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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. Keep it good work. Innovexia, is one of the top leading Pharma Franchise Company in Chandigarh. We are giving an extensive variety of PCD Pharma products to the healthcare industry at the most affordable price.

  2. These were delicious, I may add a bunch of herbs and spices to the batter next time. Great recipe!

    1. Christin
      Christin Mahrlig

      I’ve only tried it with chicken broth Becka. I think you would be safe to use either water or milk though.

  3. 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!

  4. 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!!!

    1. Christin
      Christin Mahrlig

      No, you don’t need to use a Dutch oven. A pan or skillet will work too. You just want to make sure that the oil does not overflow the sides when you add the chicken.

  5. 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! 🙂

  6. Laura Conroy

    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. Sounds like you didn’t use the self-rising flour. Don’t blame the recipe if you didn’t follow it!

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