Buttermilk Chicken Tenders Recipe

Rating 5.0
| 1
The secret to a crispy, craggy crust on your fried buttermilk chicken tenders is to allow the buttermilk to mix into the dredging flour to form a clumpy mixture. Marinating the chicken in buttermilk improves the texture and flavor of the chicken.
Utensils Dinner
Globe New American
An expert chef and baker, Chef Libby enjoys creating dishes from all over the world and crafting meals to fit any dietary restrictions. She can teach everything from making homemade pasta and authentic Spanish paella to baking croissants and macarons. Chef Libby is passionate about making delicious cooking accessible and teaching home cooks basic or advanced techniques based on their skill level.


1 lb
chicken tenders, see notes
1 cup(s)
1 tsp
kosher salt
1 qt
peanut oil
1 cup(s)
all-purpose flour
2 tblsp
ketchup or barbecue sauce, for dipping

Directions 7 steps | 45 Minutes

Step 1

Measure and prep all ingredients.

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Step 2

Place the chicken, buttermilk, and salt in a plastic zip-top bag or another airtight container. Mix to thoroughly combine. Transfer the chicken into the refrigerator to marinate for at least 1 hour, preferably overnight.

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Step 3

When ready to fry, preheat the oven to 375°F. Heat the peanut oil in a Dutch oven, wok or other large pot to 375°F. Line two baking sheets with cooling racks. In a large shallow bowl, whisk together the flour and paprika.

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Step 4

Remove one piece of chicken at a time and dredge it in the flour. Transfer the dredged chicken to one of the prepared baking sheets. As buttermilk drips into the flour mixture, mix it in with your fingertips and allow to flour to form clumps. If the mixture becomes too wet and won't adhere to the chicken, mix in more flour. After you've coated all the chicken, repeat the dredging with the first couple of tenders you coated, to make sure they have as much breading as the rest.

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Step 5

Place a few breaded chicken pieces in the hot oil, keeping an eye on the temperature to ensure it does not drop below 300°F. Adjust the heat as needed to maintain a temperature around 350°F. 

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Step 6

Fry the tenders for about 10 minutes, turning as needed, or until the breading is crisped and browned. Using a strainer, spider, or slotted spoon, remove them to the second prepared baking sheet. If they are not cooked all the way through (165°F on an instant-read thermometer), transfer them to the hot oven for a few minutes to finish cooking. Once the oil temperature returns to 375°F, fry the next batch of chicken. Continue until all the chicken is cooked. 

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Step 7

Serve the buttermilk chicken tenders with ketchup or your favorite barbecue sauce. Enjoy!

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Nutrition Per Serving
View All
19.1 g
22.4 g
45.6 g


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Kimiko S.


23 Sep 2022

This was the perfect recipe to use up the leftover buttermilk in my fridge (and of course the kids - young and old alike - loved it!)

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