Spicy food is a slight obsession of mine. Whenever I eat out or even at home I’m always searching the menu for something with heat. Buffalo sauce tops the list of my favorites. I love wings, tenders, wraps, pizzas and anything else I can smother in the spicy sauce. My go to bar food are chicken tenders and while I love the spicy fried chicken, I do not love the amount of calories that comes with. Instead of going out to eat tonight for the glorious spicy hot fried tenders and having instant guilt and possibly a stomach ache from all the grease, I decided to take a stab at a healthier version at home.
My husband is from Michigan and on a trip back to visit his family we had Detroit style buffalo wings. There are many places around the states that serve this style of buffalo sauce and you likely has seen a similar version on a menu somewhere. It’s a tangier sweet and spicy version made with honey. While I have an obsession with buffalo sauce, my husbands weakness is honey. This sauce is the best of both worlds for us. Honey is a great natural sweetener and an added bonus to using honey is that if you use local honey, like we do, it can help with allergies.
This recipe is very simple and delicious! It starts with preheating to 425º F and scrambling an egg in a large bowl. Spread the breadcrumbs on a plate and dip each chicken tender in the egg and then coat with breadcrumbs.
Arrange all the breaded tenders on a baking sheet. Mine is non-stick, but if yours isn’t you might want to spread some olive oil on it first. Then bake for about 15 – 20 minutes or until the tenders are fully cooked.
While the tenders are cooking you can make the Detroit style buffalo sauce. Seriously, this stuff is addictive, I already used the leftovers. Start by mincing up a two garlic gloves. Measure out the hot sauce, apple cider vinegar and honey. I used raw vinegar and local honey. I try to add in healthy and local products as much as possible into my cooking.
Now you get the fun part of mixing all the ingredients together in a small mixing bowl. I used a whisk to really combine the ingredients well. The honey is rather sticky and tough to mix and the vinegar really helps liquify the sauce. If you want your sauce spicier or thicker you can omit the vinegar to achieve that.
Take the tenders out of the oven and place in a medium to large mixing bowl while they are still hot. You want the bowl to be big enough to be able to coat the tenders in the sauce easily without breaking them. If your bowl is too small it will be very hard to mix the sauce in.
Pour the sauce over the tenders and get your hands dirty! Obviously, make sure they are clean first and then start tossing the tenders lighting in around to even coat them in the sauce. Once fully coated serve the tenders immediately.
My husband and I both like ranch and it’s a perfect pairing for buffalo tenders. Drizzle over the top or put on the side for dipping. Ever since I was a little kid, I’ve loved fried chicken and mashed potatoes. Rather than the normal celery sticks, I decided to serve mine southern style with potatoes. I am a Nashville girl after all.
The left overs from this meal was so good, my husband and I were fighting over them! He doesn’t like buffalo sauce as much as I do and he ate this so quickly I was amazed. The chicken even reheated in the microwave well. Here’s the recipe for your to enjoy!
Time: 30 minutes
- 1lb chicken tenders
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 1/2 cup of hot sauce
- 1/2 cup of honey
- 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 egg
- 1/2 cup Panko Breadcrumbs
- Ranch – for topping
- Preheat your oven for 450° F.
- Scramble 1 egg in a small bowl. Spread the breadcrumbs on a plate.
- Dip the chicken tenders in the egg. Then coat with breadcrumbs.
- Arrange the breaded tenders on a non-stick or oil lined baking sheet and bake for 15-20 minutes until chicken is fully cooked.
- Mince the cloves of garlic and place in another small bowl. Then pour in honey, apple cider vinegar and hot sauce.
- Whisk together ingredients and set aside.
- Remove the chicken from the oven and place, still hot, in a medium to large mixing bowl.
- Pour sauce over the hot tenders and toss to fully coat chicken.
- Serve chicken immediately and drizzle with ranch.