Crispy Jalapeno Air Fryer Chicken Fingers (can be baked too!)

Crispy Jalapeno Air Fryer Chicken Fingers – chicken marinated in buttermilk, coated with French fried crispy jalapenos, & cooked in the air fryer in just 12 minutes. This recipe can be cooked in the oven too! 

Air Fryer Crispy Jalapeno Chicken Fingers

 

You know the containers of French fried onions that lots of folks put on top of green bean casserole? I love those things. I can eat those things like potato chips, straight out of the container! I’m also a woman who loves her some spicy food, so when I first came across the jalapeño version of the French fried onions, I knew they were going to be fantastic and I ordered about 6 gazillion containers off of Amazon.

Ok, maybe not that many, but I did do subscribe and save and forgot to skip/cancel it (oops) so I ended up with a stockpile of those delicious french fried jalapenos! To use up some of them, I crushed some of them up and created this delicious crispy jalapeno chicken finger recipe!

Crispy Jalapeno Chicken fingers on a blue plate

For this recipe, I pulled out my air fryer (which is quite honestly my favorite countertop appliance). If you don’t have an air fryer, don’t fret – these can be make in the oven too! The air fryer does get it somewhat crispier but it’s yummy as can be either way.

What ingredients do I need to make these Crispy Jalapeno Air Fryer Chicken Fingers?

Only 3 ingredients!

  • chicken tenderloins (or boneless skinless chicken breasts cut into fingers)
  • buttermilk
  • a bag of Crispy Jalapenos, crushed

Sometimes I like to add a few splashes of hot sauce (I like Frank’s) to my buttermilk.

Crispy Jalapeno Chicken Fingers (with ranch dipping sauce)

I like to marinate my chicken in the buttermilk for at least an hour, but preferably overnight. If you don’t have time, you can just dip it in it (or use regular milk if you’re skipping the marinating) and then bread it – but marinating it in the buttermilk really does produce the best final product, so try not to skip it if you can!

After the chicken has been marinated (or submerged in the liquid), I coat the pieces in the crushed up crispy jalapenos. They stick pretty good, just make sure you crush them up well. Cook them in your air fryer on 400 degrees for about 6 minutes on each side, until the chicken is cooked through the inside & the outside is nice and crispy.

crispy jalapeno chicken fingers in the air fryer basket

What if I don’t have an air fryer?

Alternatively, you can bake these in the oven on 425 degrees for about 18-20 minutes, turning halfway through.

If you would like to purchase an air fryer, Amazon has a great selection. You can check out their inventory at this link

Try this coating on other chicken cuts too such as chicken thighs – it’s delicious!

Crispy Jalapeno Chicken fingers on a blue plate

What should I serve with these Crispy Jalapeno Chicken Fingers?

Crispy Jalapeno Chicken fingers on a blue plate

Air Fryer Crispy Jalapeno Chicken Fingers

Ingredients

  • 12 chicken fingers about 1-1/4 pounds
  • buttermilk to cover
  • 2 cups crispy jalapenos (french fried jalapenos), crushed or more if needed
  • hot sauce (I like Frank's), to taste optional

Instructions

  • Marinate the chicken fingers for at least an hour in the buttermilk, or up to overnight. Somtimes I like to add a few splashes of hot sauce to the buttermilk, but it's not neceesary.
  • Drain the buttermilk & thoroughly coat the chicken fingers in the crushed crispy jalapenos. Set aside on a plate for 10-15 minutes for the breading to 'set' on the chicken.
  • Place the chicken fingers in your air fryer. Cook it in batches at 400 degrees for about 6 minutes on each side.
  • Alternatively, you can bake this in the oven. Place on a foil or parchment paper lined baking sheet and bake at 425 degrees for 18-20 minutes, turning halfway through.
Air Fryer Crispy Jalapeno Chicken Fingers

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