A bowl of Chinese honey chicken.

Crispy Chinese Honey Chicken

This is our delicious Chinese honey chicken recipe! This meal stays crispy and doesn't take too long to make. Plus most of the ingredients are pantry staples, so you won't have to buy too much just for this recipe. Enjoy!

Cook Time: 25 Minutes (plus 30 minutes of marinating time) | This recipe serves 4 people.


For The Chicken Marinade:

  • 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • 2 tsp soy sauce
  • Vegetable oil, for frying

For The Crispy Batter:

  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 5 Tbsp cornstarch, plus more for dusting the chicken
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ¾ cup-1 cup club soda or seltzer water, chilled

For The Honey Sauce:

  • 2 Tbsp soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup Sperry Honey
  • 2 Tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 clove garlic, grated or finely minced
  • 1 tsp ginger, grated or finely minced
  • 1 Tbsp cornstarch, mixed with 2 tablespoons water to make a slurry
  • 1/2 cup water

For The Garnish:

  • Sesame seeds
  • Sliced green onions

For serving, fluffy white rice, chow mein noodles or steamed broccoli.


A bowl of raw chicken in the marinade.

Step 1

Add the chicken to a bowl. Season with cornstarch, black pepper and soy sauce then mix well. Set aside for 30 minutes.

Step 2

Heat about 1 inch of vegetable oil in a large skillet or wok over medium-high heat. Place ¼ cup of cornstarch on a plate. Dredge the chicken pieces with the cornstarch and dust on both sides. Shake off the excess and place the coated chicken on a clean plate. 

A bowl of cornstarch-flour mixture

Step 3

Prepare the crispy batter by mixing the flour, cornstarch, baking powder and salt in a bowl. Slowly pour in the chilled club soda and stir about 10-15 times (clumps are fine).

Dipping the chicken in the cornstarch slurry.

Step 4

Dip the cornstarch-coated chicken in the wet batter. The batter should coat the chicken and not be see-through or too thick. Once the oil is hot (about 350°F), fry the chicken pieces in batches until golden brown and cooked through, about 3-4 minutes per side. Remove the chicken from the oil and drain on a wire rack over a tray.

A basket of fried chicken next to the cornstarch slurry and the honey marinade.

Step 5

In a small bowl, whisk together the honey, soy sauce, rice vinegar, sesame oil, garlic and ginger. Taste and season to your liking if necessary. In a separate bowl, mix the cornstarch and water to create a slurry.

Step 6

In a saucepan over medium heat, combine the honey sauce mixture and water. Bring to a simmer. Add the cornstarch slurry to the saucepan and cook until the sauce thickens about 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.

Step 7


Heat the oil to 400 °F. Add the chicken back to the oil and fry for another 1 minute. This gives the chicken an extra layer of crispiness.

A closeup on the Chinese honey chicken.

Step 8

Add the fried chicken to a bowl and pour over the sauce to coat each piece. Serve with your favorite sides.

Bonus Tips

The fried chicken in the basket.

- Make sure to use chilled club soda for this recipe to help the tempura batter puff up. 

- Do not substitute baking powder with baking soda as you won’t get the same result. The baking powder is essential for added crispiness. 

- Double-fry the chicken for lasting crispness. This step is optional but is great if you don’t plan to eat the chicken right away. Also, only add the sauce when you are ready to eat the chicken.

Another closeup photo of a Chinese honey chicken bowl.

- It’s important that you drain the fried chicken on a wire rack and not paper towel. The rack allows for better circulation to keep the chicken crispy. 

- Some recipes call for corn syrup in the sauce since it adds a candy-like texture to the chicken for even more crispiness but that’s not entirely necessary for a great recipe.

Leave Your Two Cents Below!

Once you've tried it, make sure to rate the recipe and leave a comment below. We hope that helped! Oh, and if you need some pure honey, make sure to check out our Grade A clover honey.

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