Game Day Recipe: Crispy Buffalo Chicken Tenders with Blue Cheese Dip

January 20, 2013

Game Day Recipe: Crispy Buffalo Chicken Tenders with Blue Cheese Dip


Buffalo wings are a game day favorite, but if you’re looking for something a little different, you’ll love these baked Buffalo chicken tenders. The crispy coating, made from Panko (Japanese breadcrumbs), ensures juicy, tender bites of chicken. The sweet-hot seasoning has more complexity than the usual drenched-in-hot-sauce wing. Another bonus: They’re a lot less messy, so you don’t have to worry about greasy hot wing stains on  your sofa!


Overview

  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: about 24 tenders

Ingredients

Blue Cheese Dip

  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 2/3 cup blue cheese, crumbled
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper

Buffalo Chicken Tenders

  • 1 1/2 cups mayonnaise
  • 1/3 cup hot sauce (e.g., Crystal or Frank's)
  • 1/2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
  • 3 pounds chicken tenders, trimmed

Panko Coating

  • 5 cups panko bread crumbs
  • 1/3 cup Barbecue spice seasoning (available in spice aisle of supermarket)
  • 1 Tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoons black pepper
  • 5 Tablespoons unsalted butter

Instructions

To make Blue Cheese Dip

  1. Whisk all ingredients together and store, refrigerated for up to 3 days prior to use.

To make Chicken Tenders

  1. Whisk together mayonnaise, hot sauce, and cayenne pepper in a large bowl. Add chicken and marinate at least 15 minutes or overnight (refrigerated).
  2. Toss together panko, salt, pepper, and BBQ seasoning in a large bowl. Melt butter in a large skillet and toss in panko, stirring frequently, until toasted. Remove to a shallow pan and cool.
  3. When ready to cook, arrange 2 baking racks on foil lined cookie sheets and preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Coat each tender in panko, place on rack (leaving space between tenders), and cook in oven for 12-15 minutes or until cooked through. Repeat with 2nd batch of tenders on same baking sheets. Serve warm with additional hot sauce and Blue Cheese Dip.

Notes:

To speed game-day prep: make the Blue Cheese dip up to 3 days before, marinate the chicken tenders overnight and prepare the spiced-toasted panko breadcrumbs the day before. Coat the tenders in panko just before baking. These are easy to prepare with little to no heat as well. Simply leave the cayenne pepper and hot sauce out of preparation instructions. You can also prepare these as Buffalo Chicken Nuggets – just cut the tenders into thirds and bake for a few minutes less.




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