Bacon Wrapped Chicken Tenders
These bacon wrapped chicken tenders are perfectly seasoned, crispy on the outside and juicy on the inside. Better still, they truly couldn't be easier to make! Recipe will make approx 12 tenders.
Servings: 12 tenders
Cost: £1.50 / $2
Large Frying Pan & Tongs
Small Pot (for spice mix)
Small Pot (for dipping sauce)
Sharp Knife & Chopping Board
Bacon Wrapped Chicken Tenders
- 1lb / 500g Chicken Tenders (see notes)
- 12 single rashers of Streaky Bacon, or as needed
- 1.5 tsp Smoked Paprika
- 1/2 tsp EACH: Onion Powder, Garlic Powder
- 1/2 tsp Brown Sugar (optional - leave out for keto)
- 1/4 - 1/2 tsp Salt
- 1/4 tsp Cayenne Pepper (or to preference)
- Olive Oil, as needed
Honey Mustard Dip (optional)
- 1/4 cup / 60g Mayo (full fat)
- 1/4 cup / 60g Dijon Mustard (see notes)
- 1/4 cup / 60g Honey
- 1 tbsp Sour Cream
- 1 tsp Lemon Juice (see notes)
- Salt & Black Pepper, to taste
Ensure you take your meats out 15mins before they're needed. Frying cold meat will cause it to seize up and go chewy. You want them close to room temp before they hit the pan.
In a small pot combine 1.5tsp smoked paprika, 1/2 tsp onion powder, garlic powder and sugar (optional), 1/4-1/2tsp salt and 1/4tsp cayenne pepper (or to taste).
Lay out your tenders and sprinkle over half your spice mix. Rub into meat, flip then repeat.
Take one rasher of bacon and starting at one tip of the tender, wrap around until you meet the other end, ensuring you tuck in the bacon at the end to stop in unfolding. Repeat with all the tenders.
Heat up a good glug of oil in a large pan over medium heat, then add your tenders (depending on pan size you may need to work in batches). Fry until the bacon is crispy and the fat has rendered down, and the chicken is completely white through the centre. Depending on the size of your tenders this could take between 8-12mins.
It's important to keep the heat no higher than a medium. This will draw out the bacon fat nicely. Cooking any higher will just char the bacon, leaving the bacon fat soft and the chicken potentially uncooked. See notes for baking options.
a) Chicken Tenders - If you can can your hands on actual tenders then great. If not just slice up chicken breast into strips. I find using 3 breasts works out to around 1lb/500g, each breast sliced into 4 tenders which is 12 in total (as recipe states).
b) Room Temp Meat - Another reminder to make sure you don't fry these cold straight out the fridge. They'll release a tonne of moisture and the bacon won't go crispy.
c) Baking Option - You can bake these, however I find they crisp up better in the pan and also come out slightly less dry. However, if you were to bake them I recommend placing them on a wire rack (so they crisp up all round) and bake at 200C/390F for 20-25mins or until piping hot through the centre and crispy on the outside. I usually go for 20mins and switch on the grill and broil at the end just to crisp the bacon up.
d) Make Ahead - These are perfect to prep ahead. No need to get them out the fridge early (because they'll be going straight back in). Just wrap them up and tightly cover in the fridge for up to 24hours, then take them out 15mins before cooking and follow recipe. You can also tightly cover and FREEZE them, just thaw in the fridge overnight and continue recipe.
e) Honey Mustard Dip - I like my honey mustard fairly mustardy. This dip will give you a good punch of flavour - enough to make your tongue tingle. But adjust as necessary after mix all the ingredients. Lemon juice cuts through the sweetness, but you can sub white wine vinegar or white vinegar if that's what you have.
f) Calories - per tender (based on 12) using 1 tbsp olive oil and without the dip:
Calories: 104kcal | Carbohydrates: 0.53g | Protein: 10.01g | Fat: 6.69g | Saturated Fat: 0.302g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.293g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1.007g | Trans Fat: 0.001g | Cholesterol: 22mg | Sodium: 127mg | Potassium: 166mg | Fiber: 0.1g | Sugar: 0.33g | Vitamin A: 154IU | Calcium: 6mg | Iron: 0.46mg