Wondering how long to boil chicken tenders and how much water to add? Follow our simple step-by-step instructions for boiling chicken tenders in under 10 minutes. Use in your favorite recipes, salads, casseroles, or freeze to use later.
Boiling chicken tenders is a no-fail cooking method that creates juicy chicken every time. If you’re interested in chicken thigh instructions check out how to boil chicken.
To get started, gather the equipment and ingredients then follow the written instructions or printable recipe card below. Enjoy!
- large skillet with lid
- 1 pound of chicken tenderloins ✅
- salt and pepper to taste
- fresh herbs, optional
Gluten-Free Guide: If you’re new to eating gluten-free we understand it’s overwhelming trying to figure out which foods may contain gluten and which ones don’t. All of our gluten-free recipes marked with this symbol ✅ represent foods that need to be checked for gluten.
How To Boil Chicken Tenders
Add salt and pepper and the fresh herbs if using. Add water until the chicken is covered. Place the lid on the chicken.
Bring the chicken tenders to a boil. Once boiling, remove a tender with the tongs. Check to make sure the internal temperature of chicken is 165°F. Continue boiling another minute if not. Once cooked remove with tongs and enjoy plain chicken or in your favorite recipe.
Season boiled chicken with salt and pepper for ease or opt to include fresh herbs or vegetables if desired. Fresh parsley, thyme, oregano, celery, onion, garlic and carrots are all delicious options that will boost the flavor of the tenders.
For storage, simply place in a container, jar or ice cube tray to store in the fridge for up to 3 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
Kids In The Kitchen
Cooking tips and suggestions for kids making this recipe.
- Pick a new herb to season the chicken each time you create this recipe
- Serve boiled tenders with your favorite dipping sauce such as BBQ, honey mustard or ketchup
- Stick a thermometer into the thickness part of the chicken tender – once it hits 165 degrees F, it is safe to serve
What To Serve With Chicken Tenderloins
While we often add these boiled chicken tenderloins to a soup or casserole dish, serving plain is also an option. Pair with any of our most popular side dishes for a complete meal any night of the week.
- Roasted Frozen Broccoli
- Gluten Free Cheesy Potatoes
- Air Fryer Twice Baked Potato
- Spaghetti Squash Carbonara
- Brussels Sprout Apple Salad
- Gluten Free Pasta Salad
- Gluten Free Potato Salad
- Broccoli Salad without Mayo
- Grilled Spaghetti Squash
- Roasted Butternut Squash with Brown Sugar
Tips and Tricks
- Seasoning: Season your chicken tenders with salt, pepper, and any other desired herbs or spices before adding them to the skillet. This will enhance the flavor of the chicken.
- Pan Size: Choose an appropriately sized skillet or pot that can comfortably hold the chicken tenders without overcrowding. Crowding the pan can lead to uneven cooking.
- Herbs and Aromatics: Fresh herbs can infuse flavor into the chicken as it cooks. You can use herbs like thyme, rosemary, or parsley. You might also consider adding aromatics like garlic or onion for extra flavor.
- Water Level: Make sure you add enough water to fully submerge the chicken tenders. This ensures even cooking and prevents them from drying out.
- Boiling Process: Start with cold water in the skillet to prevent the chicken from cooking too quickly on the outside while staying raw inside. Slowly bring the water to a boil over medium heat.
- Boiling Time: Once the water comes to a boil, reduce the heat to a simmer to maintain a gentle boil. Boil the chicken tenders until they reach an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C). This is the safe minimum temperature to ensure that the chicken is fully cooked.
- Using Tongs: Using tongs to handle the chicken is a good idea to prevent overcooking or damaging the tender texture of the meat.
- Checking for Doneness: To check if the chicken is cooked, you can cut into one of the tenders to ensure there is no pinkness and that the juices run clear. Alternatively, use a meat thermometer to confirm the internal temperature.
- Resting: After boiling, let the chicken tenders rest for a few minutes before serving. This allows the juices to redistribute within the meat, resulting in a juicier and more flavorful outcome.
- Versatility: Boiled chicken tenders can be used in various dishes. They can be shredded for salads, tacos, sandwiches, or added to pasta dishes.
- Broth: The liquid you’re left with after boiling can be strained and used as a base for soups or sauces due to the flavorful herbs and spices that were added.
Remember that while boiling is a straightforward method, attention to details like seasoning, temperature, and cooking time can make a significant difference in the final result.
Frequently Asked Questions
Store cooked chicken in the fridge for up to 5 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
Yes, frozen chicken can be boiled. If using frozen, increase the cooking time by 10 minutes then temp the chicken. Continue cooking if the internal temperature has not reached 165 degrees.
Boiling any cut of chicken is possible when following this step-by-step guide. Simply adjust the total cooking time depending on the size and thickness of the chicken. For fresh chicken thighs, boil for approximately 30 minutes and 40-50 minutes for frozen. Regardless of the cut, the internal temperature of chicken must be 165 degrees prior to serving.
Chop or shred to use in wraps, salads, sandwiches, tacos, enchiladas, casseroles, soups or your favorite chicken recipe.
Boiled Chicken Recipes
- Oven Baked Chicken Tacos
- Chicken Bacon Ranch Tatertot Casserole
- Grandmas Chicken Casserole
- Gluten Free Chicken Casserole
- Baked Chicken and Brown Rice Casserole
- Gluten Free Chicken Tortilla Soup
- Gluten Free Chicken Noodle Soup
- One Pot Chicken and Rice
- Gluten-Free Chicken And Dumplings
- Boiled Chicken Recipes
CKC Features both Gluten-Free Guidance and Kids Cooking Instructions: If you’re new to eating gluten-free we understand it’s overwhelming trying to figure out which foods may contain gluten and which ones don’t. All of our gluten-free recipes marked with this symbol ✅ represent foods that need to be checked for gluten or cross-contamination.
The ⭐️ symbol in the recipe below denotes the steps in which kid cooks may need a helper (depending on age). If there is no ⭐️ symbol, that step (or recipe) doesn’t require a helper.
Boiled Chicken Tenders
- 1 pound chicken tenderloins ✅
- salt and pepper to taste
- fresh herbs, optional
- Add chicken to skillet. Add the chicken tenders to the skillet. Add salt and pepper and the fresh herbs if using. Add water until the chicken is covered. Place the lid on the chicken.1 pound chicken tenderloins, salt and pepper to taste, fresh herbs, optional
- ⭐️Bring to a boil. Bring the chicken tenders to a boil. Once boiling, remove a tender with the tongs. Check to make sure the internal temperature is 165°F. Continue boiling another minute if not. Once cooked remove with tongs and enjoy in your favorite recipe.
- Season boiled chicken with salt and pepper for ease or opt to include fresh herbs or vegetables if desired. Fresh parsley, thyme, oregano along with celery, onion, garlic and carrots are all delicious options that will boost the flavor of the chicken tenders.
- Store cooked chicken in the fridge for up to 5 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months.