This Crispy Honey Chicken is out-of-this-world good.Kramer and I have been eating a lot of Chinese food since we moved to New York. We had a lot to make up for since there is no decent Chinese food anywhere in Phoenix. One of our favorite places has something called crispy honey beef, and while I had chicken instead of beef in my house, I wanted to try and recreate it. The outcome was actually nothing like the thing I wanted to embody, but it was still delicious and perfectly crispy. I thought the sauce itself was fantastic, too. It was a combination of soy sauce, honey, sriracha, vinegar, ginger, and sugar. The result was a sweet and sticky coating on perfectly fried pieces of chicken. There was just the right amount of heat, in my opinion, to cut through the sweetness, but if you prefer things a little less spicy, you can just tone down the amount of sriracha. I’ve actually had people ask me a few times what sriracha is, so I’ll quickly explain what it is.
Sriracha is a hot Thai chili sauce that is made from sun-ripened chili peppers and combined with vinegar, sugar, and garlic. It’s a great combination of sweet, spicy, and tangy, and it unlike most hot sauces in the United States. It can typically be found at most grocery stores in the Asian food section. If I can find it in Mesa, Arizona, I’m sure you can find it just about anywhere! Sriracha pairs perfectly with just about anything, from seafood to pizza to hot wings, and especially in recipes such as the one posted below! So, don’t be afraid to fry chicken at home. It’s really easy and it’s something impressive to serve to your friends and family that seems much harder to make than it is. This crispy honey chicken is one of my new favorite dishes, and I hope it will be one of yours, too.
Combine all of your sauce ingredients and set aside.
Dice your onion and mince your garlic and saute while you cook the chicken. When the chicken is done, add in the sauce and the cornstarch mixed with water. Stir over medium heat until slightly thickened, then add your chicken.
Cut your chicken into bite-sized pieces, then toss with the egg, flour, and cornstarch.
Heat enough oil in a large pot or pan to fry your chicken (it should be about an inch to an inch and a half of oil in the pan). Make sure that the temperature stays under 375 degrees F, and if you don’t have a thermometer, just make sure that the oil isn’t starting to boil at all (it will sizzle when the chicken is in it, however).
Fry until crispy and golden. You can test a few pieces to make sure it’s cooked through and crispy enough. I found that it takes about 8-10 minutes per batch of chicken (I did mine in 2 batches). Set aside to drain on paper towels. Don’t worry if it cools a bit, as it will warm up when you add it to the sauce.
Serve over rice and/or vegetables and dig in.
- 2 pounds chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces
- 1 egg
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- ½ cup cornstarch
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- oil for frying, enough to fill a pot or wok with 1 inch of oil (make sure you have at least a 48 ounce bottle of oil to work with)
- 3-4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 onion, diced
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- 1-2 teaspoons sriracha (I used 2 teaspoons; if you're not a fan of spicy things, use 1 or ½ teaspoon)
- ¼ cup honey
- 3 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- ¼ teaspoon sesame oil (optional)
- ¼ cup water + 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- Toss your cut-up chicken with the egg, then with the flour, salt, pepper, and cornstarch. It will be sticky. Set aside. Heat 1-inch of oil in your frying vessel and allow to heat up, never allowing the temperature to rise above 375 degrees F or to start simmering or boiling. The oil should look like it is heating up (it will move around slightly), but you never want to see any bubbles forming until you have added in the chicken.
- Fry the chicken in batches, 8-10 minutes for each batch, until golden and crispy. Check a piece or two to be sure that it's cooked through, but also to be sure that it's crispy enough. With a slotted spoon, remove the chicken to a cutting board or a plate lined with paper towels and drain. Do this until all of the chicken has been fried; don't overcrowd the pot, either. It doesn't matter how many batches you have to do, as the chicken will be warmed again when it is added to the sauce. Be careful when disposing of the oil (allow it to cool completely first).
- Saute your onion and garlic with about a tablespoon of oil for five minutes or so, until softened. Add in the rest of the combined sauce ingredients and stir over medium heat until slightly thickened, then add in the water and cornstarch mixture. Stir until thickened, and be careful not to burn it! This shouldn't take more than 8 minutes or so. Add in the fried chicken pieces and stir until well coated. Serve hot over rice or vegetables. Serves 4-5.