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Easy Spicy Keto Air Fryer Chicken Tenders

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If you're like me and love a good, crispy chicken tender but are also committed to a keto lifestyle, this recipe is going to be your new best friend. I'm obsessed with my air fryer – it makes getting that super crispy texture way easier and healthier than deep frying. This spicy keto air fryer chicken tenders recipe is simple, incredibly tasty, and totally guilt-free!

Keto Air Fryer Chicken Tenders

Why I Love These Air Fryer Chicken Tenders

  • Quick and easy: You can whip these up in practically no time. Only ten minutes of prep, then the air fryer does most of the work.
  • Packed with flavor: The buffalo wing sauce gives these tenders a nice bit of heat, perfectly balanced by the garlic and onion powder.
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  • Perfect for the whole family: These are great as an appetizer, a main course, or even in salads. This easy recipe is kid-approved too!
  • Seriously low carb: Only 2 net carbs per serving means these fit perfectly into your keto diet plan.
chicken tenders on a plate

Air Fryer Spicy Sauced Chicken Tenders

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 10-12 minutes

Servings: 3 

Net Carbs: 2 net carbs per serving

photo of recipe ingredients


  • 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken tenderloins
  • ½ tsp. garlic powder
  • ½ tsp. onion powder
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • ⅓ C. low carb buffalo wing sauce
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03/11/2024 09:27 am GMT


  1. Preheat: Let your air fryer get nice and hot at 400 degrees F.
  2. Prep the chicken: Drizzle the chicken tenders with olive oil and season with garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and pepper. Toss everything together to make sure the chicken is well-coated.
  3. Air fry: Put the chicken tenders in the air fryer basket in a single layer (you might need to cook in batches). Give them a good 10-12 minutes, flipping them halfway through for the perfect crispy texture.
  4. Sauce it up: Once your tenders are golden brown and cooked through (an internal temperature of 165 degrees F is perfect), toss them in a bowl with the buffalo sauce.
  5. Enjoy! Serve immediately with your favorite dipping sauce. Ranch or blue cheese is a classic, but feel free to experiment!

Tips for the Best Air Fryer Keto Chicken Tenders

  • Don't overcrowd the air fryer: To get them seriously crispy, you want space between the tenders for the hot air to circulate.
  • Pork rinds for the win: If you're craving a more substantial breading, crush some pork rinds and mix with a little parmesan cheese and seasonings. Dip your chicken in an egg wash, then the pork rind mixture – amazing!
  • Play with flavors: This is a great base recipe. Try other sauces, like honey mustard or sugar-free BBQ sauce! Experiment with different spice combinations too – a bit of cayenne pepper adds some extra kick.

What to Serve With Your Chicken Tenders

These keto air fryer chicken tenders are incredibly versatile! Here are a few more ideas for delicious sides and ways to serve them:

  • Classic and Simple: Green beans are always a winner, but don't forget about other keto-friendly veggies like roasted broccoli or zucchini. A little olive oil spray and your favorite seasonings make them a perfect side.
  • Salad Superstars: Turn these tenders into a full meal by serving them over a big, fresh salad. Add other keto-friendly toppings like avocado, cherry tomatoes, and a drizzle of your favorite dressing.
  • Fancy Fries: Sweet potato fries are fantastic, but for a fun twist, try making fries out of other low-carb veggies like carrots, parsnips, or even zucchini!
  • Dippers Delight: These tenders taste great as is, but they're even better with a dipping sauce. Ranch, blue cheese, honey mustard, or even a sugar-free BBQ sauce are delicious options. Get creative!

Loving My Air Fryer

Honestly, I don't know how I lived without my air fryer for so long! It's the best way to get that satisfying texture without all the oil in traditional deep-frying. Here's why I'm obsessed:

  • Keto Heaven: The air fryer makes it so easy to stick to my keto diet. I can make all my favorite "fried" foods like chicken wings, keto chicken nuggets, and even crispy Brussels sprouts.
  • Beyond Chicken: Salmon, shrimp, even tofu – the air fryer cooks these perfectly! The possibilities are endless.
  • Quick and Easy: On busy weeknights, air fryer recipes are lifesavers. They cut down cooking time significantly, with way less mess to clean up afterward.
keto air fryer chicken tenders on plate

Healthy air fryer chicken tenders FAQ

Q: Will these chicken pieces be crispy?

A: This recipe focuses on tender, juicy chicken with a bold buffalo sauce flavor. You won't get a traditional crispy breading texture, but the air fryer still ensures the chicken cooks beautifully with a slightly browned exterior.

Q: Can I use a different type of chicken?

A: Yes, you can use boneless, skinless chicken breast. Just cut them into thin strips or use pre-cut chicken tenderloins. You may need to adjust the cooking time slightly depending on the thickness.

Q:  Can I make these ahead of time?

A: Yes, you can prep the chicken ahead of time and store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator until you're ready to cook. To reheat, pop them back in the air fryer for a few minutes until warmed through.

Q: What if I don't like buffalo sauce?

A: No problem! You can easily adjust the flavor profile to your liking. Here are some delicious alternatives to buffalo sauce:

  • Sugar-free BBQ sauce
  • low carb Honey mustard
  • low carb Ranch dressing
  • low carb Garlic aioli
  • Teriyaki sauce (check the carb content!)

Q. Can I adjust the spice level?

A: Absolutely! If you like it milder, use less buffalo sauce or opt for a mild variety. If you're a heat-seeker, add some cayenne pepper or hot sauce to the mix for these keto chicken strips.

Yield: 3

Spicy Keto Air Fryer Chicken Tenders

Keto Air Fryer Chicken Tenders

The BEST spicy, saucy chicken made in minutes in your air fryer. Seriously low-carb and keto-friendly!

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes


  • 1 lb. Boneless skinless chicken tenderloins.
  • ½ tsp. Garlic powder
  • ½ tsp. Onion powder
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 Tbsp. Olive oil
  • ⅓ C. Keto Buffalo wing sauce


    Preheat the air fryer to 400 degrees.
    Drizzle the olive oil over the chicken tenders, and then sprinkle with the garlic powder, onion powder and salt and pepper to taste. Toss to combine well.
    Place the chicken tenders onto a well greased pan or rack, and place into the air fryer.
    Cook for 10-12 minutes, flipping the tenders halfway through the cooking time.
    Add the cooked tenders to a mixing bowl, and pour the hot wing sauce over them. Toss to combine, and serve.

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I hope you love this keto air fryer chicken tender recipe as much as I do. If you try it, definitely let me know in the comments! If you want even more keto-friendly deliciousness, be sure to check out 3 ingredient Keto Creme Brulee recipe (Crème Brûlée, 3 ingredient keto chocolate mousse: Easy Recipe in minutes or Keto chicken alfredo casserole: Easy to make recipe.

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