Hot, but not overpowering. Cholula hot sauce is often referred to as the Flavorful Fire, and this firecracker chicken recipe really proves it. It is the only hot sauce in our house besides a bottle of habanero sauce (over 600,000 Scoville units). The habanero sauce is used sparingly and is there to bring heat and only heat. Cholula, on the other hand, brings a little bite and fantastic spicy flavors.
The firecracker chicken comes out almost like sweet-and-sour chicken in texture. After the first bite you’ll know that it tastes nothing like sweet-and-sour chicken! The sauce is great. Don’t be afraid to spoon it all over the rice, the chicken, the plate. Everything.
Also try my copycat of Panda Express SweetFire chicken.
For the chicken
- 1 cup cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2-4 tablespoons vegetable oil divided
- 2 pounds chicken tenderloins or breasts cut into bite-sized pieces
- 2 large eggs beaten
- 1 cup rice cooked
- 4 green onions sliced
For the sauce (I ended up doubling the amounts shown. The sauce is outstanding. More is better.)
- ⅓ cup Cholula hot sauce
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon water
- 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- Preheat oven to 325 F.
- Spray a 9″ x 13″ baking dish with non-stick spray.
- Put cornstarch, salt and pepper into a large resealable baggie. Seal and shake to combine.
- Add chicken to the baggie and seal and shake to coat well.
- Put beaten eggs into a small pie plate or bowl.
- Heat some of the oil in a large skillet over high heat.
- Working in batches, shake some of the excess corn starch off the chicken then place into the eggs. Rotate to coat, shake off the excess, and place into the hot skillet.
- Cook chicken 1-2 minutes per side until golden. You are not trying to cook the chicken completely, just get a nice color and bite.
- Remove chicken to the baking dish, spreading it out in one layer.
- Continue until all of the chicken is browned, adding more oil if necessary.
- Whisk together all of the sauce ingredients and pour over the chicken.
- Bake for 45 minutes to an hour, stirring and flipping the chicken every 15 minutes, until the chicken is done.
- Serve over warmed rice garnished with green onions.
Nutritional values are approximate.