Baked breaded chicken strips are a freezer staple in our house. Crispy baked chicken strips that are kid friendly and totally toddler approved, plus they're great for Game Day and parties.
Baked Breaded Chicken Strips:
When it comes to freezer meals, they can dip into the creamy casserole territory a bit too often. Creamy casseroles stocked in the freezer made hearty, comforting meals for my family, but we need a change.
While, I love creamy chicken spaghetti, cheesy freezer lasagna, and make ahead mashed potatoes as much as anyone else, these baked breaded chicken strips are a lean protein option for the freezer. It's so comforting to have an easy-to-cook protein in the freezer that I can quickly build a meal around.
I pull them out on the weekends for a quick and easy toddler lunch for Camille, and I pile them on a salad for adult lunches, too. They're even great to serve on Game Day, doused with your favorite sauce or dip on the side. Basically, these baked breaded chicken strips please kids and adults alike!
I took this recipe from my Mom's files, but I made them for the freezer. There's a method to making them freezer safe.
Chicken strips for the freezer:
- Using 3 pie pans or cake tins, fill one with flour, one with eggs, and one with crushed cornflakes and seasonings.
- Dunk each chicken tender in the flour, followed by the eggs and finally the cornflakes. Press the cornflakes to the chicken to adhere.
- From here, lay the chicken tenders flat on a parchment lined sheet pan and freeze until firm. Then, stack in freezer-safe containers or bags.
- These can be baked from frozen: line the chicken tenders on a wire rack over a sheet pan and bake.
The reason we cook these baked breaded chicken fingers on a wire rack is so that the heat can circulate evenly around them. These wire racks are small and fit over a quarter sheet pan. This results in super crispy, evenly-baked chicken fingers, every time! Be sure to spray the rack with cooking spray to prevent any sticking. I'm using a quarter sheet pan to bake this batch above, because I'm only baking a few chicken fingers.
Make ahead chicken strips:
If I could just offer a little tip: wait for chicken fingers to go on sale. Then, buy the giant package that seems impossible for a small family to use--you know the one, it's 4-5 pounds worth of chicken fingers. If you bread all of the chicken tenders and have them in the freezer just waiting for you, you will be so glad you did! I can't tell you how many weekend lunches have been saved by this bag of baked breaded chicken strips!
If you can remember to flip the chicken fingers half-way through baking, you'll be rewarded with the crispiest chicken fingers I could ever give you. Be sure to serve these with your favorite dipping sauce; we love tangy barbecue sauce, of course!
Be sure to check out all of my freezer meals here.
Baked Breaded Chicken Strips
Make a batch of baked breaded chicken strips for the freezer for easy freezer meals.
- 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 4 large eggs
- 4 cups cornflakes
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 2 pounds chicken tenders
- cooking spray, for pan
- Line 3 shallow pans side-by-side. In the first pan, add the flour, salt and pepper. Whisk together well. In the second pan, beat the eggs. In the thrid pan, add the cornflakes, garlic powder and onion powder.
- Using your hands, crush the cornflakes a bit, just so they're broken up into slightly smaller pieces.
- Next, dredge each chicken tender in the flour, followed by the egg, and followed by the cornflakes.
- Place each breaded chicken finger on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. (Make sure this baking sheet fits in your freezer!)
- Freeze the chicken strips for at least 6 hours until very firm. Then, move the chicken fingers to a plastic bag for long term storage.
- To cook the chicken fingers, preheat the oven to 475 degrees F.
- Spray a wire rack with cooking spray. Arrange the frozen chicken fingers on the rack evenly spaced, and bake for 25 minutes. Flip the chicken fingers half way through for even crispiness.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 689Total Fat: 29gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 20gCholesterol: 194mgSodium: 2099mgCarbohydrates: 70gFiber: 3gSugar: 2gProtein: 38g
Look so good. Have you ever divided large b/s chicken breasts into 3 or 4 sections and used as your tenders?
Works as well? If using tenders, do you try to remove that big tendon?
Lori Eckert says
How do you keep these baked chicken tenderloins from getting dry?
I know I'm late for comments, but heck, I just found you tonight while I was looking for small batch blondies! =)
I make baked tenders too, but with a diet twist you might like.
Usually I just cut up chicken breasts into tender shapes, toss them into a ziploc bag and add 1/2 - 3/4 cups of greek nonfat yogurt to them. Seal it up and squish them around, then toss them into the fridge for an hour to marinate.
For the breading, I just crush up cornflakes and add seasonings to it in another ziploc bag. In general, 1 cup of cornflakes will bread about 6-8 ounces of chicken.
Toss the chicken peices into the bag a couple at a time, shake it around and press down to be sure they are all covered in crumbs, then toss them onto your baking rack.
Baking time is about the same as for yours. The yogurt makes the crumbs stick, it's healthy and it keeps the chicken tenders nice and moist!
Christina Lane says
Aww thanks so much, Toni! These sound delicious :)
Another great idea!! Freezer foods are great for we older couples too. ;)
I need to adapt the cooking time for my IP Vortex Pro air fryer.