I’ve tried chicken tenders from Popeyes, Chick-fil-A, Whataburger, Raising Cane’s, KFC, Bojangles, Zaxby’s and Cook Out.
The Popeyes and KFC chicken tenders were similar in their crispy texture and taste.
Raising Cane’s impressed me with its crispy yet juicy tenders and delicious signature sauce.
Out of all the chicken tenders I’ve tried, Whataburger’s didn’t quite like me.
A three-piece chicken breast is only $4.44 at Whataburger at the location I visited in Austin, Texas.
The chicken tenders were large and cooked perfectly.
I thought the tenders could only be described as ‘classic’ – they weren’t anything out of the box, but I enjoyed them.
The meat inside was juicy but I thought the fried coating could have been a bit more crispy.
The chicken tenders tasted great on their own as well as with ranch dipping sauce. At least they weren’t bad. However, I felt the other tenders were a little crispier and had just the slightest hint of more flavor in the batter.
Anyway, for under $5 I would definitely order these again.
I also ordered chicken tenders from Cook Out, a regional chain I visited in South Carolina.
The three-piece “snack” cost $4.39, excluding tax.
The chicken tenders were crispy on the outside.
They were also a good size. The price was also a great deal for the generous portion I got.
However, there was no abundance of chicken meat inside.
These were undeniably classic chicken tenders, similar to Whataburger’s, but they were a little too fried for my taste. However, I thought they were well seasoned and had a lot of peppery flavor.
Chick-fil-A’s chicken tenders were good…but I basically just use them as a vehicle for the chain’s Chick-fil-A sauce.
A three-piece chicken tender costs $7.65 at my nearest location if it’s not included in a meal deal.
Some chicken pieces looked a little darker and more fried than others.
There were little bits of fried breadcrumbs scattered on the outside, which I always love with a tender chicken.
The chicken tenders were nicely fried but still juicy inside.
However, they were not as crispy as I expected. I wanted a definite crunch when I bit into the tenders, but they didn’t deliver. In the end, it’s largely down to personal preference.
When I dipped them in the chain’s signature Chick-fil-A sauce, the experience was nothing short of mouthwatering. The actual chicken tenders were just okay though – it was the sauce that took them over the edge.
KFC’s chicken tenders ended up in the middle of the pack.
On the day I tried this one, I ordered a five-piece tender meal for $12.95 excluding taxes and fees. However, a four-piece tender meal, which comes with a side dish, sauce, and a drink, costs $10.55, excluding taxes and fees.
The tenders were crispy on the outside but I thought they were a little on the small side compared to the others I tried.
However, they did have bits of fried breadcrumbs on the outside which I knew would make for a nice texture.
The chicken tenders were tasty and included a decent amount of white meat chicken.
However, the slightly smaller size meant they didn’t come out on top compared to the last two chains I tried.
My fourth favorite chicken tenders came from Popeyes.
A three-piece tender combination came in at $12.40 excluding taxes and fees. The meal deal included a large portion of chips, a drink and a biscuit, as well as a choice of a variety of different dips.
The Popeyes chicken tenders were crispy, flaky and crunchy.
I really liked the crispy exterior of the Popeyes chicken tenders.
The meat inside was also flaky and juicy.
I also thought the batter was quite flavorful – I could taste hints of spice and buttermilk, although they didn’t taste quite as buttery as the Chick-fil-A tenders.
I found the Bojangles chicken tenders tasty and super crispy.
A four piece combo of chicken tenders came with chips, a medium drink and a biscuit. It cost me $6.29 excluding taxes and fees.
I thought the chicken tenders were a good size.
The texture and flavor of the breadcrumbs made them taste like a cross between Chick-fil-A and Cook Out chicken tenders.
The breadcrumbs were peppery, just the right thickness, and perfectly coated the juicy white chicken meat inside.
I also thought the price was reasonable considering how much food I got. The chicken tenders went perfectly with honey mustard, but were also tasty on their own. Overall, I would definitely order these again.
My second favorite chicken tenders came from Zaxby’s.
A five piece combo of chicken tenders came with fries, a small drink, coleslaw and a slice of Texas toast. I also asked for honey mustard and Zaxby’s famous Zax sauce. My meal cost $9.89 excluding taxes and fees.
The chicken tenders’ breadcrumbs were very similar in consistency, taste, and texture to Chick-fil-A, but I thought these chicken tenders had more chicken meat.
The breadcrumbs were perfectly crispy and super tasty, with a slight sweetness.
The chicken tenders held up without sauce, but were really taken to the next level when dipped in the spicy Zax sauce.
Zax sauce tastes similar to Cane’s sauce, but I found it just a little less flavorful and creamy. I also thought it didn’t have the same kick.
However, the chicken tenders For real impressed me. They were a good size, extremely flavorful and addictively delicious. I found myself wanting even more than the five chicken quotes I got, which is rare for me.
In the end, it was a very hard decision whether I preferred Zaxby’s or Raising Cane’s chicken tenders.
But my favorite chicken tenders came from Raising Cane’s.
My Six Piece Meal came to $14.27, including tax, but a three-finger combo with three chicken fingers, fries, Cane’s sauce, Texas toast, and a regular drink costs $6.38 excluding tax and any additions or swaps.
Raising Cane’s was one of the smaller chains I tried – they have one around 617 locations in 33 states, compared to 314 Cook Out locations† 944 Zaxby’s Locationsand 790 Bojangles Restaurants†
The chicken tenders were super crispy.
The chicken tenders were also thick. After biting into it, I could see the strips of white chicken underneath, which, in my experience, you don’t always find on fast food chicken tenders.
The chicken tenders were super crispy and juicy inside – I had to give them the win.
I tried the tenders alone and with the cane’s sauce. On their own, the tenders were just anything you could wish for – thick, juicy and crispy on the outside.
However, the chain is known for its chicken-complementing sauce, and after biting into it I could definitely see why. It had a slight kick to it, was super creamy and surprisingly spicy. It paired perfectly with the chicken and was unlike any other sauce I’ve ever tried.
In the end, Raising Cane’s took the win for me with the chain’s near-perfect chicken tenders and fair prices.
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