Air Fryer Bacon Wrapped Chicken Tenders

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Air Fryer Bacon Wrapped Chicken Tenders combines the juiciness of tender chicken tenderloins with the irresistible crunch of air-fried bacon. It’s a delicious appetizer that’s quick to prepare and sure to please the entire family.

Air Fryer Bacon Wrapped Chicken Tenders with a sauce on a plate

My Air Fryer Bacon Wrapped Chicken Tenders are juicy, crispy, and full of flavor. Just like my crispy Baked Chicken Thighs or these Pan Fried Pork Chops, they’re ready in less than 30 minutes, so they’re perfect for a busy weeknight or a fun weekend meal. Plus, they come with a tasty dipping sauce that’ll have everyone asking for more.

Why You’ll Love These Bacon-Wrapped Chicken Tenders

Juicy and flavorful chicken tenders are always a hit, and these bacon wrapped tenders might be a new family favorite for dinner or a weekend lunch.

  • They are quick to make, and only need 10 minutes of prep time.
  • They’re full of flavor, made with bacon and a delicious seasoning mix.
  • They’re wrapped in bacon for a salty and savory flavor.
  • The homemade honey dijon dipping sauce makes these tasty tenders even more addictive.
  • Cooked in the air fryer for easy clean up.

What To Serve With Bacon Wrapped Tenders

These super flavorful chicken tenders go perfectly with comfort food sides like roasted potatoes and green beans. You could also serve these with fried rice, or even a warm bowl of butternut squash soup.

Ingredients

  • Chicken tenderloins – You can find a package of tenderloins in the meat case at your local grocery store. Substitute with chicken breast cut into strips if tenderloins are unavailable.
  • Ground mustard – Ground mustard is a dry seasoning that you can buy at your supermarket. Dry mustard powder works as well if you don’t have ground mustard.
  • Smoked paprika – Regular paprika or even chipotle powder can be used for a different flavor profile.
  • Center cut bacon
  • Mayonnaise – Greek yogurt makes a nice substitute and will give your dipping sauce a tangier flavor.
  • Dijon mustard – Whole grain mustard provides a similar flavor and texture.
  • Yellow mustard – If you don’t have yellow mustard, you can use more Dijon mustard instead.
  • Honey
  • Hot sauce – Sriracha or any preferred hot sauce will add the desired kick, but you can omit it if you prefer.
  • Rice vinegar – Apple cider vinegar or white wine vinegar are suitable alternatives.
  • Garlic powder, salt, and pepper

How to Make Air Fryer Bacon Wrapped Chicken Tenders

STEP ONE: Make the chicken seasoning. In a small bowl combine ground mustard, smoked paprika, garlic powder, salt, and pepper.

STEP TWO: Coat the tenders. Add the chicken tenders to a mixing bowl then pour the seasoning mix overtop. Use clean hands or tongs, to completely coat the chicken in the seasoning mix.

STEP THREE: Wrap the tenders in bacon. Starting at the end of one tenderloin, wrap a piece of bacon around the whole piece of chicken and secure each end with toothpicks. Repeat with the remaining chicken tenders.

STEP FOUR: Bake. Preheat air fryer to 400°F. Place your bacon-wrapped chicken tenders into the air fryer basket in a single layer. Air fry at 400 degrees for 20 minutes, flipping halfway through.

STEP FIVE: Make the dipping sauce. While the chicken cooks, combine the mayo, Dijon mustard, yellow mustard, honey, hot sauce, and rice vinegar in a small mixing bowl. Mix well and serve on the side of the cooked chicken tenders.

sauce being mixed in bowl

Tips and Recipe Notes

  • Make sure your air fryer is fully preheated before you place your basket and tenders inside.
  • Flip the tenders halfway through cooking for even crispiness.
  • Don’t overcrowd the air fryer basket. Make sure there’s room between your tenders. If you can’t fit them in your air fryer, cook in batches.
  • For extra flavor, you can marinate the chicken in the seasoning mix for 30 minutes before wrapping it in bacon.
  • To prevent the toothpicks from burning, soak them in water for 10 minutes before you use them.
close up of bacon wrapped chicken tenders

Can this recipe be made gluten-free? Dairy-free?

Absolutely! All the ingredients in this recipe are typically gluten-free and dairy-free. Just make sure to check your labels to be sure.

Can I use turkey bacon instead of regular bacon?

Yes, turkey bacon works well, but keep a close eye on it in the air fryer so that it doesn’t burn.

Can I use frozen chicken tenders?

It’s best to use fresh or fully thawed chicken tenders for even cooking.

Can I use boneless chicken thighs?

Yes, but they may need a few extra minutes in the air fryer.

How do I know when the chicken is done?

The chicken is done when it reaches an internal temperature of 165°F. The inside of the chicken should be fully cooked and not pink or wet. If your air fryer isn’t overcrowded, 20 minutes a 400°F should cook these tenders perfectly.

a hand holding up a bacon wrapped chicken tender

How to Store Leftovers

If you don’t eat up every last bite of these tenders, you can store them for later.

You can also make these tenders ahead if you want to cook them for a party of make dinner prep even easier. Here’s how:

Make Ahead: You can coat these tenders in seasonings, then wrap them in bacon. Lay them on a plate or baking dish and cover tightly with plastic wrap. You can store them in the fridge for up to 24 hours. Remove the tenders from the fridge about 30 minutes before you start cooking to give them a chance to come to room temperature.

In the Fridge: If you have any leftovers (which is rare!), store them in an airtight container in the fridge. They’ll stay good for up to three days.

In the Freezer: Place the fully cooled tenders in a single layer on a baking sheet and freeze until solid. Then, transfer them to a freezer-safe bag or container. They’ll keep for up to two months.

How to Reheat: To reheat, pop the tenders back in the air fryer at 350°F for 5-7 minutes until heated through. You can also reheat them in the oven at 350°F for about 10 minutes.

Air Fryer Bacon Wrapped Chicken Tenders with a sauce on a plate

Air Fryer Bacon Wrapped Chicken Tenders

5 from 1 vote
Course Appetizer, Main Course
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Air Fryer Bacon Wrapped Chicken Tenders combines the juiciness of tender chicken tenderloins with the irresistible crunch of air-fried bacon. It's a delicious appetizer that's quick to prepare and sure to please the entire family.

Ingredients
  

  • 1 pound chicken tenderloins
  • 1 teaspoon ground mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 pound center cut bacon
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon yellow mustard
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce
  • 2 teaspoon rice vinegar

Instructions

  • Prep the chicken tenders. In a small bowl combine ground mustard, smoked paprika, garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Add the chicken tenders to a mixing bowl then using clean hands season with the seasoning mix. Starting at the end of a tenderloin, wrap a piece of bacon around the whole piece of chicken and secure each end with toothpicks.
  • Bake. Preheat air fryer to 400°F. Place bacon-wrapped chicken tenders into the air fryer basket in a single layer. Air fry at 400 degrees for 20 minutes, flipping halfway through.
  • Make the dipping sauce. In a mixing bowl combine the mayo, Dijon mustard, yellow mustard, honey, hot sauce, and rice vinegar. Mix well and serve on the side of the chicken tenders.

Video

Notes

  • Make sure your air fryer is fully preheated before you place your basket and tenders inside.
  • Flip the tenders halfway through cooking for even crispiness.
  • Don’t overcrowd the air fryer basket. Make sure there’s room between your tenders. If you can’t fit them in your air fryer, cook in batches.
  • For extra flavor, you can marinate the chicken in the seasoning mix for 30 minutes before wrapping it in bacon.
  • To prevent the toothpicks from burning, soak them in water for 10 minutes before you use them.

Nutrition

Calories: 559kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 26g | Fat: 46g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 14g | Monounsaturated Fat: 17g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 106mg | Sodium: 1204mg | Potassium: 462mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 153IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 17mg | Iron: 1mg
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