Chilli Chicken recipe is the most loved Chinese recipe along with chow mein recipe. People love to consume Chilli Chicken Dry as a starter. It is the most demanded appetizer in Indian restaurants. Some also love to enjoy this recipe with Fried Rice and Hakka Noodles. If you are also among them then cook this recipe as Chilli Chicken Gravy.
In this recipe, we mainly use boneless chicken pieces. These chicken pieces are firstly cut into cubes or chewable size pieces. Some people also use chicken pieces with bones to prepare this recipe. But I personally like boneless chicken pieces. Firstly we roast these chicken pieces to turn them crispy. Then we cook these crispy chicken pieces with light sweet-sour and spicy gravy along with capsicum.
Is Chilli Chicken very hot and spicy?
Many people consider that this Chilli Chicken recipe is very spicy. But it is not so! It is a perfect balance of sweet, sour and spicy flavor. We achieve this balance by preparing a special sauce for this recipe. This sauce is a combination of chili sauce, dark soya sauce, and vinegar. It is this sauce that gives this recipe a unique sweet, sour and spicy flavor.
Then, we cook this recipe using capsicum or bell pepper, spring onion, and Indian spices. Thus, this recipe turns into a perfect combination of Indo-Chinese taste that is not too hot but still flavourful, which everyone loves.
My Son, like most other kids, loves this recipe. I prepare Chilli Chicken dry recipe if he wants to enjoy it as an appetizer. I also modify this recipe to Chilli Chicken Gravy, by adding little extra water in it. Thus he can enjoy it along with Jira Rice, Veg Fried Rice, Schezwan Fried Rice, Schezwan Noodles or Naan.
I prefer preparing this recipe at home. Most restaurants use Ajinomoto or monosodium glutamate (MSG) to produce a unique flavor in Chinese Chilli Chicken Recipe. As both of these ingredients are controversial for health. Thus I do not want my son to consume them.
Restaurants also use food color to give this recipe a soothing color.
With my recipe, you can easily prepare Chilli Chicken at home without using these controversial ingredients. But still, you will get a delicious Chilli Chicken at home. Homemade Chilli Chicken recipe is very safe for health. And cooking it in hygienic condition of the home you are 100% sure about.
Tips to make Chilli Chicken
For preparing this recipe at home I will use boneless chicken pieces from the breast portion of the chicken. The breast portion of chicken has the most flesh in it. By using the breast portion I can use the rest pieces of the chicken for my other chicken recipes.
Flesh from Chicken of around 1 Kg to 1.25 Kg is best to use. If you are using chicken pieces from bigger chicken then brine them first. Brining Chicken help absorbs extra liquid and salt. Which results in a juicier and more flavorful recipe.
How to Brine the Chicken
To brine chicken pieces, pour warm water in a large bowl. Then add salt, sugar, soy sauce, and olive oil. Stir until the sugar and salt dissolve. Then allow the brine to cool to room temperature. Now place chicken pieces in the brine, cover, and refrigerate for two hours.
Initially using warm water helps in dissolving the sugar and salt easily.
To brine the chicken – for every 1 liter of water use 1/4 cup salt, 1/5 cup sugar, 1/4 cup soy sauce, and 1.5 tablespoons of olive oil. If you can get kosher salt that is best. Otherwise regular salt will also work. You can also exclude olive oil if you wish.
Please note that if you brine the chicken, sodium content also increases in it. If you are conscious about sodium or have blood pressure complaints. Then always go with chicken of small size.
To make this recipe spicy and tangy I will use red chili sauce, tomato ketchup, dark soya sauce, and white vinegar. Combining these sauces gives the gravy a balanced sweet, sour and spicy flavor.
How to get the perfect color
Restaurants use food color to make the recipe look deep red in color. The best way to get a vibrant red color in your recipe is to use Kashmiri red chili powder. This adds a vibrant red color to the recipe without making it very hot. Otherwise, you can also use Paprika or red chili powder too.
How to get Juicy and Tender chicken pieces
A perfect Chilli Chicken recipe turns delicious, only when you dip the crispy chicken pieces into the gravy that are juicy from inside. To make the chicken pieces flavourful I marinate the chicken pieces in Indian spices.
To make them crispy from outside I will use corn starch and raw eggs. Eggs lock the juices inside the chicken pieces. Thus keeps the chicken pieces moist, tender and succulent. It also acts as a binding agent.
Then I fry them till golden. Do not over-fry them otherwise the pieces will turn chewy rather than crunchy.
Finally, I will cook this recipe with a combination of red and spring onion, along with bell pepper. To achieve a lustrious Chilli Chicken recipe.
This is the best Chilli Chicken recipe for your home. So let us start preparing our Chilli Chicken.
for marination of chicken
- 500 grams of boneless chicken breast (बिना हड्डी का मुर्ग़े का सीना) cut into 1-inch cubes
- 1 tablespoon ginger paste (अदरक का पेस्ट)
- 1 tablespoon garlic paste (लहसुन का पेस्ट)
- 1 teaspoon salt (नमक)
- 1 teaspoon black pepper powder (काली मिर्च पाउडर)
- 1 tablespoon white vinegar (सफेद सिरका)
- 1 piece egg (अंडा) raw egg
- 3 tablespoon cornflour (मक्के का आटा)
- 2 tablespoon refined flour (मैदा)
- 1 tablespoon oil (तेल)
for preparing sauce
- 1 cup water (पानी)
- 1 teaspoon white vinegar (सफेद सिरका)
- 2 tablespoon dark soya sauce (काला सोया सॉस)
- 1-2 teaspoon red chili sauce (लाल मिर्च सॉस) as per your taste
- 2 teaspoon tomato ketchup (टमाटर की चटनी)
- 1 tablespoon cornflour (मक्के का आटा)
Other Chilli Chicken Ingredients
- 1 piece onion (प्याज) sliced into cubes
- 1/2 cup capsicum (शिमला मिर्च) sliced into cubes
- 1 piece spring onion (हरा प्याज़) chopped
- 5-6 cloves finely chopped garlic (बारीक कटा हुआ लहसुन)
- 1 inch finely chopped ginger (बारीक़ कटा हुआ अदरक)
- 1-2 pieces green chilies (हरी मिर्च)
- 3/4 teaspoon black pepper powder (काली मिर्च पाउडर)
- salt to taste (नमक स्वाद अनुसार)
- 1 teaspoon sugar powder (चीनी पाउडर)
- 1/2 cup oil (तेल) for deep frying
- spring onion (हरा प्याज़)
- 1/2 teaspoon sesame seeds (तिल)
for marinating chicken
- Take a mixing bowl with skinless-boneless chicken pieces and add 1 tablespoon of ginger paste, 1 tablespoon of garlic paste, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon black pepper powder and 1 tablespoon white vinegar to the chicken pieces and mix well.
- Now, add 1 piece raw egg whites along with the yolk, again mix well. Please do not skip mixing at first stage step and at this stage separately. Mixing at both the stage separately is necessary for a uniform combination of spices and eggs with the chicken.
- After mixing raw egg add 3 tablespoon cornflour, 2 tablespoons refined flour and 1 tablespoon of oil and again mix well and keep it aside for 30-45 minutes for marinating.
How to Make Chilli Chicken Sauce
- In a bowl take a cup of water, add 1 teaspoon of white vinegar, 2 tablespoons of dark soya sauce, 1-2 teaspoon of red chili sauce or as per your taste, 2 teaspoons of tomato ketchup with 1 tablespoon of cornflour mix well and keep aside.
How to fry chicken
- Now heat oil for frying in a wok over medium flame. When the oil is sufficiently warm add marinated chicken pieces in oil and let it rest in oil for a minute.
- After 1 minute when the coating over marinated chicken gets set in oil fry the chicken pieces separately for another 2 -3 minutes stirring gently and occasionally till it turns golden. Do not over fry otherwise the chicken will get taut.
- As soon as the chicken pieces turn golden drain them out from oil and transfer them on a plate. Fry all the chicken pieces this way.
How to Make Chilli Chicken at Home
- Slice the onion into cubes and separate the bulbs, chop the capsicum into cubes, slit the green chilies and finely chop ginger and garlic.
- Cut and separate the white and green portion of the spring onion. Then finely chop them separately. We will use the white portion for cooking and green portion of spring onion for garnishing our chili chicken.
- Heat a wok on high flame and add 1 tablespoon of oil to it and let the oil starts smoking, then add chopped white part of spring onion followed by finely chopped ginger, finely chopped garlic and let it cook for 1 minute so that, the raw flavor of ginger and garlic goes away.
- Now add onion bulbs, slit green chilies, sliced capsicum cubes and toss for 2-3 minutes.
- Then stir the previously prepared sauce very well as the cornflour settles in the bottom and add the sauce mixture to the wok and let it boil.
- After the sauce starts boiling add salt as per your taste, a small amount of sugar to balance the taste, black pepper powder, mix well and again cook for 1-2 minutes.
- Now add fried chicken pieces to it and mix well again and cook a minute on high flame. Remove your chili chicken from flame.
- Before serving, add the green portion of chopped spring onion, sprinkle some sesame seeds and serve hot.