Air Fryer Chicken Tenders are juicy on the inside and crispy on the outside. They’re kid friendly, Whole30, paleo, gluten and grain free. Make this recipe for healthy baked chicken strips in an air fryer or your oven. They have a beautiful golden color from turmeric, for an anti-inflammatory boost!
Disclosure – We are grateful to be partnering with Bob’s Red Mill on this air fryer chicken post. Thank you for supporting the brands that allow me to create gluten free and dairy free recipes
Let’s recap! Remember, for the entire month of May, we’re focusing on KID FRIENDLY recipes with pantry staples. Easy for KIDS to make in 30 minutes! Recipes you can make with minimal ingredients and/or pantry staples. Which leads me to this very SIMPLE and quick kid friendly recipe. Ahhh almond crusted crispy chicken tenders! Aka my “Golden Nuggets.” Haha!
Thanks to the invention of the air fryer, our days of deep-fried foods are long gone, my friends. You can have the taste and texture of frying, without all of the oil and mess. It’s fantastic!
Air frying chicken strips makes this recipe healthier. Plus, it’s easy for kids to help make, because NO frying is needed.
Ingredients for Air Fryer or Healthy Baked Chicken Strips
This is such a simple, healthy baked chicken strips recipe – it only requires 7 ingredients!
- chicken tenderloins – If you can’t find chicken tenderloins, it’s not a problem. Just use a sharp knife to cut boneless, skinless chicken breasts lengthwise into 4 or 5 pieces.
- Super fine almond flour – This is just an estimate – use more if you’re unsure. For a finer texture, I use Bob’s Red Mill super fine almond flour.
- fine grain sea salt or seasoned salt blend of choice
- pinch of ground turmeric
- garlic powder
- onion powder
- black pepper
- 1 egg
ABOUT THE ALMOND FLOUR
Blanched almond flour is a wonderful option for those with gluten and/or grain intolerance. Plus, it’s low carb and paleo-friendly!
I like to use the Bob’s Red Mill brand because it’s made from whole, California-grown almonds. No fillers or other unwanted ingredients.
The super fine texture is perfect for air frying, but also for baking. I use it to make everything from air fried chicken tenders to my Chocolate Almond No Bake Protein Bars and even Almond Flour Cookies.
How to make air fryer chicken tenders
Come on, what’s NOT to love about this recipe? The air fryer chicken tenders are gluten free, dairy free, low carb/keto, and Whole30 friendly – without even trying! Oh, and this healthy meal is ready to eat in 30 minutes, with no mess and no fuss!
No worries if you aren’t on the air fryer wagon yet because you can make these healthy baked chicken strips in an oven, too. I’ve got the instructions for you down below.
Before you start making the recipe, you’ll want to create a breading station to make things easier.
First, the chicken tenders will get a coating of egg, so that will go into one dish. The other dish is where they’ll take a dip into the almond flour breading mixture.
Because the chicken strips are long and relatively thin, I find that it’s easiest to use two rectangular baking dishes. Or, if you have wide bowls, they’ll do the job just as well.
Are you ready? Let’s make a winner, winner, anti-inflammatory chicken dinner!
1. PREHEAT THE AIR FRYER OR OVEN
If you’ll be making air fried chicken tenders, set your air fryer to 370 F. Or, if you’re making the healthy baked chicken strips in your oven, preheat the oven to 400 F.
2. MAKE THE BREADING and EGG WASH
- In a wide bowl or a shallow dish, combine the almond flour, salt, turmeric, garlic powder, and black pepper. Use a fork to whisk it all together to combine the flavors, and then set it aside.
- Next, whisk the egg in the other wide bowl or shallow dish, and set that aside.
3. COAT THE CHICKEN
Coat one chicken tender at a time in egg and then dredge in the turmeric almond flour mixture. Place in air fryer or, if you’re baking them in the oven, place them on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Repeat until all of the chicken tenders have a coating of almond flour mixture.
4. BAKE or AIR FRY
If you’re air frying, it will take about 16 minutes. To bake them in the oven, 20 -22 minutes. Regardless of which method you use, be sure to flip the tenders over half way through the cooking time.
Remove once cooked and place on a warm plate to rest for a few minutes before serving.
- Can I make this recipe ahead?
The answer is, partially. You can definitely make the breading ahead, and if you aren’t using tenderloins, you cut the chicken breasts into strips ahead of time. Really, the only thing that you might want to wait to do until just before air frying is whisking the egg.
- Can I freeze air fried chicken strips?
Absolutely, you can! Just be sure that they are completely cool before you wrap and freeze them. Otherwise, they may develop freezer burn more quickly. If they’re in an air tight container or Ziploc bag, you can keep them frozen for up to 3 months.
- What should I serve with this meal?
Need some delicious kid friendly side dish ideas? My suggestions are Oven Baked Sweet Potato Fries or Stone Baked Tortilla Chips with Avocado Cranberry Salsa.
Oh, and since the air fryer is already out, finish off the meal with some Air Fried Sweet Potato Dessert Fries!
Golden Air Fryer Chicken Tenders are kid friendly, paleo, Whole30, gluten free and grain free. Make this recipe for healthy baked chicken strips in an air fryer or oven.
- 1 lb boneless skinless chicken tenderloins
- 1 1/2 – 2 cups blanched almond flour (an estimate – use more if not sure)
- 1 tsp fine grain sea salt or seasoned salt blend of choice
- 1 tsp ground turmeric
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1 large egg, whisked
- In a wide bowl or shallow dish, combine the almond flour, salt, turmeric, garlic powder, and black pepper. Whisk together with fork to combine the flavors. Set aside.
- Whisk the egg in a wide bowl and set aside.
- Coat one chicken tender at a time in the whisked egg bowl, and then dredge in the turmeric almond flour mixture. Place in air fryer or on lined baking sheet (if using oven). Repeat until you have coated all the chicken strips in the almond flour mixture.
- AIR FRY at 370 F. for 16 -17 minutes. OVEN option – Place breaded chicken on lined baking sheet then cook in preheated oven at 400 F for 20 -22 minutes, flipping halfway through cooking time.
- Remove when internal temperature reaches 163 F. and place on hot plate to rest for 5 minutes. The chicken will continue to cook to a safe internal temperature of 165 F.
- Serve or cool and store for later. Can be frozen for up to 3 months.
- Depending on what type of air fryer you have, you may need to adjust cooking times. I used Krups Air Fryer.
- Category: Main
- Method: Air Fryer
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: air fryer chicken tenders, healthy baked chicken strips, air fried chicken tenders, chicken breasts
Alright my friends, hope you (and/or your kids, if you have them) are as excited as I was to try these “GOLDEN Nuggets.” I mean seriously, this takes me back to childhood! In the best possible way. Take pictures and tag us if you do! 😉