Cheesy Baked Chicken Tenders will bring out the kid in you. You'll be delighted with this grownup version.
You don't have to be a kid to love chicken fingers. In fact, I would argue that these are a more grown-up version of your favorite kid food. They're baked, not fried, and instead of a boring breadcrumb coating, we're adding ground Pecorino Romano cheese to the mix. You could also use Parmesan cheese, or whatever semi-hard cheese you have on hand--just make sure the cheese is ground finely and has the consistency of a powder. I chop up a block of Pecorino, and pulse it in my food processor to get freshly ground cheese.
For the crispiest chicken fingers, I used Panko instead of regular breadcrumbs. They have an extra crunch factor that I love. I used equal parts Panko and Pecorino.
Let's talk about baking instead of frying. You still need a bit of oil for crispy baked chicken fingers. In this case, I lined my baking sheet with foil so I wouldn't have to wash it. I'm lazy like that. Don't tell my mom. Then, I sprayed the foil with cooking spray.
After dipping and coating the chicken fingers, I placed them on the baking sheet and sprayed them again. The oil on top of the chicken fingers is what will help them become brown and crispy. And a chicken finger that isn't brown and crispy is just a chicken flub.
This recipe serves two, but it can easily be doubled to serve a crowd. Crispy chicken fingers are the perfect substantial appetizer at parties, and everyone loves them on game day. Oh, and you can totally make them for kids any day of the week, too.
If you buy the big pack of chicken tenders in bulk, you'll probably have some left over if you make this small batch of baked chicken tenders. With the rest of the package, try my easier chicken pot pie for two. All the comforting flavor of chicken pot pie, but served over toast instead of inside a pie crust. You're set with chicken fingers for life.
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