Did you know that July 6 is National Fried Chicken Day? If you needed any convincing to indulge in your favorite fast food, then observing this holiday is a pretty good excuse. But here’s the thing: Homemade fried chicken is infinitely tastier and — dare I say — a teeny bit healthier than the chain stuff, especially when it’s in bite-sized popcorn chicken form. Try out our recipe below for bites that are perfect for dipping in tangy hot chili sauce — seriously, this should come with an “addictive” warning. Finger lickin’ good!

Celebrate National Fried Chicken day with super-addictive popcorn chicken with hot chilli sauce. Finger lickin' good!

Ingredients:

For dipping sauce

  • 7 ounces Sriracha
  • 2 ounces unsalted butter
  • 2 Tablespoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon garlic granules

Instructions:

  1. Place all the ingredients in a small saucepan and heat until butter melts.
  2. Simmer for five minutes, then leave to cool.
Hot chilli sauce

Ingredients:

For popcorn chicken

  • 8 skinless chicken thighs or tenders
  • 2 cups panco breadcrumbs
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon garlic granules
  • 1 teaspoon onion granules
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • chopped chives to serve
  • peanut or sunflower oil to fry
Popcorn chicken ingredients

Instructions:

  1. Cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces and discard any fat.
  2. Add the oregano, garlic and onion granules, paprika, and salt, and mix to coat. Leave to marinate for half an hour.
  3. Place the flour, buttermilk, and breadcrumbs in three separate bowls.
  4. Dip each piece of chicken into the flour, then the buttermilk, and finally in the breadcrumbs. Place on a wire rack. This will get a bit messy — use one hand to dip in the flour and buttermilk and your other hand to coat in the breadcrumbs. Or ask someone to help you!
  5. Pour enough oil to fill a deep pot about halfway. Heat the oil until it reaches 350 degrees Fahrenheit; ideally, check with a digital thermometer.
  6. Use a frying basket to lower 8-10 pieces of chicken into the hot oil at a time. The temperature will drop slightly — you want to maintain it at 300-325 degrees Fahrenheit while you cook. Any higher and the chicken will burn on the outside but remain raw inside!
  7. Cook for around 6 minutes, until crisp and golden. Drain on kitchen paper.
  8. Serve immediately, sprinkled with finely chopped chives, with a little bowl of the hot chili sauce on the side. Dip away!
Hot chilli sauce

Place all the dip ingredients in a small saucepan and heat until butter melts. Simmer for five minutes, then leave to cool.

Popcorn chicken

Cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces and discard any fat.

Popcorn chicken

Add the oregano, garlic and onion granules, paprika, and salt, and mix to coat. Leave to marinate for half an hour.

Popcorn fried chicken

Place the flour, buttermilk, and breadcrumbs in three separate bowls.

Dip each piece of chicken into the flour, then the buttermilk, and finally in the breadcrumbs. Place on a wire rack. This will get a bit messy — use one hand to dip in the flour and buttermilk and your other hand to coat in the breadcrumbs. Or ask someone to help you!

Popcorn fried chicken

Pour enough oil to fill a deep pot about halfway. Heat the oil until it reaches 350 degrees Fahrenheit; ideally, check with a digital thermometer.

Use a frying basket to lower 8-10 pieces of chicken into the hot oil at a time. The temperature will drop slightly — you want to maintain it at 300-325 degrees Fahrenheit while you cook. Any higher and the chicken will burn on the outside but remain raw inside!

Cook for around six minutes until crisp and golden. Drain on kitchen paper.

Celebrate National Fried Chicken day with super-addictive popcorn chicken with hot chilli sauce. Finger lickin' good!

Serve immediately, sprinkled with finely chopped chives, with a little bowl of the hot chili sauce on the side. Dip away!

Celebrate National Fried Chicken day with super-addictive popcorn chicken with hot chilli sauce. Finger lickin' good!

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