Ginger Fried Chicken

Ginger Fried Chicken Recipe Video (scroll down for printable recipe)

I ordered ginger fried chicken at a restaurant in Hawaii and I’ve thought about it ever since. It’s so simple to make. Marinate chunks of boneless chicken (skinless or skin-on, whichever your preference) in lots of ginger, garlic, soy sauce and a little vinegar then dredge in flour and cornstarch and fry. Use white or dark meat, they both turn out delicious.

The trick to getting the breading to stay on is to coat the chicken fully, until it’s all white. Then — the important part — let it sit until the white turns brown. You’ll see what I mean when you do it. About 5-10 minutes after coating, the  residual marinade on the chicken absorbs the flour, effectively gluing it to the chicken. When you fry — second most important part — use a thermometer to make sure the oil stays around 350ºF (180ºC) the whole time. Oil that is too cool will not only produce greasy fried chicken, it can also cause the breading to fall off. And no one is interested in naked, greasy chicken.

Serve this like you might find it in Hawaii, with a side of macaroni salad. Or go lighter to balance the chicken with a big salad, like this Winter salad.

ginger fried chicken recipe

Ginger Fried chicken Recipe

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Ginger Fried Chicken

  • Author: Hilah Johnson
  • Prep Time: 30 mins
  • Cook Time: 15 mins
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x
Scale

Ingredients

  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon minced ginger
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons rice or cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar (optional)
  • 1 pound boneless chicken
  • 1/2 cup cornstarch
  • 1/2 cup AP flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 12 cups oil for frying
  • 1 lemon or lime, cut into wedges

Instructions

  1. Combine garlic, ginger, soy and vinegar in a bowl. Cut chicken into pieces about 1-1/2 inches square. Allow to marinate at room temperature at least 15 minutes and up to an hour.
  2. Meanwhile, combine cornstarch, flour, salt in a shallow bowl.
  3. Drain marinate from chicken (it’s okay if bits of garlic and ginger stick) and coat each piece in the flour mixture. Transfer to a plate and let sit for 10 minutes.
  4. Heat 1/2 inch of oil to 350ºF and fry the chicken in two batches, about 6 minutes each.
  5. Serve with lemon wedges and steamed broccoli.

Serve this with steamed vegetables for a fairly quick and painless meal. You can prep the vegetables while the chicken marinates and steam them while you fry the chicken. Ginger fried chicken is also a bang-up salad topper! I served it on a salad of Napa cabbage, steamed broccolini, and Romaine lettuce; dressed simply in lime juice and sambal oelek. Here’s a picture from my Instagram:

fried chicken salad

This is the thermometer I use and LOVE (affiliate link)

20 Comments

  1. Bob on October 30, 2015 at 6:05 pm

    Thanks for the tips, I assume those of us who are not ginger fans (would not, would not on a boat, would not, would not with a goat) could just omit it or possibly substitute other spices in the same 1 tbsp in quantity. FYI, I hate teriyaki too.

    • Hilah on October 31, 2015 at 2:40 pm

      Hey Bob! Sure just leave the ginger out.

  2. Mish on October 31, 2015 at 1:06 am

    Great recipe … my only question … could you pop them into a deep fryer instead?
    Thanks again & I love your site!

    • Hilah on October 31, 2015 at 2:39 pm

      Of course! Cook at 350ºF for probably just 5 minutes

  3. Diane on November 3, 2015 at 4:09 pm

    I’m thinking this would work with shrimp too. Don’t you?2

    • Hilah on November 6, 2015 at 10:57 am

      Ooh, yeah I bet it would!

  4. Amber on November 6, 2015 at 6:37 pm

    Girl.
    Thanks for yet another recipe that made my picky spouse say, “That was actually pretty good.” Huge victory, will fry again!

    • Hilah on November 8, 2015 at 2:25 pm

      Yay!! Can’t go wrong with fried chicken.

    • Solaris on May 5, 2019 at 5:31 am

      Thanks for a killer recipe! I’ve been looking for a solid one for a minute. and this takes the cake!! P.S. I added another tablespoon of ginger in the batter for an extra ginger kick, and it was stellar. Thanks a million!

  5. Brent on January 31, 2016 at 11:35 am

    Will be Deep frying two chickens in a turkey deep fryer today using your marinade…thinking of injecting Sriracha chili sauce into one to liven up the party.

    • Hilah on February 1, 2016 at 2:29 pm

      Sounds good!

  6. Brent on February 1, 2016 at 4:19 pm

    Turned out good..will use rub again

  7. Warren on February 3, 2016 at 5:59 pm

    great combination of ingredients and easy to make. thanks a lot, my Taiwanese mother in-law nyaamed it and said “hao chi” which is rare.

  8. Nikki Trivisonno on March 9, 2016 at 5:44 pm

    Um….Yum! I haven’t made a recipe of yours I wasn’t over the top excited about, but I watched this video thinking where is the sauce? It needs sauce! So I had some sweet and sour sauce on standby and guess what? You were right! Absolutely no sauce needed! I was eating it straight out of the pan!

    • Hilah on March 9, 2016 at 6:39 pm

      Awesome! 😀 Thanks, Nikki!

  9. Natalie on July 8, 2016 at 11:26 am

    Is there a good way to make this into a crock pot meal for a good old fashioned pot luck?

    • Hilah on July 9, 2016 at 7:37 am

      I have never tried it so I can’t be sure. What I’d do is use whole chicken pieces (thighs, breasts) with the marinade ingredients and cool on low for 4-6 hours. But again, I have not tested it and am not sure it would taste great.

  10. Mike McCabe on January 9, 2018 at 1:51 pm

    Looks Bomb! Could I use a air fryer? How would you apply oil or….. Thx Hilah!!

    • Hilah on January 10, 2018 at 1:54 pm

      Hey Mike! I’ve never used an air fryer. I’d just use this marinade and then follow another similar recipe in the instruction manual or online

  11. Travis on January 19, 2019 at 8:10 am

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