Best Air Fried Chicken Strips or Tenders
Crispy chicken tenders cooked in the air fryer come out so crispy and with much less oil! You guys, we’re all so obsessed with these air fired chicken tenders and your kids will love it. The hot circulating air of the air fryer makes the chicken tenders so crispy and perfect. All it takes is some oil spray and the chicken strips cook much healthier than deep frying. When we tested these in the regular conventional oven, they still don’t come out as crispy as the air fryer.
Video: Air Fried Chicken Strips Recipe
Different types of breading and don’t let it burn
There’s different types of breading you can enjoy: italian bread crumbs or japanese panko are two popular options. For low carb and keto breading, you can use crushed pork rinds or almond flour. What ever you use, don’t let it burn in the air fryer! The hot circulating air will blow around the dry breading, which will touch the heating coils and burn. So it’s important that you spray enough oil on the bread to hold it to the chicken. Also, enough oil spray will make the chicken crispy. If you miss oiling any breading spots, they will cook dry and hard, not crispy. Hope you enjoy our air fried chicken tenders!
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There are so many options for the breading that come out crispy and accommodate different dietary choices. We love them all, each giving slightly different texture and flavor.
Lots of factors influence how the chicken strips cook. They all vary in size and thickness, so you’ll have to adjust timing. All air fryers are different and some cook much hotter than others. Once you cook your first batch, you’ll know more of what works for your model of air fryer and size of food. These recipes were tested on basket style air fryers. Make sure to spray the tenders to completely coat all the dry spots of breading or else is may cook up dry and crunchy instead of crispy. Want to know what oils and sprayers are best for an air fryer? This article is a great write up. Read more recipe notes below the recipe.
- 1 pound chicken tenders , or boneless skinless chicken breast, tenders, or thighs
- 1-2 cups breading of choice - breadcrumbs, panko, crushed pork rinds or almond flour
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt , to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper , to taste
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- Cooking Spray
If chicken into strips (not necessary if using chicken tenders). Make sure they are even sized so that they cook evenly. The thicker they are, the longer they will take to cook. Combine the salt, black pepper, garlic powder, and paprika. Season chicken strips with the spices. Set aside.
- In put the breading in a medium bowl. In another medium bowl, beat the eggs until smooth.
- Preheat the Air Fryer at 370°F/188°C for 4 minutes.
- Dredge chicken cutlets strips in egg, then breading of choice. Press chicken cutlets into the bowl of breading so that they completely coat the chicken cutlet. Repeat this process for all chicken pieces. Generously spray both all sides of all the coated chicken with oil spray to coat all dry spots.
- Air Fry at 370°F/188°C for 8-14 minutes, depending on the size and thickness of your tenders. After 6 minutes, flip the chicken tenders. Lightly spray any dry spots than then continue cooking for the remaining time or until they are crispy brown or internal temperature of the chicken reaches 165°F/74°C.
Serve chicken strips with your favorite dip: ketchup, mustard, bbq sauce, etc.
Air Frying Tips and Notes:
Make sure to spray with oil to completely coat the breading.
Shake or turn if needed. Don’t overcrowd the air fryer basket.
If you don’t want to pre-heat the air fryer, just add a couple minutes to your first batch.
Recipes were tested in 3.4 to 6 qt air fryers. If using a larger air fryer, the recipe might cook quicker so adjust cooking time.
Remember to set a timer to shake/flip/toss as directed in recipe.