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Hawaiian Style Chili Chicken Recipe

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Hawaiian style chili chicken is a crispy, golden brown fried chicken dipped in a chili, shoyu, sugar sauce and meant to be enjoyed by all. Make this for your next potluck and you’ll be sure to please.

chili chicken on a plate

If you’ve ever tried Pukalani Superette’s chili chicken on Maui, then you know how yummy this is. Crispy, golden brown fried chicken dipped in a sweet sauce with a hint of spice. 

Chili chicken is a favorite dish amongst the locals in Hawai’i and makes the perfect plate lunch dish. I mean what’s better than good old fried chicken?

If you’re looking for other ultimate plate lunch ideas check out these recipes: chicken katsu, loco moco, mochi crunch shrimp, and chow fun.

If you’re not on Maui or can’t make the journey up the mountain you’re in luck because now you can cook up your own batch at home.

Ingredients for chili chicken

  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup shoyu
  • 1-3 Hawaiian chili peppers
  • 2 pounds chicken thighs
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon garlic salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • frying oil of choice
chili chicken ingredients

Don’t like chicken thighs? No problem. Any cut of chicken will work for this recipe.

If you don’t have Hawaiian chili peppers you can sub this out with red chili flakes or the chili pepper of your choice.

If you’re not much of a spice fan mochiko chicken isn’t spicy and has a slightly sweet taste.

What is a Hawaiian chili pepper?

Hawaiian chili peppers are a small variety of yellow-orange to red color peppers that pack on the heat. 100,000 to 250,000 SHU on the Scoville scale.

hawaiian chil peppers

What is shoyu?

Shoyu is a Japanese style soy sauce. This can be found in most grocery stores in the Asian aisle.

Can you make this recipe gluten free?

You sure can. Swap out all purpose flour for mochiko flour and use Tamari instead of shoyu. Perfect for gluten allergies and intolerances.

What oil should I use to fry chili chicken?

I like to use avocado oil to fry my Hawaiian style chili chicken, but you can use any frying oil of your choice. Be sure to use a high smoke point oil.

close up of chili chicken

What is smoke point?

The smoke point of an oil is the temperature at which an oil stops simmering and starts smoking. Once oils hit their smoke point, they start breaking down. This break down causes a chemical release that gives food a burnt taste and possibly harm the body.

How hot should my oil be when frying?

Generally you want your oil to be heated through to 350-375F.

How to make Hawaiian style chili chicken?

To a medium size mixing bowl add brown sugar, shoyu, and chili peppers. Whisk to combine and set aside.

Next begin heating the frying oil of your choice in a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Heat oil to 350-375F.

Add flour, garlic salt, and pepper to a shallow dish. To another shallow dish add eggs and whisk to combine the eggs.

Now batter the chicken. Place chicken in to the flour mixture first being sure to coat the entire surface. Shake off the excess. Then dip in the eggs again being sure to coat the entire surface. And lastly, dip the chicken back in to the flour to coat one last time.

Place the chicken in the oil and fry until golden brown or about 7-10 minutes on each side.

Once chicken has finished frying, remove from oil and drain on a paper towel or cooling rack set over a cookie sheet.

While the chicken is still hot, dip the chicken in the chili, shoyu, sugar mix and quickly remove and set aside. Continue until all pieces of chicken have been dipped into the sauce. ENJOY!

Hawaiian Style Chili Chicken

Hawaiian Style Chili Chicken

Yield: 6 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes

Hawaiian style chili chicken is a crispy, golden brown fried chicken dipped in a chili, shoyu, sugar sauce, and meant to be enjoyed by all. Make this for your next potluck and you’ll be sure to please.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup shoyu
  • 1-3 Hawaiian chili peppers, sliced
  • 2 pounds chicken thighs
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon garlic salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • frying oil of choice

Instructions

  1. To a medium size mixing bowl add brown sugar, shoyu, and chili peppers. Whisk to combine and set aside.
  2. Next begin heating the frying oil of your choice in a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Heat oil to 350-375F.
  3. Add flour, garlic salt, and pepper to a shallow dish. To another shallow dish add eggs and whisk to combine the eggs.
  4. Now batter the chicken. Place chicken in to the flour mixture first being sure to coat the entire surface. Shake off the excess. Then dip in the eggs again being sure to coat the entire surface. And lastly, dip the chicken back in to the flour to coat one last time.
  5. Place the chicken in the oil and fry until golden brown or about 7-10 minutes on each side.
  6. Once chicken has finished frying, remove from oil and drain on a paper towel or cooling rack set over a cookie sheet.
  7. While the chicken is still hot, dip the chicken in the chili, shoyu, sugar mix and quickly remove and set aside. Continue until all pieces of chicken have been dipped in to the sauce. ENJOY!

Notes

*If you like more or less heat adjust the chili peppers as desired.

*You can use any cut of chicken for this recipe.

*Make this recipe gluten free by using Mochiko flour instead of the all-puropse flour and Tamari instead of shoyu.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 493Total Fat: 25gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 18gCholesterol: 256mgSodium: 558mgCarbohydrates: 29gFiber: 1gSugar: 16gProtein: 40g

Nutrition information isn’t always accurate.

Did you make this recipe?

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chili chicken

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By on May 27th, 2020

About Relle

Aloha, my name is Relle and welcome to my little home on the internet where I like to share all my favorite Hawaiian recipes (and local ones too).

I am a wife, mom of two, and nurse practitioner here in the beautiful state of Hawai’i. I was born and raised in Hawai’i and I am of native Hawaiian descent. In my spare time I love to cook and bake and I have compiled many of my favorite recipes here for you to enjoy.

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