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Karaage chicken will make you give up the Colonel for good

Justina Huddleston is an editor and the head writer for TDmonthly Magazine. She has been a freelance writer for several years, though her real passion is cooking. You can see the recipes she creates on her vegan food blog, A Life of Litt...

This Japanese fried chicken will ruin you for its American cousin

Korean fried chicken has taken the culinary world by storm, knocking that secret-spiced Kentucky version off its 'Merica-centric pedestal.

But there's another batch of crispy chicken goodness in town that puts the K in KFC — we're talking Japanese chicken karaage. Luckily for us, there's literally no such thing as too much variety when it comes to delicious fried chicken, am I right?

More: 10 times this vegan fried 'chicken' hack totally blew our minds

Chicken karaage differs from its brethren in a couple of ways.

First, boneless chicken is generally used, which leads to less time picking around gnarly bones and more time chowing down.

Second, a secret technique to getting super-crispy karaage is to coat the meat in potato starch rather than in wheat flour.

The general method for making chicken karaage goes like this: Marinate chunks of boneless chicken (thigh meat and leg meat stay nice and juicy) in soy sauce, ginger and garlic, then dredge in potato starch, and deep-fry.

More: Food Porn Friday: 21 times fried chicken had us drooling

Karaage for beginners

The potato starch makes a light yet super-crispy, golden coating akin to tempura, but one that will stay crisp even when packed away in lunchboxes and picnic baskets for a few hours. It's like everything you've ever wanted your grandma's cold fried chicken to be, minus the gnawing through leathery skin and soggy breading.

So the next time you find yourself sighing wistfully over the fridge, thinking "chicken again?" when it comes time to make dinner, take heart — just when you think you've had every version of chicken under the sun, chicken karaage is here to save the day.

Serves 4

Prep time: 10 minutes | Marinate time: 30 minutes | Cook time: 12 – 16 minutes | Total time: 52 – 56 minutes


  • 8 skinless, boneless chicken thighs
  • 4 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon grated ginger root (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh garlic (optional)
  • 2 cups potato starch
  • Sunflower oil, for frying


    1. In a large bowl, combine the soy sauce with the ginger and garlic. Combine well, then add the chicken thighs. Marinate for 30 minutes.
    2. In a deep frying pan, heat the oil to 360 degrees F.
    3. Dredge each piece of chicken in the potato starch.
    4. Fry the chicken in batches, 3 – 4 at a time, until golden brown (approximately 6 – 8 minutes). Drain on crumpled paper towels. For extra-crispy chicken, fry the pieces a second time.

Before you go, check out our slideshow below:

This Japanese fried chicken will ruin you for its American cousin
Image: Salu Salo

This Japanese fried chicken will ruin you for its American cousin
Image: gontabunta/Getty / Design by Tiffany Egbert/SheKnows
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