This is obviously a recipe today, but I’m going to categorize this one under Motherhood, as well, because these are some major kid favorites around our house. With my boys, they’ve recently decided that they no longer like the chicken nugget “crumbs” that flake off the typical Tyson chicken nuggets. *sigh…what?!* Then I discovered battered chicken nuggets and was instantly appalled at the ingredients and calorie count, so I was back to the drawing board. These chicken strips are the perfect juicy, not to crumb-y, homemade chicken strips that not only kids, but also your grown-ups, will love.
These are one of those in a hurry, or don’t want to spend too much time prepping, or just want to enjoy the sunshine a little while longer, kind of proteins. The prep is minimal, the cook time is less than 20 minutes, and a crispy, juicy dippable main dish is ready for your whole family.
My big tip for these? Don’t substitute the panko. Panko is a Japanese-style breadcrumb that actually is made from crustless bread that’s grounded down into flaky, airy crumbs. It tends to stay crispier than regular breadcrumbs and won’t absorb as much liquid or grease. Add that crispiness with the pecan bits and you’ve got a breading to die for!
Pecan Crusted Chicken Tenders
- 1 – 1.5 lbs. chicken tenders
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise
- 2 Tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 1 cup chopped pecans
- 1 cup panko bread crumbs
- 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
- Rinse chicken tenders and pat dry. Season both sides with salt and pepper and set aside.
- Preheat oven to 400.° Prepare pan by placing a rack on a cookie sheet and lightly coating with cooking spray. For easy clean-up, cover cookie sheet in foil first.
- In one shallow bowl, mix together mayonnaise and Dijon mustard. In a separate shallow bowl, combine pecans, panko, and Parmesan cheese.
- Coat each chicken tender with the mayo mixture and then roll in the pecan mixture. Place on coated rack, spacing at least 1" apart. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until chicken is cooked through and breading is golden brown.
- Serve immediately with your favorite dipping sauce and enjoy!