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Pistachio and Parmesan Tenderloins

Pistachio and Parmesan Tenderloins

Pistachio and Parmesan Tenderloins

The recipe was so easy, I would never forget.  From cocktail parties to smaller group gatherings with friends, these Pistachio and Parmesan Tenderloins were so popular it was a no brainer to ever stop preparing them.

Do you have any oh- so- easy to prepare, quick and delicious recipes that somehow fall off the radar for some reason or another then later pop into your mind and you find yourself needing to think through the ingredients of that very recipe you once thought impossible to forget? I would never.  I once had today’s Pistachio and Parmesan Tenderloins at the home of a friend and thought they were amazing. With a mere few ingredients, it hardly seemed necessary to ever even jot down the recipe.


 ‘I would never,’ kind of reminds me of the new State Farm Insurance commercial. The guy starts out, ‘I will never get married,’ next scene he’s looking for engagement rings, and on it goes, ‘we are never having kids,’  then never purchasing an suv, moving to the suburbs, all of which he ultimately does. I just love this commercial, and its hilarity, some universal commonalities. We all begin with certain thoughts, and next thing you know, life happens, and all those things you said you would never do, you’ve done.

Personally, I thought I would never stop hosting big parties, and then came along the kids activities. Instead there were all day Saturday kids events, birthday parties, endless sports travel and the treat of perhaps sharing some pizza and beer with the other team families. Yes, it went this way, just like it did with the big trays of Pistachio and Chicken Tenderloins.

Cut very thinly, dipped in advance, then served hot out of the oven stacked upon a well polished over sized silver tray, lined with a big white doily, these crunchy, tasty, bites served alongside an easy mustard sauce were near immediately wiped off the buffet table at every single (former) occasion.


Then one day pondering, about to give a go to the old Pecan and Parmesan Tenderloins and perhaps share them with you at a later juncture, all of a sudden I remembered.

A time before all day Saturday kids activities, sporting events and birthday parties, I would snap off beige, red shells of half opened greenish specked pistachios and with a clink drop them into a small stainless mixing bowl piling a collection for the next gathering event. These favorites so easy to never forget were actually Pistachio and Parmesan Tenderloins, not Pecan.

With no large gatherings in mind for the summer I’ve left the tenderloins whole rather than cutting them into thin strips and they are delicious on their own or on top a salad, really, whatever works according to where you are in life, including, living out some of those things that you were sure ‘you would never’ but did.

Pistachio and Parmesan Tenderloins

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 50 minutes

Category: Poultry

Cuisine: American Homestyle

Servings: 12

Pistachio and Parmesan Tenderloins


  • For Preparing the Pistachio and Parmesan Tenderloins:
  • 12 chicken tenderloins, removed of any sinews, left whole or sliced thinly
  • 1 1/2 cups shelled pistachios
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
  • 8 tablespoons butter, cut into pieces
  • few shakes hot sauce such as Tabasco
  • 2 pinches cracked black pepper
  • a couple pinches coarse kosher salt
  • For the Dipping Sauce:
  • 1/8 cup sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard


  1. For Preparing the Pistachio and Parmesan Tenderloins: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Pulse pistachios in the bowl of a food processor until coarse fine texture (not mushy.) Add pistachios to a shallow depth bowl then stir in the Parmesan cheese, a good pinch of salt, and cracked black pepper. Melt the butter in a small saute pan then shake in the hot sauce.
  2. One at a time, dip the chicken tenderloin into the butter then into the pistachio cheese mixture and lay on top of a parchment lined baking sheet. Bake tenderloins until just done and golden crispy, approximately, twenty minutes, a little less for thinner strips. For a deeper golden color, place under broiler for a minute or so. Sprinkle a bit of salt on top of hot cooked chicken before serving.
  3. Preparing the Dipping Sauce: Stir sour cream and mustard together until well blended.


Pistachio Parmesan Tenderloins may be prepared, uncooked, a day in advance then refrigerated until baking.


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