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Crunchy Keto Chicken Tenders

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Calling all crunch-a-holics, these Keto Chicken Tenders are super easy to make and totally delicious! They are coated with crushed pork rinds for the ultimate crunch package. Paired with an addicting honey mustard, these Keto Chicken Strips are a recipe the whole family will love!

A baking sheet with crispy keto chicken tenders next to a bowl of keto honey mustard.

This post was originally published on March 19, 2019, and has been updated with fresh content, images, and video, though the recipe remains perfectly the same.

Crispy crunchy chicken has always been a favourite of mine, I mean who doesn’t love juicy chicken surrounded by a crunchy, salty crust? Never mind dipped in honey mustard!

I’ve tried almond flour and I’ve tried parmesan cheese plus a combination of the two, and yes, they each taste amazing, but didn’t give me the crunch I was really looking for. So I turned to crushed pork rinds.

Oh dang. Life changer.

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These Keto Chicken Tenders are what dreams are made of for a crunch-a-holic like myself. I hope you love these Low Carb Chicken Tenders as much as my family and I do!

Ingredients

All ingredients used to make Keto Chicken Tenders.

Parmesan – We use the shelf stable parmesan in the plastic shaker. It creates the best texture for breading the Keto chicken strips!

Pork rinds – This is what gives our Keto chicken tenders that super crunchy crust. I usually buy Old Dutch pork rinds, which conveniently comes in 100 g packages 😉

How to make Keto Chicken Tenders

You’ll want to start by getting all the components ready, and heat your oven or air fryer to 400°. If baking, line two baking sheets with parchment paper or non stick baking mats.

Pulse pork rinds in a food processor into a fine crumble, or crush by hand/rolling pin. Toss them into a medium sized bowl with parmesan cheese, chili powder, sea salt, ground black pepper, garlic powder and onion powder. Whisk to combine, crushing up any clumps of parmesan or pork rinds.

A white bowl with the breading.

In another bowl whisk the egg with water until fully combined, then cut the ligaments from each chicken tender.

ligament cut from one of the tenders.

Keto Baked Chicken Tenders

With one hand dunk a chicken tender into the egg mix then drop into the pork rind mix without touching it with your hand. Use the other hand to toss the chicken in the pork rinds, then place on one of the baking sheets.

Continue until all the chicken has been coated, diving the tenders evenly between both baking sheets. There should be room in between each tender.

Baking sheet with breaded chicken tenders.

You should have leftover egg and pork rinds. Double dip the top of each piece until all of the pork rinds have been used up (you won’t have enough to fully toss each piece in the egg wash/breading).

Baking sheet with double breaded chicken tenders.

Bake the coated chicken in the preheated oven for 16-20 minutes, until the internal temperature of the largest piece has reached 165°. Cool slightly then enjoy these Keto Baked Chicken Tenders dunked in Keto Honey Mustard!

Baking sheet with baked Keto chicken tenders.

Keto Air Fryer Chicken Tenders

With one hand dunk a chicken tender into the egg mix then drop into the pork rind mix without touching it with your hand. Use the other hand to toss the chicken in the pork rinds. Continue until all the chicken has been coated.

A bowl of egg wash, another bowl of breading, beside a cutting board with chicken tenders.

You should have leftover egg and pork rinds. Double dip the coated chicken until all of the pork rinds have been used up.

Breaded Keto chicken tenders on a cutting board.

Add the prepared Keto Chicken Tenders to the basket and spray lightly with cooking oil. Do not over-crowd, you’ll most likely have to cook these in multiple batches.

chicken tenders in an air fryer basket, ready to be fried. Basket is beside a cutting board with prepared chicken tenders,

Cook for 7 minutes, flip the chicken and then spray lightly with cooking oil. Cook for an additional 6 minutes, until the internal temperature of the largest piece has reached 165°.

crisp chicken tenders in an air fryer basket.

Cool slightly, then enjoy these Keto Air Fryer Chicken Tenders dunked in Keto Honey Mustard!

A wooden cutting board with crisp air fryer Keto chicken tenders, beside a small bowl of Keto honey mustard.

Check out how these Keto Chicken Tenders are made:

Also, you can enjoy the keto Starbucks drinks that are healthy & tasty both!
Not only they are available at every outlet, but these Starbucks keto drinks can be prepared at home or ordered at local coffee shops

White plate with Keto Chicken tenders next to a bowl of keto honey mustard.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you eat chicken tenders on Keto?

Store bought or from a restaurant? Unless they are Keto chicken tenders, then definitely not. Luckily, making home made Keto chicken tenders are fast and easy!

How many carbs are in fried chicken tenders?

Over 30g per serving! Yikes! These Keto chicken strips? Just 1.6g net carbs per 1/2 lb!!

Can you eat air fried food on keto?

You totally can! These Keto chicken tenders are a great example of an awesome Keto recipe made in an air fryer. You could also make Keto Mozzarella Sticks, Brussel Sprouts or Keto Avocado Fries in the air fryer!

How can I use use leftovers Keto Chicken Tenders?

Top a Low Carb Caesar Salad with chopped up Keto Chicken Strips for a crazy delicious salad. Chop up Keto Chicken Fingers and toss with Low Carb BBQ Sauce, then pile the mixture of deliciousness onto a 90 Second Keto Bread or Chaffles! Another delicious lunch with leftover Keto Chicken Tenders is to make one of these Keto Chicken Wraps with Bacon and Avocado.

Three crispy keto chicken wraps with lettuce, avocado and bacon.

Make sure to check out our 61 Easy Low Carb Dinners that are quick and family approved.

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Baking sheet filled with Crunchy Low Carb Baked Chicken Tenders hot from the oven, filling the air with their delicious aroma.

Crunchy Keto Chicken Tenders

Super crunchy with a pork rind crust, these Keto Chicken Tenders are delicious, just 1.6 g net carbs and perfectly paired with Honey Mustard!
5 from 14 votes
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 18 minutes
Total Time: 33 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Author: Aleta

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs chicken tenders

Egg Mix

  • 1 egg
  • ¼ cup water

Breading

  • 100 g pork rinds *see note 1
  • ½ c parmesan cheese *see note 2
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • 1 ½ tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder

Instructions

Prep

  • You’ll want to start by getting all the components ready, and heat your oven or air fryer to 400°. If baking, line two baking sheets with parchment paper or non stick baking mats.
  • Pulse pork rinds in a food processor into a fine crumble, or crush by hand/rolling pin *see note 3. Toss them into a medium sized bowl with parmesan cheese, chili powder, sea salt, ground black pepper, garlic powder and onion powder. Whisk to combine, crushing up any clumps of parmesan or pork rinds.
  • In another bowl whisk the egg with water until fully combined, then cut the ligaments from each chicken tender.

Oven Method

  • With one hand dunk a chicken tender into the egg mix then drop into the pork rind mix without touching it with your hand. Use the other hand to toss the chicken in the pork rinds, then place one of the baking sheets *see note 4.
  • Continue until all the chicken has been coated, diving the tenders evenly between both baking sheets. There should be room in between each tender.
  • You should have leftover egg and pork rinds. Double dip the coated chicken until all of the pork rinds have been used up.
  • Bake the coated chicken in the preheated oven for 16-20 minutes, until the internal temperature of the largest piece has reached 165°. Cool slightly then enjoy these Keto Baked Chicken Tenders!

Air Fryer Method

  • With one hand dunk a chicken tender into the egg mix then drop into the pork rind mix without touching it with your hand. Use the other hand to toss the chicken in the pork rinds *see note 4. Continue until all the chicken has been coated.
  • You should have leftover egg and pork rinds. Double dip the coated chicken until all of the pork rinds have been used up.
  • Add the prepared Keto Chicken Tenders to the basket and spray lightly with cooking oil. Do not over-crowd, you'll most likely have to cook these in multiple batches.
  • Cook for 7 minutes, flip the chicken and then spray lightly with cooking oil. Cook for an additional 6 minutes, until the internal temperature of the largest piece has reached 165°.
  • Cool slightly, then enjoy these Keto Air Fryer Chicken Tenders dunked in Keto Honey Mustard!

Notes

  1. Pork rinds are what gives our Keto chicken tenders that super crunchy crust. I usually buy Old Dutch pork rinds, which conveniently comes in 100 g packages 😉
  2. We use the shelf stable parmesan in the plastic shaker. It creates the best texture for breading the Keto chicken strips!
  3. Use a rolling pin to crush the pork rinds into a fine crumble – this will be so much more effective than crushing by hand.
  4. Don’t mix your hands up! You don’t want your egg hand to touch the crumbs or your crumb hand to touch the egg mixture. You’ll end up losing a lot of crumbs this way, which we want on the chicken, right?
  5. Be careful not to over bake the chickenwe want those tenders nice and juicy! This is why a digital meat thermometer is invaluable in any kitchen.
  6. Try these Keto Chicken Tenders dunked into Keto Honey Mustard, Blue Cheese or Ranch Dressing.

Nutrition Facts

Nutrition facts are an estimate only! The ingredients you choose could have different nutritional values than the ingredients I have used.  
Deduct fibre from the total carbs to get 1.6 g net carbs per serving.

Nutrition

Serving: 0.5lb | Calories: 587kcal | Carbohydrates: 2.5g | Protein: 90.8g | Fat: 20.9g | Sodium: 1474mg | Fiber: 0.9g | Net Carbs: 1.6g
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27 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    These were amazing! Crunchy, moist and flavorful. I cooked them in the air fryer. Thank you!

  2. 5 stars
    I just made these with boneless, skinless chicken thighs cut into tenders (what I had available). Delicious, nice spice mix–good proportions on the measurements. Using the rolling pin to crush the rinds worked well–kind of fun too. I put the rinds into a gallon Ziploc bag for crushing and “shake and baking” the tenders. Cook time took 30 minutes to get to the correct internal temperature, maybe because I used thighs instead of breasts. My non-Keto, very picky husband ate three pieces before I realized it.

    • Hey Kelley, I’m so glad to hear you both liked them so much! That’s great the thighs worked as well, I bet they were nice and juicy 👌
      Thanks for the comment!

  3. 5 stars
    Ah, chicken tenders! Who doesn’t like them? I love how crispy yours are and the fact that they are low carb. Love your ideas about using leftover chicken tenders too especially in a wrap!

  4. Jacquelyn Hastert

    5 stars
    Winner winner low-carb chicken dinner! I am in love with this and can’t wait to make it again.

  5. 5 stars
    You have proven that crispy chicken doesn’t have to be fried! I love this and can’t wait to make it.

  6. You really nailed the chicken tender shot and these sound delicious! And like a def crowd pleaser! Thanks so much for sharing :).

  7. 5 stars
    Omg, pork rinds?? That DOES sound like a game changer!! I would definitely love these to death, yum!

  8. These look delicious and I love that they’re so quick and easy! Perfect for one of our many busy week nights!

  9. 5 stars
    I love that they are baked, but they still look so crispy. A family favorite for sure.

  10. Amanda Mason

    5 stars
    I have been making my own chicken tenders for years and I never once thought of using pork rinds. Genius! I’m so giving this recipe a try! Love that you use chili powder in this recipe!!

  11. 5 stars
    They look crispy and delicious! I can see why you love them, I think I would as well!

  12. 5 stars
    Ah !! I’m drooling over how delicious these look. I love baked chicken but never thought a no-carb version would turn out so beautiful. Thanks for sharing

  13. 5 stars
    These do look so crispy!! Nothing like a nice crisp to something like chicken tenders!! I can’t wait to try your chicken as it looks so delicious!!

  14. I was wondering the other day how I could manage a crunchy chicken coating without using carbs – pork rinds is a perfect solution! I bet the pork rinds make it so tasty and delicious!

  15. 5 stars
    Never would have thought to use pork rinds as a coating! What a great idea. I’ve been watching those carbs especially when it comes to dinner…can’t wait to try this!!

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