Pecan-Crusted Chicken Tenders

Pecan-Crusted Chicken Tenders


While many people only indulge in chicken tenders when they’re out of the house, this simple, beloved dish can be enjoyed at home as well.


  • ½ cup pecans
  • ⅓ cup whole-wheat flour
  • 2 tsps paprika
  • 2 tsps dry mustard
  • 2 tsps garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tbsp expeller-pressed canola oil
  • ½ cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 pound chicken tenders, larger pieces cut in half lengthwise
  • ¼ cup nonfat plain Green yogurt (for dip)
  • ¼ cup light mayonnaise (for dip)
  • 1 tsp lemon juice (for dip)
  • ¼ tsp dried dill (for dip)
  • ¼ tsp garlic powder (for dip)
  • ¼ tsp onion powder (for dip)
  • 1 pinch salt (for dip)
  • 1 freshly ground black pepper (for dip)


  1. Preheat the oven to 475 F and line a sheet pan with parchment paper. Whir pecans, flour, paprika, dry mustard, garlic and onion powder, salt, and pepper in a food processor until pecans are ground to a powder, about 30 seconds. Drizzle in the oil with the motor running, blending completely.
  2. Transfer mixture to a shallow dish and stir in the panko bread crumbs.
  3. Beat the egg in a second shallow dish and add the chicken tenders, coating them completely. Transfer each tender to the breading, turning to coat evenly. Arrange the chicken on the prepared pan. Bake until golden brown and nearly firm, about 8 minutes.
  4. To make the dip: Stir all the dip ingredients together in a small bowl. Enjoy the cooked chicken immediately with the dip.
  5. Note: Chicken tenders come from the undersides of chicken breasts and are naturally portioned into strips, saving you time in cutting them. If you don’t have chicken tenders, substitute chicken breasts cut into 4- x 1-inch strips.