Chicken Fire Poppers

Chicken Fire Poppers are bites of crunchy, sticky, sweet, spicy perfection!

Chicken Fire Poppers are panko crusted, skillet fried then dipped in the most glorious honey-brown sugar hot sauce you've ever tasted and baked until they are bites of crunchy, sticky, sweet, spicy perfection!

Chicken Fire Poppers sound like a funny recipe name, perhaps you’re guessing there is jalapeno and cream cheese inside? When I first came across the recipe on Friday I looked at it and thought, “wow that looks dangerous and delicious!” Then I set off to my favorite two places to research this recipe, Google and Pinterest.

Pinterest interestingly enough came up with NOTHING. This Chicken Fire Poppers recipe was simply not a even on the radar of Pinterest even with all of its pinterest-y characteristics… sweet, crispy, sticky, spicy, chicken bites. You would’ve expected it to be a hit! Chicken Fire Poppers are panko crusted, skillet fried then dipped in the most glorious honey-brown sugar hot sauce you've ever tasted and baked until they are bites of crunchy, sticky, sweet, spicy perfection!Google on the other hand only brought up 2-3 pages with reference to the cookbook these Chicken Fire Poppers came from. So I knew, I had to make this recipe and put it on Pinterest. When it came out of the oven looking as amazing as it did I texted a picture to my friend who had shared the recipe with me and said “Holy crap, this is the best thing ever!”

Here is the one disclaimer I have to make about this recipe. When you take your first bite you’re going to think this is the greatest recipe in the world. I mean look at this…. Chicken Fire Poppers are panko crusted, skillet fried then dipped in the most glorious honey-brown sugar hot sauce you've ever tasted and baked until they are bites of crunchy, sticky, sweet, spicy perfection!

And by your third bite you’re going to be doing a little fat kid happy dance because….well…this… Chicken Fire Poppers are panko crusted, skillet fried then dipped in the most glorious honey-brown sugar hot sauce you've ever tasted and baked until they are bites of crunchy, sticky, sweet, spicy perfection!

But if you get bold and try to eat a lot of it, say I don’t know, a big plateful? You may be feeling the effects of it later. You see the sauce the chicken is coated in is a glorious mixture of sugar, brown sugar, honey and hot sauce. Tastes amazing but in mass quantities it will make you feel like there is a brick in your stomach.

So take this as your official warning. This chicken is dangerously, amazingly good…in smaller quantities. Eat the whole batch at your own risk. My husband would probably eat a dinner sized portion of it given the opportunity but I’m listing it as an appetizer because, well, I love you all.
Tools used in this Chicken Fire Popper recipe:
Lodge Cast Iron Skillet – I use this pan for SO much it lives on my stovetop (hey, it isn’t laziness…the pan is HEAVY!).
Pig Tail Flipper – I use this *almost* more than I use tongs in the kitchen. Flipping is so quick and doesn’t smash foods.
Panko Breadcrumbs
Breading Station – I use this because the pans are wide with a flat bottom. If you have small rectangular plates use those, I wouldn’t use curved bowls for breading stations as it could knock some breading off.
Frank’s Hot Sauce – Source it locally in your grocery store if possible to save on the price, but this is the hot sauce you want!
Kirkland Signature Honey – Any real honey will work, just make sure what you are buying is actually pure honey. The amount of fake honey being sold out there is astronomical and it is just colored corn syrup. This bottle is great, I get it straight from Costco, but for the price and for the fact I know it is authentic honey, I keep it as my standby. Also, it has a nice mild flavor which is what you want for this recipe. Avoid floral honeys that would have a flavor battle with your hot sauce.

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Chicken Fire Poppers

Chicken Fire Poppers are panko crusted, skillet fried then dipped in the most glorious honey-brown sugar hot sauce you've ever tasted and baked until they are bites of crunchy, sticky, sweet, spicy perfection!
Yield 6 servings
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Course Appetizer
Cuisine American
Author Sabrina Snyder

Ingredients
 

  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 pound chicken tenders , cut into 1-2 inch pieces
  • 1 1/2 cups panko bread crumbs
  • Canola Oil for frying
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/3 cup Frank's hot sauce

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  • In a small bowl, beat the eggs with the garlic powder and onion powder.
  • In a second bowl add the panko crumbs.
  • Dip the chicken in the egg mixture, then coat with the panko crumbs.
  • In a large skillet or your cast iron skillet, heat about a half inch of canola oil over medium-high heat.
  • Fry the chicken on both sides until golden and crispy, about 2-3 minutes each side.
  • Don't worry about if the center is done, just get it crispy and browned, then put the pieces into a 9x13 baking pan.
  • In a bowl, combine the sugar, brown sugar, honey and hot sauce and mix to combine.
  • Pour the sauce over the fried chicken and carefully stir to make sure it is coated.
  • Bake the chicken, covered, for 15 minutes
  • Remove the chicken from the pan, and with a spatula to scrape out the sticky sauce, pour the sauce over the plate of chicken.

Notes

Adapted from CHIC Made Simple

Nutrition

Calories: 387kcal | Carbohydrates: 69g | Protein: 20g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 102mg | Sodium: 633mg | Potassium: 368mg | Sugar: 58g | Vitamin A: 100IU | Vitamin C: 1.1mg | Calcium: 56mg | Iron: 1.5mg
Keyword: Chicken Fire Poppers

 

Chicken Fire Poppers are panko crusted, skillet fried then dipped in the most glorious honey-brown sugar hot sauce you've ever tasted and baked until they are bites of crunchy, sticky, sweet, spicy perfection!
Chicken Fire Poppers are panko crusted, skillet fried then dipped in the most glorious honey-brown sugar hot sauce you've ever tasted and baked until they are bites of crunchy, sticky, sweet, spicy perfection!
Chicken Fire Poppers are panko crusted, skillet fried then dipped in the most glorious honey-brown sugar hot sauce you've ever tasted and baked until they are bites of crunchy, sticky, sweet, spicy perfection!

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the upcoming cookbook: Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients which is being published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

Dinner, then Dessert, Inc. owns the copyright on all images and text and does not allow for its original recipes and pictures to be reproduced anywhere other than at this site unless authorization is given. If you enjoyed the recipe and would like to publish it on your own site, please re-write it in your own words, and link back to my site and recipe page. Read my disclosure and copyright policy. This post may contain affiliate links.

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Comments

  1. Hi, if i fry the chicken a day ahead do i skip the oven part and just do it before serving?
    or can i have it ready with the sauce and in oven and just reheat the next day?

    1. The oven part helps make it this super sticky melded deliciousness. I would still do the oven part. You can of course serve it as a dipping sauce, but if you do it the other way it is SO GOOD. Heavy, lol, but GOOD. Happy Thanksgiving!

  2. Wow! This was sooo good. I couldn’t believe how crunchy it stayed after I put the sauce on the chicken and put it in the oven. Next time I will serve it over some jasmine rice. T

  3. hey there.
    can you please explain why you fry a bit and then put in oven?
    is it for health reasons as not to fry so much in oil, or does it enhance the whole crunchy thing?

    thnks 🙂

  4. Yes I did survived with a full yummy tummy but still had chicken to cook changed it up and baked chicken with planko like a shake and bake and then put on sauce just as good with no oil will keep you up to date as i play with this recipe ?

  5. OMG I Renamed this crack chicken so good ate hole batch in one sitting I’m sure my blood sugar was sky high but couldn’t stop, made with side dish salad and corn, A+ recipe yum yum.

    1. Yeah, this dish is no joke with all the sugars, but it is SO GOOD! Glad you enjoyed it, and survived it 😉

  6. going through my pins tonight and the two I decided to go ahead and cook were from your blog! thought that was funny, then as I’m skimming through I realized most of my recipes are from you. That’s so awesome! I made this tonight and it came out perfect. I may or may not be eating this with my husband for dinner and not as an appetizer lol.

    1. Not gonna lie – I have had this for dinner a few nights too! I’m so glad that a number of my recipes are striking your fancy!

  7. How funny you couldn’t find a similar recipe on Pinterest. Guess Pinterest needs to go back to school LOL

    I’ve never heard of fire poppers and although I’m not a big fan of spicy foods, I would love to give it a try. You know, like you said, an appetizer.

  8. These look totally addictive! I could easily eat the entire portion and that glaze, irresistible!

  9. I haven’t had breakfast yet but I totally want this for breakfast now…LOL! Yup… they look THAT good!

    1. I may or may not have had some for breakfast yesterday! O:) Totally true story, and I’m only mildly embarrassed by it.

  10. My mouth is watering all over my keyboard right now! I want to make these and not share with anyone, haha!

  11. I love panko bread because has a special crunch I can bet you these tenders are to die for!