Chicken Breast vs. Tenderloin – What’s The Difference?

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Cutting a chicken is no easy task; you have to know the precise way to cut the Chicken correctly. Professionals are careful when cutting a chicken to spate each part with perfection because each part is used in a different dish, and if a chef can’t properly cut a chicken, how can we expect them to cook a good meal? Some parts of the Chicken are easier to distinguish from the rest; for example, you can easily differentiate between a chicken wing and thighs

But some parts of the Chicken are not as easy to distinguish. Two such parts are chicken Breast and Tenderloin. Tenderloin is often related to pork, but Chickens have Tenderloin as well. It is hard to differentiate between chicken breast and Tenderloin because Tenderloins lay just below the chicken breasts; They are considered the most tender and delicate part of the Chicken. 

There are other differences like taste, juiciness, and texture that separate the two, and in this article, we will discuss these factors in detail along with their price difference and much more. So, keep reading to find out all you need to know about Chicken breast and Tenderloin. 

Chicken Breast 

Chicken Breast is something that almost every bodybuilder and athlete are familiar with. This is because Chicken breasts are loaded with nutrients and are an excellent source of lean protein. Even professional chefs and home chefs love it because of its versatility. 

You can make chicken breasts in tons of different ways; you can fry them, bake them, grill them, or throw them in boiling water for ten to twenty minutes and add them to your salads; the possibilities are endless. But this versatility comes at a price, literally. Because Chicken Breast is the most expensive part of the Chicken 

Chicken breast has very low fat amounts, making it the ideal meat for those struggling with obesity or high blood cholesterol levels. If you are struggling to lose weight, you can fall back on the chicken breast as the source of protein in your diet, and this will ensure that you are meeting your daily protein requirements and not eating too much fat. And then there is taste; if cooked and seasoned properly, chicken breast gives a unique flavor.

In addition to all of that, Chicken breast is also a great source of vitamins and minerals. Specifically, Chicken breast contains good amounts of Vitamin D and B-6, minerals like zinc, magnesium, potassium and calcium. Chicken breast is a great source of heme-iron, which is the type of iron that is readily absorbed by our bodies and helps form RBCs (red blood cells). This RBC formation is aided by Cobalamin, also present in chicken Breasts. 

Chicken Tenderloin

Chicken Tenderloins are the most delicate part of Chicken present right below the chicken breast. You can imagine Chicken Breasts as the thick outer covering hiding the tender, delicate, and thin Tenderloins underneath. Tenderloins are also referred to as Chicken tenders, and there are two chicken tenders in one Chicken. 

It is easy to miss the tenderloins because of their small size and location; they become visible only when you remove the bone from the Chicken Breast. The scientific term for Tenderloins or the hidden chicken breast is pectoralis minor. Humans have this muscle, but it is not often discussed unless you’re a bodybuilder. Pectoralis minor is attached to the Chicken breast, known as Pectoralis major. 


Chicken Breast and Tenderloins are located in the same region in the Chicken, and it can be quite difficult to tell the difference between them. But if you understand the factors described below, it will become easier to differentiate the two.

Texture and taste

 Texture and taste are determined by the way you cook the Chicken. If you cook it for too long, it will become dry and lose its flavor. Additionally, the long cooking period can also destroy its nutritional value. Tenderloins tend to be juicer and more tender; the reason for this is that Tenderloins are not used as frequently as the Breasts.

So, if a muscle is used less frequently, it becomes more tender. But this difference in taste and texture is not that great. If you cook both of them perfectly, you won’t be able to tell the difference between them. 

Sodium Levels

Sodium is an important micronutrient that can be a blessing or a curse depending on how much you consume per day. On the positive side, sodium helps brain signaling and maintain the optimum cell fluid concentration. But on its negative side, sodium can cause serious health problems like cardiovascular diseases and hypertension. 

Therefore, you must choose the right type of Chicken to include in your diet depending on your current health and nutritional needs. It is best for those suffering from hypertension and cardiovascular diseases to stick with Chicken Breast as it has a lower sodium content than Tenderloins. But it is fine if you eat a small portion of Tenderloins every once in a while. 


Tenderloins provide more calories than Chick breasts; the reason for this is the higher fat content in Tenderloins. On the other hand, Chicken breast is one of the cleanest sources of meat, with a negligible amount of fats. So, naturally, it provides fewer calories. But if you are a bodybuilder or athlete trying to bulk or gain weight, you should eat more Tenderloins because you need more calories. 

So What’s the Difference Between Chicken Breast and Tenderloin?

To sum up all the differences we have mentioned so far, here’s a list:

  • Tenderloins provide more calories than Chick breasts because it has a higher fat content.
  • Chicken Breasts are called Pectoralis major, while Tenderloins are known as Pectoralis Minor. 
  • Chicken Breast has a better nutritional profile because it has a good amount of Vitamin D and B-6, minerals like zinc, magnesium, potassium and calcium.
  • Chicken Breast is comparatively bigger and thicker than a Tenderloin.