Air Fryer Panko Chicken Tenders

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You are going to love these Air Fryer Panko Chicken Tenders with a pretzel crust! I am all about making favorite recipes healthier. My husband loves chicken tenders from his favorite takeout place. So, I challenged myself to find a homemade version he’d like even more.

Air Fryer Panko Chicken Tenders with a Pretzel Crust

Air Fryer Panko Chicken Tenders

One of the reasons that I love my air fryer is that it lets me enjoy “fried” foods without all of the added grease and oil. I love fried foods whether it’s mozzarella sticks or fried vegetable sticks. But, I don’t like the extra fat that goes along with the traditional versions. And, all that extra oil isn’t good for my cholesterol either. Thankfully, using an air fryer gives food a crispy coating without all that fat.

So, this Air Fryer Panko Chicken has both panko breadcrumbs and crushed pretzels. The combination gives these tenders a nice crunch. And, it reminds my husband of his favorite takeout chicken tenders.

Air Fryer Panko Chicken Breasts

My husband is all about finger food. So, when we have chicken he likes popcorn, nuggets, or tenders for exactly that reason. But, if you prefer to make air fryer breaded chicken breasts, you can do that.

Air Fryer Panko Chicken Tenders with Pretzel Crust

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You will need to increase the cooking time to about 30 minutes. It will depend on how large your chicken breasts are and how powerful your air fryer is. Check the manual to see what the manufacturer recommends. 

Benefits of air frying

So, I’ve already talked about how an air fryer lets you get crispy food without frying. But, using an air fryer rather than deep frying or baking helps you keep the kitchen cool. In the summertime, when it’s hot, the last thing I want to do is turn on the oven. 

Air Fryer Panko Chicken Tenders with a Pretzel Crust

How do you make Air Fryer Panko Chicken?

You’ll need just a few simple ingredients. You can use plain Panko Breadcrumbs if you want and add your own seasonings. Or, there are some that are already seasoned with lemon, pepper, or Italian seasonings. And, of course, there are gluten-free versions if you cannot have gluten.

Once you’ve assembled the ingredients, you simply process the pretzels in your food processor until they look like breadcrumbs. Then, combine the bread crumbs, pretzel crumbs, and seasonings. Dip the chicken tenders in egg and then in the breading. Cook in your air fryer and enjoy!

Scroll to the end for the printable recipe of this Air Fryer Panko Chicken Tenders. But, here is a breakdown of the steps.

Air Fryer Panko Chicken Tenders with a Pretzel Crust

Ingredients

  • 2 cups original, seasoned pretzels ( Dots )
  • 1/2 tsp Smoked Paprika
  • ½ tsp Cajun Spice
  • 1 tsp Garlic salt
  • 3/4 cup Panko bread crumbs
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 pound chicken tenders
  • Cooking spray

breaded strips of chicken in a blue bowl

Directions

  • Add pretzels, to the bowl of your food processor, process on high until it mostly looks like bread crumbs.
  • In a small bowl add the pretzel crumb mixture and Panko crumbs, stir to combine.
  • Add all seasonings to the pretzel mixture and stir to combine.
  • Add the 2 eggs to a shallow bowl, whisk
  • Pat chicken tenders dry
  • Working one chicken tender at a time, dip first in the egg, and then the pretzel crumbs to coat.
  • Set to the side on a parchment covered baking tray.
  • Repeat with each chicken tender
  • Spray the basket of your air fryer with non-stick cooking spray
  • Add the chicken tenders to the basket, three at a time.
  • Put the basket in the air fryer and turn it on 370°F for 14 minutes.

Air Fryer Panko Chicken Tenders with a Pretzel Crust

What can I dip these in?

Well, if you ask my husband, the best thing to dip Air Fryer Panko Chicken Tenders in is barbecue sauce. I like making a honey mustard sauce. But, you can dip them in whatever your preferred dipping sauce is. Sweet and sour sauce is one of the kids’ favorites.

More chicken recipes

Yield: 4

Air Fryer Panko Chicken Tenders

Air Fryer Panko Chicken Tenders with Pretzel Crust

Air Fryer Panko Chicken Tenders with Pretzel Crust

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 14 minutes
Total Time 29 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 cups original, seasoned pretzels ( Dots )
  • 1/2 tsp Smoked Paprika
  • ½ tsp Cajun Spice
  • 1 tsp Garlic salt
  • 3/4 cup Panko bread crumbs
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 pound chicken tenders
  • Cooking spray

Instructions

    1. Add pretzels, to the bowl of your food processor, process on high until it mostly looks like bread crumbs.
    2. In a small bowl add the pretzel crumb mixture and Panko crumbs, stir to combine.
    3. Add all seasonings to the pretzel mixture and stir to combine.
    4. Add the 2 eggs to a shallow bowl, whisk
    5. Pat chicken tenders dry
    6. Working one chicken tender at a time, dip first in the egg, and then the pretzel crumbs to coat.
    7. Set to the side on a parchment covered baking tray.
    8. Repeat with each chicken tender
    9. Spray the basket of your air fryer with non-stick cooking spray
    10. Add the chicken tenders to the basket, three at a time.
    11. Put the basket in the air fryer and turn it on 370°F for 14 minutes.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

4

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 557Total Fat: 23gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 16gCholesterol: 145mgSodium: 1932mgCarbohydrates: 57gFiber: 3gSugar: 2gProtein: 30g

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