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Air Fryer Chicken Tenders

Air Fryer Chicken Tenders – make crispy, golden, juicy chicken tenders in the air fryer in just minutes! Perfect weeknight dinner recipe.

My family loves chicken tenders. I am not sure what it is about them, but all of us are big fans. We love trying them at new restaurants and always buy frozen ones at the store, they are just a staple in our house.

When my son was little I used to make these Grown-up Chicken Nuggets with him. He would use little tongs to help them and then we would bake them. Well now you can use your air fryer and they are even more crispy and ready in no time!

dipping chicken tenders into canes sauce


Air Fryer Chicken Tenders

This is one of those simple and easy recipes that you can really customize any way you like. I show you the general method for how to bread chicken and then air fry it, but you get to decide the seasonings, the dippings sauces, and everything to make it yours!

You could go crazy like these Boneless Chicken Wings with this method and just cut them into small pieces to toss in the sauce afterwards. Great snack, appetizer, or dinner any time!

What You’ll Need

  • Chicken Tenderloins
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Egg
  • Water
  • All-Purpose Flour
  • Panko Breadcrumbs
  • Italian Seasoned Breadcrumbs
process of making chicken tenders

How To Make Chicken Tenders In The Air Fryer

Be sure to scroll to the bottom of the post for the FULL PRINTABLE recipe card.

  1. The key to crispy chicken tenders is the breading process. So have 3 bowls set up in front of you. Beat an egg in one. Put flour in the other. And the third will have your breadcrumbs.
  2. Start by dipping your chicken in flour. You want to lightly coat the chicken, so gently shake off any excess.
  3. Dip each piece of chicken in the egg mixture until it is evenly coated and no white flour remains.
  4. Then press it into your breadcrumb mixture. You want to make sure that it really sticks to the outside. Place on a plate while you finish the rest of the chicken.
  5. Spray the bottom of your air fryer basket with vegetable spray, and then spray the chicken tenders. If you have a mister this works best so you don’t spray off any of the coating.
  6. Place chicken into the air fryer basket and cook at 400º for about 5 minutes per side. If you want it extra crispy you can go for 1 more minute, but don’t go for long or your chicken will dry out.
chicken tenders is air fryer basket

How Long To Cook Chicken Tenders In The Air Fryer

At 400º it takes a total of 10 minutes for chicken tenderloins to cook in the air fryer. You will cook for 5 minutes, flip and cook for an additional 5 minutes. To be sure your chicken is fully cooked insert a meat thermometer and it should read 165º.

What To Serve With Chicken Tenders

You can serve with your favorite dipping sauce. My family is partial to Canes Sauce, which is super easy to make. But Ranch, Barbecue, Honey Mustard or even Buffalo Sauce are all good ideas.

crunchy chicken tenders in air fryer on plate

Recipe Tips

  • Mix up your seasonings. You really can flavor these a million different ways, this is just a base recipe for you. Add some taco seasoning in the mix and use plain breadcrumbs. Add chili powder and cayenne to make them spicy. Whatever you like, you can mix it up and make it your own.
  • Make sure your chicken is in an even layer and not overlapping when you put them in the air fryer. You want to make sure that air can circulate and get your chicken crispy.
  • Be sure that your chicken is evenly sized. You can buy chicken tenderloins at the store, but they are more expensive that regular chicken breasts. So if you cut your own, just make sure they are the same size so they cook evenly and are all done at the same time.
  • For a crispy coating follow the breading process. I know the 3 bowl process seems like a lot, but it really does give you that crunchy coating and keeps the chicken nice and juicy.
bite of a chicken tender

To make this recipe I used a Cosori 5.8 Qt Air Fryer. It is big enough that you can fit plenty of food in, and the basket comes out so you can easily shake, stir, or flip whatever you are making.

More Great Chicken Dinner Recipes

chicken tenders collage for pinterest
Yield: 4

Air Fryer Chicken Tenders

cropped in chicken tenders from the air fryer

Air Fryer Chicken Tenders - make crispy, golden, juicy chicken tenders in the air fryer in just minutes! Perfect weeknight dinner recipe.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes


  • 1 pound chicken tenders
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 whole large egg
  • 2 Tbsp water
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup Italian breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs


  1. Season chicken tenders with salt and pepper.
  2. Beat egg and water together in one bowl. Put the flour in the 2nd bowl. In the 3rd bowl combine Italian breadcrumbs and panko breadcrumbs.
  3. Dip each piece of chicken in flour and gently shake off the excess.
  4. Place each piece in egg until evenly coated.
  5. Press into breadcrumb mixture to evenly coat all the chicken.
  6. Spray the base of air fryer with vegetable spray. Spray chicken tenders evenly with oil as well (works best with a mister so you don't spray off the breadcrumbs)
  7. Arrange in a single layer in the base of your air fryer. Cook at 400º for 5 minutes, flip and cook for an additional 5 minutes.
  8. Remove and serve with your favorite dipping sauce.

Nutrition Information



Serving Size


Amount Per Serving Calories 528Total Fat 22gSaturated Fat 4gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 15gCholesterol 99mgSodium 1299mgCarbohydrates 54gFiber 3gSugar 2gProtein 29g

Nutrition Disclaimer: All information presented on this site is intended for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and any nutritional information shared on should only be used as a general guideline.

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Thursday 11th of August 2022

This recipe is indeed majestic!


Thursday 11th of August 2022

I am drooling over these chicken tenders! Love that they are made in the Air Fryer!


Tuesday 9th of August 2022

Wow these were even better than I expected. The air fryer makes them so crunchy.


Tuesday 9th of August 2022

These are amazing! My kids can't get enough of them!


Tuesday 9th of August 2022

I have always wanted to make chicken tenders in the air fryer! I cannot wait to try them now!

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