Growing up, date night for my parents happened about every Friday or Saturday night. With our favorite, family friend babysitter readily available, my mom always opted for feeding us steamed broccoli, baked french fries, and hotdogs (real, organic ones that is) for dinner. It was either that or chicken tenders from Whole Foods, which I can specifically remember being 100% better than any I had ever had outside of our house, especially the ones breaded with shredded coconut. I cannot say that my brothers and I ever complained of these simple, yet tasty dinners, and they will forever remind me of my simple, carefree, healthy childhood. Though there truly is not anything easier than opening a package of frozen chicken tenders and sticking them in a hot oven, there is something about making the homemade version even better. Not only that, but your kids can get involved in the process, making them even more willing to eat the finished product.
If you are not familiar with plantain chips, they’re pretty similar to a thick cut potato chip with a bit more crunch. My favorite brands are those that are thinner and require less jaw work, however, the typical version works perfectly for this recipe. Some generic grocery stores carry plantain chips, depending on where in the U.S. (or world) you live. However, much like other chips, they are usually heavily processed and fried with rancid vegetable oils. Whole Foods carries a few options, both of which are cooked in palm oil, and most of the time are actually roasted (not deep fried). I am aware that this fat is not the greatest unless in whole, cold pressed form (which is actually a bright orangey-red color, not white), however, the amount used to coat the chicken fingers is nothing worth stressing over. If you are interested in learning more about palm oil and its health benefits, click here. As a side note, if you cannot find suitable plantain chips locally, simple ordering Inca brand chips through Amazon is even more convenient. Click here to do so now. Last week I decided I wanted to create a homemade, kid friendly recipe. Because my younger brother is not necessarily “young” anymore, having our friends over who have a 15 month old baby was the perfect test. Ben, whose parents own Ben’s Beans Coffee Roaster, licked his plate clean and exclaimed “YEAH!” when asked if he wanted more. All in all, the dish was a hit with everyone that we were serving, which means I clearly had to share the recipe with you all. There is no better way to determine whether or not a recipe is a success than inviting a whole group of friends over. I hope you and your kiddos will enjoy them just as much!
Baked Plantain Chip Chicken Tenders
- 1 lb chicken breasts
- 1/4 cup lard – melted (or) avocado oil
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 tsp turmeric
- 1/4 cup arrowroot powder
- 7.5 oz plantain chips *I used 3, 2.5 oz size bags
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- In a food processor, pulse plantain chips until the coarsely ground.
- Add turmeric, salt, and arrowroot powder, letting the processor run until fully combined.
- Dump breading into a bowl and set aside.
- Cut chicken breasts in 1/2 inch thick, like-sized strips and place in a mixing bowl.
- Melt lard and slather over chicken.
- Spread 1/3 of the breading on a large plate.
- Using on hand to touch the chicken, and the other to roll the chicken in the breading until fully coated.
- Place on a baking sheet and repeat with remaining tenders.
- Place sheet in oven and let bake for 20-30 minutes, depending on how thick your chicken tenders are.
- Remove and serve with creamy roasted broccoli.
Psalm 119:105 “Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.”