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Detroit’s Best Chicken Fingers

By: Aaron B. Cohen | April 29, 2022

Coneys and square pizza get a lot of love in Metro Detroit, but there’s another food staple that should not be overlooked. We know a thing or two about chicken fingers.

Whether it’s at your local bar, a coney island chain, or tenders’ favorite home – the kid’s menu, Metro Detroit offers the deep-fried goodness all days, all ways.

You’re never too old for the classic chicken fingers and fries combination. And don’t worry – we’ll direct you straight to the best around. But in this town, restaurants take the dish to new levels, introducing elements that transform the childhood favorite into nothing short of a delicacy.

Here’s where to find the crispiest, tastiest tenders in Metro Detroit:

Sweetwater Tavern

Let’s start with the basics. If you’re looking for the perfect crunch, head over to Detroit’s Sweetwater Tavern for their famous beer-battered chicken strips. Choose between traditional fried or buffalo for an extra kick, and enjoy with unreasonable quantities of their house-made bbq sauce. Coleslaw comes included and will help slow down the speed at which you’ll be tempted to consume these A+ tenders.

Kuzzo’s Chicken and Waffles

Kuzzo’s Tender Love Combo is the stuff of dreams. It combines three perfectly fried chicken strips with their legendary waffle. This is for the ones who know that fried chicken and maple syrup are meant to coexist. While you’re there, check out their extensive, southern-inspired breakfast menu and Nashville-style hot chicken sandwich.

Honest John’s

Located in midtown Detroit, just steps from foodie paradise, Selden Standard, Honest John’s lives up to its name with delicious, low-key breakfast, lunch, and dinner options, plus a full bar. The chicken finger basket comes complete with four tenders, fries, and your choice of sauce for dipping. Share the basket with your friends while you each enjoy a sandwich to yourself – the Monte Cristo (ham, turkey, cheese, on French Toast) is lights out.

Eddie’s Gourmet

In the past, we’ve highlighted Eddie’s as an unsung hero of the Detroit food scene. And we’re not alone. @chowdowndetroit frequents the restaurant for the incredible pastas, and perhaps most of all, the ridiculously delicious Hawaiian fries. The secret is in Eddie’s famous zip sauce – a salty, buttery addition to steaks and chops throughout Michigan. When poured generously atop fries, the result is undeniable. Of those who are aware of this immaculate dish, few know the same treatment can be applied to their crispy chicken. While it may not present like tenders in the traditional sense (the pieces are smaller), the Hawaiian chicken combines the best of the boneless, fried experience with the addition of a sauce that will make you a loyal customer after one taste.

National Coney Island

These days, the chicken finger pita is respected as a quintessential Detroit dish. But that wasn’t always the case. Before every coney in the city added it to their menu, National Coney Island created the Hani. It’s a dish that’s greater than the sum of its parts: crispy chicken tenders, cheese, lettuce, tomato, and mayo rolled up in a warm pita. Detroiters love dipping it in ranch, which adds a cool, creamy element to each bite. With locations all over Metro Detroit and even one at the airport, you don’t have to travel far to discover why the Hani has obtained its legendary status. Let it be the last thing you eat before you leave town and the first thing you eat when you arrive back at Detroit Metro.