Japanese Crispy Chicken

"I made this last summer holidays when I went back to Japan.It's really crispy and really nice, and you can serve it with fried sweet potato (satsuma imo), which we cook like french fries."
photo by The Flying Chef photo by The Flying Chef
photo by The Flying Chef
photo by The Flying Chef photo by The Flying Chef
Ready In:


  • Marinade

  • 3 tablespoons sake
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • Chicken

  • 4 bone-in chicken thighs, skin on
  • salt and pepper, for taste
  • 12 cup cornstarch
  • oil, to deep fry


  • Marinade:

  • Mix all the ingredients together.
  • Chicken:

  • Trim off all the yellow fat from the chicken.
  • Prick it all over with a fork.
  • Rub the salt and pepper into the chicken.
  • Marinate the chicken for about 30 minutes.
  • Heat the oil for deep frying in a wok or deep pan.
  • Dry the chicken with the kitchen paper.
  • Coat the chicken with the corn starch.
  • Shake off any extra corn starch.
  • Deep fry until nice and golden colour and cooked through.
  • We can tell by how it feels, but you might check it with a skewer and see that no red juices are running.

Questions & Replies

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  1. XkittyX
    Love this recipe followed it exactly and my husband who hates dark meat loved this he could not belive that it was not chicken breast!!
  2. mle234
    This recipe is good. I'm new at deep-frying so I decided to only fry two thighs and broil the other parts of a whole chicken. The broiled chicken turned out fine, I just might suggest increasing the sake,soy, and sugar (since I'm not a big fan of the balsamic flavor). However, the fried thighs were a mess (this may be because I don't have a temperature controlled deep-fryer and the thighs were skinless). They were charred and burned because the inside wasn't cooking (so I had to cut them to allow the oil to reach the inside). I would suggest frying boneless bite-size pieces of chicken instead of whole thighs.
  3. Ilovemy4kids
    This was LOVED by all my children. I used chicken breast, but other than that, followed the recipe faithfully. Thank you so much for sharing.
  4. The Flying Chef
    Very delicious, I had a mix of chicken thighs, legs and wings so I used them all absolutely wonderful. I marinated mine for the day not just the 30 min's they had a wonderful flavour. I also did the same as another chef and boiled the marinade added some cornflour to thicken and served as a dipping sauce, Yum Yum. My son who is not keen on chicken with the bone stil in asked for seconds. I might try making this again with chicken breasts next time like a couple of others have done. Very good will definitely be making again thanks for posting Tomoko. There is nothing like a recipe that is quick and easy to do and also tastes great!!!
  5. CraftScout
    I am going to say it, this is the best fried chicken I have ever eaten, much less made! I ended up marinating it overnight (the chicken wasn't defrosted), but otherwise made as the recipe states. I can't really describe why it is so delicious. The flavors just blend together so well. All three of my boys agree, with my 16 month old, saying "Mm MMM!" with his mouth full of chicken. :) Thank you so much for posting this wondeful wonderful recipe!


Hello! I'm Tomoko Matsunaga from Japan. my host mom, Jan("JanRoundOz"she and her husband Russell are great cook, check their recipe!) introduced me this website about 3 years ago, and ever since, whenever I need to serch for the recipe,I use this site! I am currently in Australia and studying cookery. I learnt a lot of cooking tips that I didnt know from school and It's great to learn cooking with people who are also interested in cooking! I love cooking at home and I try to cook different food everyday like my host parents used to do! ;) Eventhough I am Japanese, my favourite cuisine is Italian (yet, I still love Japanese food)and most of the time the food that I make is Italian. but nowdays, Im also into Thai food and I love the flavour of Coriander! I'd love to learn more about cookin and great recipes from all of you who are cooking expert!!!
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