A few weeks ago I brought you this incredible paleo chocolate cake and today I’m bringing you something just as nostalgic: baked paleo chicken tenders!
Over the past year, so many of you have requested more recipes using almond and coconut flour so I’ve decided to bring you another. It’s been a really fun challenge for me to create grain free, gluten free and paleo-friendly meals for you. I have to say that I’m loving it and feeling constantly inspired by what you’re looking for, so keep the requests coming!
Whether you grew up on chicken fingers, chicken strips, or just good old tenders, you’re going to love these healthy baked chicken tenders. They’re basically a grown-up version of a classic, and I’m seriously in loveeeeee.
This chicken tenders recipe is perfect for adults and the kiddos, so serve them for a fun weeknight dinner that’s healthy and protein-packed. They would also make great appetizers for a party (omg everyone BYO sauce).
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Ingredients in these crispy baked chicken tenders
These delicious & easy oven baked chicken tenders are made with simple ingredients including the perfect spice mix and gluten free flours. Here’s everything you’ll need:
- Chicken: you’ll need a pound of boneless, skinless chicken tenders.
- Eggs: you’ll need a couple of eggs to dunk the chicken tenders in so that the flour coating sticks well.
- Milk: I like to use unsweetened almond milk to keep the chicken tenders dairy free, but you can use any milk you’d like. It gets mixed into the flour and helps give these chicken tenders a delicious crumb.
- Flour: instead of traditional panko breadcrumbs, the mixture of almond flour and coconut flour gives these chicken tenders a gluten free, paleo, but equally crispy, makeover!
- Spices: we’re seasoning the chicken tenders with a blend of onion powder, paprika, garlic powder, and a pinch of cayenne for heat.
How to make healthy baked chicken tenders
- Whisk the wet ingredients. Start by whisking the eggs and milk together until they’re nice and smooth.
- Mix the flour & spices. In a separate bowl whisk the flours and all of the spices together. Add a couple tablespoons of milk and mix with a fork to create a crumb-like texture.
- Dip the tenders. Dip both sides of each chicken tender in the flour mixture, then into the egg mixture, and back into the flour mixture. Place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or foil. You can also place them on a wire rack on top of your sheet pan if you’d like (just be sure to spray the grates).
- Spray & bake. Spray the chicken tender with nonstick cooking spray (this gets them nice and crispy!) then bake at 400 degrees F for 15-20 minutes until fully cooked.
- Sauce & serve. Make your honey mustard dip (or any sauces you’d like) and serve them up with the healthy chicken tenders.
Let’s talk dipping sauces
I like serving these babies with an easy homemade honey mustard sauce made from dijon mustard, honey, and a little water, but you can choose whatever sauces your heart desires. Here are some other great sauce ideas:
- Healthy Greek Yogurt Ranch Dressing
- Bleu Cheese Yogurt Dip
- Healthy Thai Peanut Sauce
- Creamy Feta Yogurt Dip
- Healthy Chipotle Ranch Dressing
And of course, good old BBQ sauce or ketchup!
Storing & freezing tips
- To store: store any leftover homemade chicken tenders in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4-5 days. To reheat, place the chicken tenders on a baking sheet and broil them on high for a couple of minutes until heated through and crispy on the outside.
- To freeze: let the chicken tenders cool completely before transferring them to a cookie sheet. Freeze them in a single layer on the cookie sheet to ensure that they don’t stick together, then transfer them to a freezer-safe bag or container for up to 3 months. Reheat in the oven until they’re crispy.
More chicken recipes you’ll love
- The Best Crispy Baked Chicken Nuggets
- Baked or Grilled Honey Mustard Chicken (with the best honey mustard marinade!)
- Grilled Tahini Chicken Caesar Sandwiches
- Spicy Ranch Chopped Chicken Cabbage Salad
- BBQ Ranch Chicken Quinoa Bowls
Get all of my chicken recipes here!
I hope you love these baked chicken tenders! If you make them be sure to leave a comment and a rating so I know how you liked them. Enjoy, xo!
Baked Paleo Chicken Tenders with Honey Mustard Dip
Delicious baked chicken tenders made with a mix of almond and coconut flour to keep them gluten free and paleo. These healthy baked chicken tenders are perfect for an easy weeknight dinner that both kids and adults will love! Enjoy with your fav sides and dipping sauces.
- For the chicken tenders:
- 2 large eggs (or 3 small eggs)
- 2 tablespoons almond milk (or milk of choice)
- 1/3 cup coconut flour
- 3/4 almond flour or almond meal
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 2 tablespoons almond milk (or milk of choice)
- 1 pound boneless skinless chicken tenders
- Coconut oil cooking spray
- For the honey mustard dipping sauce:
- 3 tablespoons dijon mustard
- 2 tablespoons honey
- ½ tablespoon warm water
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs and 2 tablespoons of milk.
In a separate large bowl, mix together coconut flour, almond flour, salt, black pepper, onion powder, paprika, garlic powder, and cayenne pepper. Add 2 tablespoons of milk to the bowl and use a fork to mix together to form a ‘crumb-like’ texture.
Dip each chicken tender into flour mixture, then into egg mixture (coating the tender entirely), then back into flour mixture to coat the chicken strips. This should create a crumb-like look. Place each strip on the prepared baking sheet, 2 inches apart.
Generously spray the tops of the chicken strips with cooking oil spray. Bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes until cooked through.
To make the honey mustard dipping sauce: add dijon mustard, honey and warm water to a bowl and mix together until well-combined. Then get dipping!
See the full post for sauce ideas, storing & freezing tips!
Chicken tenders for the win! I made some similar ones a few months back when my nephew was in town and he gobbled them up! My SIL said he doesn’t normally eat chicken so she was stoked!!
Amazing! You’ll have to give these a try and let me know how you like them 🙂
Omg, yes! I can’t decide what I like best about this recipe, that it’s a healthier way to do chicken nuggets for the fam, or that it’s chicken tenders in the first place!!!! Thanks as always, Monique!
YES all of the above! Perfect for kids and adults 🙂 Hope you love these Tori!
Got a pound of chicken fingers in my freezer just waiting to made with this recipe!! Seriously these look amazing. I loveee honey mustard, but another one of my fave sauces has always been Kraft BBQ sauce LOL! So healthy, but so gooddd.
I meant *unhealthy oops!
YES perfect timing! Love a good BBQ sauce too 😉
yum. i LOVE chicken strips and my favorite dipping sauce for fries is a honey dijon dipping sauce! i’m so going to try this and make the chicken in my air fryer <3
Perfect!! Let me know how it goes in your air fryer!
I LOVE making homemade chicken tenders, such a classic and I honestly could have them every week! So simple too, chicken tenders + sweet potato fries + ketchup = DONE. (and maybe some veggies 🙂 )
Can’t wait to try this recipe out, looks delicious as always Monique!
Aren’t they the best?! And YES with sweet potato fries. Hope you love this version!
These look awesome. I would never have thought to mix the milk in with the flours to get that texture. Genius! I always love a good honey mustard, but have also come to love sweet chili sauce. I have made it homemade and it is so much better than the bottles stuff with high fructose corn syrup in it. Also muffin week sounds like a dream week for me. Can’t wait!
It gives the chicken that nice crispy crumb! Sweet chili sauce sounds incredible too. Stay tuned for all of the muffins next week 🙂
Just made these for lunch and oh my goodness SO GOOOOOD! I broiled them for a few mins on each side after baking to get them extra crispy and they were divine. Thanks for the great recipe! I’m sure it’ll become a part of the rotation.
YUM that’s a great idea! So glad you enjoyed 🙂
Made these for dinner last night and they turned out SO good! Even my picky eater husband loved them! This recipe will definitely be a regular for us and I can’t wait to make them when our nieces & nephews stay with us! 🙂 Thanks for nourishing recipes that we can be excited about!
Amazing!! So happy to hear that. Perfect for kiddos and adults 🙂
My family is not a fan of coconut flavor which I know coconut flour can provide. Do these have that coconut flavor to them?
To me these don’t really have a coconut flavor to them!
I love your recipes Monique!!! and this is now one of my favorites, I´m obsessed with chicken fingers so this is the perfect way to enjoy them in a healthy way. I made this recipe today and they ended up PERFECT!
Thanks for your hard work and dedication to every recipe you prepare for us 🙂
Thanks so much Macarena!! So happy to hear that 🙂
I’m not doing paleo just watching carbs. Can use normal milk?
I made these tonight for my family and they were sooo delicious!! Even my picky 2 year old gobbled them up!
Amazing!! So happy to hear that.
I want to make these and have coconut flour but not almond flour or meal. Can I make it with a different flour or breadcrumbs? I don’t need it to be paleo (or gluten free). Thanks!
Awesome recipe! A 5-Star newfound favorite. Thanks!
So happy you found a new favorite!!
Made these for dinner last night and they were amazing :DDD I’ve really missed breaded chicken but these were SO satisfying. I think i’ll cook them a little on the underside at the end next time, but the flavour was spectacular!! Especially with the dipping sauce 🙂
Have you tried making these chicken fingers in a air fryer? If you have do you have time suggestions?
How well will these freeze? Thanks!
I haven’t tried freezing these, but I think it should work! Check out the instructions here – just make sure they’re completely cooled before freezing 🙂
I made these exactly as the directions set out and they were pretty terrible to be honest. Pretty disappointing.
I’m surprised to hear that! Everyone I know that has made these has loved them – maybe double check the recipe + video?
Trying these tonight!! So excited I seriously love all your recipes. But question: any substitute to the coconut flour? And is it 3/4 cup almond flour (it doesn’t specify)?
You could try tapioca flour, oat flour or regular flour! And yes, it’s cup (thank you for the catch!)
I just made these and they were amazing! I didn’t make the honey mustard sauce but I don’t think I would have even used it because the seasoning in the breading was delicious
So glad you liked them!
I just finished making these and they are a hit for sure!!! Loved them. I only had quinoa flour on hand and used that, delicious.
Perfect! Glad the quinoa flour worked out. Love these for dinner!
Making these tonight but I don’t have a cooking spray. Can i just brush or drizzle some oil on them?
That should work!
Any idea for an egg substitute? My son is allergic. Thanks!
I’m sorry, I haven’t test it without eggs!
Hey Monique! Love this recipe…do you think it could work with fish instead?
Hey Angela! As long as the fish is patted dry before you do the egg coat then I think it would work very well. Let me know if you try it.
Can you make them using only the Almond Flour?
I haven’t tried it, but I’m sure it would work well. Let us know if you test it out!
These were really easy, I just used regular milk instead of almond milk and reduced the cayenne a bit, baked on convection setting and they were really good! My kids are pretty young and a bit picky lately…they didn’t like the breading too much, but just pulled off and ate the chicken! I loved them, breading and all!
Perfect! Hopefully they’ll come around to them later on 🙂 glad you enjoyed!
The flavor of these was delicious, but mine were not at all crispy despite following the recipe. Could that be because I increased the recipe and then put two pans in the oven at the same time?
Yes this is likely due to there being two pans in the oven. Sometimes then the heat doesn’t circulate in the oven properly. Maybe try convection on your oven next time.
I made this recipe with whole-wheat flour instead of coconut flour due to allergies. The flavors in this recipe are phenomenal. The chicken pairs perfectly with the dipping sauce. I never knew I liked honey dipping sauce until I tried it made from scratch. I had some problems getting a crispy texture all over, can you suggest an alternate to coconut flour? Also, does the chicken freeze well?
Just noticed that you posted oat flour would also work. Thanks
Let me know if you try these with oat flour! And yes, these should freeze well. Enjoy!
Monique, you’ve done it again! SO delicious!! (even boyfriend approved)! The honey mustard sauce was the perfect addition. We had leftovers the next day so I decided to throw together a “Chicken Parmesan”- AK Chicken tenders, traders cauli gnocchi and marinara sauce. SO good! Thank you thank you 🙏
Amazing! Love that idea!!
Looking forward to trying out your recipes
The breading all crumbled and fell off and didn’t have much flavor aside from the coconut flour making it a bit sweet.
Thanks for sharing this! I loved getting to have chicken fingers again!
Feedback from myself and the hubby (who doesn’t eat paleo) is that it’s too much breading, I’d try just starting with the egg dip and then the crumbs next time. Our dijon mustard might be hotter than average – I used 2 TB dijon and one of regular mustard and it was still too hot for all of us, so would try 1 TB dijon and 2 regular mustard next time.
Thank you so much for your feedback, I really appreciate it!