Every kid grows up eating chicken nuggets. Eventually, we either outgrow them or turn our noses at their mysterious meat mixture. But until that moment arrives—it’s one entree most kids eat with gusto. Or at least I did.
My palate has certainly matured as I’ve gotten older, but apparently the kid in me is still pretty strong. I haven’t had or made chicken nuggets in years but recently found myself with a craving. One I decided to feed with a homemade version courtesy of sophistimom.
Marinating the chicken tenders in buttermilk keeps them nice and moist on the inside while they stay crunchy on the outside, thanks to a panko breadcrumb and parmesan cheese crust. Since I was trying to appease both my grown-up palate and my inner kid, I paired my chicken tenders with a homemade, spicy chipotle dip.
I’ll share the dip recipe later this week, along with the crispy sweet potato fries that soothed my inner kid and fed my grown-up taste buds.
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Grown-Up Chicken Tenders
Slightly adapted from sophistimom
- 1 1/2 pounds chicken breasts, cut into strips
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2 cups buttermilk
- 2-3 drops of hot sauce (or to taste)
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
- 1 cup parmesan cheese, grated
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper (OPTIONAL)
- 1/4 olive oil
- Mix the buttermilk, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper together. Add chicken strips to the buttermilk mixture. Marinate for at least two hours.
- In one shallow dish, place the beaten egg; in another shallow baking dish, mix together panko breadcrumbs and parmesan cheese.
- Take a chicken strip and coat in egg, and then panko mixture. Repeat with remaining chicken strips.
- Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium heat. Working in small batches, brown the chicken on both sides until heated through. Add more oil to the pan as needed. Keep them warm in the oven (200 degrees) until ready to serve.