I have one client, in particular, who is coming off of a long-time habit of daily runs to Chick-Fil-A for Sweet Tea and Chicken Nuggets. She has 3 kiddos under the age of 6 and sometimes, life gets so busy, you just start doing what’s easiest and then before you know it, what’s easiest has caused you to gain 20 pounds and you feel absolutely exhausted. In an effort to give her something that could be her new go-to for Chicken Nuggets, I came up with this recipe. In full disclosure – I was not sure these were going to turn out that well. I literally took the first bite and kind of cringed – you know, just waiting for them to taste, well, “meh…” I mean, how do you beat Chick-Fil-A? Oh, but I did! Seriously. I win, Chick-Fil-A! On ALL counts! Mine taste better – that’s right… You heard me. I said it! Mine are obviously healthier and totally gluten, grain and dairy-free.
So, while these chicken tenders are not quite as easy as pulling through the drive-thru, you will feel fabulous after eating them and they won’t steal your energy.
This recipe can be made in double or triple batches and then frozen so that you can easily grab a few out of the freezer, wrap them in foil, pop them into the oven under the broiler for 3-4 minutes and they’ll be ready for the kiddos for lunch or dinner in no time! Alternatively, dip them into the batter and place on a baking sheet, pop into the freezer overnight and allow them to freeze raw. Once frozen, place in a large ziploc baggie and back into the freezer. When you’re ready to make them, pull out as many as you need, place on a baking sheet and into the oven per the directions below, but for an additional 4-5 minutes, as they will need to thaw in the oven. By freezing the latter way, they will take a little longer, but be more juicy/tender.
Hope you enjoy!!
Paleo Baked Chicken Tenders with Honey Mustard Dipping Sauce
- 1lb free range, boneless, skinless chicken tenders
- 1 ½ cups almond flour
- 1 ½ tbsp paprika (plain or smoked, depending upon your preference)
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 ½ tsp ground cumin
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
- ½ tsp ground turmeric
- ½ tsp black pepper
- 1 ½ tsp sea salt
- ¾ cup coconut milk
- 3 tsp apple cider vinegar
- 2 cage free eggs or 4 egg whites
- coconut oil cooking spray
Ingredients for the Dipping Sauce:
- ½ cup Primal Kitchen brand avocado oil mayonnaise
- ½ tbsp raw/local honey
- 2 tbsp yellow mustard
- 1 tbsp dijon mustard
- 1 tbsp grain mustard
- 1 tbsp honey mustard
- 2 tbsp Bragg’s apple cider vinegar
- pinch of sea salt and black pepper, to taste
- First, make the dipping sauce, if using. Combine all ingredients for the sauce in a small bowl. Whisk until well combined. Cover and place in the fridge for a chilled sauce or leave on the countertop if you prefer.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F and cover a large baking sheet with foil and spray generously with cooking spray.
- In a medium bowl, whisk the coconut milk and apple cider vinegar together. Let sit for 5 minutes.
- While the milk is resting, in another medium bowl, mix together almond meal, paprika, garlic, cumin, cayenne, turmeric, black pepper, and sea salt.
- Once the “buttermilk” has rested for 5 minutes – up to 10 minutes, whisk the eggs in and then season with a pinch of sea salt and black pepper.
- Dredge each piece of chicken in milk/egg mixture and then coat with flour/spice mixture.
- Place chicken onto the baking sheet in an even layer. Bake on the middle rack of the oven for 15-20 minutes, until golden or a meat thermometer reads 160 degrees.