Buffalo Chicken Tenders Recipe

This Buffalo Chicken Tenders recipe is a gastronomic delight for everyone who loves a good kick of spice. The chicken is marinated in buttermilk and hot sauce, then coated in a seasoned flour mixture, and finally deep-fried to perfection. The final touch is a generous dip in homemade buffalo wing sauce to lend the right balance of heat and tang.

Buffalo Chicken Tenders Recipe
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Most of the ingredients for this recipe are basic pantry staples like flour, eggs, and buttermilk. For the buffalo wing sauce, you'll need Frank's Red Hot Pepper Sauce. If you don't typically stock this, you can find it in the condiment aisle of most supermarkets. It's the secret to the authentic buffalo flavor, so it's worth tracking down.

Buffalo Chicken Tenders Recipe Ingredients

Chicken breasts: The main ingredient of our recipe. It's lean and high in protein.

Buttermilk: This is used to marinade the chicken, it tenderizes the meat and adds a tangy flavor.

Hot sauce: This is to add spiciness to the tender.

Eggs: Helps the flour to adhere to the chicken.

Flour: Creates a crispy coating when deep fried.

Salt, pepper, paprika, garlic powder: These are the seasonings for the flour mixture.

Canola oil: Used for deep frying the chicken tenders.

Frank's red hot pepper sauce: This is the key ingredient for the buffalo wing sauce.

Unsalted butter: Adds richness to the buffalo wing sauce.

White vinegar and Worcestershire sauce: They are used to add tanginess to the buffalo wing sauce.

One reader, Adriena Nutter says:

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I recently tried out the buffalo chicken tenders recipe and it was a game-changer! The tenders were perfectly crispy and the buffalo sauce was just the right amount of spicy. It's now my go-to recipe for gatherings and everyone loves it. Highly recommend giving it a try!

Adriena Nutter

Key Techniques for Perfect Buffalo Chicken Tenders

How to prepare the chicken tenders: Soak the chicken breasts in a mixture of buttermilk and hot sauce for 30 minutes to tenderize the meat and infuse it with flavor.

How to make the buffalo wing sauce: Combine Frank's Red Hot pepper sauce, unsalted butter, white vinegar, and Worcestershire sauce in a saucepan, then bring the mixture to a boil while whisking to create a tangy and spicy buffalo sauce.

How To Make Buffalo Chicken Tenders

Crispy chicken tenders coated in homemade buffalo sauce served with flavorful ranch dressing. This buffalo chicken tenders recipe is difficult to resist!

Preparation: 30 minutes
Cooking: 30 minutes
Total: 1 hour

Serves:

Ingredients

  • 4chicken breasts,boneless skinless
  • 1cupbuttermilk
  • 1tsphot sauce
  • 2eggs,large, beaten
  • 2cupsflour
  • tspsalt
  • ¾tsppepper
  • tsppaprika
  • tspgarlic powder
  • tspbaking powder
  • canola oil,for frying

For Buffalo Wing Sauce:

  • cupFranks Red Hot pepper sauce
  • 1stickunsalted butter
  • 1tbspwhite vinegar
  • ¼tspWorcestershire sauce

Instructions

  1. Cut the chicken breasts into four tenders each and soak them in a bowl with the buttermilk and hot sauce for 30 minutes.

  2. Add the eggs to a bowl and the flour and spices to a second bowl.

  3. Dip each piece of chicken from the buttermilk bowl to the flour mixture.

  4. Dip it into the eggs then back into the flour mixture.

  5. Shake excess flour gently off and put the chicken onto a baking sheet.

  6. Repeat with all the pieces.

  7. Heat the oil in a dutch oven on medium high heat to 350 degrees F.

  8. Fry the chicken in small batches for 5 to 7 minutes or until golden brown.

Buffalo Wing Sauce:

  1. Add the ingredients to a small saucepan and bring to a boil while whisking.

  2. Dip the tenders into the sauce and serve immediately.

Nutrition

  • Calories: 209.81kcal
  • Fat: 11.94g
  • Saturated Fat: 5.17g
  • Trans Fat: 0.28g
  • Monounsaturated Fat: 4.25g
  • Polyunsaturated Fat: 1.64g
  • Carbohydrates: 13.01g
  • Fiber: 0.49g
  • Sugar: 0.93g
  • Protein: 12.00g
  • Cholesterol: 63.63mg
  • Sodium: 325.21mg
  • Calcium: 33.83mg
  • Potassium: 161.85mg
  • Iron: 0.68mg
  • Vitamin A: 70.75µg
  • Vitamin C: 7.42mg

Essential Technique for Achieving Crispy Chicken Tenders

When frying your chicken tenders, it's important to not overcrowd the pan. Overcrowding can lower the temperature of the oil significantly, causing the chicken to absorb more oil and become greasy rather than crispy. Fry in small batches and allow the oil to come back up to temperature between each batch for the best results. Additionally, using a thermometer to monitor the oil temperature can ensure consistent, perfect frying every time.

Time-Saving Tips for Making Buffalo Chicken Tenders

Prep ahead: Marinate the chicken tenders in buttermilk and hot sauce the night before to save time on the day of cooking.

Double batch: Make a larger batch of the buffalo wing sauce and store the extra in the fridge for future use.

Organized workstation: Set up a breading station with the flour, eggs, and seasoned flour in an assembly line to streamline the coating process.

Use a thermometer: Use a kitchen thermometer to ensure the oil reaches the correct temperature for frying, preventing under or overcooking.

Bake instead: Consider baking the chicken tenders instead of frying for a healthier and quicker alternative.

Prep the sauce: Make the buffalo wing sauce in advance and store it in the refrigerator until ready to use.

Substitute Ingredients For Buffalo Chicken Tenders Recipe

  • chicken breasts - Substitute with boneless turkey breast: Turkey breast is a lean and flavorful alternative to chicken, and it works well in recipes that call for chicken breasts.

  • buttermilk - Substitute with plain yogurt mixed with milk: This mixture can provide the same tangy flavor and tenderizing effect as buttermilk in the recipe.

  • hot sauce - Substitute with cayenne pepper mixed with vinegar: This combination can replicate the heat and tanginess of hot sauce in the buffalo wing sauce.

  • eggs - Substitute with flax eggs (1 tbsp ground flaxseed mixed with 3 tbsp water per egg): Flax eggs can act as a binding agent similar to eggs in the recipe.

  • flour - Substitute with almond flour: Almond flour can be used as a gluten-free alternative to all-purpose flour in the recipe.

  • canola oil - Substitute with vegetable oil: Vegetable oil can be used as a substitute for canola oil in the recipe.

  • franks red hot pepper sauce - Substitute with Tabasco sauce: Tabasco sauce can provide a similar spicy and tangy flavor to the dish.

  • unsalted butter - Substitute with coconut oil: Coconut oil can be used as a dairy-free alternative to butter in the buffalo wing sauce.

Best Way to Present Buffalo Chicken Tenders

  1. Elevate the plating: Arrange the buffalo chicken tenders in a visually appealing manner, ensuring each piece is positioned with precision and care. Consider using garnishes such as microgreens or edible flowers to add a pop of color and freshness to the dish.

  2. Incorporate contrasting textures: Introduce elements that provide a textural contrast to the crispy chicken tenders, such as a side of creamy coleslaw or a refreshing cucumber salad. This will add depth and complexity to the overall dining experience.

  3. Focus on sauce placement: Drizzle the buffalo wing sauce strategically on the plate, ensuring it complements the tenders without overwhelming them. Precision in saucing is crucial to achieving a visually stunning presentation.

  4. Utilize elegant serving ware: Select serving platters and dishes that exude sophistication and elegance, elevating the dining experience for the esteemed culinary professionals. Pay attention to the finer details, such as the choice of plates and utensils.

  5. Emphasize color harmony: Incorporate vibrant and visually appealing elements on the plate, such as a medley of colorful vegetables or a drizzle of vibrant sauce, to create a harmonious and aesthetically pleasing composition.

  6. Consider portion symmetry: Ensure that the portion sizes are consistent and symmetrically arranged on the plate, showcasing attention to detail and precision in presentation.

  7. Highlight the tenders as the focal point: Place the buffalo chicken tenders at the center of the plate, allowing them to take center stage while being surrounded by complementary elements that enhance their visual appeal.

  8. Pay attention to plate composition: Create a balanced and visually striking composition on the plate, considering factors such as negative space, arrangement, and overall harmony to captivate the discerning eyes of the Michelin-starred culinary professionals.

Essential Tools for Making Crispy Chicken Tenders

  • Cutting board: A sturdy surface for cutting and preparing the chicken.
  • Mixing bowls: Used for mixing the buttermilk, hot sauce, eggs, and flour mixture.
  • Whisk: To mix the buttermilk, hot sauce, and eggs thoroughly.
  • Baking sheet: To place the coated chicken tenders before frying.
  • Dutch oven: For frying the chicken tenders in oil.
  • Small saucepan: To prepare the buffalo wing sauce.
  • Tongs: For flipping and removing the chicken tenders from the oil.
  • Kitchen thermometer: To ensure the oil reaches the correct frying temperature.
  • Whisk: To mix the buffalo wing sauce ingredients.

Storing and Freezing Homemade Buffalo Chicken Tenders

  • To store leftover buffalo chicken tenders, allow them to cool completely to room temperature before placing them in an airtight container or resealable plastic bag. Refrigerate for up to 3-4 days.
  • For optimal crispiness, reheat the tenders in a preheated oven at 375°F (190°C) for 10-15 minutes or until heated through and crispy. Alternatively, you can reheat them in an air fryer at 350°F (175°C) for 5-7 minutes.
  • If you want to freeze the tenders for later consumption, follow these steps:
    • Place the cooled tenders on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, ensuring they are not touching each other.
    • Freeze the tenders for 1-2 hours or until solid.
    • Transfer the frozen tenders to a freezer-safe container or resealable plastic bag, removing as much air as possible to prevent freezer burn.
    • Label the container or bag with the date and contents for easy reference.
    • Frozen buffalo chicken tenders can be stored for up to 2-3 months.
  • To reheat frozen tenders, preheat your oven to 400°F (200°C) and place the frozen tenders on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a wire rack. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until heated through and crispy. Adjust the cooking time as needed, depending on the size of the tenders.
  • Note: For best results, consume the tenders within the recommended storage time to ensure optimal taste and texture. Avoid refreezing previously frozen and thawed tenders, as this can lead to a decline in quality and potential food safety issues.

How To Reheat Leftover Chicken Tenders

Here are the best methods for reheating leftover buffalo chicken tenders:

  • Oven method: Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C). Place the leftover tenders on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or aluminum foil. Bake for 10-15 minutes, flipping them halfway through, until they are heated through and crispy. This method helps to retain the crispiness of the breading while ensuring the chicken is evenly heated.

  • Air fryer method: Set your air fryer to 375°F (190°C). Place the tenders in the air fryer basket, making sure they are not overcrowded. Cook for 3-5 minutes, shaking the basket halfway through, until the tenders are crispy and heated through. The air fryer is an excellent option for reheating as it quickly crisps up the exterior while keeping the interior juicy.

  • Stovetop method: Heat a tablespoon of oil in a skillet over medium heat. Once the oil is hot, add the tenders to the skillet and cook for 2-3 minutes on each side, or until they are crispy and heated through. This method is quick and easy, but be careful not to overcrowd the skillet, as this can cause the tenders to steam rather than crisp up.

  • Microwave method (last resort): If you're in a hurry, you can reheat the tenders in the microwave. Place them on a microwave-safe plate and heat for 30-60 seconds, or until heated through. However, keep in mind that the microwave will not restore the crispiness of the breading, and the tenders may become soggy.

Regardless of the method you choose, be sure to reheat the tenders until they reach an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C) to ensure food safety. If desired, you can also brush the reheated tenders with some extra buffalo sauce for added flavor and moisture.

Interesting Fact About Buffalo Chicken Tenders

The recipe for buffalo chicken tenders is a popular dish that combines the flavors of crispy chicken tenders with a spicy and tangy buffalo wing sauce. The tenders are soaked in a buttermilk and hot sauce mixture, then coated in a seasoned flour mixture before being fried to golden perfection. The buffalo wing sauce, made with franks red hot pepper sauce, butter, vinegar, and worcestershire sauce, adds a delicious kick to the dish. This flavorful recipe is perfect for serving as an appetizer or main dish, and it's sure to be a hit with anyone who loves the combination of spicy and savory flavors.

Is Making Buffalo Chicken Tenders at Home Cost-Effective?

This buffalo chicken tenders recipe is quite cost-effective for a household. The main ingredients, such as chicken breasts, buttermilk, and flour, are generally affordable and readily available. The addition of hot sauce and butter may slightly increase the cost, but they are staple items in most kitchens. The approximate cost for a household of 4 people would be around $15-$20. Overall, this recipe offers a delicious and budget-friendly option for a satisfying meal. Verdict: 9/10

Are Buffalo Chicken Tenders Healthy or Unhealthy?

The buffalo chicken tenders recipe, while undeniably delicious, is not particularly healthy. Here's why:

  • The chicken is deep-fried, which adds a significant amount of unhealthy fats and calories to the dish.
  • The recipe calls for all-purpose flour, which is refined and lacks the nutrients found in whole grain alternatives.
  • The buffalo wing sauce is high in sodium due to the hot pepper sauce and butter, which can contribute to high blood pressure and other health issues when consumed in excess.
  • The recipe lacks any vegetables or fruits, which are essential for a balanced and nutritious meal.

To make this recipe healthier, consider the following suggestions:

  • Instead of deep-frying, try oven-baking the chicken tenders. Coat them with a mixture of whole wheat breadcrumbs, parmesan cheese, and spices for a crispy exterior without the added oil.
  • Replace half of the all-purpose flour with whole wheat flour to increase the fiber content and nutritional value of the breading.
  • Reduce the amount of butter in the buffalo wing sauce and replace some of it with a healthier alternative like Greek yogurt. This will maintain the creaminess while cutting down on saturated fats.
  • Serve the chicken tenders alongside a fresh salad or roasted vegetables to add vitamins, minerals, and fiber to the meal.
  • Use a low-sodium hot pepper sauce to decrease the overall sodium content of the dish.

By making these adjustments, you can enjoy the flavors of buffalo chicken tenders while significantly improving the nutritional profile of the meal.

Editor's Opinion on This Buffalo Chicken Tenders Recipe

The buffalo chicken tenders recipe is a classic crowd-pleaser with a perfect balance of crispy texture and spicy, tangy flavor. The buttermilk marinade ensures tender, juicy chicken, while the double coating technique creates a satisfying crunch. The homemade buffalo wing sauce adds a fiery kick, complemented by the rich, buttery finish. This recipe is a winner for game day gatherings or casual weeknight dinners, offering a delicious twist on traditional chicken tenders.

Enhance Your Buffalo Chicken Tenders Recipe with These Unique Side Dishes:

Mashed Potatoes: Creamy mashed potatoes with a hint of garlic and chives, topped with melted butter.
Grilled Asparagus: Tender asparagus spears grilled to perfection and drizzled with a balsamic glaze.
Fruit Salad: A refreshing mix of seasonal fruits, tossed in a light honey-lime dressing and garnished with fresh mint leaves.

Tasty Alternatives to Buffalo Chicken Tenders

Grilled Vegetable Skewers: Marinate the vegetables in a zesty herb dressing before grilling for a delicious and healthy side dish.
Braised Beef Short Ribs: Slow cook the beef short ribs in a rich red wine and tomato sauce until they are fall-off-the-bone tender and full of flavor.
Mango Coconut Panna Cotta: Create a creamy and tropical dessert by combining coconut milk and fresh mango puree for a refreshing and indulgent treat.

Appetizers and Desserts That Complement Buffalo Chicken Tenders

Appetizers:
Spinach and Artichoke Dip: Combine creamy spinach and artichoke dip with crispy tortilla chips for a perfect start to your meal. The warm, gooey dip is packed with flavor and is sure to be a hit with your guests.
Stuffed Mushrooms: These savory stuffed mushrooms are the perfect bite-sized appetizer to kick off your meal. Filled with a delicious mixture of cheese, herbs, and breadcrumbs, these mushrooms are sure to impress your guests.
Desserts:
Chocolate Mousse: Indulge in a rich and creamy chocolate mousse, topped with a dollop of whipped cream and a sprinkle of cocoa powder. The smooth texture and decadent flavor will leave your taste buds craving for more.
Apple Crisp: Savor the warm and comforting flavors of a homemade apple crisp, with tender-crisp apples and a buttery oat topping. Pair it with a scoop of vanilla ice cream for the perfect balance of sweetness and tartness.

Why trust this Buffalo Chicken Tenders Recipe:

This buffalo chicken tenders recipe is a tried and tested favorite, guaranteed to satisfy your cravings for a delicious and flavorful meal. The combination of tender chicken, crispy coating, and tangy buffalo wing sauce creates a mouthwatering experience that will leave you wanting more. With a perfect balance of spices and a foolproof cooking method, this recipe ensures that you'll achieve restaurant-quality results in the comfort of your own kitchen. Trust the process, and indulge in the irresistible allure of these buffalo chicken tenders.

Share your thoughts on this Buffalo Chicken Tenders Recipe in the Recipe Sharing forum and let us know how it turned out for you!
FAQ:
How long should I soak the chicken in the buttermilk and hot sauce mixture?
You should soak the chicken in the buttermilk and hot sauce mixture for at least 30 minutes. This will help tenderize the chicken and infuse it with flavor.
Can I use a different type of hot sauce for the buffalo wing sauce?
Absolutely! Feel free to use your favorite hot sauce or adjust the amount to suit your preferred level of spiciness.
Can I bake the chicken tenders instead of frying them?
Yes, you can bake the chicken tenders for a healthier alternative. Preheat your oven to 400°F (200°C) and place the breaded tenders on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for 20-25 minutes, flipping halfway through, until they are golden and crispy.
How do I know when the oil is at the right temperature for frying?
You can use a kitchen thermometer to ensure the oil reaches 350°F (175°C) before frying. If you don't have a thermometer, you can test the oil by dropping a small piece of breaded chicken into the oil. If it sizzles and turns golden brown within 30 seconds, the oil is ready.
Can I make the buffalo wing sauce ahead of time?
Absolutely! You can make the buffalo wing sauce ahead of time and store it in the refrigerator. When you're ready to use it, gently reheat the sauce on the stovetop or in the microwave until it's pourable.

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