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Chicken Crispers Recipe (Chili’s Copycat)

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)

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.
PREP: 20 minutes
COOK: 9 minutes
TOTAL: 29 minutes


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.
Author: Christin Mahrlig
Course: Appetizer, Main Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: chicken, fried chicken

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Originally published February 10, 2015.

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More Copycat Recipes

Jack Daniels Ribs

Jack Daniel’s Ribs (TGI Friday’s)

Chipotle Chicken Pizza

Chipotle Chicken Pizza (California Pizza Kitchen)

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

    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.

      1. Christin
        Christin Mahrlig

        Thanks for the tips Priscilla. Love that you marinated yours in Italian dressing overnight. That sounds so good.

      2. Jane Ashley

        SR flour has baking powder and salt in it.. This is probably why yours wasn’t as good.

  1. Jess @ whatjessicabakednext

    These crispers look delicious! Looks like the perfect comfort food to pick at! 😀

  2. Renee@Two in the Kitchen

    Oh my gosh, I just had chicken crispers from Chili’s the other night. Yours look even better Christin! I can’t wait to try this recipe!! 🙂

  3. Thalia @ butter and brioche

    We don’t have Chili here in Australia – but I can imagine these chicken crispers rival theirs! Wow they look delicious Christin.

  4. Wow!! I think these crispers look even better than Chili’s! My husband would be over the moon if I made them for him! They look perfect!

  5. Annie @ ciaochowbambina

    Wow! These look fantastic! And such a treat. My kids will be home for the weekend and there’s no doubt that if they know I have this recipe – I’ll be making them! Thank you!

  6. Julia | JuliasAlbum.com

    Love your recipes Cristin! I want to eat this chicken for lunch right now. Please send some my way!

  7. Jess @ Flying on Jess Fuel

    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! 😉 WOO!!

  8. Christina | A Soulful Twist

    Yum, Yum, girl these look delish! You definitely mastered that, they look perfect!

  9. 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 🙂

  10. Jess @ On Sugar Mountain

    Oooooh I should have NOT looked at your blog before dinner. Now I wish I had these instead of my soup. >_< Awesome recipe Christin!

  11. Annie @Maebells

    Oh my gosh!! These look amazing!! I never fry anything, but I just might have to make an exception for these delicious looking tenders! 🙂

  12. Dannii @ Hungry Healthy Happy

    This sounds really good! I haven’t been to chilli’s before, but I am going to put it at the top of the list when I come to the state’s this year 🙂

  13. Ashley | Spoonful of Flavor

    Wow, these look perfect, Christin! I haven’t been to chili’s in years but I used to love their chicken fingers. Their honey mustard sauce has always been my favorite too. I can’t wait to make these at home!

  14. Shashi at RunninSrilankan

    Now thanks to you I can make these wonderful crispers at home and enjoy them thoroughly!

  15. Jocelyn (Grandbaby cakes)

    These crispers are the way to my heart. I used to order these all the time! Now I can make them at home. Very happy camper!

  16. Gayle @ Pumpkin 'N Spice

    I love the chicken crispers from Chili, Christin! This copycat recipe sounds fantastic! And these look like they’re better than the restaurant version. Pinned!

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