Sweet Chili Chicken is bite-sized pieces of seasoned chicken breasts nestled in a sweet and spicy sauce with a blend of savory, sweet, and tangy flavors. The chicken is delicious on its own, but to make it a main dish, serve it over rice or noodles. Add a side of vegetables for a complete meal. The sauce is even better when made with homemade Sweet Chili Sauce.
Ingredients & Substitutions
Chicken: I prefer chicken breasts for this recipe. However, you could certainly use chicken thighs, but the cooking time may need to be adjusted. Shrimp or fish (like cod) would also be delicious choices for protein. But, again, adjust the cooking time as needed for the protein you are using.
Cornstarch: By coating the chicken bites in cornstarch before pan-frying, you can achieve a crispy texture that perfectly complements the juicy chicken inside.
Sauce: The sweet chili sauce forms the foundation of this sauce, lending sweetness with a subtle kick of spice. Soy sauce contributes a savory taste, while sriracha sauce offers a burst of heat. Additionally, minced garlic and ground ginger add depth and complexity to the flavor profile. Lastly, honey provides a gentle sweetness that perfectly balances out the sauce’s spiciness.
Garnish: Although optional, the green onions and sesame seeds add flavor, texture, and visual appeal to the dish.
Is Sweet Chili Chicken Spicy?
The sweet chili sauce does have some heat to it, but it is something that can easily be adjusted. For one thing, you could leave out the sriracha sauce while still having a nice balance of sweet, salty, and spicy flavors. When it comes to the Thai sweet chili sauce, that will depend on the brand you choose, or what pepper you add to it if making it homemade.
Can I Make This Ahead of Time?
Yes! To save time, you can make the sauce ahead of time and store it in the refrigerator. In fact, storing the sauce for a few days gives it time for all of the flavors to come together even more. It will last in an airtight container in the refrigerator for several days. When ready to use, give the sauce a good stir.
How to Store Sweet Chili Chicken
If you have any leftovers of sweet chili chicken, store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator. It will last up to 3-4 days.
Sweet Chili Chicken
- 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts, about 1 pound
- ¼ cup (32 g) cornstarch
- ½ teaspoon paprika
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- 3 tablespoons canola oil, for frying
- ¼ cup (68 g) Thai sweet chili sauce
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 teaspoons sriracha sauce
- 1 teaspoon garlic, minced
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 2 cups cooked white rice, for serving
- green onions, chopped for garnish
- sesame seeds, for garnish
- Pat the chicken dry and cut each chicken breast into ½-inch cubes.
- In a large bowl, combine cornstarch, paprika, salt, and pepper. Add the chicken, tossing to coat.
- In a large, nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, add oil.* Once hot, add the chicken to the pan and cook until golden brown on all sides (about 5-7 minutes). Chicken is fully cooked when it reaches an internal temperature of 165°F. Transfer the chicken to a plate and tent to keep warm as you make the sauce.
- To the same skillet, add the Thai sweet chili sauce, soy sauce, sriracha, garlic, ginger, and honey. Stir together and cook until heated through.
- Add the cooked chicken back into the sauce and toss to coat evenly.
- Serve over cooked white rice, garnished with chopped green onions and sesame seeds.
Did you make this recipe?
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