Chicken Crispers Recipe (Chili’s Copycat)

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With this Chicken Crispers (Chili’s copycat) recipe you can have juicy, tender, and flavorful chicken tenders at home. Dipped in a homemade honey mustard, they are sure to become one of your kid’s favorite things to eat.

Chicken Crispers in a metal serving dish with honey mustard.


I find myself enjoying making restaurant copycat recipes more and more. Probably because with 2 teenagers, we never seem to be able to coordinate everyones schedules to go out to eat anymore. And frankly, during the winter when it is dark and cold in the evening, I’d rather stay in my warm house than venture out anywhere.


Chicken Crispers (Chili's copycat) - super flavorful chicken tenders. This batter is really awesome and has a nontraditional ingredient.

Chicken Crispers (Chili's copycat)

This recipe is based off of Todd Wilbur’s recipe from Top Secret Restaurant Recipes 2: More Amazing Clones of Famous Dishes from America’s Favorite Restaurant Chains. According to Wilbur, Chili’s uses MSG for the flavor in their Chicken Crispers. In order to mimic the flavor in this recipe, chicken broth is used in the batter. It does a wonderful job of producing super flavorful tenders. The batter is thick and coats the chicken really well. One bite and my son immediately asked – Can you fry onion rings in this batter? I think that will be on the agenda for next week.

I fried these Chicken Crispers in vegetable shortening as I think it produces a better flavor and texture than oil and foods fried in shortening tend to taste less greasy. Chili’s Chicken Crispers may be my favorite copycat recipe to date. Next up: Honey Chipotle Chicken Crispers. I can only imagine how good they must be.

Chicken Crisper getting dipped in honey mustard.



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Chicken Crispers in a metal serving dish with honey mustard.

Chicken Crispers (Chili's Copycat)

Course: Appetizer, Main Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: chicken, fried chicken
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 9 minutes
Total Time: 29 minutes
Servings: 4
Author: Christin Mahrlig
With this Chicken Crispers (Chili's copycat) recipe you can have juicy, tender, and flavorful chicken tenders at home. Dipped in a homemade honey mustard, they are sure to become one of your kid's favorite things to eat.
Print Recipe


Honey Mustard Dressing

  • 2/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • pinch of cayenne pepper


  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 3/4 cup chicken broth
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 cup self-rising flour
  • 10 chicken tenderloins
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 6 to 10 cups shortening or vegetable oil


  • To make sauce, combine all ingredients in a small bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate.
  • In a medium bowl, combine egg, milk, chicken broth, salt and pepper. Whisk for 30 seconds. Whisk in self-rising flour and let sit 5 minutes.
  • Place shortening or oil in a Dutch oven and heat to 350 degrees.
  • Place the 1/2 cup flour in a bowl. Coat each piece of chicken in flour and then dunk into the batter.
  • Working in batches of 3-4 tenderloins, lower battered chicken into oil. Fry 7 to 9 minutes, or until golden brown.
  • Drain on a wire rack or paper-towel lined plate.

Originally published February 10, 2015.

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More Copycat Recipes

Jack Daniels Ribs

Jack Daniel’s RibsΒ (TGI Friday’s)

Chipotle Chicken Pizza

Chipotle Chicken PizzaΒ (California Pizza Kitchen)

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53 thoughts on “Chicken Crispers Recipe (Chili’s Copycat)

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  2. I made these tonight and everybody loved them AND the honey mustard! I’ve never had these at Chili’s so I don’t even know if they taste the same or not, but they were really good!

  3. Do you have to use a dutch oven? Or is it okay as long as you can get your oil heated to the right temp ? Because I so do not have dutch oven but I really wanna make these!!!

  4. These were amazing and just like Chilli’s! I took Pricillas advice and used some beer in the batter (Yum!) and added a little onion and garlic powder and hot sauce to the batter for flavor. The chicken was juicy, and the coating was crispy. Just wonderful. Thanks so much for the recipe! πŸ™‚

  5. I was very excited to try these. I followed the recipe although I did double. The mustard sauce was awesome. However my Chicken Crispers should be called chicken soggers. I think my oil temp was good but these just were, blah. My daughter who will only eat chicken tenders took one try of these and moved onto homework. I used unbleached flour, I am not sure if that is self rising so perhaps that was the problem. I have never been to Chilis so I have nothing to compare mine to. Most likely it was something I did wrong, or maybe these just are not my taste, but after I spend the next hour cleaning the top of my stove from the oil mess I think I will go back to my other Chicken Tender recipes. I do not always have the best luck with oil. These pictures are great though!

    1. It may be that the oil didn’t get hot enough. Get yourself a candy thermometer and make sure the oil reaches about 350 degrees before frying anything. I hope this helps!

    1. Self rising flour just has baking powder in it. Add 1/2 teaspoon of aluminum free baking powder. I made this and it was good, but I used peanut oil. I marinate my chicken overnight in Italian dressing and I used beer instead of milk. They were delicious and tender. Great recipe. You can also use club soda instead of beer or milk. Just keep the liquid quantity the same.

  6. Much to my foodie heart’s dismay, Chili’s is my hubby’s favorite restaurant… and it’s all because of their chicken crispers! So this awesome… now I can make them at home for him and don’t have to suffer through mediocre chain food! πŸ˜‰ WOO!!

  7. We live close by Chili’s and eat there so often they know us by name.. haha! We love the chicken crispers there too, these look just like them! I definitely need to give these a try! Beautiful pictures too πŸ™‚

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