Cook the Book: Crispy Chicken Fingers

Healthy and Delicious

Healthy and delicious recipes from Serious Eats

Cook the Book: Crispy Chicken Fingers

From time to time, I do experience some bouts of healthy eating, but one of the foods I find the hardest to resist is chicken fingers. It was always my poison of choice at KFC and although I try to avoid McDonald’s at all costs, last summer when I surrendered to this fast food fiend, it was for their snack wrap—crispy chicken with jack cheese and ranch sauce in a flour tortilla (so good, yet so very bad). With Ellie Kreiger’s recipe for crispy chicken fingers from The Food You Crave, I can give into my cravings without feeling like I’m selling out to Mickey D’s evil empire. I would make these in a whole wheat wrap or put them in a salad that would rival those secretly unhealthy premium salads that were all the rage at every fast food chain.

  • Yield:4 servings


  • 1 1/4 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, cut across into 1/2-inch-thick slices
  • 1/2 cup lowfat buttermilk
  • Cooking spray
  • 4 cups whole-grain corn cereal such as Corn Chex or corn flakes
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Pinch of freshly ground black pepper
  • Honey-Mustard Sauce (recipe follows)
  • 1/3 cup Dijon mustard
  • 2 teaspoons mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons honey


  1. 1.

    Preheat the oven to 400°F.

  2. 2.

    Combine the chicken and buttermilk in a shallow dish. turning the chicken to coat it with the buttermilk. Cover and chill for 15 minutes. Coat two baking sheets with cooking spray.

  3. 3.

    Put the cereal in a sealable plastic bag and crush with a rolling pin.

  4. 4.

    Transfer the crumbs to a shallow dish and season them with the salt and pepper. Dip each piece of chicken in the cereal to fully coat and arrange on the prepared baking sheets. Bake until cooked through, about 8 minutes. Leave the chicken on the baking sheets to cool slightly. It will become crispier.

  5. 5.

    Serve with the mustard sauce on the side.

  6. 6.

    Honey-Mustard Sauce

  7. 7.

    This sauce also makes an incredible sandwich spread. It will keep about a week in the refrigerator.

  8. 8.

    In a small bowl. stir together the mustard and mayonnaise until smooth. Stir in the honey.