Love super crispy chicken strips? Me too! Now you can make them at home easily with this no-fail recipe. These tender strips of crunchy oatmeal crusted chicken will disappear from the table in no time!
Any time we go out to eat and ask Boy what he wants, there’s only one answer – chicken strips! Chicken tenders, chicken nuggets, chicken strips or whatever name they come in, you have to admit that it’s pretty addictive.
Tender, juicy strips of chicken with a crunchy coating is the best appetizer or snack ever. Or if you are under 10 years old, it’s good for lunch, dinner or whenever.
Whenever I try to make them at home, I find it difficult to get that super crispy outer covering that makes chicken strips so addictive. Breadcrumbs just don’t stick to the chicken so well. I learnt this trick of using lightly crushed oatmeal from my mother. And that’s what I do every time now.
I like to keep my chicken strips on the thinner side so that they cook nice and even and it makes serving for kids easier too. The kiddo likes to have them plain, dipped in ketchup or a quick homemade honey mustard dip.
You can make a large batch of the oatmeal crusted chicken fingers and freeze them for later. Just thaw them slightly and fry or bake them up. Here too, it helps to keep the strips on the thinner side so that they thaw faster and you can be on your way to a delicious snack.
If you are one of those who is a bit lost at the thought of breading and frying stuff, I have a few tips and tricks to make it easier.
Firstly, pat your chicken strips dry with a paper towel. Water makes soggy chicken, which is not what we want. Then I like to make a thick marinade for the chicken with an egg, corn flour and some seasoning (herbs, spices, soy sauce or whatever you fancy). This coating makes it easier for the oatmeal to stick onto the chicken and this is a better method than using an egg wash and breadcrumbs.
Lay out the oatmeal crusted chicken pieces on a tray and rest them for a short time so that the coating has time to dry slightly and firm up. This will keep the coating from falling off when you fry them. I like to shallow fry them or bake them in the oven. If you are not making them straight away, freeze them in a large tray in a single layer. Once frozen, store all the pieces in a freezer bag or container. The next time, you can take out as many pieces as you need. Easy, right?
What are you waiting for? Whip up some crispy homemade chicken tenders and surprise your kids. Or serve them at your next party as a fun appetizer. Everyone loves chicken strips!
- Chicken - 3 large thighs, boneless and skinless
- Ginger-garlic paste - 2 tsp (optional, see Notes)
- Low sodium soy sauce - 2 tsp
- Egg - 1, large
- Corn flour - 2 tsp
- Cayenne powder - ¼ tsp (see Notes)
- Dried oregano - ¼ tsp (see Notes)
- Salt - ¼ tsp
- Oatmeal - 1 - 1½ cups (I use rolled oats)
- Oil - as needed
- Cut the chicken thighs in to thin, long strips. Make sure chicken is dry and there is no moisture or water.
- Mix together ginger-garlic paste, soy sauce, corn starch, cayenne, oregano and salt in a mixing bowl. Add chicken and mix well so that it coats all the chicken strips evenly. Set aside for at least 15 minutes.
- Pulse the oatmeal once in a food processor or spice grinder and dump it in a shallow bowl or plate. You do not need to powder the oatmeal, just a quick, short pulse to break it down will do.
- Coat each chicken strip in the oatmeal and set it on a large tray/plate. Repeat till all chicken strips are coated in the oatmeal. At this stage you can freeze the strips for later or use them straightaway.
- Heat some oil in a large, deep pan. I like to use just an inch or two of oil and top it up as I do the batches.
- When the oil is hot, drop in as many chicken strips as the pan can hold and cook on medium-low heat till golden and crispy and chicken is done on all sides, 5-6 minutes. Drain and remove to a paper-towel lined plate.
- Heat up the oil before dropping in the next batch and cook them again on medium-low heat. This will ensure that the chicken gets cooked evenly and the coating browns and crisps up nicely.
- Serve chicken strips with your favorite dipping sauce - ketchup, mustard, honey mustard, ranch, barbecue, etc. Enjoy!
2. I have also used a bit of cayenne powder and dried oregano to season and spice up the chicken. You can use your favorite spices and herbs. Think black pepper, Italian seasoning, parsley, etc.
3. Alternately, brush the chicken strips with oil and bake them in a 400 deg.F oven for 15-20 minutes.
Surprise your kiddo with these crunchy chicken strips for a delicious after school snack today. Or make them for yourself!
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