Make the best Air Fryer Chicken Tenders that are crispy on the outside and juicy on the inside with this simple recipe! These panko crusted chicken tenders taste just as good as fried chicken, but are much healthier cooked in an air fryer. They’re easy to make, and you can freeze them for a quick meal or snack later!

cooked, breaded chicken tenders stacked up on plate with small bowls of sauce on the side

I am the kid that grew up only eating chicken tenders. Okay, maybe not only chicken tenders, but pretty close to it. Before my culinary eyes were open to all of the amazing options that are out there, I ate a lot of chicken tenders. And I don’t know if it’s nostalgia, or just the fact that crispy chicken tenders are delicious, but I still love them today!

I always enjoy eating crispy chicken tenders with an array of my favorite dipping sauces. I also love to dice them up and put them in wraps or on top of a salad. Cooking these golden, crispy chicken tenders in the air fryer means that I can indulge in my favorite childhood food more often!

Air fryer chicken tenders are healthier than traditional fried chicken, since they’re not deep fried in oil. Instead, these chicken tenders are battered in flour and panko breadcrumbs, then lightly coated in cooking spray and cooked in the air fryer for just 10 minutes!

You can also batter the chicken ahead of time and store it in the fridge or freezer, so whenever you want crispy chicken strips, you can just pop them in the air fryer, and you’re ready to go!

This recipe for air fryer chicken tenders was modeled after my famous boneless wings, that have received all 5 star reviews, so you know they’re going to be great!

ingredients for air fryer chicken tenders on white wood board

Ingredients

  • Eggs – you’ll need 4 large eggs to make the egg wash to bread the chicken tenders.
  • All-purpose flour – for breading the chicken tenders.
  • Salt – to season the flour.
  • Panko breadcrumbs – to bread the chicken strips and give them an extra crispy texture!
  • Boneless, skinless chicken breasts – for this recipe, you’ll want to cut the chicken into strips, about 4-6 inches long and 1 inch wide.
  • Chicken seasoning – the SECRET INGREDIENT that makes these better than any other chicken strips you’ve ever had! Click the link above to whip up this simple 7 ingredient seasoning mix that adds so much flavor to the chicken. The combination of dried parsley, salt, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika and black pepper is perfect for this recipe!
  • Cooking spray – when air frying chicken strips, I always recommend spraying them with cooking spray first, so they get brown and crispy on the outside. 

Instructions

I’ve included step by step photos below to make this recipe easy to follow at home. For the full detailed recipe instructions and ingredient quantities, scroll to the recipe card at the bottom of this post.

Bread the chicken tenders

  1. Prepare the breading station. Whisk 4 large eggs in a shallow bowl. In another shallow bowl, combine all purpose flour and salt. In the final shallow bowl, add the panko breadcrumbs.
  2. Season the chicken. Cut the boneless skinless chicken breasts into 4-6 inch strips. Toss the strips of chicken with the chicken seasoning, until they’re fully covered.
  3. Bread the chicken. Start by placing each strip of seasoned chicken in the egg mixture. Once it’s fully covered in the egg, allow any excess to drip off before transferring the chicken to the bowl of flour. Cover the chicken completely in the flour, then add it back to the bowl of whisked eggs. Once fully covered in the egg again, dip the chicken in the breadcrumbs, pressing down slightly on all sides to make sure the chicken is fully covered in the breadcrumbs. Transfer the breaded chicken to a cutting board, then repeat with all of the remaining pieces of chicken.

Air fry the chicken tenders

  1. Preheat an air fryer to 400°F. Add the breaded chicken strips to the air fryer basket in a single layer, making sure there’s room around each piece of chicken for the air to circulate.
  2. Spray the chicken strips with cooking spray, then cook at 400°F for 4-6 minutes.
  3. Open the air fryer, flip the chicken, spray with cooking spray and cook for an additional 4-6 minutes.
  4. Remove the chicken from the air fryer and place it on a wire rack while cooking the rest of the chicken strips in the air fryer.
cooked, breaded chicken strips on a plate

Recipe tips

  • When breading chicken, always use one hand for the wet ingredients and one hand for the dry ingredients. This will prevent clumping, keep your hands from becoming coated in the breading, and it will help keep the breading ingredients separated. My Dad taught me this trick growing up, making his famous Captain Crunch Fried Chicken together! Speaking of, you can use this recipe to make an air fryer version of the Captain Crunch chicken, using crushed Captain Crunch cereal instead of the breadcrumbs.
  • To make gluten free air fryer chicken tenders, replace the all-purpose flour with a gluten-free flour blend, or rice flour. Use gluten-free panko bread crumbs, instead of traditional panko.
  • This recipe makes approximately 12 chicken tenders. If you’d like to double the recipe and freeze some for later, simply click the 2X button in the recipe card below. The ingredient amounts will automatically update for the new serving size.
  • If you don’t have an air fryer, you can make this recipe in the oven. Preheat the oven to 425°F. If your oven has a convection setting, I recommend using that. Place the chicken tenders on a wire rack, on top of a foil-lined baking sheet. Spray with cooking spray. Bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes, or until they’re golden brown. 
  • You can try other seasonings besides the chicken seasoning to add different flavors to the chicken tenders. Use my famous Chicken Wing Seasoning or Cajun Seasoning to add spice to the tenders!

Storage and reheating

This recipe makes approximately 12 chicken tenders. Store battered, uncooked chicken tenders in a freezer-safe container in the freezer for up to 3 months.

You can cook the frozen chicken tenders directly from frozen in the air fryer by adding 2 minutes to the cooking time. So the chicken tenders will need to cook for 6-8 minutes per side at 400°F.

Store cooked chicken tender leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 5 days in an airtight container. Reheat them in the air fryer at 400°F for 2-3 minutes to keep them crispy.

cooked, breaded chicken strips on plate

What to serve with them

Air fryer chicken tenders are delicious served with any of these tasty side dishes.

And these sauces for dipping!

You can also dice up the chicken tenders and add them to wraps, or salads. They’re delicious in this Buffalo Chicken Wrap or on top of this Cobb Salad.

crispy chicken tenders stacked up on plate with small bowls of sauces on the side
cooked, breaded chicken strips on a plate
Print Pin
5 stars (1 rating)
Rate this Recipe

Air Fryer Chicken Tenders

Make the best Air Fryer Chicken Tenders that are crispy on the outside and juicy on the inside with this simple recipe! These panko crusted chicken tenders taste just as good as fried chicken, but are much healthier cooked in an air fryer. They're easy to make, and you can freeze them for a quick meal or snack later!

Ingredients

Instructions

Bread the chicken

  • Whisk 4 large eggs in a shallow bowl.
  • In another shallow bowl, combine the all-purpose flour and salt.
  • In a third large shallow bowl, add the panko breadcrumbs.
  • Cut the chicken breasts into 4-6 inch strips.
  • Toss the chicken strips with the chicken seasoning, until they’re fully covered.
  • Place each piece of seasoned chicken in the egg wash.
  • Once it’s fully covered in the egg, allow any excess to drip off before transferring the chicken to the bowl of flour.
  • Cover the chicken completely in the flour, then add it back to the bowl of whisked eggs.
  • Once fully covered in the egg again, dip the chicken in the breadcrumbs, pressing down slightly on all sides to make sure the chicken is fully covered in the breadcrumbs.
  • Transfer the breaded chicken to a cutting board, then repeat with all of the remaining pieces of chicken.

Air fry the chicken

  • Preheat an air fryer to 400°F.
  • Add the chicken in batches to the air fryer in a single layer, making sure there’s room around each piece of chicken for air to flow.
  • Spray the chicken strips with cooking spray, then cook at 400°F for 4-6 minutes.
  • Open the air fryer, flip the chicken, spray with cooking spray and cook for an additional 4-6 minutes.
  • Repeat until all of the chicken tenders are cooked.

Notes

  • When breading chicken, always use one hand for the wet ingredients and one hand for the dry ingredients. This will prevent clumping, keep your hands from becoming coated in the breading, and it will help keep the breading ingredients separated.
  • To make gluten free air fryer chicken tenders, replace the all-purpose flour with a gluten-free flour blend, or rice flour. Use gluten-free panko bread crumbs, instead of traditional panko.
  • This recipe makes approximately 12 chicken tenders. If you’d like to double the recipe and freeze some for later, simply click the 2X button above. The ingredient amounts will automatically update for the new serving size.
  • If you don’t have an air fryer, you can make this recipe in the oven. Preheat the oven to 425°F. If your oven has a convection setting, I recommend using that. Place the chicken tenders on a wire rack, on top of a foil-lined baking sheet. Spray with cooking spray. Bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes, or until they’re golden brown. 
  • You can try other seasonings besides the chicken seasoning to add different flavors to the chicken tenders. Use my famous Chicken Wing Seasoning or Cajun Seasoning to add spice to the tenders!
  • Battered, uncooked chicken tenders can be stored in a freezer-safe container in the freezer for up to 3 months. The frozen chicken tenders can be cooked directly from frozen in the air fryer by adding 2 minutes to the cooking time. So the chicken tenders will need to cook for 6-8 minutes per side at 400°F.
  • Cooked chicken tender leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days in an airtight container. Reheat them in the air fryer at 400°F for 2-3 minutes to keep them crispy.

Nutrition Facts

Calories 206kcal (10%)Carbohydrates 23g (8%)Protein 18g (36%)Fat 4g (6%)Saturated Fat 1g (5%)Polyunsaturated Fat 1gMonounsaturated Fat 1gCholesterol 91mg (30%)Sodium 427mg (18%)Potassium 287mg (8%)Fiber 1g (4%)Sugar 1g (1%)Vitamin A 123mg (2%)Vitamin C 1mg (1%)Calcium 59mg (6%)Iron 2mg (11%)
Did you make this recipe?Tag @WhitneyBond on Instagram and hashtag it #WBRecipes!

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.