A flavor-rich blend of cumin, coriander, oregano, cinnamon, and smoked paprika adds vibrant flavor to these easy breaded chicken tenderloins.

Two spice-breaded chicken tenderloins on a plate with side dishes of quinoa and roasted carrots.

This recipe features quick-cooking chicken tenderloins coated in a flavorful mixture of crumbs and spices. Serve them with side dishes like roasted fresh carrots and quinoa with scallions to make a uniquely flavorful, yet simple weeknight meal.

How to Make Perfect Pan-Fried Chicken Tenders

Here are a few tips on how to make perfect pan-fried chicken tenders.

  • Prepare the chicken: Using kitchen shears, trim the white tendons from the ends of the chicken tenderloins and discard them.
  • Prepare the egg dip: Whisk egg and milk together in a pie plate or other shallow dish. The ratio is 1 tablespoon milk to 1 large egg.
  • Prepare the crumb coating: Combine the breadcrumbs with 1 teaspoon salt, all the spices, and a few grinds of black pepper. Spread the mixture on a dinner plate or sheet of wax paper.
  • Coat the chicken in crumbs: Working with one tenderloin at a time, dip in the egg mixture and turn once or twice to coat. Allow the excess egg to drip off, then lay the chicken on the bed of crumbs and use your fingers to press gently into the mixture to be sure the crumbs adhere. Repeat on the other side.
  • Fry the chicken: Coat the bottom of a large frying pan with about 1/8-inch of vegetable oil and heat over medium-high heat. Add a pinch of bread crumbs to the pan and as soon as they begin to sizzle, the pan is pre-heated. Add the chicken in a single layer and fry until the crumb coating is golden brown and the interior of the chicken is no longer pink, 2 to 3 minutes per side. You may want to work in batches to avoid crowding the pan.
  • Watch the temperature: Every stove is different and you don’t want your crumb coating to burn while the chicken cooks all the way through. Check the bottom of each piece after 1 minute in the pan, and if the crumbs already browning, the heat is too high. Carefully turn the chicken over and reduce the heat.
  • Handle the chicken gently: Use a pair of tongs to turn the chicken and be careful so as not to damage the crumb coating.
  • Check for doneness with a thermometer: Use an instant-read thermometer to check the chicken for doneness (165°F). This way you won’t need to cut it and let the juices run out.
  • Let the chicken stand before serving: Place cooked chicken on a paper towel-lined plate and gently blot to absorb the oil from frying. Let stand for 3 to 5 minutes before serving.

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Spice Breaded Chicken Tenders

Spice Breaded Chicken Tenders

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A flavor-rich blend of cumin, coriander, oregano, cinnamon, and smoked paprika adds vibrant flavor to these easy breaded chicken tenderloins.

Ingredients

  • 1-1/4 lb chicken tenderloins, 12 pieces
  • 1 cup dry breadcrumbs, unseasoned
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil

Instructions

  • Using kitchen shears, trim the white tendons from the ends of the chicken tenderloins and discard them.
  • Combine the breadcrumbs, salt, garlic powder, cumin, coriander, oregano, cinnamon, smoked paprika and a few grinds of black pepper in a shallow dish or pie plate.
  • Place the egg in another shallow dish and whisk in the milk. Dip each chicken tenderloin in the egg mixture, then dredge in the crumb-spice mixture, pressing lightly to be sure the crumbs adhere well.
  • Heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken in a single layer and cook until the crumbs are golden brown and the interior is no longer pink, about 3 minutes per side (see notes).
  • Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate to absorb any excess oil, then plate individual servings.

Tips for Making This Recipe

  • Frying the chicken: Coat the bottom of a large frying pan with about 1/8-inch of vegetable oil and heat over medium-high heat. Add a pinch of bread crumbs to the pan and as soon as they begin to sizzle, the pan is pre-heated. Add the tenders in a single layer and fry until the crumb coating is golden brown and the interior of the chicken is no longer pink, 2 to 3 minutes per side. You may want to work in batches to avoid crowding the pan.
  • Watch the temperature: Every stove is different and you don’t want your crumb coating to burn while the chicken cooks all the way through. Check the bottom of each piece after 1 minute in the pan, and if the crumbs already browning, the heat is too high. Carefully turn the chicken over and reduce the heat.
  • Handle the chicken gently: Use a pair of tongs to turn the chicken and be careful so as not to damage the crumb coating.
Calories: 280kcal, Carbohydrates: 8g, Protein: 33g, Fat: 12g, Saturated Fat: 7g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 2g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 132mg, Sodium: 539mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 1g, Iron: 2mg
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