Firecracker Chicken


5 from 16 votes
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Crispy chicken bites are drenched in a fiery, yet sweet and tangy sauce in this baked firecracker chicken recipe. I love to serve the saucy chicken over rice for an easy weeknight dinner.

Love quick and easy chicken recipes? Try peanut butter chicken, boneless chicken wings, and oven fried chicken.

firecracker chicken.

If you’ve tried my firecracker salmon or firecracker meatballs, you know how seriously addictive that sauce can be. I recently experimented with tossing it through some crispy chicken pieces, and let me say I have a new favorite.

Table of Contents
  1. What is firecracker chicken?
  2. Ingredients needed
  3. How to make firecracker chicken
  4. Arman’s recipe tips and variations
  5. Storage instructions
  6. Frequently asked questions
  7. More quick and easy chicken dinners
  8. Firecracker Chicken (Recipe Card)

What is firecracker chicken?

You can’t have firecracker chicken without firecracker sauce. The true star of this recipe, firecracker sauce, is spicy, buttery, luscious, sweet, and tangy. It coats the breaded chicken breasts, leaving you with chicken that’s exploding with bold and irresistible flavors.

Here are some reasons why I LOVE this recipe-

  • Bold, irresistible flavors. Firecracker sauce is all about the spice. Just like Szechuan chicken, it has just the right amount of kick that leaves you wanting more.
  • Crispy chicken (without deep frying). Pan-searing and baking leads to golden-on-the-outside, juicy-on-the-inside chicken every time. No messy deep frying or excess oil included!
  • Quick and easy. This is a foolproof recipe with just a smidge of hands-on work. Any beginner home cook will have an easy time with it! After the chicken is breaded and seared, it’s left to do its thing in the oven, giving you time to focus on the sides.
  • Versatile! Serve the firecracker chicken bites with ranch dressing for a fun snack or appetizer, pile them on top of a bed of rice for dinner, or wrap them in a tortilla. There are endless ways to serve this recipe!
fire cracker chicken.

Ingredients needed

  • Chicken breasts. Boneless skinless chicken breasts are cut into bite-size pieces for this recipe. They’re breaded, pan-fried, and baked until they’re crispy and delicious.
  • Salt and pepper. Use a generous amount of salt and pepper to season the chicken.
  • Eggs. The eggs are beaten and used to coat the chicken.
  • Cornstarch. Used to coat the chicken bites. Once cooked, it forms a crispy, golden crust around each piece.
  • Oil. Use a high-heat oil, like olive oil or avocado oil.

For the firecracker sauce: 

  • Buffalo sauce. This is where firecracker sauce gets its signature buttery, spicy, and rich flavor and consistency. Use any store-bought buffalo sauce you like. 
  • Brown sugar. The sweetness helps balance the fiery flavors, so the sauce doesn’t set your mouth on fire.
  • Soy sauce. Or use tamari if you’re gluten-free.
  • Olive oil. To help emulsify the sauce.
  • Ginger root. Try not to replace this with ground ginger! Fresh ginger is much more punchy and flavorful.
  • Garlic. Fresh garlic cloves are best.
  • Black pepper. To round out the other savory, spicy flavors.
  • Paprika. This adds a hint of sweet smokiness.
  • Rice vinegar. Or you can use apple cider vinegar.

How to make firecracker chicken

I’ve included step-by-step photos below to make this recipe easy to follow at home. For the full printable recipe instructions and ingredient quantities, scroll to the recipe card at the bottom of this post.

Step 1- Coat the chicken. Season the chicken breast pieces, then coat them in the eggs and cornstarch.

how to make firecracker chicken.

Step 2- Sear the chicken. Pan fry the chicken bites in a skillet until they’re golden brown.

seared chicken in skillet.

Step 3- Make the sauce. Stir the sauce ingredients together in a mixing bowl, then pour it into a baking dish.

firecracker sauce ingredients.

Step 4- Bake. Transfer the chicken to the baking dish with the firecracker sauce. Cover, then bake until it’s browned around the edges.

chicken tossed in firecracker sauce.

Step 5- serve. Serve the firecracker chicken over rice and enjoy!

chicken with firecracker sauce.

Arman’s recipe tips and variations

  • Cut into even pieces. Slice the chicken breasts into even bite-sized pieces. The more consistent the shape, the more evenly they’ll cook.
  • Pat dry the chicken breasts dry with paper towels before adding the seasonings. This way, the salt, pepper, and cornstarch will have an easier time sticking to the meat.
  • Make it in a cast iron skillet. Cut down on cleanup by searing AND baking the chicken in a cast iron or oven-safe skillet.
  • Garnish. Once it’s ready, garnish the firecracker chicken with dried chili flakes, sesame seeds, scallions, or fresh parsley.
  • Make the sauce extra spice. Make the firecracker sauce with a spicier hot sauce, like sriracha, harissa, or chili garlic sauce. You can even add red chili flakes or cayenne pepper to the sauce for extra heat.
  • Cut out the processed sugar. Swap the brown sugar in the sauce for maple syrup, honey, agave, or coconut sugar.
  • Use other cuts of chicken. My recipe works just as well with boneless chicken thighs and chicken tenders (tenderloins). Just like the breast meat, make sure you cut them into equal-sized pieces.
  • Use another protein. We’ve done chicken, shrimp, salmon, and meatballs, but you can also use turkey and beef, or tofu for a plant-based option.

Storage instructions

To store. Transfer the leftover chicken to an airtight container and store in the fridge for 3 to 4 days.   

To reheat: Warm the chicken bites in a lightly oiled skillet over medium heat until they’re heated through and slightly crisp again. You can also reheat the leftovers in a microwave but the chicken won’t be as crispy.

chicken firecracker.

Frequently asked questions

Can you make the sauce ahead of time?

Yes, you can easily stir the sauce together up to 1 week ahead of making this recipe. Just keep it in a sealed jar in the fridge until it’s time to cook.

More quick and easy chicken dinners

firecracker chicken recipe.

Firecracker Chicken

5 from 16 votes
Crispy chicken bites are drenched in a fiery, yet sweet and tangy sauce in this baked firecracker chicken recipe. Watch the video below to see how I make it in my kitchen.
Servings: 4 servings
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 40 minutes
Total: 45 minutes



  • 1 pound chicken breast cut into bite sized pieces
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons oil

Firecracker sauce


  • Preheat the oven to 200C/400F.
  • Season the chicken with salt and pepper and mix well.
  • Beat eggs well. Dredge chicken in eggs and then in cornstarch and and coat well.
  • Heat the oil in a skillet and add chicken. Cook until golden from all sides.
  • Combine sauce ingredients in a bowl, add chicken, and mix well. Pour coated chicken into an oven-safe dish. Cover with aluminum foil and bake in the oven for 20 minutes.
  • Remove the foil, stir the chicken, and bake for another 10 minutes until lightly browned on the edges.


TO STORE. Transfer the leftover chicken to an airtight container and store in the fridge for 3 to 4 days.   
TO REHEAT. Warm the chicken bites in a lightly oiled skillet over medium heat until they’re heated through and slightly crisp again. You can also reheat the leftovers in a microwave, but the chicken won’t be as crispy.


Serving: 1servingCalories: 375kcalCarbohydrates: 15gProtein: 39gFat: 17gSodium: 1126mgPotassium: 367mgFiber: 0.2gSugar: 14gVitamin A: 201IUVitamin C: 2mgCalcium: 48mgIron: 2mgNET CARBS: 15g
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Author: Arman Liew
Tried this recipe?Give us a shout at @thebigmansworld or tag #thebigmansworld!

Arman Liew

I’m a two time cookbook author, photographer, and writer, and passionate about creating easy and healthier recipes. I believe you don’t need to be experienced in the kitchen to make good food using simple ingredients that most importantly, taste delicious.

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5 from 16 votes (14 ratings without comment)

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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    This was the BEST firecracker chicken recipe I’ve ever made! So crispy, flavorful, and just the right amount of spice.

  2. The Big Man’s World, You mention using ginger root in the description for the sauce but in the actual recipe no mention of ginger root is given or any measurement for it either.