How to Heat Up Crispy Chicken Tenders

Chicken tenders offer all of the crispy, golden goodness of fried chicken without the bones. Whether you whipped up a homemade batch or bought already made ones home, you might be tempted to reheat the leftovers in your microwave. This would be a mistake, because only baking or light frying can restore the breading to its original glorious crunch.

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Baking Leftover Tenders

Reheating your tenders in the oven crisps them up without adding calories or fat.

Things You'll Need

  • Baking sheet
  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • Tongs

Step 1

Preheat the oven to 350 F.

Step 2

Coat a baking sheet with a very light spritz of nonstick cooking spray. You can also wipe it down lightly with a paper towel moistened with cooking oil.

Step 3

Bake the chicken tenders for 10 to 15 minutes, and then turn them over with tongs. Cook them for another 10 to 15 minutes until they are crisp on the outside and hot throughout.

Frying Leftover Tenders

Heating leftover chicken tenders in a bit of hot oil brings out their crunchy best.

Things You'll Need

  • Skillet
  • Oil 
  • tongs
  • cooling rack

Step 1

Coat a skillet with no more than 1/8 to 1/4 -inch of cooking oil. A neutral oil such as canola or vegetable oil is best.

Step 2

Heat the oil over medium-high heat until you can see a shimmer develop across the surface of the oil and can smell its fragrance. This should take no more than 30 to 60 seconds.

Step 3

Place the chicken tenders in the hot oil, being careful not to crowd the pan. Cook them for 2 to 3 minutes. Turn them over with tongs, watch out so as not to splash yourself with the hot oil. Cook the tenders for another 2 to 3 minutes, or until the coating is crisp and they are hot throughout.

Step 4

Remove the hot, crisp tenders from the oil and place them on a rack to cool.


  • Coat dry tenders with barbecue or buffalo sauce after reheating to add a little bit of moisture.


  • Do not place freshly refried tenders on a paper towel to drain, as this can make the bottom breading mushy.


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