A light coating of Parmesan cheese and bread crumbs on baked chicken tenders are a budget friendly way to make a delicious dinner when you are craving Parmesan chicken strips!
This recipe is similar to our Garlic Baked Chicken which uses whole chicken breasts.
Parmesan Chicken Strips Recipe
Kids love how tender these Baked Parmesan Chicken Tenders are and adults enjoy the flavors. It’s great to have easy homemade meal options that are simple enough for anyone to make.
The cheesy coating on the chicken tenders just gets better as it bakes in the oven in butter. The rich dairy flavors from butter and Parmesan cheese blend together to make this the best chicken parmesan recipe I’ve ever made.
After multiple rounds of testing we know these parmesan chicken tenders are great for meal prepping! They reheat well and pair nicely with so many other dishes throughout the week. If there are leftovers we love chopping them to use in a Chicken Bacon Ranch Stromboli!
Our family also enjoys this Instant Pot Chicken Carbonara, I’m curious to make that dish without chicken and serve it with these chicken tenders. My kids would also be super happy just to eat chicken tenders and our Crock Pot Mac and Cheese.
What Are Chicken Tenders
Chicken tenders are a whole muscle cut of meat (not ground meat that is re-shaped into a tender) that is cut from the most tender part of the chicken breast.
Since the tenderloin is a smaller, premium piece of meat which is a bit more scarce and requires labor to cut out they typically bring a higher price.
The most tender cuts of meat come from lesser used muscles, are typically smaller, lean and cook quickly.
Chicken Parmesan Made With Chicken Tenders
The best chicken parmesan is made with chicken tenders and lightly breaded and coated with seasonings. Baking the chicken in butter just adds so much more rich flavor to the dish.
Whole chicken breasts can be sliced into evenly sized pieces and substituted for chicken tenders in this recipe. The key to cooking keeping this meat tender is not to overcook it.
About three large chicken breasts are roughly equal three pounds of chicken tenders.
These baked chicken tenders are delicious alone or can be served over spaghetti with our Homemade Instant Pot Spaghetti Sauce or the ground beef can be omitted from our Crock Pot Spaghetti to serve along with the chicken tenders.
- Chicken Tenders – starting with chicken tenderloins that are pre-cut makes this recipe the easiest!
- Italian Bread Crumbs – or plain bread crumbs with Italian seasoning added works fine.
- Parmesan Cheese – grated cheese works really well to stick to the chicken strips.
- Garlic Salt, Salt & Pepper – the extra seasonings to stir in the bread crumbs and cheese.
- Butter – give the chicken strips a bath in butter for the breading to have something to stick to.
How to Tell When Chicken Tenders Are Done
Always use a digital meat thermometer to determine when chicken strips are done cooking. Cook chicken to an internal temperature of 165°F to ensure that it is safe to eat.
I like to insert a digital thermometer in the side of the chicken to get the maximum contact on the sensor with the thermometer.
How to Make Parmesan Chicken Tenders
Begin by mixing bread crumbs, parmesan cheese, garlic salt (or garlic powder), salt and pepper together. I like to use a square baking dish.
Prepare a bowl with melted butter.
Use a paper towel to dry chicken tenders so that the butter and topping will stick better.
I like to clear the counter and set up an assembly line to make the process as quick and efficient as possible.
This recipe works well for three pounds of parmesan chicken tenders which fit in two 9 x 13-inch baking dishes. Two dishes fill one rack in a typical oven and create enough chicken to feed 6 to 8 people.
Sometimes I take a little extra coating and sprinkle over the top before I pour on the butter. It tastes great, but looks a little messy.
Bake in a 350°F oven for 20 to 30 minutes until a meat thermometer reads an internal temperature of 165°F.
Chicken should bake in a single layer for best results.
My dish in the pictures bakes in about 20 to 25 minutes. BUT there are several variables that can affect baking time, including temperature of the chicken when placed in the oven, how close pieces are in the pan and how true to temp your oven is.
Can Parmesan Chicken Tenders Be Frozen
Chicken tenders can be frozen for up to three months in a tightly sealing freezer bag or freezer container.
Cooked chicken can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 to 4 days in a tightly sealed container.
Other Easy Chicken Recipes:
- Chicken Parmesan Casserole is a simple way to enjoy a restaurant quality meal at home.
- BBQ Chicken Sliders are a great way to use leftover chicken (or turkey). Use Hawaiian rolls and add bacon and cheese to create a super delish meal!
- Saucy Chicken & Vegetables mixes chicken and vegetables with an easy saucy that makes a great family meal.
- Southwest Salad is a wonderful blend of spicy ranch and crunchy veggies with delicious chicken.
- Crock Pot Swiss Chicken & Stuffing is comfort food at it’s finest and a super easy meal to make.
Printable Baked Parmesan Chicken Tenders Recipe
Parmesan Chicken Strips
- 3 pounds Chicken tenders
- 1 cup Italian bread crumbs
- 3/4 cup Parmesan cheese
- 1 teaspoon garlic salt
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1/2 cup butter melted
- Preheat oven to 350℉.
- Mix the bread crumbs, parmesan cheese, garlic salt, salt, and pepper together.1 cup Italian bread crumbs, 3/4 cup Parmesan cheese, 1 teaspoon garlic salt, 1 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- Using a microwave safe bowl melt butter.1/2 cup butter
- Trim pieces of chicken if necessary. Using a paper towel dry the chicken pieces.3 pounds Chicken tenders
- Dip chicken in the melted butter then in the crumbs. Place chicken in a single layer in a shallow baking dish. Pour the remaining butter over the top.
- Bake in the oven for 25 to 35 minutes until a digital meat thermometer shows that the chicken is cooked to an internal temperature of 165°F.
- Allow chicken to rest for 10 minutes before slicing and serving.
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Originally shared on November 27, 2020 with updates made on January 29, 2024.