With a light and super crispy golden brown fried coating and tender and juicy chicken inside, tempura is a much-loved Japanese classic, but you can make easy Chicken Tempura right at home!
I made this delicious tempura on my Blackstone Griddle, and I’ll show you how to do that, but you can also do it on your stovetop. Cut thin strips of chicken to make chicken fingers for a great appetizer cuisine.
Make this recipe for a quick and easy delicious meal that your whole family will love. Pair with a dipping sauce of your choice and some sweet potato fries or French fries.
Making Chicken Tempura on your Blackstone Griddle is an easy way to bring the kitchen outdoors. Why heat the kitchen frying inside when you can do it outside?
Plus, by deep-frying on your Blackstone flat top, you keep all those stinky frying fumes out of your kitchen. Don’t worry! I’ll walk you through how to make this tempura recipe on your outdoor griddle, but if you’d rather make it inside, I’ll show you how to do it that way, too.
My mother made this homemade chicken tenders recipe for us growing up and it was one of our favorite meals. When my kids would stay with her, she always made these breaded chicken tenders for them, and they would come home begging me to make it.
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What Is Chicken Tempura?
Usually found on menus in Japanese restaurants, tempura refers to items that have a light batter and fried. Tempura batter is different from other batters in that it is thinner, lighter, and crispier.
Tempura battered chicken, fish, vegetables, and more are quickly fried in very hot oil, resulting in super crispy morsels that are still tender and juicy inside. Japanese chicken tempura is very popular and easy to make at home.
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Is Tempura Deep Fried?
Yes, this tempura batter is deep fried. Cooking the tempura batter in very hot oil for frying helps to create a light crispy fried chicken. Crispy tempura cannot happen in an oven or air fryer.
What is Chicken Tempura made of?
Fried chicken tempura is a special way to fry the chicken strips in just a couple simple steps. Learn my easy steps to make other fry food that will pair well with foods of your choice. Fried chicken is just the first recipe of many to learn!!
- Drakes Mix
- Cold Water
- Chicken Breast
- Oil for frying (use frying oil, vegetable oil, or peanut oil)
Tip: To add a little extra flavor to your crispy batter chicken strips, before dipping the chicken strips into the batter, sprinkle a little garlic powder, seasoned salt, and black pepper. Try substituting a light beer for the cold water to make a beer batter.
How To Make Easy Chicken Tempura on Your Blackstone
To make the tempura batter combine the Drakes mix in a medium sized bowl with cold water and whisk it to remove a few lumps. Cut each chicken breast into long strips.
TIP: If using frozen chicken breast, cut them into strips while they are partially frozen. The chicken breasts will have a cleaner cut and make the thawing process go faster.
Fill a shallow pan with oil (about 1 to 2-inches deep) and fire up your Blackstone Griddle. You want your oil temperature to be 375°F, so heat the griddle as high as it needs to be to keep the oil at a consistent temperature. Use a digital thermometer to keep track of the proper temperature.
Add the chicken strips to the homemade chicken tempura batter and stir to coat all the chicken breast pieces. Using a fork, tongs, or chopsticks, lift a piece of battered chicken and let the excess homemade chicken tempura batter drip back into the bowl.
Place the coated chicken strips into the hot oil. Repeat with more chicken, but don’t overcrowd your pan and keep the chicken from touching.
You’ll need to work in batches. Cooking times will vary depending on how big your pan is, but the chicken will float to the top when they’re done.
Remove the crispy fried chicken from the hot oil when they have a golden-brown crust. Lay them on a plate lined with paper towels to drain the excess grease. Serve immediately while the chicken is hot.
How To Make Chicken Tempura on the Stove Top
Heat oil in a large skillet or wide pot until it reaches 375°F. Make sure to use a digital thermometer to stay at the right temperature. To make the tempura batter, mix the Drakes batter with cold water and whisk to remove lumps.
Working with one strip of chicken at a time, dip the chicken into the tempura batter, let the excess batter drip off, then lay the chicken into the hot oil. Repeat with more chicken, but don’t overcrowd the pan.
You’ll know it’s cooked when the chicken floats to the top and is golden-brown and crispy. Use tongs or a metal slotted spoon to fish the strips out of the hot oil and let them drain on a paper towel-lined plate.
Using the same method, you can also use a deep fryer to deep fry chicken tender strips.
What To Serve with This Chicken Tempura Recipe?
Tempura batter foods goes with so many different dishes, and you can serve these crispy chicken strips with various sides. Some of my favorites include:
- Blackstone Fried Rice – Or your favorite fried rice.
- Crispy Smashed Potatoes
- Sweet Potato Fries
- Air Fryer Arancini
- Chicken tempura bento box – fill a bento box with all your favorite Japanese sides.
You could also just nibble on them fresh out of the fryer or serve them as appetizers. Just add your favorite dipping sauces, and you’re good to go! This Pesto Aioli is tasty with the tempura strips.
How To Store Chicken Tenders
Chicken tempura tends to lose its crunch and crispiness the longer it sits, so this dish is best served piping hot. However, you can pack leftovers into an airtight container and store them in the fridge for up to 5 days.
If you have an air fryer, you can air fry the tempura strips to crisp them up again or bake them in the oven or toaster oven. They won’t be quite as crispy as fresh, but they won’t be soggy.
Chicken tenders in the freezer? This isn’t recommended; the batter will not survive the freezing and thawing process.
More Chicken Recipes
- Tempura Chicken Nuggets (crispy chicken pieces)
- Chicken Fried Rice
- Marinated Chicken Breasts
- Chicken Quesadillas
- Chicken Kabobs
- Mini Chicken and Cheese Quesadilla
Crispy Chicken Tenders Dipping Sauce
Lick Dob – Ketchup and Mayo Recipe
Sweet and Sour Sauce
Easy Chicken Tempura – Frequently Asked Questions
No, it’s not spicy. But you can certainly dip it into something spicy! Try your favorite hot sauce or Sriracha.
Yes! Just regulate the hot oil temperature (keep it at consistent 375°F) and don’t overcrowd the pan. It’s simple!
No. Drakes mix is made with wheat flour, but you can use a gluten-free tempura batter mix to make gluten-free chicken tempura.
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Chicken Tempura Recipe
Get the full recipe and nutrition calories below.
Recipe for Chicken Tempura
With a light and super crispy golden brown fried coating and tender and juicy chicken inside, tempura is a much-loved Japanese classic, but you can make easy Chicken Tempura right at home! I made this delicious tempura on my Blackstone Griddle, and I’ll show you how to do that, but you can also do it on your stovetop.
- Chicken Breast. 1 Pound
- Drake's Mix 1 cup
- Water, Cold 3/4 cup
- Oil for Frying
- To make the chicken tempura batter, combine the Drake's mix in a medium sized bowl with cold water and whisk it to remove any lumps.
- Cut each chicken breast into long strips by using a cutting board and sharp knife. TIP: If using frozen chicken breast, cut them into long strips while they are partially frozen.
- Fill a griddle proof pan with frying oil (about 1 to 2-inches deep) and fire up your Blackstone Griddle on high heat. You want your frying oil temperature to be 375°F, making sure to use a digital thermometer to keep track of the proper temperature.
- Add the chicken strips in batches to the tempura batter and stir to coat all the chicken breast pieces. Using a fork, or tongs, lift a piece of battered chicken and let the excess homemade tempura batter drip back into the bowl.
- Carefully, place the Drake's coated chicken strips into the hot oil. Continue with more chicken, but don’t overcrowd your pan and keep the chicken from touching. You’ll have to work in batches depending on the size of your hot oil pan. Cooking times will vary, but the chicken will float to the top when they’re done.
- Remove the crispy chicken tenders from the hot oil when they have a golden-brown crust. Lay them on a plate lined with paper towels. Serve immediately while the chicken strips are hot.
- If you don't have a Blackstone Griddle, fry your tempura chicken in a deep fryer, or a pan of hot oil on the stove.
- Serve with your favorite dipping sauce such as ranch dressing, lick dob (mayo and ketchup recipe), Sweet and Sour Sauce, and Ponzu Sauce.
- Store leftover chicken tempura in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 6 days.
As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. This page contains affiliate links. Click on the highlighted text in a post to explore a product. If you purchase through one of them, I will receive a commission (at no additional cost to you). I ONLY EVER ENDORSE PRODUCTS THAT I TRULY LOVE. Thank you for your support!
Blackstone 36" Cooking Station 4 Burner Propane Fuelled Restaurant Grade Professional 36 Inch Outdoor Flat Top Gas Griddle with Built in Cutting Board, Garbage Holder and Side Shelf (1825), Black
Member's Mark Peanut Oil, 35 Pound
Taylor Precision Products Programmable with Timer Instant Read Wired Probe Digital, Meat, Food, Grill BBQ Cooking Kitchen Thermometer with Timer, Gray
Amount Per Serving Calories 174Total Fat 6gSaturated Fat 1gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 4gCholesterol 77mgSodium 69mgCarbohydrates 0gFiber 0gSugar 0gProtein 28g
Note: For exact nutritional information, consult your dietitian. All nutritional information is simply a guideline.
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This came out SO crispy! Had it on top of rice bowls and it was awesome!
Thank you Shelby, I am glad that you liked my deep fried chicken strips recipe! I will have to try it on a rice bowl, that sounds delicious!
I love to eat chicken tempura in restaurants and I’ve been pleased with them in the past, then I came across this recipe and I have to say, hand on heart, this is the best recipe EVER! The flavors are just divine and my whole family (even the picky eaters) ate the lot in record time – thank you SO much, this one is a keeper!