I love chicken fingers, but since they’re not exactly the healthiest thing on most menus, I pass. When I saw Sandra make these, I thought “Here’s my chance!” But even though they aren’t fried, they still needed a little help to be a healthy go-to meal. They are delicious, and you can use with any sauce you like, or the orange bbq sauce below. I actually doubled the recipe because the sauce didn’t go too far. I guess you can say I’m a sauce queen! :)
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CROUTON CRUSTED CHICKEN TENDERS WITH ORANGE BBQ SAUCE – Anthony J. Caruso
1 (6-ounce) bag whole grain garlic and butter croutons (recommended: Rothbury Farms)
1/2 cup white whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup egg substitute
1/2 cup lowfat buttermilk
1/3 cup 100% whole wheat bread crumbs
1 1/2 pounds chicken tenders
Orange Barbeque Sauce:
2/3 cup barbeque sauce
1/4 cup sugar free orange marmalade
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
2 teaspoons hot sauce
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Cut the corner off of the bag croutons just enough to let the air escape. Place the bag onto a cutting board, cover with a kitchen towel and smash it with a rolling pin. Crush the croutons until coarse in texture.
Set up a breading station with 3 pie plates or baking dishes. In 1 dish add the flour, and season it with poultry seasoning, and a generous pinch of salt and pepper. In the second dish mix together the egg substitute and buttermilk. In the third dish add the crushed croutons, and the bread crumbs.
Dip chicken tenders into the flour and shake of any excess. Then dip them into the buttermilk, and then into the bread crumb mixture making sure to thoroughly coat the tenders. Put the tenders on a baking sheet and bake for about 12 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees, whichever comes first. Cooking time will vary based on the size of the tenders.
Transfer to a platter and serve with the orange barbeque sauce.
Orange Barbeque Dipping Sauce: Add all of the ingredients to a small bowl, and whisk together until well combined.
Here’s the skinny:
I used whole grain croutons to give the crust an extra whole grain health bump. I also used white whole wheat flour and 100% whole wheat bread crumbs to get rid of the simple carbs and add whole grains.
I also used egg substitute instead of the egg to cut out fat and cholesterol.
Also, I used lowfat buttermilk instead of regular buttermilk, cutting out more fat and calories.
Lastly, I used sugar free orange marmalade.