How To Make KFC Crispy Chicken Tenders At Home

It’s difficult to resist a bucket full of KFC chicken tenders, but constantly visiting the restaurant can get expensive. Therefore, our Chef Jasbir has replicated the KFC chicken tenders recipe for us. 

KFC Copycat Chicken Tenders

Confession: I had been on a mission to find the best KFC chicken tenders recipe and this recipe has proven to be the one. It provides the same juicy, crispy, and flavorful experience each time that the KFC chicken tenders offer.  

After trying out the recipe myself, I discovered that the secret lies in the buttermilk marinade that makes the chicken tender and succulent on the inside and crispy on the outside.

Moreover, these tenders don’t turn out to be oily. Therefore, munching on a bucket full of golden and crispy KFC tenders at home is easy for me now. 

They can be dipped in any of your favorite sauces. I usually serve them with honey mustard, ranch, or BBQ sauce.

 Equipment Required

  • Large Bowls – You’ll be needing three bowls for preparing this recipe. 
  • Skillet or Wok – A skillet or wok will be required to fry your tenders and make them crisp.
  • Paper Towels – Paper towels will help you drain excess oil from the fried chicken tenders. 
  • Whisk – A whisk will help you combine the ingredients to make the coating for the tenders. 
  • Knife – A knife will be required to cut the chicken breasts in strips. 
KFC Chicken Tenders Ingredients

Preparation And Cooking Time

Preparation TimeCooking TimeTotal Time
40 Minutes20 Minutes1 Hour

How To Make KFC Chicken Tenders Recipe

KFC Chicken Tenders Step 1
KFC Chicken Tenders Step 2
KFC Chicken Tenders Step 3
KFC Chicken Tenders Step 4
KFC Chicken Tenders Step 5
KFC Chicken Tenders Step 6
KFC Chicken Tenders Step 7
KFC Chicken Tenders Step 8
KFC Copycat Chicken Tenders

FAQs About KFC Chicken Tenders Recipe

  • Don’t Skip On Buttermilk – I think I’ve already mentioned it a lot of times before and I am gonna mention it again. The secret to making the best KFC chicken tenders lies in marinating it in buttermilk as it tenderizes and makes the chicken more flavorful. In fact, if you can’t find buttermilk, then it is recommended that you make it at home. 
  • Proper Coating – After marination, coat the chicken well, as the crispy and crunchy texture of tenders entirely depends upon it. 
  • Properly Drain The Oil – After frying the tenders, Jasbir always recommends removing excess oil by placing them on a paper towel or a wire rack. It will ensure you get rid of any extra oil.   
  • Place The Tenders In Oven – Chicken tenders are best enjoyed piping hot out of the oil. However, if you plan to eat them a little later like me, you can place them in a warm oven just like KFC does. It will ensure they stay hot and crispy.

Nutritional Information Per Serving

Calories136 kcal
Fat2 g
Cholesterol57 mg
Sodium458 mg
Potassium255 mg
Carbohydrates12 g
Protein14 g

Chicken tenders make for a healthy meal. We can say so by looking at the nutritional information in the table mentioned above. 

They contain moderate amounts of calories and fat, and are also rich in protein. Therefore, you can enjoy this beloved snack guilt free.

KFC Chicken Tenders At Home

Recipe Variations For Different Diets

  • Gluten-Free Chicken Tenders – Some of my friends suffer from gluten allergies. Therefore, I discovered ingredients to make them gluten-friendly. You can replace the flour with potato starch, cornstarch or tapioca starch/flour. Surprisingly, I found no difference in the taste and texture while using these substitutes.  
  • Vegan Chicken Tenders – If you follow a vegan diet, you don’t need to miss out on the amazing flavors of this dish. You can easily replace chicken for mock meat.
  • Keto Chicken Tenders – If you are following a keto diet, simply replace all purpose flour with almond flour.

Storing And Reheating This Recipe

Storing KFC Chicken Tenders

All you have to do is wrap leftover chicken tenders in foil or an airtight container once it comes to room temperature. Then, place them in the coolest part of the refrigerator. By storing the chicken tenders by this method that I’ve mentioned, you can increase their shelf life by 3-4 days.

Reheating KFC chicken tenders is an easy process. The good news is that if you reheat them properly, you can enjoy the same texture and taste. So let me tell you about reheating these tenders. 

Reheating KFC Chicken Tenders In Air Fryer

Using an air fryer to reheat this recipe will retain the crispiness of these chicken tenders on the outside and the moisture on the inside. Therefore, I recommend using this way to reheat. 

All you need to do is place the tenders in the air fryer for 5-10 minutes at 350-375 degrees Fahrenheit.

Reheating KFC Chicken Tenders In Oven

You can also use an oven to reheat chicken tenders as it distributes the heat evenly. Moreover, the hot air also helps in creating a crunchy texture. So, place the tenders in a preheated oven for 10 minutes at 350-375 degrees Fahrenheit until heated through. 

I’m sure you must be wondering why I haven’t mentioned reheating the tenders in the microwave. That’s because there is a lack of proper air circulation in the microwave. 

Thus, the tenders will turn dry and rubbery when reheated in the microwave. Moreover, the coating will become soggy. 

Lastly, between cooking a fresh batch of chicken tenders and reheating cycle, make sure that the tenders are not left outside for more than an hour at all times, as meat items spoil quickly. If you observe a change in appearance or odor, discard the leftovers. 

What To Serve With This Recipe

  • Mac and CheeseChicken tenders and mac and cheese are a match made in heaven. That’s because the creamy and cheesy mac compliments the savory and crunchy flavor and texture of the chicken tenders. 
  • Green BeansEnjoy a full Southern experience by pairing tenders with smoky and savory green beans.  
  • Coleslaw A creamy and refreshing coleslaw helps cut through the greasiness from the chicken. 
  • Caprese SaladNever underestimate the power of a refreshing salad. The light and savory flavors of the Caprese salad will compliment the tenders and make for a well-balanced meal.
  • Mashed PotatoesCreamy mashed potatoes makes for the right contrast of textures with crispy tenders. If you haven’t tried this combination yet, it’s time to do so.
  • Honey Mustard SauceRich and creamy, honey mustard sauce makes for the perfect dipping accompaniment.
  • Ranch DressingIf you prefer light and refreshing dipping sauces on the side, then a ranch dressing is what you need to try with chicken tenders.
  • BBQ SauceTo elevate the flavor profile of your chicken tenders, a homemade or store-bought BBQ sauce can do wonder with its smoky goodness. 

Printable Version

KFC Crispy Chicken Tenders Recipe

Author : Samah
Serving : 16
Calories : 136 kcal
Total time : 1 hour
The KFC crispy chicken tenders are juicy chicken tenders covered with a crispy and spicy breading. The chicken strips are marinated in buttermilk and a hot sauce mixture. They are then covered with seasoned flour and deep-fried.
4 from 16 votes


  • 4 boneless skinless Chicken Breasts (each cut into 4 long strips)
  • 2 cups Flour
  • 2 cups Water
  • 1 cup Buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon Hot Sauce
  • teaspoon Garlic Powder
  • teaspoon Paprika
  • ¾ teaspoon Black Pepper
  • 2 ½ teaspoon Salt
  • teaspoon Baking Powder
  • ½ cup Canola Oil (for frying)


  • 3 Large Bowls
  • Deep Fryer
  • Paper Towels
  • Whisk
  • Knife


  • Take two bowls and add buttermilk and chicken strips in each.
    KFC Chicken Tenders Step 1
  • Then marinate the chicken strips by pouring buttermilk to it.
    KFC Chicken Tenders Step 2
  • Next, add hot sauce to the bowl and allow the chicken strips to marinate for half an hour.
    KFC Chicken Tenders Step 3
  • To prepare the batter for coating the chicken strips, gather flour, baking powder, garlic powder, paprika, black pepper, and salt.
    KFC Chicken Tenders Step 4
  • Now add baking powder, paprika, and black pepper to the flour followed by salt and garlic powder. Stir the ingredients to combine.
    KFC Chicken Tenders Step 5
  • With all the elements ready, place the bowls of marinated chicken strips, flour mixture, and cracked eggs next to each other.
    KFC Chicken Tenders Step 6
  • Now, coat the chicken strips in the seasoned flour, then dip them in egg and coat them with seasoned flour once again.
    KFC Chicken Tenders Step 7
  • Then, heat canola oil in a wok to a temperature of 350℉ and fry the chicken tenders in a single layer until they turn golden and crispy. It will ensure that the chicken pieces don’t stick to each other. Moreover, by frying chicken in batches, the temperature of the oil will also remain stable.
    KFC Chicken Tenders Step 8
  • Your KFC chicken tenders are ready!
    KFC Copycat Chicken Tenders


Prep Time : 40 minutes
Cook Time : 20 minutes
Total Time : 1 hour
Cuisine : American
Course : copycat


Calories : 136kcal | Carbohydrates : 12g | Protein : 14g | Fat : 2g | Cholesterol : 57mg | Sodium : 458mg | Potassium : 255mg


Dear readers, I hope you are happy to find out about KFC’s copycat crispy chicken tenders recipe. Now, it’s time for you to give it a try and enjoy its delectable flavors from the comfort of your home. 

However, before you get started, I would like to tell you that there are numerous other recipes waiting on our website to be discovered by you. They have been curated, tried, and tested in-house by our chef, just like this one. So, do go through our website and make the most of them.

1 thought on “How To Make KFC Crispy Chicken Tenders At Home”

  1. 5 stars
    I just made it. Especially as we are 25kms away from any fast food.
    It worked a treat, but I reckon next time I will triple the amount of spice, and make it more ”zinger” like.
    But all in all, the boys loved it. Thank you

4.13 from 16 votes (15 ratings without comment)

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