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Taiwanese Popcorn Chicken


"Ever wonder how they make that addictive popcorn chicken at those boba places? Well here's a recipe for that yummy snack! Garnish with a mix of curry powder, pepper, Chinese five-spice, and salt; measuring doesn't matter."
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27 m servings 219 cals
Original recipe yields 4 servings

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  • Prep

  • Cook

  • Ready In

  1. Combine chicken pieces, garlic powder, black pepper, curry powder, ginger, soy sauce, cinnamon, five-spice powder, and salt in a large bowl. Let marinate for 10 minutes.
  2. Sprinkle tempura batter mix over chicken; toss to coat lightly and evenly.
  3. Heat oil in a deep-fryer or large saucepan to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Fry chicken in the hot oil in batches until golden brown, about 4 minutes. Drain on paper towels.
  4. Increase oil temperature to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Fry Thai basil leaves until crisp, about 1 minute. Drain on paper towels. Fry chicken a second time, 2 to 3 minutes per batch. Drain on paper towels.
  5. Serve chicken with basil leaves.


  • Cook's Note:
  • Make sure the coating isn't too thick in step 2. You should still be able to see the chicken through the coating. If coating is too thick, thin with water. Substitute sweet potato flour for the tempura batter mix if desired.
  • Editor's Note:
  • We have determined the nutritional value of oil for frying based on a retention value of 10% after cooking. Amount will vary depending on cooking time and temperature, ingredient density, and specific type of oil used.

Nutrition Facts

Per Serving: 219 calories; 17 g fat; 5.7 g carbohydrates; 11.5 g protein; 37 mg cholesterol; 90 mg sodium. Powered by the ESHA Research Database © 2018, ESHA Research, Inc. All Rights Reserved

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It's a must to sprinkle them with a salt based seasoning after you double fry them. I love the flavor of Thai basil but once fried it turned bitter.