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Crunchy Taiwanese Popcorn Chicken Recipe: “Crispy Taiwanese Fried Chicken with a Delicious Fried Basil Twist”

15 min Cook
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  • Indulge in the crispy goodness of Crunchy Taiwanese Popcorn Chicken. With a perfect balance of seasonings and a satisfying crunch, this recipe is a delightful treat that captures the essence of Taiwanese street food.

Taiwanese popcorn chicken, also known as “salt and pepper chicken,” is a popular street food dish that has gained worldwide recognition for its addictive flavor and crispy texture. If you want to recreate this delightful dish at home, here are some tips that will help you achieve the perfect Taiwanese popcorn chicken experience.

The first and most important step is marinating the chicken. To infuse the chicken pieces with flavor, create a marinade using soy sauce, garlic, ginger, and a pinch of sugar. Let the chicken marinate for at least 30 minutes or overnight if possible. This allows the flavors to penetrate the meat and tenderize it for a juicy and flavorful result.

Next, it’s time to coat the chicken. The secret to achieving that crispy exterior is using a combination of potato starch and cornstarch for the coating. The potato starch lends a light and crisp texture, while the cornstarch adds a bit of thickness. Make sure to coat the chicken pieces well and press the coating mixture onto them to ensure an even and crunchy crust.

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At first, I was going to do my basic tahini dressing, but then the thought of a basil dressing came t0 mind so I switched it up.

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20 min Cook

Make Taiwanese Popcorn Chicken

When it comes to frying the Taiwanese popcorn chicken, it’s essential to maintain the right oil temperature. Heat the frying oil to around 350°F (175°C), as this will allow the chicken to cook evenly and quickly. Overcrowding the pan will reduce the oil temperature, resulting in greasy and soggy chicken. Fry the chicken in small batches to maintain the oil temperature, and use a slotted spoon or a wire rack to drain excess oil after frying.

Lastly, seasoning is key. After frying the chicken, sprinkle it with a mixture of salt, white pepper, and Taiwanese five-spice powder. These seasonings add a punch of flavor and enhance the overall taste experience of the popcorn chicken. Toss the chicken gently in the seasoning while it’s still hot to ensure all the pieces are evenly coated.

With these helpful tips, you’ll be able to recreate the mouthwatering flavors and crispy texture of the beloved Taiwanese popcorn chicken right in your own kitchen. So gather your ingredients, have fun with the process, and indulge in this delightful street food favorite from Taiwan.

1. How to Cook

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2. Easy recipe

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Taiwanese Popcorn Chicken is the most famous Taiwanese Night Market food that you can now find at many Bubble Tea shops and restaurants.

If you’re a fan of Taiwanese popcorn chicken, you know that the key to a memorable batch lies in achieving the perfect balance of extra crispy and juicy texture. Thankfully, with a few tips and tricks, you can take your popcorn chicken game to the next level and savor every bite of this irresistible street food delight.

To ensure an extra crispy coating on your chicken, a two-step coating process is highly recommended. Start by marinating the chicken in a mixture of soy sauce, garlic, ginger, and a touch of Chinese five-spice powder. Then, coat the marinated chicken in a dry mixture of all-purpose flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and your choice of spices for an added kick. The combination of flour and cornstarch will create a light and delicate coating, while the addition of baking powder will help add extra crispiness when fried.

When it comes to frying, maintaining the right temperature of the oil is crucial. Heat the frying oil to around 375°F (190°C) to ensure a quick and even cooking process. This high temperature seals the exterior of the chicken, locking in the juices and creating that sought-after crunchy texture. Be sure not to overcrowd the frying pan or deep fryer, as this will reduce the oil temperature and lead to oil-soaked, less crispy chicken. Fry the chicken in small batches, giving each piece enough space to fry evenly. After frying, allow the chicken to rest on a wire rack to preserve its crispness.

Crunchy Taiwanese Popcorn Chicken

To keep the popcorn chicken extra juicy, consider employing the double cooking method. After frying the chicken once, remove it from the oil and let it rest for a few minutes. Then, return the partially cooked chicken back into the hotter oil for a second fry. This method not only ensures a crispy exterior but also a moist and succulent interior. The double frying technique is a popular secret among Taiwanese popcorn chicken aficionados, providing that perfect contrast of textures.

By following these tips, you can achieve an outstanding batch of extra crispy and juicy Taiwanese popcorn chicken. The combination of the two-step coating, frying at the right temperature, and double cooking method will have you savoring every bite of this addictive street food. Get ready to impress your taste buds and enjoy a truly delightful snack that brings the flavors of Taiwan straight to your table.

Taiwanese popcorn chicken recipe “EXTRA CRISPY & JUCIY!”

Note: For an extra crispy texture, you can double fry the chicken. After the initial frying, remove the chicken from the oil and let it rest for a few minutes. Then, return the chicken to the hot oil and fry for an additional 2-3 minutes until extra crispy.


– 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into bite-sized pieces
– 1 tablespoon soy sauce
– 1 tablespoon Shaoxing wine (Chinese cooking wine)
– 1 teaspoon sesame oil
– 2 cloves garlic, minced
– 1/2 teaspoon salt
– 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
– 1/4 teaspoon Chinese five spice powder
– 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
– 1/4 cup cornstarch
– 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
– Vegetable oil, for frying
– Fresh basil or cilantro, for garnish (optional)


1. In a bowl, combine the soy sauce, Shaoxing wine, sesame oil, minced garlic, salt, black pepper and Chinese five spice powder. Add the chicken pieces and mix until well coated. Marinate for at least 30 minutes, or overnight in the refrigerator for even better flavor.
2. In a separate bowl, whisk together the all-purpose flour, cornstarch, and baking powder.
3. Heat vegetable oil in a deep frying pan or pot over medium-high heat until it reaches 350°F (180°C)
4. Dredge the marinated chicken pieces in the flour mixture, making sure to coat them evenly.
5. Carefully drop the chicken pieces into the hot oil, a few at a time to avoid overcrowding the pan. Fry for about 5-6 minutes, or until golden brown and crispy. Use a slotted spoon or tongs to transfer the fried chicken to a paper towel-lined plate to drain excess oil.
6. Repeat the frying process with the remaining chicken pieces.
7. Serve the Taiwanese popcorn chicken hot, garnished with fresh basil or cilantro if desired. Enjoy as a snack or with steamed rice as a main dish.

Crispy Taiwanese Street Food Delight: Authentic Taiwanese Popcorn Chicken Recipe Tips

Indulge in the ultimate Taiwanese fried chicken experience with an extra crunchy twist. Our authentic recipe combines boneless, skinless chicken thighs, sweet potato starch, tapioca starch, and a tantalizing blend of seasoning mix, including five-spice powder, garlic powder, and light soy sauce. What sets this crispy delight apart is the fragrant Thai basil leaves that add a burst of flavor to every bite. As you deep fry these chicken pieces to a golden brown perfection, the basil leaves turn into crispy fried basil, creating a mouthwatering contrast in texture.

Enjoy the unforgettable taste of Taiwanese night market classics right in your own kitchen!

Crunchy Taiwanese Night Market Special: The Best Taiwanese Popcorn Chicken Recipe

For an authentic Taiwanese popcorn chicken experience that will leave you craving more, try our mouthwatering recipe. The secret lies in the perfect blend of spices, including the aromatic five-spice powder and the tongue-tingling Sichuan peppercorns. We coat bite-sized chicken wings with a mixture of potato and sweet potato flour, creating an irresistibly crispy texture that’s reminiscent of Korean fried chicken. With the unique flavors and textures of authentic Taiwanese street food, you’ll savor every bite of this delightful dish, perfect for snacking or as a flavorful appetizer.

Irresistible Delight: Crunchy Taiwanese Popcorn Chicken

Irresistible Delight: Crunchy Taiwanese Popcorn Chicken

Take your taste buds on a journey with this Crunchy Taiwanese Popcorn Chicken Recipe. These bite-sized delights boast a golden, crispy exterior with tender and flavorful chicken inside, creating a snack that's perfect for sharing or indulging solo.
prep time
30 min
cooking time
15 min
total time
45 min


  • Deep fryer or large skillet

  • Mixing bowls

  • Slotted spoon or basket

  • Paper towels for draining


  • - 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into bite-sized pieces

  • - 1 tablespoon soy sauce

  • - 1 tablespoon Shaoxing wine (Chinese cooking wine)

  • - 1 teaspoon sesame oil

  • - 2 cloves garlic, minced

  • - 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • - 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

  • - 1/4 teaspoon Chinese five spice powder

  • - 1/2 cup all-purpose flour

  • - 1/4 cup cornstarch

  • - 1/4 teaspoon baking powder

  • - Vegetable oil, for frying

  • - Fresh basil or cilantro, for garnish (optional)




Marinate the chicken for at least 20 minutes for enhanced flavor. Use sweet potato starch or tapioca starch for the signature crunchy texture. Adjust seasonings to taste, and customize with your preferred dipping sauce.
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