Pan Seared Chicken Tenders

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Flavor-packed, tender, and juicy are some words to describe these Pan Seared Chicken Tenders. They are ready in 15 minutes. Isn’t this what dinner dreams are made of?

Pan seared chicken tenders on a white platter.

If you want to be in the kitchen and out in no time, make these succulent chicken tenders in your pan or skillet.

Serve them with some Garlic Herb Rice, Garlic Butter Green Beans, or Easy Roasted Potatoes for a satisfying dinner.

For more quick and easy dinner recipes, check out this Pan Seared Shrimp Pan Seared Sea Bass, and Pan Fried Teriyaki Salmon.

Pan Searing Chicken Tenders

The chicken tender or tenderloin is an independent small muscle that lies directly under the chicken breast. Some people assume it is just part of a chicken breast but it isn’t.

Pan searing is a cooking technique that involves cooking meat, chicken, or fish in a skillet over medium to high heat.

This technique, when done properly creates a sear on the protein and adds loads of flavor in a short time.

Fish spatula lifting up a pan seared chicken tender.

Cooking chicken tenders this way is a great way to cook them because they get done so fast.

Also, with this recipe, you don’t need to coat the flour in any flour or breading. This makes a great low-carb, gluten-free, or Whole30 recipe.

The Ingredients

With minimal ingredients, you’ll have great-tasting chicken tenders pan-seared with no added flour or breading. Here is everything you need:

Ingredients for cooked chicken tenders with labels.
  • Chicken tenders: You could pick up packs of chicken tenders from your local grocery store or supermarket. This recipe calls for one pound of chicken tenders which can serve about 4 people but feel free to double the recipe if your family is bigger.
  • Olive oil: Use olive oil or another flavorless oil for pan searing.
  • Seasoning: A combination of salt, black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, parsley flakes, and paprika takes chicken tenders over the top!
  • Butter: Adding some unsalted butter at the end of cooking adds more flavor which takes these chicken tenders over the top! If you want even more flavor, use high-quality European butter if you can find it.

See the recipe card below for quantities of ingredients.

How To Pan Sear Chicken Tenders

With 4 easy steps, you’ll have a tasty dinner of pan-cooked chicken tenders. Here are the steps:

Seasoned chicken tenders on a white plate.

Step 1: Mix the seasoning and rub on both sides of the chicken tenders.

Raw chicken tenders searing in a skillet.

Step 2: Heat up oil in a skillet on medium-high heat and cook the chicken tenders for 4 minutes on the first side.

Chicken tenderloins cooking in a cast iron skillet.

Step 3: Flip the chicken to the other side and cook for another 3-4 minutes until done.

Butter in pan with chicken.

Step 4: Add butter to the pan and let it melt then spoon the melted butter over the chicken tenders.

Pan cooked chicken tenderloins with melted butter.

When the chicken tenders are done, you can garnish them with fresh chopped parsley and serve warm with your favorite sides.

These Pan Seared chicken tenders will go with these Buttermilk Mashed Potatoes and quickly Sauteed Vegetables.

Tip: Chicken is done when it registers an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit or 73 degrees Celsius on a meat thermometer.

Also check out this recipe for pan seared Thin Sliced Chicken Breasts.

Substitutions and Variations

  • Chicken – instead of chicken tenders, you could use boneless chicken breasts or boneless chicken thighs cut into strips.
  • Seasoning – add seasoning blends like Italian seasoning, Cajun seasoning, or lemon pepper seasoning. Make sure you reduce the salt the recipe calls for if your seasoning is salted or use salt-free seasoning.
  • Spicy – for a spicy kick, add some red pepper flakes or cayenne pepper to the seasoning.

Also, check out these Pan Seared Tilapia and Pan Seared Boneless Pork Chops recipes.

Chicken tenders in a pan with a fish spatula.

Top tip

Make sure your pan heats up until smoking hot before adding the chicken to the pan. This ensures the chicken gets a nice sear.

Recipe FAQs

How long to pan-sear chicken tenders?

Pan-sear chicken tenders for 4 minutes on one side then 3-4 minutes on the other side.

Should I cover chicken when pan searing?

There is no need to cover chicken when pan searing.

How do you sear chicken without overcooking it?

To prevent chicken from overcooking, flip the chicken as soon as it reaches a golden brown color and releases easily from the pan.

Looking for more easy dinner recipes? Try these:

Serving

Serve these chicken tenders with:

If you make this Pan Seared Chicken Tenders recipe, please leave a star rating below. I love hearing from you.

Pan seared chicken tenders on a white platter.

Pan Seared Chicken Tenders

5 from 2 votes
Flavor-packed, tender, and juicy are some words to describe these Pan Seared Chicken Tenders. They are ready in 15 minutes. Isn't this what dinner dreams are made of?
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 10 minutes
Total: 15 minutes
Servings: 8 tenders

Equipment

  • 1 10 inch skillet cast iron or another skillet

Ingredients  

  • 1 pound chicken tenders about 8 tenders
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter

Instructions 

  • Thoroughly pat the chicken tenders dry with paper towels.
  • In a small bowl mix together the salt, ground black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, and dried parsley flakes.
  • Sprinkle the seasoning evenly on both sides of the chicken tenders then rub the seasoning on the chicken using finger tips.
  • Place the skillet on medium heat and add the olive oil. Heat up for 2 minutes.
  • Add the seasoned chicken tenders to the skillet pressing each chicken tender onto the skillet.
  • Cook on one side for about 4 minutes then flip to the other side and cook for another 3-4 minutes.
  • Dot the pan with thye butter and let the butter melt. Spoon the melted butter over the chicken tenders.
  • Serve chicken tenders warm with your favorite side dish.

Notes

1. Tip: Patting the chicken dry with paper towels helps the chicken sear properly.
2. Chicken: Feel free to cut boneless chicken thighs or chicken breasts into strips and use those instead.
3. Seasoning: Experiment with other kinds of seasoning like Italian seasoning or lemon pepper seasoning.
4. Storage: Store pan-seared chicken tenders in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days. Store in an airtight bag or container in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Nutrition

Calories: 98kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 0.01g | Cholesterol: 36mg | Sodium: 212mg | Potassium: 220mg | Fiber: 0.1g | Sugar: 0.04g | Vitamin A: 79IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 5mg | Iron: 0.3mg

Additional Info

Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American, Western
Calories: 98
Tried this recipe?Mention @preciouscore or tag #PreciousCore!

About Precious

Welcome to my core! I am Precious Nkeih, the recipe developer and writer right here on my blog, Precious Core. My goal is to show you insanely delicious recipes you can replicate in your kitchen. And I love to tell stories too. Hope you find recipes here that will make cooking easier for you! Check me out on YouTube at YouTube.com/PreciousKitchen.


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2 Comments

  1. Recipe was perfect, easy to follow, so delicious. I always cook dry chicken, and now I can say I know how to make it turn out tender! Thank you, thank you, thank you!