Air Fryer Chicken Strips – Creme De La Crumb

Total Time: 25 minutes

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Tender and crispy Air Fryer Chicken Strips are coated in panko and coconut for the ultimate crunchy outer later! Dip them in sweet and sour sauce or your own favorite dipping sauce!

You can’t go wrong with a family-friendly chicken dish! Be sure to check out my recipes for Winger’s Sticky Fingers, Honey Chipotle Chicken Crispers, Air Fryer Chicken Wings, and easy Chicken Taco Casserole.

crispy chicken strips with dipping sauce up close

Why This Recipe Works

Healthy & Delicious: These air fryer chicken strips are the healthy version of a comforting classic. Skip the frozen chicken tenders and make homemade chicken strips that are full of flavor and so delicious! The air fryer ensures that these can be made tender and crispy without the fat of deep frying. Even the pickiest of eaters will be excited to eat these! Pair them with your favorite dipping sauce for an easy appetizer or even main meal!

Simple Ingredients & Preparation: The ingredients in this recipe are simple pantry staples, and the air fryer cuts the cooking time down to just 15 minutes! The only prep that goes into these is breading the chicken breast with the panko and coconut mixture and then popping them into the air fryer. I like to pair these with sweet and sour sauce or a sweet chili sauce, but any dip will do great!


ingredients for air fryer chicken strips recipe
  • Chicken Breast: I used two chicken breasts here and cut them up into thin strips, about 1 1/2 inch each.
  • Flour: You’ll first dip the chicken in flour, so that the egg has something to hold onto.
  • Egg: Then you will dip the chicken into the egg, which adds a layer for the breadcrumbs to hold onto!
  • Cayenne Pepper: I mixed up some cayenne pepper and salt & pepper into the egg in order to season the chicken a little more. If you don’t like spice, you can skip the cayenne and just add salt and pepper!
  • Panko Breadcrumbs: I like panko breadcrumbs since they are more course and have a lovely crunchy texture!
  • Unsweetened Shredded Coconut: The coconut adds another level of texture and a slight coconut flavor which goes super well with sweet and sour sauce or sweet chili sauce!
  • Cooking Spray: I used cooking spray to spray the air fryer and also spray the tops of the chicken so it gets nice and crispy. However, make sure your air fryer basket will not get damaged by cooking spray by reading the manual!
  • Sauce for dipping!

Here’s How to Make It

Step by Step Instructions

six steps of preparing air fryer chicken strips recipe
  1. Prepare the Breadcrumb Coating: Whisk together the flour and a generous amount of salt into a small bowl. Whisk together the egg with more salt, pepper and the cayenne in another bowl. In a third bowl, toss together the panko breadcrumbs and the coconut.
  2. Dip the Chicken: Season the chicken well with salt and toss first into the flour mixture, then the egg mixture, and finally the breadcrumb mixture.
  3. Air Fry: Spritz the base of the air fryer basket with cooking spray, as well as the tops of the chicken strips. Place them oiled side up in the air fryer basket, working in batched to keep space for the air to move around the chicken strips if needed. Air fry for 15 minutes at 390, turning halfway through.
  4. Serve with sweet and sour sauce or sweet chili sauce (or your favorite dipping sauce), for dipping!
air fryer chicken strips on platter

Expert Tips

  • Avoid over crowding the air fryer! It is important that the chicken has some room and is not touching each other in order to get nice and crispy. Work in batches if your air fryer doesn’t have enough space to do it all at once.
  • Make extra and freeze! You can make these ahead and freeze them after they have cooled in order to have extra chicken strips on hand to reheat later.
  • For ease, buy chicken tenderloins at the store. These are basically just chicken breast cut into smaller strips which are perfect for air fryer chicken tenders!
  • To avoid breading your fingers, use one hand for dipping the chicken strips into the flour and breadcrumbs and the other hand for the egg mixture! That way, one hand stays dry!
  • These perfectly dunk-able air fryer chicken strips would go well with so many sauces! In addition to Asian-style sauces, you can try BBQ sauce, ranch, or buffalo sauce!

Frequently Asked Questions

How long to cook chicken strips in the air fryer?

Each air fryer is different, so it depends on your model and also the size of your chicken strips! In my model, at 390 degrees, the chicken was perfect and crispy on the outside in 15 minutes. If you are unsure if your chicken tenders are done, use a meat thermometer to check the thickest one. If you have reached 165 degrees, then you are good to go!

How to store leftover chicken strips?

You can store any leftover chicken strips in an airtight container for up to 4 days. To reheat, pop them back in the air fryer until heated through! I don’t recommend microwaving these, since they won’t come out crispy.

More Easy Appetizer Recipes to Try

Did you make this recipe? FANTASTIC. Please rate the recipe below and be sure to tag me on social when you share a photo of your CDLC creation – I love to see what you’re up to in the kitchen!

crispy chicken strips with dipping sauce up close

Air Fryer Chicken Strips

Tender and crispy Air Fryer Chicken Strips are coated in panko and coconut for the ultimate crunchy outer layer! Dip them in sweet and sour sauce or your own favorite dipping sauce!