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Korean Style Chicken Nuggets

These Korean style chicken nuggets instantly transport me back to Korea.  I have fond memories of ordering in with the family after a long day of sightseeing and having these delivered right to our doorstep.  A delivery guy would bike over to hand deliver a piping hot box of juicy, crispy chicken that was sweet, spicy and savory, all at once.  These are always best served with danmuji pickles which are a refreshing palate cleanser to the saucy, fried chicken.

Before you ask why cornstarch, allow me to let you in on a little Korean “frying secret” that I learned from my uncle who used to run his own chicken shop.  This pure starch doesn’t absorb oil like flour does and locks in the juices keeping your chicken moist and juicy.  It also keeps things lighter and crisper.  I used white meat today just because that’s all I had but you could certainly use any part of the chicken you prefer.  The pieces only take a few minutes to cook {I used coconut oil} then get tossed in thick savory sauce.

The sauce comprises of the usual suspects like garlic, ginger and soy but the rice/apple cider vinegar in conjunction with the fresh orange really lifts up the flavor while the hit of Korean pepper flakes lends the slightest bit of heat.  If you can’t find Korean pepper flakes, you can substitute with half the amount of crushed red pepper but I tend to have a bias for the Korean stuff.  It holds a mild heat and warm flavor that is unique.

When all is said and done, these are still good the next day, having absorbed more of the sauce and really developing its flavors.  When served hot, it’s great alone {but with danmuji, of course} or over rice, noodles or salad.  I once served these as an amulse-buche and they were a big hit.  It’s a familiar package with an exotic twist and even the garnish adds texture and flavor.  I knew that when my craving for these struck, it would never go away until it was satisfied.  They’re yummy little morsels, packing a flavor explosion and I hope you enjoy them.

5.0 from 1 reviews

Korean Style Chicken Nuggets
Prep time

Cook time

Total time


Serves: 2 servigs

  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • 2 ts freshly grated ginger
  • 1 ts Korean pepper flakes
  • ¼ c soy or tamari
  • ¼ c sugar
  • 2 tb apple cider/rice vinegar
  • Juice of ½ fresh orange
  • 2 chicken breasts, cubed
  • ½ c cornstarch
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 c coconut oil
  • Crushed nuts and sesame seeds

  1. Combine all the ingredients for the sauce and simmer until it reduces by half and set aside.
  2. Dredge the chicken in the cornstarch seasoned with salt and pepper. Make sure your chicken is at room temperature.
  3. Bring the oil to 350 degrees and fry in batches.
  4. Blot off an excess oil then toss each piece in the reduced sauce.
  5. Garnish with nuts and sesame seeds and serve with danmuji {radish} pickles.


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