Our healthy baked chicken tenders (no breading) are the BEST way to enjoy flavorful chicken tenders that can be used in a variety of ways!
If you have just a few ingredients and 20 minutes, you can make yourself these easy oven baked chicken tenderloins in the oven and create a meal that is a WHOLE LOTTA YUM!
Plain Baked Chicken Tenders
Plain raw chicken tenders are something we recommend keeping in the fridge or freezer- and they are always on our list for a meal-prep day. Plus they're cheaper than other chicken cuts!
Super versatile, oven baked chicken tenders without breading are the perfect finger food, quick snack, or easy lunch or dinner option. We love to use these healthy tenders in lunch wraps, to make a filling and delicious Cobb salad, or even to create a quick and easy chicken taco salad.
You will love these Oven Baked Chicken Tenders
- Learn our secret on how not to overcook tenderloins! Make them juicy every time!
- Seasoned with butter and/or extra virgin olive oil and chicken rub, our simple baked chicken tenders no breading recipe is absolutely delicious plus can used in so many ways.
- Our plain baked chicken tenders are the perfect recipe for those eating healthy following gluten-free, keto, low-carb, and paleo lifestyles.
- With a cook time of just 10-minutes, these chicken tenders are ready even faster than traditional breaded varieties plus healthier than deep frying.
- The whole recipe needs just a few ingredients and less than 20-minutes of your time!
Baked Chicken Tenderloins ingredients
Chicken tenders, butter or oil, and some chicken seasoning, plus a few minutes in the oven - that's all you need to create these baked chicken tenders without breading.
- chicken tenders - we're talking raw chicken tenderloins here, not the precooked frozen breaded tenders. You could also cut chicken breasts into thick slices.
- butter - or olive oil. We used salted butter but unsalted butter works just fine. Vegetable oil will work too.
- chicken rub - use our recipe included in the recipe card or you can use your favorite store-bought brand.
- optional dipping sauce such as BBQ, ketchup, honey mustard, or ranch dressing
Seasoning Rub Ingredients
- garlic powder -add even more garlic powder for a garlic lover's version!
- onion powder
- Italian seasoning
- sweetener (optional) - use brown sugar or use golden monk fruit for low carb.
- fine sea salt -or use kosher salt but less than the fine sea salt since kosher salt weighs less.
- ground black pepper
- cayenne pepper
Chicken Tenderloins in Oven substitutions and additions
Change the seasoning - create a variety of chicken tender flavors when you change your chicken seasoning to include Italian seasoning, taco seasoning, herbs, or other spices.
Make these panko crusted tenders or use other types of bread crumbs by dipping them in panko breadcrumbs after dipping them in the olive oil butter mix.
Add parmesan cheese - just coat the chicken with parmesan cheese to add a little cheesy crunch.
As written, the baked chicken tenderloins are gluten-free, low carb, and keto friendly.
- Dairy-Free - use extra virgin oil or avocado oil in place of the butter
How to make Baked Chicken Tenderloins
While this oven baked chicken tenders no breading recipe is super easy, take a few minutes to read through our step-by-step instructions and recipe tips to ensure your baked chicken tenders come out perfect each and every time.
Preheat the oven to 400F and put the oven rack in the center position.
Combine the seasoning mixture ingredients, which includes the paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, Italian seasoning, salt, pepper, an cayenne in a small bowl. The cayenne pepper is optional but recommended if you want a kick of spice.
Add the butter to a shallow dish and melt it in the microwave (if you're using it), you're giving an option of using just extra virgin olive oil OR you can use a mix of butter and olive oil.
Dip or brush the chicken tenders with the olive oil butter mix on both sides. Dipping could add more fat than you'd like, if that's the case just brush a little olive oil or butter on both sides of the chicken.
Sprinkle both sides of the chicken tenderloins with the seasoning mixture.
How long to bake chicken tenders?
Transfer chicken tenders to a baking sheet (if you hadn't already done so). Bake the chicken for a total of 10 minutes, flipping them after 5 minutes.
Cook the chicken tenderloins until the internal temperature when tested with a digitial thermometer reaches 162 F and they're golden brown. This is less than the recommended 165 F you'll often find. Removing the chicken right when they're done means it often overcooks slightly since the meat continues to cook while it rests on the counter.
Let the chicken rest a few minutes before serving, they'll continue cooking at should be at 165 F (which is the USDA recommended cooking temp). Enjoy!
Oven Baked Chicken Tenders recipe tips
- Season both sides of the chicken tenders to make your baked chicken tenders as flavorful as possible.
- While flipping your oven baked chicken tenders no breading is not required, we do highly recommend flipping to ensure even cooking.
- The best way to make sure your baked chicken tenders are cooked fully without overcooking is to use a digital meat thermometer.
- You can coat these with bread crumbs and an egg wash if preferred before baking.
- You can also use frozen chicken tenderloins! Just cook them from frozen and dip them in the fat and then seasoning.
How to serve Baked Chicken Tenders
Baked chicken tenders (no breading) are always a good choice for dinner. Use your cooked tenders in:
- Top a salad! Use mixed greens, a salad recipe, or a grocery store salad kit.
- Make chicken wraps for dinner or lunch.
- Make an easy and healthy dinner with your baked chicken tenders plus oven-roasted potatoes and bacon curry coleslaw.
- Serve with roasted veggies
- Steamed veggies
- Add dipping sauce on the side such as honey mustard dipping sauce,
How to store Baked Chicken Tenderloins
Store: Baked chicken tenderloins can be kept in the fridge for up to 3-4 days in an air-tight container.
Freeze: Freeze leftover chicken tenderloin for up to 3 months. Wrap them in plastic wrap and then with a double layer of foil, or you can place them in a freezer bag, or freezer-safe container.
Reheat: You can reheat chicken tenderloins in a 400 F oven for 5+ minutes until they’re heated through, but the fastest way would actually be to pan fry them in a skillet for 2-3 minutes or air fry them at 380 F for 2-3 minutes.
Chicken Tenders in Oven FAQs
If you have any leftover chicken tenders, you can store them for 4-5 days in the fridge in a covered container.
Yes, you can! Just add a few minutes to the cooking time and be sure the internal temperature reaches 165F before serving.
Chicken breast tenders are definitely part of a healthy diet, especially if you cook them yourself and you know what the ingredients going into the recipe are. In general, pre-packed frozen chicken tenders or fried chicken tenders aren’t the healthiest options compared to our baked chicken tenders or air-fried recipe, but everything is in moderation.
These are also sometimes called chicken strips or tenderloins too.
Chicken tenders should be cooked to an internal temperature of 165°F to make sure they are safe to eat. Undercooking the chicken can make you sick whereas overcooking it makes the texture dry and tough. This is why we highly recommend using an inexpensive digital meat thermometer!
Chicken can bake faster with foil since it helps to lock in the heat and moisture, which can speed up the cooking time. However, the cooking time can also vary based on the thickness of the chicken and the temperature of your oven.
More Chicken Tenders Recipes
Looking for even more easy chicken recipes?
- Air Fryer Chicken Tenders (no breading)
- Pan Frying Chicken Tenders
- Instant Pot Frozen Chicken Tenders
- Air Fryer Frozen Chicken Tenders
- Chicken with mushroom sauce