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Crispy Panko Breaded Chicken Tender Salad

We’ve crafted a recipe specifically tailored to the needs of busy individuals who crave delicious, budget-friendly options without compromising on taste. Imagine tender chicken breasts, thinly sliced and perfectly breaded with crispy Panko breadcrumbs, seasoned to perfection with paprika, garlic powder, and a hint of salt. Paired with a vibrant spring mix salad featuring juicy Roma tomatoes, crisp cucumbers, and tangy red onions, this dish is a symphony of textures and flavors. Whether you’re meal prepping for the week ahead or looking for a quick and satisfying dinner option, this recipe has you covered.

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Calories: 469kcal | Carbohydrates: 32g | Protein: 42g | Fat: 19g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 8g | Trans Fat: 0.04g | Cholesterol: 111mg | Sodium: 1191mg | Potassium: 909mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 1470IU | Vitamin C: 22mg | Calcium: 61mg | Iron: 3mg
crispy panko breaded chicken tender with salad, sliced cucumbers, tomatoes, and red onions

Why This is Great for Meal Prep

  • Quick and Easy Preparation: With simple instructions and minimal ingredients, this recipe is a breeze to prepare, even for those with the busiest of schedules. The thinly sliced chicken cooks up in just a few minutes, while the salad assembly is quick and straightforward. It’s a time-saving meal prep option that won’t leave you stuck in the kitchen for hours.
  • Nutrient-Rich Ingredients: This meal is packed with wholesome ingredients like lean chicken breast, fresh vegetables, and nutrient-rich greens. The chicken provides a healthy dose of protein to keep you feeling satisfied and energized throughout the day, while the salad veggies offer essential vitamins, minerals, and fiber to support overall health and well-being.
  • Balanced and Satisfying: Our Crispy Panko Breaded Chicken Tender Salad strikes the perfect balance between protein, carbs, and healthy fats, making it a satisfying and well-rounded meal. The combination of crispy chicken tenders and crunchy veggies keeps your taste buds happy, while the addition of complex carbs from the salad greens provides long-lasting energy to power you through your busy day.
  • Versatile and Customizable: One of the best things about this meal prep recipe is its versatility. While we’ve provided a basic salad combination, feel free to get creative and customize it to suit your taste preferences and dietary needs. Swap out the veggies, experiment with different salad dressings, or add your favorite toppings to make each meal uniquely yours.
  • Portion-Controlled and Budget-Friendly: By prepping individual servings ahead of time, you can easily control portion sizes and avoid overeating throughout the week. Plus, by buying ingredients in bulk and prepping multiple meals at once, you’ll save both time and money in the long run. It’s a budget-friendly meal prep solution that helps you stay on track with your health and wellness goals without breaking the bank.

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Ingredients You’ll Need

  • Chicken Breast: Chicken breast is a lean source of protein that’s not only affordable but also versatile and easy to cook. By using thinly sliced chicken breast, we ensure that it cooks quickly and evenly, making it perfect for meal prep. Protein is essential for muscle repair and growth, as well as for keeping you feeling full and satisfied between meals.
  • Panko Breadcrumbs: Panko breadcrumbs are light and airy, resulting in an incredibly crispy and crunchy coating for our chicken tenders. Unlike traditional breadcrumbs, panko creates a thicker and more textured crust, adding an extra layer of flavor and texture to the dish. Plus, using breadcrumbs instead of a heavier batter keeps the dish lighter and healthier without sacrificing that satisfying crunch.
  • Seasonings (Paprika, Garlic Powder, Salt): These simple yet flavorful seasonings add depth and complexity to the dish without the need for excess salt or unhealthy additives. Paprika provides a subtle smokiness and mild heat, while garlic powder adds savory flavor. Salt enhances the overall taste of the dish and helps to balance out the other flavors. Together, these seasonings elevate the chicken tenders from basic to extraordinary.
  • Egg: The egg serves as a binding agent for the breadcrumbs, helping them adhere to the chicken and creating a crispy coating when cooked. It also adds moisture and richness to the chicken tenders, ensuring they stay juicy and flavorful. Eggs are an affordable and nutritious ingredient that adds both structure and texture to the dish.
  • Olive Oil: Olive oil is used for pan-frying the chicken tenders, providing a healthy source of monounsaturated fats and adding a deliciously rich flavor to the dish. It’s a budget-friendly option that’s readily available and adds a luxurious touch to the crispy chicken tenders. Plus, pan-frying allows us to achieve that golden-brown crust without the need for deep frying, making it a healthier cooking method.
  • Spring Mix: Spring mix is a blend of tender baby greens like spinach, arugula, and lettuce, providing a nutritious and flavorful base for our salad. It’s packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, making it a nutrient-rich addition to any meal. Plus, spring mix adds a variety of textures and flavors to the salad, from peppery arugula to buttery lettuce, creating a more interesting and satisfying eating experience.
  • Tomato, Cucumber, Red Onion: These fresh vegetables add color, crunch, and flavor to our salad, making it a vibrant and delicious side dish. Tomatoes provide sweetness and acidity, cucumbers add a refreshing crunch, and red onions lend a mild tanginess. Together, they create a well-balanced salad that complements the crispy chicken tenders perfectly.
  • Salad Dressing: A choice of salad dressing adds the finishing touch to our meal prep masterpiece, tying all the flavors together and adding a burst of tangy or creamy goodness. Whether you prefer a classic balsamic vinaigrette, a zesty Italian dressing, or a creamy ranch, the dressing adds moisture and flavor to the salad without overpowering the other ingredients. Plus, by choosing a store-bought dressing or making your own at home, you can control the ingredients and customize the flavor to suit your taste preferences.
crispy panko breaded chicken tender with salad, sliced cucumbers, tomatoes, and red onions

How to Meal Prep Crispy Panko Chicken Tenders

  1. If you can’t find thinly sliced chicken breast at your local store, fear not! Simply filet your chicken breast and slice it in half sideways. Want it even flatter? Place it between two layers of plastic wrap and give it a good pound with a meat pounder or a small frying pan. This step not only makes your chicken cook faster but also ensures maximum crispiness!
  2. In three separate bowls, set up your breading station. Whisk the egg in one bowl, place the flour in another, and combine the panko breadcrumbs with paprika, garlic powder, and salt in the third bowl.
  3. First, dip each chicken slice into the flour, making sure it’s fully coated. Shake off any excess flour. Next, dip it into the egg wash, ensuring it’s nicely covered. Finally, coat the chicken in the seasoned panko breadcrumbs, pressing gently to adhere.
  4. Heat a skillet with olive oil over medium-high heat. Once hot, add your breaded chicken tenders and cook for about 3 to 5 minutes on each side, or until they’re golden brown and cooked through. Pro tip: Check for an internal temperature of 165°F to ensure they’re perfectly done.
  5. While your chicken is sizzling away, it’s time to prep your salad. Toss together the spring mix, sliced tomato, cucumber, and red onions in a large bowl. Divide the salad into meal prep containers and top each with a crispy chicken tender.
  6. Don’t forget the finishing touch! Drizzle each salad with your favorite salad dressing. Whether you’re into balsamic vinaigrette, honey mustard, or creamy ranch, the choice is yours!

Reference the recipe card below for detailed instructions.

crispy panko breaded chicken tender with salad, sliced cucumbers, tomatoes, and red onions

Meal Prep Tips for Crispy Panko Chicken Tenders

  • Healthy Dips: Pair your crispy chicken tenders with a variety of healthy dipping sauces, such as hummus, tzatziki, or guacamole. These flavorful dips add extra moisture and flavor to the chicken without piling on extra calories or unhealthy fats.
  • Soup or Soup Starter: Kick off your meal with a light soup or broth-based starter, such as vegetable soup or miso soup. Not only does this help to increase your vegetable intake, but it also fills you up with low-calorie, nutrient-rich foods, making you less likely to overindulge on the main course.
  • Fruit Dessert: End your meal on a sweet note with a serving of fresh fruit or a fruit salad. Not only does this provide a refreshing and naturally sweet treat, but it also adds extra vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants to your meal. Try pairing your salad with seasonal fruits like berries, melon, or citrus for a burst of flavor.
  • Hydration: Don’t forget to stay hydrated throughout the day by drinking plenty of water or herbal tea. Hydration is key for overall health and well-being, and it helps to support digestion, energy levels, and cognitive function. Consider infusing your water with fresh fruit or herbs for a flavorful twist.
crispy panko breaded chicken tender with salad, sliced cucumbers, tomatoes, and red onions
pan-fried chicken salad

Crispy Panko Breaded Chicken Tender Salad

Enjoy crispy Panko-breaded chicken tenders atop a bed of fresh greens, perfect for a flavorful and convenient meal prep option.
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Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Course lunch, Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 2
Calories 469 kcal


  • knife
  • cutting board
  • saute pan
  • tongs


Chicken and Breading

  • 12 oz chicken breasts (thinly sliced)
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 each large egg
  • 1 tbsp olive oil


  • 4 cups spring mix
  • 1 each roma tomato (sliced)
  • 1/2 each cucumber (sliced)
  • 1/4 cup red onions (sliced
  • 4 tbsp choice of salad dressing


  • If you can't find thinly sliced chicken breast, filet your chicken breast and slice it in half sideways. If you want it even flatter and thinner, lay it in between two layers of plastic wrap and use a meat pounder or a small frying pan to pound it out flat. This will help the chicken cook faster.
  • Whisk the egg in a large bowl. Place the flour in another bowl. Then, place the panko breadcrumbs and seasonings in another bowl
  • First dip the chicken in the flour making sure it is fully coated. Then shake off the excess
  • Next, dip the chicken in the egg wash. Then, drip it into the seasoned panko breadcrumbs. Make sure it is fully coated
  • Heat a skillet with olive oil on medium high heat. Then, pan fry the chicken breast on each side until golden brown and fully cooked (about 3 to 5 minutes on each side-check for an internal temperature of 165F).
  • Serve the chicken with a side salad.


Nutrition information provided is an estimate. It will vary based on cooking method and specific ingredients used. Please consult with your healthcare provider for specific dietary needs. To gain a better understanding, explore our nutrition disclaimer here


Calories: 469kcalCarbohydrates: 32gProtein: 42gFat: 19gSaturated Fat: 3gPolyunsaturated Fat: 5gMonounsaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0.04gCholesterol: 111mgSodium: 1191mgPotassium: 909mgFiber: 2gSugar: 5gVitamin A: 1470IUVitamin C: 22mgCalcium: 61mgIron: 3mg

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use a different type of protein instead of chicken breast?

Absolutely! While chicken breast is the star of this recipe, you can easily swap it out for other proteins like turkey breast, pork loin, tofu, or even fish fillets. Adjust cooking times accordingly based on the protein you choose.

Can I make this recipe gluten-free?

Yes! You can easily make this recipe gluten-free by using gluten-free breadcrumbs or almond flour instead of traditional flour and panko breadcrumbs. Be sure to check that all seasonings and salad dressing are also gluten-free.

How long will the chicken tenders stay crispy?

While the chicken tenders are best enjoyed fresh, you can help them stay crispy by storing them separately from the salad components. Store the chicken tenders in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. Reheat in a toaster oven or oven to maintain crispiness.

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