The Best Chicken Fingers

Oh my goodness. Give me a plate of these chicken fingers and some of the dipping sauce and stand back because I’m going in! Calling these the “best” is not only accurate it’s an understatement! The chicken is moist and tender. It isn’t dried out like some of the chicken finger recipes we’ve all made. The batter adheres perfectly and has just the right crunch. No batter loss here and no breading that’s so crunchy you’d swear you were biting into pebbles. This is spot-on great stuff here!
The Best Chicken Fingers

Although this recipe calls for adding a bit of hot sauce to the marinade I wouldn’t let that scare you off from making them for your We-don’t-like-spicy friends. The chicken is by no means spicy hot. The heat is very subtle. If you have to go without it substitute apple cider vinegar or white vinegar. Personally, I’d double the amount of hot sauce and add a bit of cayenne or chipotle powder to the breading next time!

The Best Chicken Fingers

Course Appetizer
Prep Time 45 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings 6 -8 servings
Author Inspired by Butter With A Side Of Bread

Ingredients

For the chicken

  • 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts or chicken tenderloins

For the marinade

  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon Frank’s RedHot Sauce
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

For the breading

  • 1/2 cup Panko breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 cup regular breadcrumbs Italian-seasoned is fine
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt or garlic salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • Vegetable oil for frying

For the Chicken Finger Dipping Sauce

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup ketchup
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • Couple pinches of kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

For the chicken

  • Cut into strips or nuggets. Try to make the pieces as close to the same size as possible.
  • Whisk together the marinade ingredients. Add in the chicken pieces and coat well. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  • Combine the breading ingredients in a pie plate or bowl.
  • Heat the oil in a deep fryer or Dutch oven until 365 F.
  • Working in batches, remove the chicken pieces from the marinade. Shake off excess and transfer to the fryer. Fry 2-4 minutes per side, flipping once. Remove to a paper-towel lined plate to drain.
  • Serve with the Chicken Finger Dipping Sauce.

For the Chicken Finger Dipping Sauce

  • Whisk together all ingredients.

Chicken Fingers using the Vortex

I’m a huge fan of cooking chicken wings using the Vortex BBQ. I’m also a huge fan of ‘frying’ chicken using the Vortex BBQ. And now, I’m a huge fan of making chicken fingers using the Vortex BBQ. Just as easy as wings or fried chicken, these fingers came out tender and super tasty. They have a very nice coating that is light on crunch but heavy on flavor. And nothing could be easier to make, either!
Chicken Fingers using the VortexChicken fingers on the Vortex BBQ cook a whole lot quicker than do wings or chicken thighs. Don’t throw them on and ignore them. They’ll be done in no time.

As I mention in the recipe note, I put foil on my grill grates before I added the chicken. I’m not 100% sure if that’s required, but the chicken didn’t stick.

If you’re looking for a great side dish for your chicken fingers, make a batch of seasoned skinny fries, also made using a Vortex. For dipping sauces, try my copycat of Chick-fil-A’s dipping sauce, firecracker dipping sauce or my chili dipping sauce.

Chicken Fingers using the Vortex

Note: I covered my grill grates in foil and brushed on a light coating of oil because I thought the fingers might stick. I haven't tried to make them yet without foil. You might want to foil yours also, or at least oil them before adding the chicken.
Course Main
Cuisine American
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Author Mike

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds chicken tenderloins
  • 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • Hot sauce optional, to taste
  • Vegetable oil

Instructions

  • Fire up your charcoal grill with the Vortex BBQ insert. Let the coals get good and hot.
  • Combine the flour, salt and pepper in a pie plate.
  • Pour the buttermilk into another pie plate. Whisk in the hot sauce if using.
  • Working in batches, dip the chicken into the flour mixture, then the buttermilk, and then once again in the flour.
  • Transfer to your grill and cook for 15-20 minutes or until done. Lightly brush the chicken with the oil the last 5 minutes of cooking.
  • Serve hot.