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How to Make Non-Soggy Everything Bagel Chicken Tenders

Plated Chicken Tenders

There are a few things that can confuse parents. One is when you never eat chicken tenders at home, but then order them from a kids’ menu at a restaurant. When I have done this in the past, I get “the look” from my Mom with the question, “You don’t like chicken, why are we paying a million dollars for you to eat it here?” What I do not want to tell her is that homemade chicken tenders are usually soggy.

The second thing that confuses her is that we only eat plain bagels. We can make this really simple. It is bread. It needs nothing added to it to make it delicious.

Close up of Seasoning on Chicken Tenders

When we decided to try this recipe for Everything Bagel Chicken Tenders, she really got confused. But we can explain! First and most important, you dip these into maple syrup and honey. That is a real chicken dinner miracle. Second, we thought we might try a new way of baking these that kept them from getting soggy. It is all about experimenting after all!

Our Method to Get Rid of Soggy Chicken

Like a lot of baked methods, this recipe had you dip your raw chicken into an egg wash and then dip it into some Panko. But of course, we didn’t have any Panko. (We would complain, but there is no way we want to take over the grocery shopping list-making fiasco.)

Seasoning for Chicken Tenders

But we did have some everything bagel mix and bread crumbs. As we were trying to make these crunchy, we decided to throw in some French fried onions.

Preparing Chicken

We took out cooling racks and set them on the baking pans. With a bit of oil spray, we prepared them for the chicken tenders. By keeping them off of the pan and allowing air to flow underneath, we were hoping to keep the bottoms from getting soggy.

Chicken ready for Cooking

Did our Kids Cooking Experiment Work?

While I would not say that these were as crispy as fried chicken tenders, they were surprisingly crunchy. We loved the way the salt and garlic were very noticeable and kept you from tasting just plain chicken.

Chicken Tenders with Dipping Sauce

But we have to be honest. The best thing about this recipe was the dip. The original recipe called for just maple syrup and mustard. But we decided that it would be even better with honey.

Close up of Chicken Tender

Non-Soggy Everything Bagel Chicken Tenders

Yield: 4 Servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Total Time: 22 minutes

No Kid Likes Soggy Chicken!


For the Chicken

  • 1 1/2 Pounds Chicken Tenders
  • 1/2 Cup Panko or Plain Bread Crumbs
  • 3 Tablespoons Everything Bagel Seasoning
  • 3 Tablespoons Crushed French Fried Onions
  • 1 Egg
  • Cooking Spray for Racks

For Dipping Sauce (Amounts Adjustable)

  • 1/4 Cup Honey
  • 1/4 Cup Maple Syrup
  • 3 Tablespoons Mustard


    1. Preheat oven to 400° F. and line a baking sheet with foil, parchment paper, or silicone mat. Layer cooling rack, or other oven safe rack onto baking sheet and spray with cooking oil.
    2. Cut chicken breasts into 1 inch strips.
    3. In a shallow bowl, beat egg with a bit of water. In second bowl, add Panko/bread crumbs, seasoning, and onions.
    4. Take each chicken tender and dip into egg wash, then roll in seasoning. Place on prepared racks.
    5. Bake for 12-15 minutes depending on their size. The chicken is cooked through when the internal temperature is 165° F. 
    6. Whisk honey, maple syrup and mustard to make dipping sauce. Amounts can be adjusted depending on your preference for sweetness.


Adapted from RecipeRunner

Did you experiment with this recipe?

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