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This bang bang chicken recipe really lives up to its name. It is “BANGIN'” delicious! A smooth, spicy sauce sinks into every nook and cranny of perfectly tender-on-the-inside, crispy-on-the-outside cubes of fried chicken.
Gosh, there’s just something so special about breaded, fried chicken. Really in all of its forms. But this bang bang chicken takes it to the next level. It is absolutely addicting. Once you have your first bite, you’ll be popping these little morsels of saucy goodness into your mouth like nobody’s business.
Let me walk you through the experience. You pick up a piece of chicken and place it in your mouth. You can feel the spice from the siracha-infused sauce making your mouth water. You bite down and “crunch”. You discover that the chicken is enwrapped in a perfectly crunchy breading that is wonderfully permeated by that smooth spicy sauce. The chicken itself is so tender. As you chew, all of the flavors meld together. Spicy, savory, tangy, and just a tiny bit sweet. Yum.
What is Bang Bang Chicken?
Bang bang chicken is a popular Chinese dish consisting of breaded chicken pieces that are fried and then tossed in a delicious, spicy sauce. It’s so delicious and the an,e is kind of fun too. Traditionally, Chinese street vendors would use a baton to “bang” the chicken. The purpose of the banging is to tenderize the meat but it also gives the dish its name.
Why You’ll Love this Recipe
This bang bang chicken delivers crunchy, flavorful satisfaction with every bite. I can’t get enough of it. Here are a few of the things that keep me coming back for more.
- Simple. This chicken dish is comprised of simple ingredients and requires just a few easy-to-follow steps. Perfect for any skill level.
- Sauce. Everywhere. The sauce for this bang bang chicken is loaded with spice, tang, and just a hint of sweetness. It creeps into every nook and cranny of the breading on the chicken making every bite an explosion of flavor.
- The breading. The breading that encases the tender chicken pieces is something else. It is perfectly seasoned and crisps up beautifully in the frying process. The juxtaposition of the initial crunch followed by the tenderness of the chicken will have you coming back for a second bite before you even finish your first.
- It’s not even deep-fried. These little bites of saucy chicken deliver the same crispy, crunchy, texture that you might get in a deep-fried version. But they aren’t deep-fried! So you can enjoy all of the goodness with less of the guilt.
What You’ll Need
I love this recipe because it requires just a few simple ingredients that you might already have in your kitchen. Here is a list of what you will need to make bang bang chicken. Scroll to the recipe below for more details.
- Chicken tenderloin – Cut into cubes. It is important that the cubes are even in size to ensure even cook time.
For the sauce
- Sriracha sauce
- Granulated sugar
- Rice vinegar
For the egg mixture
For the breading
- All-purpose flour – Feel free to use your favorite 1:1 gluten-free flour instead.
- Panko breadcrumbs – I strongly suggest Panko here. It can be tempting to reach for seasoned breadcrumbs or something similar, but the Panko gives a unique crunch that is far preferable for this dish.
- Ground pepper
- Garlic powder
- Dried basil
How to Make Bang Bang Chicken
All you need to do is bread some chicken, give it a fry, whisk up a sauce, and put it all together, That’s all it takes. Here’s a quick rundown of how to make this spicy bang bang chicken. Make sure to scroll to the recipe below for more detailed instructions.
- Make the sauce. Whisk together the ingredients for the sauce and set aside.
- Prepare to bread the chicken. Combine the egg and milk in one bowl and the ingredients for the breading in another.
- Bread the chicken. Dip the chicken in the breadcrumbs, followed by the milk mixture, and again in the breadcrumbs. Place the breaded chicken in the refrigerator for 20 minutes.
- Fry the chicken. Heat the oil in a large skillet and, once it is glistening, add the chicken and fry until golden brown and cooked through. Transfer the fried chicken to a plate lined with paper towels. Do this in two batches.
- Add the sauce. In a bowl, pour the sauce over the chicken and toss to coat.
Tips for Success
Want to make the best, crispiest, most flavor bang bang chicken possible? Follow these simple tips and tricks. You won’t be sorry.
- Even cubes. Try to slice your chicken into even pieces. This will ensure that the cubes cook at the same rate.
- Let the breaded chicken rest before frying. Refrigerating the just-breaded chicken will allow the breading some time to adhere to the meat, lessening its chances of falling off during the frying process.
- Get the oil temperature right. Oil that is too hot will burn the breading before cooking the chicken all the way through. Oil that is too cold will not crisp the chicken properly. It will absorb into the breading making it soggy and greasy.
- Fry in batches. It is essential not to crowd the cooking oil. Adding too many chicken pieces to the frying oil will cool it down and we know what happens when frying oil isn’t hot enough. A soggy, greasy fiasco.
- Toss thoroughly. One of the best things about this chicken is that it is absolutely smothered in a delicious sauce. Make sure to toss the chicken in the sauce thoroughly to achieve this effect. You want every centimeter of breading covered.
Whether you decide to gobble these goodies up as fun finger food or turn them into a full meal, you won’t be disappointed. Here are some of my favorite ways to enjoy bang bang chicken.
- As fun finger food. I love making bang bang chicken and serving it to a crowd on game day. It’s like wings but better!
- Over white rice. Enjoy this bang bang chicken as an entree by serving it over white rice (or even
Kimchi Fried Rice) with a veggie side or two.
- With veggies. Make it a full meal by serving bang bang chicken with Chinese Cabbage Stir Fry, Garlic Roasted Green Beans, Cold Garlic and Soy Green Beans, or my Spicy Chinese Cucumber Salad.
- In a sandwich or a wrap. This is a great way to use freshly prepared bang bang chicken or any leftovers you might have. See my section below titled “Ways to Use Extra Bang Bang Chicken”.
How to Store and Reheat Leftovers
In the rare event that you have leftovers feel free to refrigerate or freeze them. Allow the chicken to cool completely, seal it in an airtight container, and place it in the refrigerator for up to 4 days or in the freezer for up to 1 month.
To reheat, place the bang bang chicken on a wire rack over a baking sheet and bake at 375 degrees F for about 10 minutes or until heated through. If you are reheating from frozen, they will need closer to 15 minutes in the oven.
Ways to Use Extra Bang Bang Chicken
Have leftovers and want to dress them up in a new and exciting way? Here are some fun ideas for you.
- Wrap it up. Slice the chicken pieces and wrap them in a tortilla with extra sauce and your favorite slaw.
- Between two slices. Pop leftover bang bang chicken in a sandwich. Just sub it in as the protein in your favorite fried chicken sandwich recipe. Don’t have one yet? Try my Beer Battered Fried Chicken Sandwiches.
- On a salad. Toss the leftovers in a chopped salad. My Harvest Chopped Salad Bowl is pretty tasty as is but adding some bang bang chicken takes it to the next level.
More Chicken Dinner Ideas
Chicken is such an easy, affordable protein to cook up for dinner. There are so many things you can do with it. If bang bang chicken isn’t quite what you are looking for, here are some of my other favorites.
- Smothered Chicken
- Marry Me Chicken
- Chinese Salt and Pepper Chicken Wings
- Sweet Chili Glazed Grilled Chicken
- Orange Chicken
- Beer Battered Fried Chicken Sandwiches
Bang Bang Chicken
- 5 chicken tenderloins, cubed
For the sauce
- ½ cup (112 g) mayo
- 5 teaspoon Sriracha sauce
- 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon rice vinegar
For the egg mixture
- 1 egg, beaten
- ½ cup (118 ml) milk
For the breading
- ½ cup (63 g) all purpose flour
- ½ cup (30 g) Panko breadcrumbs
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon ground pepper
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon dried basil
The default measuring system for this website is US Customary. Unit conversions are provided for convenience and as a courtesy only. While we strive to provide accurate unit conversions, please be aware that there may be some discrepancies.
- Prepare a plate lined with paper towels for the chicken after it’s done cooking in the oil. Set aside.
- Combine all the ingredients for the sauce and set aside.
- In a small, shallow dish, combine the egg and milk. Set aside.
- In another shallow dish, combine the ingredients for the breading. Set aside.
- Bread the chicken cubes by first coating it in the bread mixture then the egg wash then back in the breading. Put the coated chicken cubes on a plate. Continue until all the chicken have been breaded.
- Pop the plate of chicken in the fridge for about 20 minutes. It’ll help the breading stick to the chicken.
- In a large skillet, add a thin layer of vegetable oil and place over medium high heat.
- Once the oil is glistening, add in the chicken (I did it in 2 batches so you don’t overcrowd the pan) and cook the chicken until it’s cooked through & the breading is nice and crispy brown.
- Once the first batch is done, put the cooked chicken on the prepared plate with the paper towel. Continue with the second batch and once that’s cooked, add that to the prepared plate.
- In a large bowl, put in your cooked chicken and pour the sauce all over. Toss well to coat every bite.
This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition information can vary for a variety of reasons. For the most precise nutritional data use your preferred nutrition calculator based on the actual ingredients you used in the recipe.
Photography by Eat Love Eats