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Air Fryer Chicken Strips: Gluten-Free Pecan Crusted Chicken

Delicious and affordable chicken strips cooked in an air fryer.

Chicken Strips at a Fraction of the Cost

My kids love chicken strips but they are so expensive to buy for my teens who eat like truck drivers. And I also like knowing exactly what goes into my food. I can buy 3 pounds of frozen boneless, skinless chicken breasts at our local store for $5.98. I always keep a couple bags of these stocked in my freezer. This makes these air fryer chicken strips an affordable meal that everyone loves.

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I bought this six-quart air fryer last summer and absolutely love it! My girls love making french fries for a snack and this fryer makes it a breeze…and uses only about a tablespoon of oil!

Pecan-crusted air fryer chicken strips are delicous and gluten-free!
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Gluten-free chicken strips made in the air fryer.

This air-fryer recipe came about when I planned to make chicken strips for dinner but realized I didn’t have any panko or other bread crumbs to use. I looked in my cupboard and found a jar of pecans and some cornmeal. I combined these to make a delicious, gluten-free crust for our chicken tenders.

Easy to make air fryer chicken strips.

These air fryer chicken strips take just minutes to prepare. Grind the pecans in your blender. The pecans will be a little moist which means you do not need to use milk or egg for these chicken strips.

Press down gently on the chicken to help the pecan crust stick.

Pressing down gently on the chicken strips will help the pecan mixture stick.

These pecan-crusted air fryer chicken fingers were a hit with all of my kids.

Cook one layer at a time in the air fryer.

I was worried that the pecans would make the chicken too sweet, but it turns out it just added a mild, slightly nutty flavor. My kids gave these a two thumbs up…I hope you enjoy them as much as we do!

These air fryer chicken strips were a huge hit with my kids and they are gluten free!

Pecan Crusted Air Fryer Chicken Strips

These chicken fingers are easy to make and have a gluten-free crust.

Course Main Course
Keyword Air Fryer
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 18 minutes
Servings 6


  • 3 pounds boneless, skinless, chicken breasts
  • 1 cup pecans
  • 1/2 cup cornmeal
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese
  • 1 Tablespoon garlic salt
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 2 Tablspoon oil for fryer
  • ground pepper to taste


  1. Add oil to the bottom of the air fryer.

    Cut chicken breasts into 1/2 strips. Place pecans in blender and pulse until it is a flour texture. The mixture will be moist which helps it stick to chicken. Combine pecans with parmesan cheese, cornmeal, garlic salt, and onion powder. 

    Place mixture in a shallow dish. Take one piece of chicken at a time and dip both sides in the pecan mixture. Press down gently on the chicken to help pecan coating stick to chicken. 

    Place one layer at a time in the air fryer. Cook chicken for six minutes at 400 degrees. When the timer goes off, flip each piece of chicken and cook for six more minutes. Flip one more time and cook for six minutes (for a total of 18 minutes).

    Serve with ketchup, ranch dressing, blue cheese, or other dipping sauces.

What is your favorite air fryer meal?


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