Baked Chicken Tender Recipe Without Breading

Today, let’s dive into the delightful realm of baked chicken tenders without breading. As someone well-versed in the culinary arts, you likely appreciate the beauty of simplicity in cooking. That’s precisely what this concept is all about – stripping away the excess to let the true flavours of the succulent chicken shine through. Picture juicy, tender chicken with a crispy exterior straight from the oven. But why go breading-free, you ask? Besides being a healthier alternative, it allows the natural flavours to take centre stage, promising a satisfying crunch without the guilt. Let’s embark on this flavorful journey together! 🍗✨

Baked Chicken Tender Recipes Without Breading


  • Chicken tenders
  • Olive oil or cooking spray
  • Seasonings (e.g., salt, pepper, garlic powder, paprika)
  • Optional: herbs (e.g., thyme, rosemary)

1. Chicken Tenders: Start with fresh, boneless, skinless chicken tenders. They’re the star of our dish, so make sure to get the best quality available.

2. Olive Oil or Cooking Spray: You’ll need olive oil or cooking spray to help crisp the chicken in the oven. It adds a delicious flavor and helps prevent the chicken from sticking to the pan.

3. Seasonings: Gather your favourite seasonings to add flavour to the chicken. Please keep it simple with salt, pepper, garlic powder, and paprika. These classic seasonings create a perfect balance of flavors.

4. Optional Herbs: Consider adding herbs like thyme or rosemary to your chicken for extra freshness and aroma. They elevate the dish and add a touch of elegance to your meal.

Now that we have all our ingredients ready head to the kitchen and start cooking some delicious baked chicken tenders!

Preparing Chicken Tenders

1. Preheat Oven: Before we start prepping the chicken, preheat your oven to the specified temperature. For this recipe, aim for around 375°F (190°C). Preheating ensures that the oven reaches the desired temperature, allowing the chicken to cook evenly and achieve that perfect golden crispiness.

2. Trim Excess Fat: Take each chicken tender and trim any excess fat using a sharp knife or kitchen shears. Removing excess fat helps reduce the calorie content. It ensures that the chicken cooks more evenly and doesn’t become overly greasy.

3. Pat Dry: Once the fat is trimmed, it’s time to pat the chicken tenders dry with paper towels. This step removes any excess moisture from the chicken’s surface, which helps achieve a crispy exterior during baking. Dried chicken absorbs seasonings better, resulting in a more flavorful dish.

With these prep steps done, our chicken tenders are ready to be seasoned and baked to perfection! Let’s keep the cooking journey going.

Seasoning the Chicken

Now it’s time to add some flavor to our baked chicken tenders without breading:

1. Drizzle with Olive Oil or Use Cooking Spray: Start by drizzling a small amount of olive oil over the chicken tenders or using cooking spray to lightly coat them. This step helps achieve a crispy texture while baking and adds a touch of richness to the flavor. Make sure to coat each tender evenly for consistent results.

2. Sprinkle Seasonings: Sprinkle your desired seasonings evenly over the chicken tenders. You can use a combination of salt, pepper, garlic powder, and paprika for a classic flavor profile. Adjust the amount of seasoning according to your taste preferences, but remember to do it sparingly, as you can always add more later if needed.

3. Massage Seasonings In: Once the seasonings are sprinkled over the chicken, gently massage them into the meat with your fingertips. This helps ensure that the seasonings are evenly distributed and adhere well to the surface of the chicken tenders. Take your time with this step to ensure every bite is flavorful.

Our chicken tenders are perfectly seasoned; they’re ready to hit the oven and start cooking up a storm! Let’s keep the culinary adventure going.

Baking Process

Let’s move on to the baking process for our baked chicken tenders without breading:

1. Arrange on Baking Sheet: After seasoning the chicken tenders, arrange them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or aluminum foil. This prevents the chicken from sticking to the pan and makes cleanup a breeze. Make sure to space the chicken tenders evenly apart to allow for even cooking.

2. Bake in Preheated Oven: Once arranged, place the baking sheet with the chicken tenders into the preheated oven. Bake them for the recommended time, typically around 20-25 minutes at 375°F (190°C). Keep an eye on them towards the end of the cooking time to avoid overcooking.

3. Ensure Proper Cooking Temperature: To ensure the chicken is thoroughly cooked, use a meat thermometer to check its internal temperature. The chicken should reach a minimum internal temperature of 165°F (74°C) to be safe to eat. Insert the thermometer into the thickest part of the chicken tender to get an accurate reading.

With these baking steps completed, our delicious baked chicken tenders are ready to be enjoyed! Let’s savour the aroma and flavour of our homemade creation.

Serving Suggestions

Let’s explore some delightful serving suggestions for our scrumptious baked chicken tenders without breading:

1. Serve with Dipping Sauces: Present your hot, freshly baked chicken tenders alongside dipping sauces. Options abound, from classic barbecue sauce to tangy honey mustard or creamy ranch. Dipping sauces adds flavor and fun to the meal, allowing everyone to customize their dining experience.

2. Pair with Side Dishes: Complement your chicken tenders with mouthwatering side dishes. Consider serving them alongside steamed vegetables for a healthy and nutritious option. Alternatively, opt for roasted potatoes for a comforting and hearty addition. If you’re craving something lighter, a fresh salad makes for a refreshing accompaniment, balancing out the richness of the chicken.

By incorporating these serving suggestions, you can elevate your baked chicken tenders into a complete and satisfying meal that’s sure to please everyone at the table. So gather your favorite sauces and side dishes and indulge in a delicious culinary experience!

Tips for Success

Let’s dive into some valuable tips to ensure success with our baked chicken tenders without breading:

1. Use a Meat Thermometer: To guarantee that your chicken is cooked through but not overcooked, rely on a meat thermometer. Please insert it into the thickest part of the chicken tender and ensure it reaches an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C). This step ensures food safety while maintaining the tenderness and juiciness of the chicken.

2. Marinate for Extra Flavor: Enhance the flavor of your chicken tenders by marinating them before baking. Prepare a mixture of olive oil, lemon juice, and favorite herbs, such as thyme or rosemary. Allow the chicken to marinate in this flavorful blend for at least 30 minutes before baking. Marinating not only adds depth of flavor but also helps tenderize the meat.

3. Experiment with Seasoning Blends: Be bold and get creative with your seasoning blends to suit your taste preferences. Explore different herbs, spices, and aromatics combinations to create unique flavor profiles. Whether you prefer a smoky barbecue rub, a zesty citrus marinade, or a savory herb blend, experimenting with seasonings allows you to tailor the dish to your liking.

By incorporating these tips into your cooking routine, you’ll ensure that your baked chicken tenders turn out perfectly tender, flavorful, and utterly delicious every time. So grab your apron and let your culinary creativity soar!

Additional Ideas

Let’s explore some creative additional ideas to elevate our baked chicken tenders without breading:

1. Substitute Chicken Breasts: Instead of using chicken tenders, consider substituting them with boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut into strips. This allows for a larger portion size and provides a heartier meal option. Slice the chicken breasts into strips of similar size to ensure even cooking.

2. Incorporate Cheese or Nutritional Yeast: For a cheesy flavor without needing breading, consider incorporating grated Parmesan cheese or nutritional yeast into your seasoning mixture. Sprinkle the cheese or yeast over the seasoned chicken tenders before baking. The cheese will melt as they cook and form a deliciously savory crust on the chicken.

3. Add Citrus Juice for Tanginess: To impart a tangy twist to your seasoning, add a splash of citrus juice, such as lemon or lime, to the chicken. The acidity of the citrus juice brightens up the flavors and adds a refreshing tanginess to the dish. Drizzle the juice over the seasoned chicken tenders before baking for extra flavor.

By incorporating these additional ideas, you can add variety and excitement to your baked chicken tenders recipe repertoire. So, whether you’re craving a cheesy indulgence or a zesty burst of citrus, there are plenty of ways to customize and enhance this classic dish to suit your taste preferences. Let’s keep the culinary creativity flowing!


Can I achieve a crispy texture without using breading?

You can achieve a crispy texture by coating the chicken tenders with a light layer of olive oil before baking.

How do I ensure the chicken stays moist without breading?

Baking the chicken tenders at the right temperature and for the correct duration helps retain moisture without needing breading.

Can I still add flavor to the chicken without breading?

Absolutely! Season the chicken tenders with your favourite herbs, spices, and marinades to infuse them with delicious flavour.

Are baked chicken tenders without breading healthier than breaded versions?

Yes, omitting the breading reduces the calorie and carbohydrate content, making them a healthier option.

How can I prevent the chicken from sticking to the baking sheet?

Use parchment paper or aluminum foil to line the baking sheet before arranging the chicken tenders to prevent sticking.


Baked chicken tenders recipes without breading offer a delightful alternative for those seeking a healthier yet equally flavorful option. By following simple steps like preheating the oven, seasoning the chicken with herbs and spices, and baking until reaching the desired temperature, anyone can achieve crispy, tender chicken without the need for breading. Moreover, incorporating additional ideas such as substituting chicken breasts, adding cheese or nutritional yeast for extra flavor, and experimenting with citrus juices allows for endless customization. With the proper techniques and creative flair, a satisfying meal of baked chicken tenders sans breading is achievable and delicious.

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