Firecracker Chicken

Firecracker Chicken: Sweet, sour and fiery! I would describe this flavorful chicken stir-fry dish as sweet and sour chicken meets buffalo — thanks to Frank’s Red Hot and red pepper flakes. It’s not an extremely hot recipe, but has a delicious kick that will keep you coming back for more. An instant family favorite!

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I hope you had the best weekend! We had the most beautiful weather, perfect for spending it outside doing lawn work. This weekend was the only shot we had to rake up 85 million sticks leftover from winter, edge our driveway, turn up our garden and weed out my raised herb garden. So we definitely made the most of it and got to work. HOLY MOLY am I sore, I must have hauled 200 pounds of dirt and grass that we edged away (gaining over a foot of driveway) and loading it into my husbands truck. Pat edged and I hauled– our yard has never looked better.

Earlier last week I whipped this little ditty up in the middle of the day, because I knew we’d have a few late nights at the ball field,  so I made sure on those days to have dinner ready and in the fridge to reheat later. On the menu was this Firecracker Chicken.

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For those who aren’t a fan of vegetables in their stir-fry, well then Firecracker Chicken is your jam. Chicken is coated in a light cornstarch batter and pan-fried in coconut oil until golden and crispy and tossed in a sweet and sour sauce that has a spiciness that is equally addictive and delicious. I serve it with cooked jasmine rice and, you guessed it, my favorite roasted broccoli recipe.

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For this recipe you will need: egg white, low-sodium tamari (or low-sodium soy sauce), white pepper and cornstarch and boneless, skinless chicken breast halves. All that’s needed for the sauce is honey, dark brown sugar, low-sodium chicken broth, hot sauce, cider vinegar and red pepper flakes. SO EASY.

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First add the egg white into a medium bowl, discarding the yolk or saving it for a different purpose. Beat the egg white until frothy and whisk in a tablespoon of tamari, 1-1/2 tablespoons of cornstarch and a 1/2 teaspoon of white pepper. Cube up 1-1/4 to 1-1/2 pounds of boneless, skinless chicken breast halves into 1-inch pieces. Use tongs to toss and coat in the cornstarch batter.

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In a separate medium bowl, measure and whisk together; 1/3 cup of dark brown sugar, 1/4 cup of honey, 1/3 cup Frank’s Red Hot sauce, 2 tablespoons cider vinegar, 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon red chili pepper flakes and 1 cup of low sodium chicken broth.

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Preheat a large 12-inch chefs pan or wok on medium-high heat. Add in 2 tablespoons of coconut oil and working in batches, cook the chicken until deeply golden brown and crispy. Transfer the chicken to a paper towel lined plate and repeat with the remaining uncooked chicken. When all of it is fully cooked and crispy, go ahead and add it back into the pan, pour in the firecracker sauce and bring to a boil.

Once the sauce is bubbling away, stir while pouring in a cornstarch slurry. (1 tablespoon cornstarch mixed with 1 tablespoon cool water)

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Stir often until the sauce is thick and glossy.

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Now it’s time to eat! I serve on a bed of jasmine rice, family-style with a sprinkling of sliced green onions and cilantro leaves. But individual bowl work too, feel free to saddle up roasted broccoli, sugar snap peas or a medley of your favorite spring/summer veggies right next to the firecracker chicken and rice. BUT for my fellow heat-lovers, I sprinkle even more red pepper flakes over top. Can’t. Get. Enough

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I’m not kidding you, this is better than take-out! And I have zero doubts that this delicious firecracker chicken stir-fry will become your family’s new favorite!

Enjoy! And if you give this Firecracker Chicken Stir-Fry recipe a try, let me know by snapping a photo and tagging me on twitter or instagram!

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My cookbook Simply Scratch : 120 Wholesome Homemade Recipes Made Easy is now available! CLICK HERE for details and THANK YOU in advance! 


Firecracker Chicken

Firecracker Chicken: Sweet, sour and fiery! I would describe this flavorful chicken stir-fry dish as sweet and sour chicken meets buffalo chicken--thanks to Frank's Red Hot and red pepper flakes. It's not extremely hot, but has a delicious kick that will keep you coming back for more. An instant family favorite!

Yield: 4 to 6 depending

Prep Time: 15-20 minutes

Cook Time: about 20 to 25 minutes

Total Time: about 40 minutes


1 egg white

1 tablespoon low-sodium tamari (or low-sodium soy sauce)

1-1/2 tablespoons cornstarch

1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper

1-1/4 to 1-1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, cut into 1-inch pieces

2 to 3 tablespoons coconut oil or extra light olive oil


1/3 cup dark brown sugar

1/4 cup honey

1/3 cup Frank's Red Hot Sauce

1 cup low-sodium chicken broth

2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, plus more for serving

cornstarch slurry (1 tablespoon cornstarch mixed with 1 tablespoon cold water)

2 to 3 cups cooked jasmine rice, for serving

sliced green onions, for serving

cilantro leaves, for serving


In a medium bowl, whisk the egg white until frothy and whisk in the tamari, cornstarch and white pepper. Add in the cubed chicken into the batter and toss to coat evenly. Set aside.

Heat a large 12-inch chefs pan or wok preheat the coconut oil on medium-high heat.

Meanwhile in a separate bowl, whisk together the brown sugar, honey, hot sauce, chicken broth, vinegar and red pepper flakes. Set aside.

Once the pan and oil are hot, work in batches cooking the chicken until deeply golden and crispy. Transfer to a paper towel lined plate and repeat with the remaining chicken. Once all of the chicken is cooked, add it back to the pan, pour in the sauce and bring to a boil.

When the sauce is bubbling, stir while pouring in the cornstarch slurry. Stir until the sauce thickens and is glossy.

Serve the firecracker chicken on rice with a sprinkle of green onion, cilantro and red pepper flakes.

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8 Responses to “Firecracker Chicken”

  1. #
    Julia Mueller — May 15, 2017 at 12:22 pm

    Aaaagh this chicken! It looks so tasty, healthy, yet authentic! You’re a magician, m’dear! Also, I just ordered your cookbook! I can’t wait to get it in the mail and make allll the recipes!!!! xo

    • Laurie McNamara replied: — May 18th, 2017 @ 1:57 pm

      You’re so kind! Thank you for ordering, words cannot express how grateful I am. ❤️ xo!

  2. #
    Laura — May 17, 2017 at 8:07 am

    Made this last night–great! I doubled and sauteed chinese veg on the side and everyone loved! thanks for a great weeknight dinner!

    • Laurie McNamara replied: — May 18th, 2017 @ 1:55 pm

      That’s awesome, Laura! I’m so glad you enjoyed it!

  3. #
    Natalie — September 30, 2017 at 1:39 pm

    Made this last night and it was AMAZING! Just a heads up that the recipe at the bottom doesn’t specify where the chicken broth goes, but I saw that with the pictures it is part of the sauce. Forgot the chicken broth in mine, but it was still so so tasty.

    • Laurie McNamara replied: — October 1st, 2017 @ 11:27 pm

      I’m so glad you liked the recipe, Natalie! Good catch, I swear I go crosseyed proofreading yet I still overlook stuff. I appreciate you!

  4. #
    Dave — October 13, 2017 at 7:24 pm

    Hi Laurie,
    I made this recipe tonight and it was tremendous. My question is, have you ever considered including the kcal content for your various recipes? I use an app called “My Fitness Pal” and track my exercise and calories through it. I make something like this and feel it’s pretty healthy but I’m clueless as what to write in for calories.
    I have to tell you, I got drawn to your blog for your Mexican dishes. I lived in SoCal for almost 30 years and then Charlotte, NC when I retired. Now I don’t have to go looking for my favorite Mexican dishes. Thanks to you I can make my own.
    I like cooking, and I lover your site.

    • Laurie McNamara replied: — October 17th, 2017 @ 8:12 am

      Hi Dave! I have actually thought about it, and am currently exploring a blog redesign and will most likely be adding that in. I love Mexican food too! So if there’s any Mexican dishes you know of that I could try and recreate, feel free to let me know! Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment! 🙂

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