Sticky Asian Chicken

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This Sticky Asian Chicken is an EASY 4 ingredient recipe that is going to rock your weeknight dinners. Salty soy sauce, sweet brown sugar, and spicy garlic chili paste combine to make one of the easiest Asian-inspired marinades you can imagine.

I’m including directions for baking, broiling, or pan-frying this chicken on the stove-top. However you choose to make it, the result is an Asian chicken recipe that’s better than anything you can find at a restaurant.

Sticky Asian Chicken is a sweet, salty, spicy blend of flavors that no one can resist! Get the recipe at barefeetinthekitchen.com

Sticky Asian Chicken

My middle son cheers every single time I make this chicken. Lucky for him, it’s so easy to make that it has found its way to our dinner table countless times over the past five years.

The inspiration for this recipe happened a while back when I accidentally picked up a jar of garlic chili paste while grocery shopping. I was looking for my favorite chili paste, Sambal Oelek, and in a moment of distraction, I picked up the wrong one.

The garlic chili paste looks similar to Sambal Oelek but has a slightly different flavor that I really liked. The garlic gives the dish a different layer of heat without actually being spicy.

If you can’t locate garlic chili paste, Sticky Asian Chicken is easy to make without it. Just add minced garlic to your favorite plain chili paste. It’s an easy hack that works great in this recipe when you’re in a pinch!

Speaking of the chili paste, you can adjust the amount of chili paste as desired. The amount of paste you add will determine how spicy the finished Asian Chicken will be.

If you’re spice lovers, feel free to use as many as 6 tablespoons of the stuff. Those who are less spice tolerant might start with 4 and go from there. For my kids, I used 4 tablespoons and it was perfect.

Asian Chicken Recipe

Too often, Asian chicken recipes are either too spicy for my kids or too bland for me. This recipe is neither.

The sugar in the recipe balances out and there was hardly any heat. Even though the chicken wasn’t that spicy, it was completely full of rich flavor.

My middle son enjoyed this so much, he ate four drumsticks the first time I made this and would have happily eaten more.

Asian Marinade

While the chicken is cooking, a portion of the marinade is simmered on the stovetop until slightly thickened and reduced. Drizzle the thickened marinade over the finished cooked chicken and be prepared for one of the tastiest chicken dinners of your life.

The portion of the marinade you’ll simmer should be set aside BEFORE adding raw chicken to the rest of the marinade.

Remember to discard any marinade that has touched raw chicken, for food safety.

You only need FOUR ingredients to make this irresistible Sticky Asian Chicken! Get the recipe at barefeetinthekitchen.com

Sticky Asian Chicken Recipe

Kitchen Tip: I use this measuring cup, this whisk, and this baking sheet to make this recipe.

The most time-consuming part of this recipe is letting the chicken marinate for a few hours. While it takes 4 – 6 hours to really let the chicken soak up that good sauce, it’s hands-off time.

I like to prep the marinade and the chicken early in the day and let it marinate while I do other things. Then, a couple of hours before dinner, I remove the chicken from the fridge to bring it to room temperature.

Drumsticks are our favorite cut of meat to use in this recipe. Skinless chicken breasts and boneless chicken thighs also work great!

You will just need to adjust your cooking times to the type of cut. Boneless thighs and breasts will usually take about half as long as bone-in cuts of chicken.

Baking Directions

Baking is one of my favorite easy ways to cook chicken and this recipe is no exception. After just 40 minutes or so in the oven, each piece of chicken is tender, juicy and flavorful.

If you enjoy oven baked Asian chicken, let me the first to insist you also try my beloved {5 Minute} Sheet Pan Chicken Dinner. It’s another easy and kid-friendly dinner meal that my family requests constantly.

Broiling Directions

Another even faster way of cooking this chicken is to place it under the broiler for about 10 minutes. My family also really loved the way the chicken tasted when it was broiled. This is a great option for busy nights when you need a tasty meal and don’t have time to waste.

Pan-Frying Directions

If you prefer your chicken cooked on the stove-top, this recipe works great with a pan-frying method of cooking. I let each piece cooking in the pan, covered, until deeply brown and crispy.

Pan Fried Italian Chicken Thighs are another great stove top chicken recipe I love that results in perfect crispy chicken pieces every time.

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You only need FOUR ingredients to make this irresistible Sticky Asian Chicken! Get the recipe at barefeetinthekitchen.com

Sticky Asian Chicken

5 from 6 votes
Sticky Asian Chicken can be baked or broiled in the oven, cooked on the stove-top, or grilled. However you cook it, this chicken is irresistible!
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Servings: 8 servings

Ingredients 

  • 4 pounds chicken about 12-16 drumsticks, depending on size
  • 1 1/2 cups low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 4-6 tablespoons garlic chili paste or a chili paste like Sambal Oelek plus 2 cloves minced garlic

Instructions

  • Combine the soy sauce, sugar and chili paste in a large measuring cup or bowl and whisk to combine. Pour HALF the marinade into a separate container and refrigerate until needed, this will be the glaze on the chicken.
  • Place the chicken in a gallon-size zipclose bag or airtight container. Cover with the remaining marinade and seal. Place in the refrigerator, turning the bag every hour or two until ready to cook. Marinate for 4 – 6 hours.
  • 30 – 60 minutes before you are ready to cook, remove the chicken from the refrigerator and place it on the counter to come closer to room temperature.

Oven Baking Directions

  • Preheat the oven to 400 degress. Place the chicken pieces on a foil lined baking sheet, discard all the marinade that has touched the chicken. Bake the chicken for 30 minutes.
  • Remove the chicken from the oven, turn pieces over and return the chicken to the oven. Bake an additional 8-10 minutes until the juices run clear when pierced with a knife. While the chicken finishes baking, place the clean reserved marinade in a small saucepan and bring it to a boil for at least 1 minute. Reduce to a low simmer for about 5 minutes.
  • Serve the chicken with the slightly reduced marinade sauce drizzled over the chicken. Enjoy!

Broiling Directions

  • Preheat the oven to broil. Place the chicken pieces on a foil lined baking sheet, discard all the marinade that has touched the chicken. Broil the chicken for 10 minutes. Place the clean reserved marinade in a small saucepan and bring it to a boil for at least 1 minute. Reduce to a low simmer while the chicken cooks.
  • Remove the chicken from the oven, turn pieces over and lightly baste with the marinade. Return the chicken to the oven and cook another 5 – 8 minutes until the juices run clear when pierced with a knife. Serve the chicken with the slightly reduced marinade sauce drizzled over the chicken. Enjoy!

Pan Frying Directions

  • Warm a non-stick skillet over medium heat. Place the chicken pieces in the skillet skin side down, discard all the marinade that has touched the chicken. Cover the chicken with a lid and allow it to cook without touching it for about 10 minutes. Place the clean reserved marinade in a small saucepan and bring it to a boil for at least 1 minute and then reduce to a low simmer while the chicken cooks.
  • Turn the chicken over. The skin should be super crispy and deeply browned. If it is not, increase the heat and let
  • it cook a couple more minutes before turning it. Turn the chicken and let the other side brown for another 5-10 minutes, depending on the size of the pieces. Serve the chicken with rice, with the slightly reduced marinade sauce either drizzled over the chicken or on the side. Enjoy!

Notes

Drumsticks are our favorite for this recipe, although it works great with other cuts of chicken as well. I have also used boneless skinless chicken thighs or chicken breasts with success. Simply adjust the cooking time as necessary. Thighs and breasts will take about half as long to cook as bone-in pieces, maybe slightly longer than that, depending on thickness.

Nutrition

Calories: 314kcal · Carbohydrates: 16g · Protein: 25g · Fat: 17g · Saturated Fat: 5g · Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g · Monounsaturated Fat: 7g · Trans Fat: 1g · Cholesterol: 82mg · Sodium: 1801mg · Potassium: 392mg · Fiber: 1g · Sugar: 14g · Vitamin A: 152IU · Vitamin C: 2mg · Calcium: 38mg · Iron: 2mg
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{originally published 9/27/2012 – recipe notes and photographs updated 4/26/22}

Sticky Asian Glazed Chicken can be baked, broiled, grilled, or pan-fried! Get the recipe at barefeetinthekitchen.com

More Chicken Recipes

When you’re busy and have a family to feed, you can never have enough chicken recipes.

If you like this recipe you might also enjoy my Asian Chicken Salad recipe, Spicy Bacon and Chicken Stir-Fry and Ginger Chicken and Broccoli Stir-Fry.

Give Copycat Chick-fil-A Nuggets by Chocolate Chocolate and More a try next time you’re having a fast-food craving. Buffalo Chicken Spinach Alfredo by 365 Days of Baking is a delicious take on chicken and pasta.

Creamy Spinach Artichoke Chicken by Spend with Pennies and Slow-Cooker Chicken Tacos by Love from the Oven are two more great chicken recipes to add to your list.

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Mary Younkin

Mary Younkin

Hi, I’m Mary. I’m the author, cook, photographer, and travel lover behind the scenes here at Barefeet In The Kitchen. I'm also the author of three cookbooks dedicated to making cooking from scratch as simple as possible.

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  1. Sara F says

    This is SOOO delicious!! I didn’t add a full 1.5 cups of soy sauce, just because I didn’t have enough. But, even with that modification….this chicken was perfect. I made it and put it on top of an Asian style salad with mandarins and a peanut butter based salad dressing. I’m saving this recipe for sure!!!!!5 stars

  2. Susan Nelson Thibault says

    Delicious!
    I didn’t read far enough through, a bad habit of mine and didn’t reserve any of the marinade for the glaze. At the end, I brushed them with honey and it worked out splendidly!5 stars

  3. Trisha says

    Yes Hi.
    I’m excited about making this tomorrow for dinner, can you by any chance put these in an air fryer to cook?