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Crisp & Spicy Chicken Tenders with Blue Cheese Dipping Sauce

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Serves four.

  • 2-1/2 cups panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1-1/2 lb. chicken tenders
  • 3/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 Tbs. hot pepper sauce (I like Frank’s Red Hot)
  • 1/4 tsp. cayenne
  • 3/4 cup crumbled blue cheese (about 4 oz.)
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 3 Tbs. milk

Pour the panko into a shallow dish (like a pie pan) and toss with 3/4 tsp. salt and 1/4 tsp. pepper.

Trim off any exposed tendon ends from the wide tips of the chicken tenders, if necessary. In a medium bowl, whisk 1/4 cup of the mayonnaise with the hot sauce, cayenne, and 1/8 tsp. salt. Add the chicken and toss with your hands to coat well. Coat each tender in the panko and arrange in a single layer on a heavy-duty rimmed baking sheet. Refrigerate while you heat the broiler and make the sauce. Position an oven rack 6 inches from the broiler element and heat the broiler on high for at least 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, combine the remaining 1/2 cup mayonnaise with the blue cheese, sour cream, milk, 1/2 tsp. salt, and a few grinds of pepper in a medium bowl. Whisk until well combined and only small bits of cheese remain intact. Broil the tenders, flipping once, until they are crisp and golden brown in spots on the outside and cooked through, 4 to 6 minutes per side (rotate the pan as needed for even browning). Transfer the tenders to a platter or to individual plates and serve with the dipping sauce.

Serving Suggestions

As with Buffalo wings, fresh carrot and celery sticks are perfect here.

nutrition information (per serving):
Calories (kcal): 710; Fat (g): fat g 51; Fat Calories (kcal): 460; Saturated Fat (g): sat fat g 14; Protein (g): protein g 43; Monounsaturated Fat (g): 5; Carbohydrates (g): carbs g 18; Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 1.5; Sodium (mg): sodium mg 1190; Cholesterol (mg): cholesterol mg 140; Fiber (g): fiber g 1;

Photo: Scott Phillips

These were the crispest, most flavorful chicken tenders I have ever made! They were spicy but not overwhelmingly so - more flavor than spice I would say. Either way, this is my new go to recipe for chicken tenders. Perfect for game day! :-)

not a fan, needs to be hotter

This was so easy! I have tried a few different ways of baking instead of frying "breaded" chicken, and this is by far the best and easiest. I would even change this up with herbs and parmesan instead of the hot sauce for variation. Great for a week night... or a party!

Turned out wonderful - the panko was crisp and the chicken was moist. Nice "buffalo wing" flavor without the mess.

These are GREAT. I made them for our superbowl party and everyone loved them. Using panko makes them so crunchy and so much better than deep fried. There is just the right amount of spice.

This is so quick and easy my husband has the recipe memorized and cooks it nights I work late! The panko adds the perfect crisp. We don't serve this with the blue cheese sauce, but usually honey mustard instead.

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