Chicken strips are ubiquitous on restaurant children's menus, but that's probably because almost everybody likes them. This healthier oven-baked alternative to the deep-fried kids' staple is perfect for school lunchboxes (it's good cold) and tasty enough for an easy weeknight meal. Serve them with dipping sauces like BBQ sauce and ranch dressing.
The kids can pitch in and help make these, too. Have them assemble the ingredients and shake the chicken in a bag to coat with breadcrumbs. Using chicken tenders means you don't have to cut anything, too. Japanese-style panko breadcrumbs make these nice and crispy, but regular breadcrumbs will work as well.
1 pound chicken tenders or boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Lately I've been trying to get a little more creative with my kids' school lunches and try to get out of the turkey sandwich rut. One of the things I've packed recently are these delicious baked chicken fingers. A healthier variation on the deep-fried kids' menu staple, these strips of chicken breast are coated with breadcrumbs mixed with parmesan cheese and dried herbs. They're tasty either hot or cold, and so they're perfect for the lunchbox.
I like to use the Japanese-style panko breadcrumbs because they're really light and crispy; you can find them at Trader Joe's or in the Asian foods aisle of the grocery store. Ordinary breadcrumbs will work just fine, though, and homemade ones would of course be outstanding.
The kids love to help make these—just make sure everyone washes their hands after handling raw chicken.