An easy chicken recipe that is perfect for weeknight dinners or to serve as an appetizer. Baked cornflake chicken tenders are delicious, crunchy, and perfectly dippable in your favorite sauce!
I don't care if you are 3 or 33 - everything loves chicken tenders! You are never too old to enjoy dunking a crispy juicy tender in your favorite sauce. Especially when it is honey mustard!
Being from Kentucky, fried chicken is just in our blood. And while I grew up with a mom that makes the BEST fried chicken nuggets (actually my dad is also quite the fried chicken connoisseur too!), it does require a lot of work. Nowadays I only fry up chicken for people I reallllllllyyyyy love or when I am rrreallllllyyyy craving it or for extra special occasions.
So when I am craving my home state's southern staple, but don't feel like pulling out the frying pan and cleaning up the mess of the oil, and probably want to keep it on the healthy side, these baked cornflake chicken tenders are the perfect answer!
Light and healthy, but still have that classic crunch and juicy flavor we all love! I grew up dipping chicken nuggets in honey (don't knock it until you try it! and dipping fried in honey too - BLESS! SO GOOD!) and honey mustard. Our fridge is always stocked with homemade honey mustard sauce and this is a must-have for this recipe.
So enough talking, let me show you how it is done!
- Chicken Tenders - you can also use boneless skinless chicken breast and slice it into similar size tender pieces. Both work just fine!
- Seasonings: salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, smoked paprika, dried dill, and mustard powder. These will be used to season the chicken and the cornflake mixture giving the ultimate flavor combo!
- Eggs - needed so the cornflakes will stick to the chicken.
- Pickle Juice and Hot Sauce - sounds weird but we are going to add this to the eggs. It helps give the chicken even more flavor. Trust me on this one!
- Cornflake Cereal - needs to be finely crushed so it will stick easily to the chicken.
How to Make
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Prepare a baking sheet lined with foil with a cooling rack on top.
- Prep Chicken. If using chicken breast, slice it into similar size pieces resembling chicken tender sizes. Sprinkle the chicken tenders with salt and pepper on both sides.
- Coating Chicken. You will need 2 separate pie plates of large bows. In one, add the whisked eggs, pickle juice, and hot sauce. Whisk together. In the other bowl, add the finely crushed Cornflake cereal and spices and mix them together. Take a chicken tender and coat it entirely in the egg mixture. Then place in the cornflakes and gently press down to coat each side. Use your fingers to press down firmly making sure the cornflakes stick to all sides. Remove and lay on a cooling rack on the baking sheet. Repeat with all of the chicken tenders,
- Bake. Place in the oven for 20-25 minutes. Halfway through, gently flip each tender so that each side can get nice and crispy.
- Serve. Remove and enjoy immediately. This pairs perfectly with a honey mustard dipping sauce too!
You can serve cornflake chicken tenders with Instant Pot Green Beans and mashed potatoes for a very southern-style meal. These are also great served with a big salad (or ever cut up on top) or roasted veggies to keep the whole meal on the lighter side. Or serve as a party/game day app with any of your favorite dipping sauces!
Here are some helpful tips when making this recipe.
- Finely crush cornflakes. I made the mistake of not crushing up the cornflakes fine enough and had a really hard time getting them to stick and stay on. Place the cornflakes in a food processor or blender and pulse to break up a couple of times, or put them in a ziptop bag and crush them that way. Just make sure there are no large pieces remaining.
- Cook on a cooling rack. Line a baking sheet with foil then place a cooling rack inside. Having the tenders cook on top of the cooling rack allows the heat to get to the bottom of the tender too and crisp up. Flip them halfway through the baking time so that both sides get nice and crispy and not soggy on one side.
- Make nuggets. Slice into smaller nuggets size pieces for a fun twist on this recipe. This would be great if served as an appetizer to make them perfectly bite-sized!
- Use breast and cut into strips or tenders. If you can't get your hands on actual chicken tenders - use boneless skinless chicken breast and slice it into similar-sized tender pieces. It works just as well!
More Chicken Recipes
- Healthy Spicy Chicken Pad Thai
- Easy Dutch Oven Chicken Cacciatore
- Easy Chicken and Spinach Skillet Pasta