WOW, I am just gonna say it- this recipe is INSANELY GOOD. I think it may just be one of fave recipes that I’ve posted in a while. It’s got everything – spice, comfort and it’s still pretty healthy too (which is a bonus!). I mean, what more can you ask for in a recipe? These paleo chicken tenders are baked in a delicious coating of almond flour and savory spices. And then you dunk them in a wildly delicious hot honey with some fresh thyme. Winner, winner, (paleo) chicken (tender) dinner!
Ingredients In Your Pantry
As our time during this Covid-19 pandemic keeps going on, I’m trying my very best to keep recipes simple, tasty and healthy. That’s always been my goal to be honest, but sometimes I get carried away with ingredients. I guess that’s just the foodie in me. But, because I don’t even want to go out to the grocery store more than once a week, I’m trying to use what I have on hand. I realize that everyone has access to different ingredients, so for these paleo chicken tenders (and any other recipe), use what you have.
Here are some swaps to make if you don’t have access to the same flours I’m using:
No Almond Flour:
Use almond meal instead (just pulse almonds into a fine flour/meal). Or use another type of flour, such as a gluten free blend, or even just all purpose flour.
No Tapioca Flour:
I used tapioca flour first to coat the paleo chicken tenders, which helps them get a little bit crispier. If you don’t have tapioca flour, just omit dipping them in there first and just do egg and then the almond flour mix. They’ll still be delicious.
Use what spices you have on hand, I tried to keep it simple with smoked paprika, garlic powder and cayenne. If you want less heat, omit the cayenne of course.
Tips to Make these Paleo Chicken Tenders
In order to get these paleo chicken tenders as crispy as possible while baking them in the oven, I have a few tips for you.
If you’re wondering what to serve with these chicken tenders, definitely check out my easy, 30 minute oven baked fries with rosemary and parmesan!
Refrigerate the Raw Chicken Tenders After Breading
After you’ve assembled the chicken tenders and they’re all breaded, move them into the fridge. This helps the breading stay in tact more, which is useful whether you’re using gluten/grain free fours or not.
Here is what they look like after you bread them and before cooking.
Spray Your Chicken Tenders with Oil
Spray your chicken tenders with a little bit of avocado oil right before you place them in the oven. This helps to get them a little crispier. When you flip them over halfway through baking them, you can spray the other side as well. I like using Chosen Foods Avocado Oil spray as it’s better for high heat cooking and baking. Plus it’s a neutral tasting oil.
Have your Breading Station Ready to go
This just makes things go quicker. Have one small bowl filled with the tapioca flour, another small bowl with the whisked egg and a medium size bowl with the flour. Try and use one hand to dip in the tapioca to keep it dry and then another hand for dipping in the egg. This keeps things cleaner and you won’t have to keep washing your hands in between.
Hot Honey Dipping Sauce
I think a BIG part of the deliciousness of this recipe is the hot honey. WOW! There is so much flavour in this sauce and you’re going to want to make a batch of it and use it on everything! Depending on how much spice you want, you can control the amount of peppers you use. I don’t like things crazy hot, so I only used one serrano pepper, but for me that was enough.
You definitely want to ensure that you’re using a good quality honey. No need for the raw stuff as you’re going to heat it over a low heat. But the stuff in the ‘bee’ bottle just won’t do. This is the one that I used for this recipe, it’s a Canadian brand.
Make the hot honey ahead of time to speed things up. It lasts a while in your pantry (or somewhere else that is cool and away from the sun). It does get very thick as it sits, but it will loosen if you run the jar under hot water. Of course, you can always buy hot honey as well, this brand looks great!
Feel free to drizzle your hot honey on anything! Sandwiches, pizza, meat, fish, ANYTHING goes with this stuff, trust me.
Don’t forget the oven baked parm fries that go perfectly with these chicken tenders!
How to freeze Chicken Tenders
I like making a big batch of chicken tenders at a time so that I can have some on hand for whenever I get another craving. Plus, the process of dipping and breading the chicken takes a bit of time, so I might as well make it worthwhile.
To freeze these, you’ll want to bread all the chicken and then place it on a parchment lined pan in the freezer for about an hour or more, until pretty frozen. Then, you can just place the frozen (uncooked) chicken tenders in a plastic freezer bag.
When you want some, just take some out and pop them in the oven from frozen. You’ll need to increase the cooking time and lower the oven temperature slightly. They should take about 30 minutes at 350ºF.
If you make these paleo chicken tenders and hot honey sauce, let me know. Tag me on Instagram, or comment/leave a rating below. I love hearing from you!
This post contains affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. I only share products and services I have personally used and love. Disclosure here.
Paleo Chicken Tenders with Hot Honey Sauce
Delicious and easy paleo chicken tenders with a hot honey sauce!
For the Chicken Tenders
For the Hot Honey
- 1/2 cup Honey
- 1 Serrano Pepper sliced, seeded for less heat
Prepare a baking sheet, by lining it with parchment paper.
Pat the chicken strips dry with paper towel and set aside. In a large bowl, whisk together the almond flour, smoked paprika, garlic powder, cayenne and salt. In a separate small bowl, add the tapioca flour. In another small bowl, add the egg and whisk.
Dip each chicken piece into the tapioca flour first, shaking off excess. Then dip into the egg, again, shaking off any excess. Then dip into the almond flour and place on your prepared pan. Continue until all of the chicken strips are done. Place in the fridge for up to one hour, if you have time.
When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 400ºF (204ºC) and place in the oven to cook for 20 minutes, flipping halfway through. Spray one side with avocado oil and when you flip them over, spray the other side. You can broil for about 1 to 2 minutes if you want them crispier, just be careful they don't burn.
Remove from the oven and serve with the hot honey, or any dipping sauce. Serve with some fresh thyme for garnish if you want.
Make the Hot Honey
In a small saucepan over low heat, add the honey and serrano pepper and bring to a very low simmer. Once it has begun simmering, lower the heat more and let it sit for up to 45 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool for about 10 minutes.
Strain the pepper from the honey using a sieve into a clean jar. You can also leave the pepper in the honey if you want more heat. Store in the container in a cool, dry place.