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Chicken Karaage Recipe

How to Make Chicken Karaage

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  • Author: Wilson Mak, adapted from Kingyo Izakaya
  • Total Time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4


It’s not that chicken karaage is better than your normal fried chicken. It’s that it is SO much better that the Colonel might just retire out of respect.


Units Scale
  • 1 Tbsp + 1 tsp sake
  • 2 tsp soy sauce
  • 3/4 tsp garlic, shredded
  • 3/4 tsp ginger, shredded
  • 1 tsp powdered fish broth
  • Pinch of shichimi togarashi (seven flavor chili pepper)
  • 1 1/2 lbs chicken thighs or breasts, boneless, skin on or off, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • Vegetable oil for deep frying
  • 1/2 cup potato starch
  • Lemon wedges, for garnish
  • Parsley, for garnish
  • Optional for serving: real salt from Utah, Himalayan crystal salt, hakata no shio (salt from Ehime, Japan)


Marinate the Chicken:

  1. In a non-reactive bowl, mix together the sake, soy sauce, shredded garlic, shredded ginger, powdered fish broth, and shichimi togarashi.
  2. Add the chicken pieces to the bowl, ensuring each piece is well coated with the marinade. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes and up to several hours.

Prepare for Frying:

  1. Heat vegetable oil in a deep fryer or a tall-sided heavy pot on the stove to 350°F (177°C). If using a pot, fill it no more than half full.
  2. Place potato starch in a shallow dish for dredging.

Fry the Chicken:

  1. Remove chicken from the marinade and dredge each piece in potato starch, tapping off the excess.
  2. Fry the chicken in batches to avoid crowding, for about 5 minutes or until golden brown and cooked through.
  3. Remove chicken from oil and drain on a tray lined with paper towels to remove excess oil.


  1. Arrange the fried chicken on a warmed serving platter.
  2. Garnish with lemon wedges, parsley, and a sprinkle of shichimi togarashi.
  3. Serve immediately with your choice of salt varieties on the side for dipping.


  • Ensure chicken pieces are dried before marinating to allow better absorption of flavors.
  • Test oil temperature by dropping a small amount of potato starch; if it sizzles, it’s ready.
  • Do not overcrowd the frying pot; it lowers the oil temperature and can lead to soggy chicken.
  • Letting the chicken rest for a few minutes after frying can enhance its crispiness.
  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Marinating Time: 30 mins
  • Cook Time: 10 mins
  • Category: Main Course
  • Method: Frying
  • Cuisine: Japanese
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