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honey garlic chicken pieces on place garnished with sesame seeds and green onion.
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4.83 from 17 votes

Crispy Chinese Honey Garlic Chicken (30 Minutes)

If you're looking to satisfy a craving for crispy, fried and sweet, this honey garlic chicken Chinese-style will do the trick. It makes a delicious appetizer or main dish and is surprisingly easier than you think.
Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time15 minutes
Total Time30 minutes
Course: Appetizer, Main Course
Cuisine: Chinese
Servings (change as needed): 6 appetizers (or 2-3 mains)


  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken thighs or breasts, cut into bite sized pieces (about 1 -2 inch/2.5-5 cm)
  • oil, enough to fill skillet 1 inch/2.5 cm use Canola oil or other vegetable oil


  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • pinch salt or other seasonings, Note 1

Honey Garlic Sauce, Note 2

  • 4 tablespoon honey
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced (or 3 if preferred)
  • 2 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper (or less if you like less peppery)

Garnish (optional)

  • toasted sesame seeds
  • 1 green onion, sliced


    °Heat oven to Warm temperature or 200F/93C. This is to keep the chicken warm between batches or before serving.
    °Prepare baking sheet lined with parchment paper or aluminum foil to keep chicken warm in between batches. Add a rack on top (not essential).
    °Add sauce ingredients to a pot large enough to hold all the chicken once fried.
    °Prepare oil for frying - place 1 inch/2.5 cm oil in skillet with higher sides (or wok)
  • MARINATE CHICKEN: Whisk egg whites, cornstarch, and pinch of salt (and other seasonings Note 1) in a bowl until well blended and fluffy. Mix in chicken and let sit for 10 -15 minutes while you heat oil.
  • HEAT OIL FOR FRYING: While chicken is marinating, heat oil on medium high in large skillet on stove to 350-360F/177-182C on a frying or instant thermometer. Note 3 if you don't have a thermometer. It will take 10-15 minutes to heat up.
  • FRY CHICKEN: Once the oil is at the right temperature, carefully add the marinated chicken pieces, one at a time. DO NOT crowd the pan. You will need to do 2-3 batches depending on the size of skillet. Fry chicken for about 3-4 minutes, depending on size of pieces, turning once. Remove with a slotted spoon to drain on a paper towel. Place on prepared pan and put into oven to keep warm. Bring oil back to correct temperature. Repeat until all chicken is fried. Adjust temperature of stove if needed to maintain correct temperature.
  • MAKE SAUCE AND ADD CHICKEN: Boil honey garlic sauce on medium high heat for 1-2 minutes until slightly thickened. If too thick, add a touch of water. Add chicken to sauce in pot. Toss to coat well. Place on serving plate, sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds and garnish with green onions if desired.


  1. Seasonings for marinade mixture: Elevate the flavor by adding a teaspoon of sesame oil, soy sauce or oyster sauce and/or Shaoxing wine. For heat, add a pinch of red pepper flakes.
  2. Double sauce: To have enough sauce for drizzling on rice if using chicken as a main dish, double the amounts.
  3. If you don't have a frying thermometer, to test the temperature, dip the handle of a wooden spoon or a chopstick into the oil. The oil will bubble steadily (not super vigorously) around the stick when it's ready for frying.
  4. Make aheadYou can make this recipe ahead by keeping the meat in the oven on Warm or at 200F/93C for 30-45 minutes, then tossing it in the heated sauce right before serving. Store leftovers in airtight container in fridge for up to 2 days. Reheat at 400F/204C for about 5 minutes. 
Nutritional information is estimated using chicken breasts served as appetizers (6 servings). 
Calories: 224kcal | Carbohydrates: 14g | Protein: 17g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 0.05g | Cholesterol: 48mg | Sodium: 428mg | Potassium: 312mg | Fiber: 0.2g | Sugar: 12g | Vitamin A: 25IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 9mg | Iron: 1mg