Making juicy, crispy Air Fryer Chicken Tenders is a snap! They’re quick and easy for a delicious weeknight dinner from frozen or scratch!
Why We Love Air Fryer Chicken Tenders
- Make air fryer chicken tenders without the mess of deep frying in hot grease.
- I like making air fryer chicken tenders with flour coating instead of frozen, but if I’m pressed for time I can grab the frozen breaded tenders instead. Total lifesaver on busy mornings packing lunches.
- The air fryer gives the chicken tenders a crispy coating with juicy and tender meat.
- If you’re making a small batch you can throw some potato wedges in at the same time and have your meal done all at once!
Ingredients You’ll Need to Make Air Fryer Chicken Tenders
CHICKEN: I’m using chicken tenderloins for this recipe, but you can also buy whole boneless skinless chicken breasts. Then cut the breasts into 3 strips and proceed as directed. If you’re using frozen, raw chicken tenders, be sure to thaw them in the fridge overnight.
DREDGING STATION: We’re setting up a standard dredge station for the chicken. One shallow bowl with seasoned flour and another shallow bowl with egg wash.
HOT SAUCE: Don’t worry! Adding hot sauce won’t make these tenders super spicy. It’ll boost the flavor of your tenders and everyone will wonder why they’re so darn good! The tenders are slightly spicy. If you want no spice at all, skip the hot sauce and add another 1 tablespoon of water to the egg wash.
How to Make Air Fryer Chicken TendersJump to Recipe
STEP 1 Preheat your air fryer to 400 degrees F. Set up your dredge station and grab the chicken tenders.
STEP 2 Dip the chicken tenders into the seasoned flour, then into the egg wash, and then back into the seasoned flour to form a crust. Be sure to shake off any excess flour.
STEP 3 Spray the air fryer basket with olive oil spray. Then place the breaded chicken into the basket of your air fryer so they are not touching. (I usually have to work in batches.) Give the tops of the chicken a good spritz with some more olive oil spray so there are no dry patches.
STEP 4 Cook the chicken tenders for 10 minutes, flipping them halfway through. Give the tops another spritz of olive oil after flipping. Once the timer goes off the chicken should be golden brown and crispy with an internal temp of 165 degrees F.
Tips & Tricks
- A meat thermometer is the best way to check that your chicken is cooked through. Just poke it into the thickest part of the tender and if it reads 165+ degrees F you’re good to go.
- Even with olive oil on the basket and the tenders, the chicken tends to stick to the basket a little. I recommend using a spatula instead of tongs to flip the chicken.
- If Cajun Air Fryer Chicken Tenders sound awesome to you, add 1 tablespoon of Cajun seasoning to the flour before breading the chicken.
- My family loves dipping their chicken tenders in honey mustard, ranch, barbecue sauce, or even just plain old ketchup.
Air Fryer Chicken Tenders FAQ
Can you put raw chicken in an air fryer?
Yup! Your air fryer work just like a convection oven, but on the countertop. It’s totally safe to cook raw meats in.
How long to cook chicken tenders in an air fryer?
Cook for ten minutes, until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F and the flour coating is golden brown.
How long to cook frozen chicken tenders in an air fryer?
First, start by preheating your air fryer to 360 degrees F. Then cook the frozen tenders for 14-16 mins. The cooking time can vary slightly by model. You can always take one tender out and cut off the end to check that the chicken is warmed through.
When I’m making frozen chicken nuggets for the kids, I turn my air fryer to 370 degrees F and cook them anywhere from 5-8 minutes.
Other Recipes You May like
- Crock Pot Chicken Thighs and Potatoes
- Chicken and Dumplings
- Chicken Breast Supreme
- No-Roll Chicken Cordon Bleu
- Spinach & Chicken Alfredo Bake (uses frozen ravioli!)
- Baked Chicken Flautas (You can cook them in your air fryer for 6-9 minutes at 400 degrees F.)
Air Fryer Chicken Tenders
- Preheat your air fryer to 400 degrees F.
- Set up a dredge station. In a shallow bowl, stir together the flour, salt, pepper, garlic powder, and onion powder. In another shallow bowl, beat together the eggs, water, and hot sauce.
- One at a time, dip both sides of the chicken tenders in the seasoned flour, then into the egg wash, and then back into the flour making sure both sides are coated. Shake off any excess flour.
- Spray the air fryer basket with olive oil spray. Place the breaded tenders into the basket making sure they don't touch. (I usually have to work in batches.) Give the tops of the chicken a good spritz with olive oil spray. There shouldn't be any dry spots.
- Cook the chicken for 10 minutes, flipping halfway through. (see note) Spritz the tops of the chicken with olive oil spray after flipping.
- When the timer goes off the chicken should be golden brown and crispy with an internal temperature of 165 degrees F. Serve warm with your favorite dipping sauce.