Korean Fried Chicken is coated with an addictive homemade Korean sweet chili sauce that is perfectly crunchy on the outside. This Korean fried chicken recipe without gochujang is authentic and perfect for any occasion. Give in to your craving anytime with this easy recipe!
Spicy Korean Fried Chicken
Traditional Korean Fried Chicken is extremely popular for any occasion, thanks to food chains that offer deliveries of this amazing and flavorful dish. It pairs well with beer but even if you eat it just as a snack or appetizer, this dish will not disappoint!
The signature crunch on the outside is what this dish is popular for. Coat it with sauce and it turns phenomenal! The sauce itself is so flavorful -sweet but spicy, and garlicky!
What if I told you that you will no longer need to order for deliveries? Just make it at home using this easy recipe!
You can tweak the recipe however you like it and make it numerous times over and it will be healthier and also a cheaper alternative to any takeout. We love serving this with coconut rice, noodles, or stuffed into bao buns!
Give this recipe a try, and you will understand why it is one of the most popular Asian dishes out there!
What is Korean Fried Chicken?
It is a popular dish that is crunchy on the outside but tender on the inside. The crunchy crust is complemented by a sauce that is usually sweet and spicy.
The spicy sauce usually contains gochujang which is a chili paste. But in this version, we will just use chili sauce as it is more common.
Also, this is not a traditional dish. Traditionally, Koreans boil and make soups out of chicken. It was only in the 1970s that people saw the rise in fondness for crispy fried chicken. Then, in the 1980s, the addition of the sauce emerged.
Nowadays, this snack is growing in popularity across South East Asia, the US, and the rest of the world.
For this recipe, we will do away with the double frying. Instead, we will be using one-inch chunks that will crisp up with just one frying.
For the sauce, prepare the following ingredients:
- chili sauce
- brown sugar
- soy sauce
- red pepper flakes
- sesame oil
How to make Korean Fried Chicken?
- Make the sauce: First, combine all the ingredients, stir well and then, combine.
- Prepare the breading: In a bowl, mix cornstarch, flour, salt, and black pepper. In another bowl, prepare beaten eggs.
- Fry the meat: In a deep frying pan, put enough oil to cover about 2 inches of the pan. Work in batches by first coating the meat with the eggs, then, pressing the meat into the flour mixture. Cook the meat until golden brown.
- Serve: Toss in the sauce and make sure to coat each piece. Garnish and then, serve while hot.
What is different about Korean Fried Chicken?
The difference lies in the method of frying. People fry it at first at a lower temperature to prime the meat. Then, they fry it again at a higher temperature and for a shorter period.
The first time drains the fat. On the other hand, the second frying ensures that the skin is crispy.
Why is Korean Fried Chicken so crispy?
Because they fry it twice, draining the fat from the first frying leaves the skin drier which makes it more likely to crisp up.
Also, they use breading very sparingly, not the thick batter that some Americans use.
Does Korean Fried Chicken have bones?
Yes, but you can make a boneless version as in this recipe, it does not matter. And sometimes, the frying is so efficient that even the bones become crunchy enough to eat.
They use wings and drumsticks as the most common parts to cook this dish. I guess it is because this dish makes for perfect finger food.
Should I boil my chicken before frying?
You do not need to. Boiling before frying may drain the flavors out of the meat.
Is Korean fried chicken spicy?
The actual meat is not spicy. However, the sweet chili sauce is a bit spicy due to the chili and some red pepper flakes in it. But overall, it has a nice balance to it, and you can easily adjust it by using more or less chili sauce.
What to serve with sweet chili fried chicken?
Also, it is best to serve Korean fried chicken without gochujang over brown rice.
How to store leftovers:
- Refrigerate: This can keep for 3 to 4 days in the fridge, just let it cool completely before storing.
- Freezing: You can freeze this dish for up to 4 months.
- To reheat: Reheat by putting it in the oven or oven toaster until heated through.
How to reheat Korean fried chicken?
I love Korean fried chicken served right away because it is super crispy and delicious. However, if you end up with leftovers, then reheat in the oven (covered) for about 10-12 minutes at 185C/375F.
More easy chicken recipes:
- For a more authentic taste, replace the chili sauce with gochujang or chili paste.
- Feel free to tweak the recipe to adjust to the level of sweetness and spiciness of the sauce as desired.
- Toss the meat and sauce together at the last minute before serving to preserve the crunch longer.
Korean Fried Chicken
- 2 pounds chicken breast (cut into 1-inch chunks)
- 1 cup cornstarch
- 1/4 cup flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 eggs (beaten)
- Canola oil for frying
For the Sauce:
- 1/4 cup ketchup
- 3 tablespoons chili sauce
- 1/4 cup honey
- 3 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1/3 cup soy sauce
- 1/2 cup water
- 3 cloves garlic (minced)
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 2 teaspoons sesame oil
- In a medium bowl combine all the SAUCE ingredients and set aside.
- In a large, shallow bowl, whisk cornstarch flour, salt, and black pepper.
- Add beaten eggs to another bowl.
- Pour about 2 inches of canola oil into a deep frying pan and heat it over medium-high heat.
- Dip the chicken pieces into the beaten eggs.
- Add the chicken chunks to the cornstarch mixture and toss until well coated. Work in batches.
- Cook it in batches in the hot oil until golden and crispy.
- Remove to a plate and set aside.
- Discard oil, add the chicken back to the pan and toss with the sauce.
- Serve it with a sprinkling of green onion and sesame seeds, if so desired.