Super-Crispy Korean Chicken

There is nothing worse than biting into a piece of soggy fried chicken. This is often the case after fried chicken has been tossed in a sauce, but this recipe solves that problem with a secret ingredient:


I’m not even kidding. Adding vodka to the chicken marinade and coating will give you an extra-crunchy crust. Vodka evaporates very quickly, helping to dehydrate the crust rapidly while being fried. It also inhibits gluten formation, the thing that makes pizza crust a little chewy. Chewy is good for a pizza, but not so good for fried chicken.

Don’t worry, you won’t taste the vodka at all.

Super-Crispy Korean Chicken with Coconut Rice

Or if you want to taste the vodka, just pour yourself a little cocktail.

I won’t judge.

Super-Crispy Korean Chicken with Coconut Rice

I added half of the marinade to the flour mixture to make the coating nice and crumbly. These clumps will help make the chicken even more crispy.

Plus, now there are even more nooks and crannies for the sauce. Yum!

Super-Crispy Korean Chicken with Coconut RiceSuper-Crispy Korean Chicken with Coconut Rice

I used my homemade gochujang for this spicy Korean sauce. Its spicy, sweet, and salty. Perfect for some crispy fried chicken. If you don’t have a giant jar of gochujang that’s been fermenting for a few months, just grab a store-bought version (or you can find it online). The store-bought version might not be quite as spicy, but you can easily add a little cayenne pepper to the sauce.

Super-Crispy Korean Chicken with Coconut RiceSuper-Crispy Korean Chicken with Coconut Rice

I like to serve this super-crispy Korean chicken over a bed of creamy coconut rice. Instead of using water to cook the rice, substitute half of the water for an equal amount of coconut milk (you can even substitute all of the water for coconut milk for extra-creamy rice).

Once you’ve tried this Korean chicken, I promise that you’ll think twice about ordering take-out again!

Crispy Korean Chicken
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
  • 1 egg white
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp vodka
  • 2 tbsp Shaoxing wine
  • ¼ tsp baking soda
  • 3 tbsp corn starch
  • 1½ lb boneless, skinless chicken thighs cut into ¾-inch pieces
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup corn starch
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp Kosher salt
  • ½ cup gochujang
  • ⅓ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp Shaoxing wine
  • 1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp garlic, grated
  • 1 tbsp ginger, grated
Other Ingredients:
  • vegetable or canola oil, for frying
  • cooked jasmine rice, for serving (optional)
  • 2 tbsp sliced green onions, for garnish
  • sesame seeds, for garnish
Prepare the Marinade:
  1. In a large bowl, combine the egg white, soy sauce, vodka, Shaoxing wine, baking soda, and corn starch with a whisk until no lumps remain. Pour half of the marinade into a small container and set aside (this will later be used in the coating).
  2. Add the chicken thighs to the remaining marinade and stir to combine. Set aside or refrigerate for later use.
Prepare the Coating:
  1. In a pie dish or a shallow bowl, combine the flour, corn starch, baking powder, and Kosher salt. Stir until well combined. Set aside until ready for use.
Prepare the Sauce:
  1. Add the gochujang, sugar, low-sodium soy sauce, Shaoxing wine, toasted sesame oil, garlic, and ginger to a small bowl. Stir until the sugar has dissolved and the ingredients are well-combined.
  2. Pour the sauce into a medium-sized skillet over medium-high heat. Heat until the sugar has dissolved and the sauce has thickened. Cover and reduce the heat to low to keep warm.
Prepare the Crispy Korean Chicken:
  1. Fill a large dutch oven with about 1½ quarts of vegetable oil over medium-high heat. Heat the oil until the temperature reaches 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. While the oil is heating, prepare the chicken. Pour the unused marinade into the coating mixture and stir to combine.
  3. Using a pair of tongs, pull a piece of chicken out of the marinade, allowing excess marinade to drip off. Place the chicken into the coating mixture and turn to ensure that every side is coated evenly. Place the coated chicken on a clean plate and set aide. Repeat with remaining chicken pieces.
  4. Add a few pieces of coated chicken to the hot oil and fry until golden brown and the center of the chicken reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit (about 4 minutes). Place the chicken on a wire rack or plate lined with paper towels to drain. Repeat with remaining chicken, keeping the oil temperature between 325 and 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
  5. Once all of the chicken has been fried, add the chicken to the sauce and toss to coat. If the sauce is too thick, add a few tablespoons of soy sauce or water to thin. Serve immediately over rice and garnish with green onions and sesame seeds.


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