Chicken Tenders Without the Guilt

To get you started here’s a twist on a childhood favorite of mine: chicken tenders.

Paleo-Chicken-Fingers, www.crowdink.com
Paleo Chicken Fingers (Image Source: The Healthy Foodie)

A new year is upon us and that means the first six weeks will just be talk about getting in shape, losing weight and becoming a better you. That’s great…but it will be everywhere.

Most people start out on this grand “new year, new me” adventure with high hopes but then realize their self-will isn’t as strong as they’d hope. So why not trying to incorporate many different healthy habits and make your own program that you may actually want to stick to.

To get you started here’s a twist on a childhood favorite of mine: chicken tenders. Usually these are battered in buttermilk, deep-fried and served alongside some very unhealthy sides. By changing just a few ingredients you can have this classic meal without all the guilt.

 PALEO CHICKEN FINGERS AND GARLIC HONEY DIJON DIPPING SAUCE

INGREDIENTS

For the Chicken Fingers

  • 2 large skinless, boneless chicken breasts (1-1/4 pound)
  • 1 cup finely ground almonds (or almond flour)
  • ¼ cup tapioca flour
  • 1/2 cup finely shredded unsweetened coconut
  • 2 tbsp black sesame seeds
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp dried mustard
  • ½ tsp sweet paprika
  • ½ tsp himalayan salt
  • ½ tsp ground black pepper
  • ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
  • 2 whole eggs, beaten
  • 2-3 tbsp avocado oil

For the Dipping Sauce

  • 1/3 cup paleo mayo
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 2 tbsp unpasteurized liquid honey
  • ¼ tsp cayenne pepper

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. *The night before – While this is entirely optional, I strongly recommend that you soak your chicken breasts overnight in a solution of salty water made of 1 teaspoon of salt for every cup of water. This creates a much juicier and tastier chicken and requires very little effort on your part. Trust me, it’s totally worth it.
  2. Preheat oven to 400F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  3. Take the chicken out of the “brine” and pat it real dry. Cut each chicken breast into 6 relatively even strips.
  4. In a shallow bowl, add ground almonds, tapioca starch, unsweetened coconut, sesame seeds, garlic powder, dried mustard, paprika, salt, black pepper and cayenne and stir until evenly combined.
  5. Beat the eggs in a separate shallow bowl.
  6. Dip each chicken strip in eggs then roll in almond mixture until nice and evenly coated on all sides; place on lined baking sheet and repeat until all chicken is used.
  7. Drizzle generously with avocado oil, place in the oven and bake until the crust gets golden brown and chicken is cooked through, about 15-20 minutes, depending on the size of your chicken fingers. Flip after 10 to 15 minutes of cooking time.
  8. While your chicken fingers are cooking, prepare the dipping sauce by combining mayonnaise, garlic, honey and mustard in a small bowl.
  9. When the strips are fully cooked, allow them to cool for a few minutes on the baking sheet and then serve with the dipping sauce.

Full Recipe The Healthy Foodie