Succulent and juicy grilled chicken tenders made very quickly on the grill! The chicken tenders are marinated in a herb lemon and olive oil marinade, then grilled on a grill pan or an outdoor grill for a quick summer main dish. Serve on their own with your favorite dip, or in wraps, salads, and pasta.
What are Chicken Tenders?
Many people think that chicken tenders are just thin strips of chicken breast. But a chicken tender is a cut of meat found underneath and attached to the chicken breast, it’s the most tender part of the chicken breast even though it’s so small. Every chicken has 2 tenders, they’re moist and tender when cooked properly.
You can find chicken tenders sold separately from chicken breasts in supermarkets on trays, so you can buy a tray with 10-20 chicken tenders to grill up, fry, or bake.
They are also known as chicken strips, tendies, and chicken fillets.
How to Grill Chicken Tenders
Start by preparing a simple marinade, this will help tenderize the meat and give it a great flavor. You can use buttermilk and add hot sauce to it, but I went with a dairy-free option and used lemon juice, olive oil, herbs, salt, and pepper.
To marinate the chicken tenders, add them to a bowl with the chicken marinade and mix until the chicken is well coated. Cover with plastic wrap, and leave it to marinate in the fridge for at least 30 minutes and up to 8 hours. The longer you leave the chicken in the marinade, the more flavor you will get.
When you’re ready to grill, place the marinated chicken tenders on a preheated grill pan or grill, oil the grill grates, and cook for 3-4 minutes on each side until you get grill marks and the chicken looks cooked through. Work in batches if needed.
You can also throw a few pieces of lemon slices on the grill, they will char and caramelize and give a great flavor.
Allow the grilled chicken tenders to rest for a few minutes before serving.
How to Check If the Chicken Is Cooked Through and Safe to Eat
The best way to check the doneness of the chicken is by inserting a kitchen thermometer in the center of the chicken piece, and the internal temperature of the chicken should read 165F or 75C.
If you don’t own a kitchen thermometer, I highly recommend that you invest in one to use for chicken, meat, bakes, and candy making. The one that I’ve been using for the past 6 years is this one, it gives you accurate instant readings within 3 seconds. And I really love it!
What to Serve Grilled Chicken Tenders With?
- Serve these grilled chicken tenders as a part of a grilling platter, along with grilled veggie kabobs, grilled portobello mushrooms, and grilled shrimp. And why not serve with some homemade ranch dressing or homemade Cane’s sauce? SO good!
- Serve in these delicious ranch grilled chicken wraps.
- Over a salad! Works great in this chicken caesar pasta salad, Greek orzo salad, on the side with this simple but absolutely delicious Caprese salad, or in this kid-friendly pasta salad.
- With creamy coleslaw, and a dip (I love ranch!).
- Over rice, try this bright and delicious turmeric rice! A great side for grilling.
- And finally, my FAVORITE recipe. These baked chicken tacos are incredible! And you can totally use these juicy chicken tenders to fill your tacos.
- 1 pound chicken tenders
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- In a large mixing bowl, add the marinade ingredients and whisk until they're well combined. Add the chicken tenders, and mix until they're well coated in the marinade. Cover with plastic wrap, and marinate in the fridge for at least 30 minutes and up to 8 hours.
- To grill the chicken tenders, place on a preheated grill or grill pan and cook for 3-5 minutes on each side until they're cooked through. Total of 8-10 minutes depending on the size of the chicken tenders.
- Remove from the grill, and allow the chicken tenders to rest for a few minutes before serving.
- The best way to check the doneness of the chicken is by inserting a kitchen thermometer in the center of the chicken piece, and the internal temperature of the chicken should read 165F or 75C.
- Serve these grilled chicken tenders with a simple salad, pasta, in tacos, rice, or in sandwiches.
This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition data is gathered primarily from the USDA Food Composition Database, whenever available, or otherwise other online calculators.
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