Taiwanese Popcorn Chicken

Discover the Mystique of Taiwanese Popcorn Chicken

Step into the vibrant streets of Taiwan, where the enticing aroma of sizzling spices and crispy delights fills the air. In this culinary journey, we present a tantalizing treasure: Taiwanese Popcorn Chicken. Imagine bite-sized, golden nuggets of succulent chicken, seasoned to perfection and encased in a flavorful, crispy exterior. This iconic street food sensation promises a symphony of tastes and textures that will transport your taste buds to the bustling night markets of Taiwan. Get ready to embark on a culinary adventure that combines bold flavors and irresistible crunch, bringing the essence of Taiwanese street food right to your plate.

Visual Ingredient List

Taiwanese Popcorn Chicken elevates the classic concept of chicken nuggets to new heights with its exceptionally crisp texture. Each bite offers a delightful crunch that sets it apart from conventional nuggets. The secret lies in the meticulous preparation, where bite-sized chicken pieces are expertly seasoned, coated, and fried to golden perfection. This culinary marvel brings a symphony of flavors and textures, making it a tantalizing experience that goes beyond the ordinary chicken nugget. Immerse yourself in the world of Taiwanese Popcorn Chicken, where crispiness meets culinary excellence.

Protein Options

chicken thighs
chicken thighs
tofu cubes
tofu cubes
pork tenderloin
pork tenderloin

Marinade Ingredients

tamari soy sauce
Soy sauce or alternative
egg white
1 egg white
potato starch
Potato or corn starch
SpiceBreeze spice blend

Other Ingredients

garlic chopping
Optionally, add garlic to the marinade.
Breadcrumbs *
Italian or Thai (recommended) basil.

* Breadcrumbs: grate dry or toasted bread slices, or use panko, coarse ground almonds, or coarse sweet potato starch.

Taiwanese Popcorn Chicken

Taiwanese Popcorn Chicken

Embark on a sensory voyage through the bustling streets of Taiwan with Taiwanese Popcorn Chicken. Picture this: bite-sized gems of succulent chicken, enveloped in a golden, crunchy armor that crackles with every bite. Immerse yourself in the juicy tenderness of the seasoned meat, harmonized with the exotic notes of Chinese five-spice. This iconic street food revelation encapsulates the essence of Taiwan's vibrant night markets, offering a symphony of flavors that dance on your palate. Brace yourself for an extraordinary culinary adventure that elevates crispy indulgence to an art form, all from the comfort of your own plate.
hands-on time 30 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Taiwanese
Servings 3



  • 1.5 lb chicken thighs or breast, cut into bite-size pieces [1]
  • 1 egg white

Fresh Produce

  • 1-2 cloves garlic, grated optional
  • 1 bunch fresh basil (not washed!) [2]

Packaged Good/Staples

  • 2 tbsp soy sauce or tamari [3]
  • 2 tbsp potato or corn starch
  • 1-2 cups breadcrumbs [4]

Culinary Spice Kit

  • 1 pouch Cinnamon, fennel, ginger, orange peel, black pepper, cloves, Sichuan pepper, star anise

Suggested Sides

  • salad with lemon dressing cucumber, cabbage, or lettuce
  • steamed vegetables bok choy, asparagus, kale, or leek



  • In a CONTAINER, mix soy sauce, egg white, 2 tbsp starch, Popcorn Chicken spices, and garlic (optional).
  • Add chicken. Mix well. Cover.
  • Let it marinate in the fridge for 1 to 24 hours.


  • Coat chicken in breadcrumbs. Shake off excess breadcrumbs.
  • Spread them out in one layer on a large plate.
  • Let them sit for 15 minutes.


  • In a PAN, heat oil for deep frying until sizzling.
  • Fry chicken in several batches (don't crowd the pan) for a few minutes until they turn golden.
  • Scoop the chicken pieces out and transfer them to a plate with paper towels.

Fry Basil Leaves

  • Prepare: Have a lid and strainer ladle close by.
  • Add a handful of basil leaves to the hot oil. Cover immediately.
  • After 5-10 seconds, before the leaves start to burn, use the strainer ladle to quickly scoop out the leaves.
  • Transfer them to a plate with the chicken.


  • Serve chicken with your preferred sides.
  • Optional, sprinkle them with salt and black pepper or chilies. 
  • Enjoy!


[1] Alternatives: pork tenderloin, tofu, fish filet (cod or halibut).
[2] Italian or Thai (recommended) basil.
[3] See our blog for alternatives.
[4] Alternatives: panko, coarse ground almonds, coarse sweet potato starch.
Marceline Reid-Jaques
Marceline Reid-Jaques
Karen Jones
Karen Jones
Wonderful, flavorful meals using readily available ingredients!
ann davis
ann davis
My daughter gave me a subscription as a Christmas present while our families were quarantining together. It was so much fun! It introduced us to several cuisines that were totally new to us. The recipes were easy to follow and the spices were transformative - fresh and pungent and delicious.
Jessica Brown
Jessica Brown
The best way to try new dishes!

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