Crunchy Chicken Strips & Easy Honey Mustard Sauce (Paleo, Gluten-Free)

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Chicken tenders were ALWAYS my go-to food growing up. Just about every restaurant sold some variation of them, and it was pretty hard to mess them up.

In college, the best day in the cafeteria was chicken tender day when the dining staff served us 3 large crispy, breaded chicken fingers for lunch. Dipping them in a bowl of sweet, ooey gooey honey was just what I needed to round out the crunchy, saltiness of the tenders.

Pure food bliss.

I was talking to a blog follower the other day (Barb), and she asked for more dinner ideas.

That comment (along with my lifelong love of chicken tenders) motivated me to share this recipe for my favorite homemade version – one that happens to sneak in some honey AND turn out buttery, crunchy, salty and satisfying

Oh, and healthy, of course 🙂

I LOVE the simplicity of this recipe...and how incredible it tastes.

It’s an easy go-to dinner option with fewer than 5 ingredients. If you have kids, involve them in the 2-step “breading” process. They’ll have fun with it.

Serve these chicken strips with a salad or veggie side dish. We’ve enjoyed them alongside some cauliflower mashed potatoes or roasted vegetables. YUM!

Crunchy Chicken Strips & Easy Honey Mustard Sauce

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Chicken Tenders

  • 1 package chicken breast strips OR skinless chicken breasts, cut into strips and patted dry with a paper towel
  • 1/2 cup Dijon mustard
  • 3 tablespoons honey (I use raw honey, but any honey will work in this recipe)
  • 1.5 cup pecans (Don’t have pecans? Try these with chopped walnuts or almonds instead…but I have to admit – using pecans is my favorite way to make this dish.)
  • Sea salt, to taste

Honey Mustard Dipping Sauce (basically 2 parts mustard to 1 part honey. Adjust the amount based on how much you want!)

  • 1/4 cup Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons honey (I used raw honey but any will work)
Honey mustard dipping sauce! Nomnomnom

Honey mustard dipping sauce! Nomnomnom

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Whisk together the honey and mustard in a medium-sized bowl.
  3. Toss the pecans in a food processor and pulse until the nuts are finely chopped. Pour the chopped pecans onto a plate.
  4. Use a paper towel to pat the chicken breasts dry. Taking one chicken breast at a time, place the chicken into the honey mustard mixture and coat on both sides. Roll chicken in chopped pecans.
  5. Place coated chicken into a greased (or foil-lined or parchment-paper lined) glass baking dish. Sprinkle each chicken breast with sea salt.
  6. Bake for 25-35 minutes or until a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part reads 165 degrees F. (It is SO worth it to buy a meat thermometer, by the way. They’re cheap and take the guesswork out of cooking meat and seafood.).
  7. While the chicken is cooking, stir the honey and mustard together in a dish for the dipping sauce.

Start dipping and eating. It’ll be hard to stop! 🙂

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7 Comments

  1. Nancy Bryant

    This would be so excellent to make for Braxton.

  2. Lindsay

    My entire family, kids included loved this recipe.. A real hit! Keep them coming Rachel!

  3. Laura

    Great recipe and so easy to make! Definitely going into the dinner rotation at my house!

    • Aw, I’m so glad Laura! Thanks for stopping by to leave your feedback 🙂 you can really do it with any kind of nuts to vary it up but I’m partial to pecans 😉

  4. Jan Sullivan... Joe's Aunt

    Rachel, girl, you did it again! We cooked this recipe this evening… along with the Kale Waldorf Salad! We forgot to toast the pecans, so I toasted them AFTER they were ground– that’s why the photo on your FB page shows them as being so dark. The clean-up for this (and the Kale Waldorf Salad) was so easy as there were no oils. My sous chef (husband Peter) appreciated that! Yummy yum!

    • So glad you enjoyed it!! This is one that is a go to in our house because it’s so easy! You can change it up and use any nuts you want, but we like it best with pecans 🙂 Also, no need to toast the pecans first – they will toast enough as they bake in the coating. I took the picture on that post before I knew how to use my fancy pants camera, which is why it looks dark. The next time we make this dish, I’ll take some new pics!

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