Crispy Coconut Chicken with chicken tenders breaded in coconut flakes and spices, then baked until golden brown and dipped in your favorite sauce. Your kids will love this healthy version of chicken strips!

Kids will also go crazy for healthy chicken recipes like almond chicken, healthy fried chicken and air fryer chicken tenders.

Coconut Chicken

Coconut Chicken Tenders

Absolutely delicious, crispy outside and moist inside baked coconut chicken tenders your kids will eat, I promise!

If you are skeptical of chicken and coconut combo, just think of coconut shrimp. It tastes so good together! I also like to use flour breading on my chicken like in this lemon chicken recipe.

This is a healthy chicken tenders recipe you will feel so good about feeding your family. Baked instead of fried, full of healthy fats, good calories and so much flavour. Baked chicken recipes like this one and healthy chicken parmesan are so great for easy weeknight dinners.

I highly recommend making a double or triple batch of these chicken strips and then serve with healthy ranch dressing, healthy honey mustard dressing, or just ketchup.

Ingredients for Coconut Chicken

  • Chicken: You can either use boneless and skinless chicken breasts and cut into strips yourself or buy chicken tenderloins. Organic is a bonus, of course if your budget allows.
  • Egg: Acts as a glue for the breading. Don’t skip.
  • Coconut flakes: I use unsweetened coconut flakes. Short flakes tend to stick better than long ones.
  • Flour: Any flour works. My preference is whole wheat flour but I have tried all-purpose and almond flour as well.
  • Seasonings: Garlic powder, salt and pepper.

How to Make Coconut Chicken

There is a full recipe card below. 

  • Prep chicken: Cut chicken breasts into 1 inch wide strips. I like to use kitchen scissors to cut chicken. Saves washing a board and a knife.package of chicken breast
  • Make breading: Whisk eggs in a shallow bowl. On a separate plate, mix coconut flakes, flour and seasonings. Your dipping station is ready.bowl of raw chicken breast, bowl of whisked egg and bowl of coconut flakes, flour and seasoning
  • Dip the chicken: First, dip both sides of each chicken tender into the egg wash. Next, coat the chicken tenders in the coconut flakes mixture. Repeat for all of the chicken tenders.chicken tenderloins immersed into eggchicken tenderloin coated in coconut flake mixture
  • Place on baking sheet: I like to bake my chicken tenders on a silicone lined baking sheet. You can also use parchment paper. Give the chicken tenders a spray with cooking spray prior to baking for those crispy sides. Coconut Chicken lined up on baking tray; unbaked
  • Bake: Bake at 425 degrees F for 25 minutes or until golden brown. Keep an eye on it, you may want to flip the tenders half way through the baking time.

Tips and Serving

  • Serving for maximum crispiness: Coconut chicken is the most crispy within first 30 minutes after baking. So, make sure to prep other parts of dinner, like a side and salad, before you begin baking. Then while chicken is baking, finish the other dishes.
  • If you have long coconut flakes: Place flakes in a resealable plastic bag and “give them a beating” with a mallet. They will stick to meat better, thus resulting in more crunchy chicken.
  • Difference in ovens and baking sheets: Ovens vary and bake differently, convection oven bakes faster. Also dark coloured sheet bakes faster than light. Keep an eye but make sure to bake until golden brown.
  • Dipping sauces: You can serve chicken strips with healthy ranch dressing, peanut sauce or just good old ketchup, if short on time.
  • Sides and salad: We usually serve with simple quinoa, brown rice or whole wheat spaghetti on the side. If you are loving the coconut flavors, try some cilantro coconut brown rice. And of course, a salad like healthy broccoli salad or avocado corn salad.

How to Store, Make Ahead and Freeze

Storing: Leftover chicken tenders can be placed in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Unfortunately, they do tend to lose their crispiness in a sealed container.

Make Ahead Freezer Meal

  • How to freeze: Prep chicken tenders as per recipe instructions. Place uncooked breaded tenders on a baking sheet. Freeze for a few hours and then transfer to a Ziplock bag. Freeze for up to 3 months.
  • How to cook: When you are ready to eat, you can bake right from frozen. Spray chicken fingers with cooking spray. Then bake from frozen at 425 degrees F for 30-35 minutes, possibly turning in the middle (depends on the oven – just keep an eye on them).

Check out my full list of 20 healthy freezer meals. I’m obsessed!Coconut Chicken Tenders in freezer bag

More Favorite Chicken Recipes

coconut chicken tenders on plate served with dip
coconut chicken

Crispy Coconut Chicken

Crispy Coconut Chicken with chicken tenders breaded in coconut flakes and spices, then baked until golden brown and dipped in your favorite sauce. Your kids will love this healthy version of chicken strips!
5 from 10 votes
Servings 6 servings
Calories 90
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 17 minutes
Total Time 32 minutes

Ingredients 
 

Instructions 

  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees F and line large baking sheet with unbleached parchment paper or silicone baking mat.
  • Cut chicken breasts into 1 inch wide strips. Set aside.
  • In a shallow bowl, add egg and whisk with a fork. On a large plate, add coconut flakes, flour, garlic powder, salt and pepper; mix well with a fork.
  • Dip both sides of each chicken tender into an egg wash, then coat in coconut flakes mixture and place on a baking sheet. Repeat with remaining meat.
  • Spray chicken fingers with cooking spray and bake for 25 minutes or until golden brown. Depending on the oven, you might have to flip tenders half way. Just keep an eye on it.
  • Coconut crusted chicken tenders are best served right away for maximum crispiness. Kids love these and they are healthy!!!

Notes

  • Store: Refrigerate for up to 2 days although tenders loose their crispiness a bit.
  • Flour: Any flour works. My preference is whole wheat flour but I have tried all-purpose and almond flour as well.
  • If you have long coconut flakes: Place flakes in a resealable plastic bag and “give them a beating” with a mallet. They will stick to meat better, thus resulting in more crunchy chicken.
  • Difference in ovens and baking sheets: Ovens vary and bake differently, convection oven bakes faster. Also dark coloured sheet bakes faster than light. Keep an eye but make sure to bake until golden brown.
How to Make a Freezer Meal
  • How to freeze: Prep chicken tenders as per recipe instructions. Place uncooked breaded tenders on a baking sheet. Freeze for a few hours and then transfer to a Ziplock bag. Freeze for up to 3 months.
  • How to cook: When you are ready to eat, you can bake right from frozen. Spray chicken fingers with cooking spray. Then bake from frozen at 425 degrees F for 30-35 minutes, possibly turning in the middle (depends on the oven – just keep an eye on them).

Nutrition

Serving: 3tenders | Calories: 90kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Sodium: 197mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 1g
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: North American
Author: Olena Osipov
Did you make this recipe?Mention @ifoodreal or tag #ifoodreal!

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About Olena

Welcome! I grew up in Ukraine watching my grandma cook with simple ingredients. I have spent the last 11 years making it my mission to help you cook quick and easy meals for your family!

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Comments

  1. 5 stars
    This recipe was a lovely spin on breaded chicken. So simple yet delicious! I prepped these ahead of time and froze them, and they turned out great!

  2. 5 stars
    Eating them as we speak! πŸ™‚ Definitely an exciting alternative to breaded chicken strips. The batch I froze will be a nice surprise for Future Me. Thanks Olena!

  3. For this recipe and for the healthy fried chicken can you use unsweetened desiccated coconut (the kind of coconut that’s short and finely ground?)

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