Healthier version of deep-fried chicken fingers. These lightened-up, baked almond-crusted chicken tenders are flavorful, crunchy and a definite crowd pleaser (you don’t even have to let on that they are better for you). Nuts like almonds contain heart-healthy unsaturated fats, fiber and vitamin E, and are known for their antioxidant properties. Pair with veggies and Greek yogurt-based dips for a healthy, delicious super snack spread.
Almond-Crusted Baked Chicken Tenders
Makes 8 servings (about 2-3 tenders per serving). Per Serving: 220 calories, 10 g total fat (1.5 g saturated fat), 4 g carbohydrate, 2 g dietary fiber, 28 g protein, 430 mg sodium.
- 1 1/4 cup almonds
- 2 tsp. garlic powder
- 1 tsp. smoked paprika
- 1 tsp. dried mustard
- 1 tsp. dried oregano
- 1 tsp. dried thyme
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1/2 tsp. black pepper
- 2 eggs (beaten)
- 2 lbs. thin-sliced chicken breast halves (cut in half or chicken tenders)
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
- Pulse almonds in a food processor until finely ground into an almond meal.
- Mix the almond meal together with garlic, paprika, dried mustard, oregano, thyme, salt and pepper.
- Dredge each piece of chicken in egg and coat with almond spice mixture.
- Place pieces on lightly greased cookie sheet.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes, until golden.
Greek Yogurt Ranch Dip
Makes 8 (2 Tbsp.) servings. Per Serving: 25 calories, 0 g total fat (0 g saturated fat), 3 g carbohydrate, 0 g dietary fiber, 3 g protein, 180 mg sodium.
- 1 cup nonfat Greek yogurt
- 1/3 cup buttermilk
- 1 Tbsp. dried parsley
- 2 tsp garlic powder
- 2 tsp. onion powder
- 1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper
- 1/4 ; tsp. ground black pepper
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 2 eggs (beaten)
- 1 tsp. Dijon mustard
- 1 tsp. lemon juice
- 1 Tbsp. fresh chives (finely chopped)
- Fresh chives for garnish
- In a medium bowl, stir together all ingredients, except for garnish.
- Garnish with fresh chives and serve chilled.
Greek Yogurt Honey Mustard
Makes 8 (1 Tbsp.) servings. Per Serving: 20 calories, 0 g total fat (0 g saturated fat), 3 g carbohydrate, 0 g dietary fiber, 1 g protein, 150 mg sodium.
- 1/2 cup nonfat Greek yogurt
- 1 Tbsp. honey
- 1 Tbsp. yellow mustard
- 2 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
- 1/8 tsp. salt
Mix all ingredients together and serve chilled.
Sonja Goedkoop, MSPH, RD, is the Manager of Nutrition and Wellness at Zesty, Inc. She is passionate about helping others improve their health through diet and physical activity and believes eating nutritious food should be easy and taste great. You can follow her on Twitter @SonjaGoedkoopRD.