Taiwanese chicken steak- how to get the outstanding crunchy texture

The first time I tried this amazing Taiwanese chicken steak was at a night market called Shilin in Taipei, Taiwan. I was fascinated by the insane size of the steaks, which the local described by comparing to the dimension of the face. It is thin and large, look-alike schnitzel snack with a crumbly, crispy and crunchy coating.  The surface is dusted liberally with a mix of chili powder and pepper.

This delightful Taiwanese chicken steak has slowly entered into other countries. One successful chains store from Taiwan is Hot Star, with outlets across Taiwan, Australia, Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Canada, Hong Kong, China, and Thailand. The main cities of these countries are now in the grip of this Taiwanese chicken streak frenzy from the Hot Star fried chicken chain. We can also find it at street stores and night markets in Malaysia.  They serve this enormous size chicken steak among the array of other local sumptuous delights.

However, there is little information about how to prepare this finger-licking street food.  There is only some sporadic information about Taiwanese chicken steak written in the native language. Therefore, I have decided to take on this recipe and explain how to make it in English.

Taiwanese chicken steak

Huge size chicken steaks

The size of the Taiwanese chicken steak is about 30cm long, which is even unable to achieve by butterflying just once. That is why I did it by butterflying twice to form a larger piece with a sharp knife and pound it with a meat mallet. The purpose is to create a thin piece of chicken which is the secret of success to replicate this recipe.

What the major difference of this oriental style chicken steak compares with the traditional schnitzel is the coating of the chicken. Sweet potato flour is used in this recipe to render the crunchiness. Other oriental foods such as the Japanese karaage include this type of flour for the crunchiness and crispness. If sweet potato flour is unavailable, the closest substitute you can reply on is cornflour.

Try this Taiwanese chicken steak recipe for your next culinary adventure in your kitchen. This recipe is the closest copy of the Hot Star fried chicken as the recipe is a trade secret.  However, I  guarantee that this will be a total crowd pleaser.

Watch this Taiwanese chicken steak recipe video ( 3.06 minutes)

Here is my Taiwanese chicken steak recipe (closest copy to the Hot Star fried chicken)


5.0 from 3 reviews
Taiwanese chicken steak- Hot Star fried chicken recipe
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: Taiwanese
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2
This is the replica of the Hot Star fried chicken from Taiwan, which is one of the most famous Taiwanese street food.
Ingredient AHot Star fried chicken
  • 600g of chicken breast
  • A stalk of spring onion
  • 30g of ginger
  • 20g of minced garlic
  • 2 teaspoons of soy sauce
  • ½ teaspoon of salt
  • 1 teaspoon of sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon of white pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon of five spice powder
  • 2 tablespoons of white wine
  • 1 tablespoon of flour
  • ½ teaspoon of baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon of water
Ingredient B
  • 1 part of rice flour
  • 1 part of sweet potato flour
Ingredient C- Seasoning mixture
  • ¼ teaspoon of salt
  • ¼ teaspoon of ground white pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon of chili powder
  1. Remove the skin of the chicken breast.
  2. Butterfly the chicken breast twice with a sharp knife.
  3. Flatten the chicken breast with the back of the knife.
  4. Put the chicken into the mixture of ingredient A and mix well.
  5. Put the chicken to a bed of the mixture of ingredients B. Make sure it fully covered with flour.
  6. Shake off the excess flour.
  7. Deep fried the chicken immediately in hot oil over high heat (above 180°C/ 350°F) until golden brown.
  8. Remove the chicken with tongs and chopsticks.
  9. Place it on a kitchen towel or a metal rack.
  10. Mix all the ingredients C.
  11. Sprinkle the seasoning mixture onto the chicken.
  12. Serve with rice or coleslaw.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 730g Calories: 1120 Fat: 20g Carbohydrates: 40g Sugar: 6g Sodium: 2.1g Protein: 180g

10 Tips to prepare a perfect Taiwanese chicken steak


  • Baking soda help to make the coating crunchy and crispy.
  • The purpose of adding some water to the marinade is to keep the thin slices of chicken moist. However, Do not use too much soy sauce and water in the marinate mixture.  The chicken will turn out to be gooey and not crispy it contains too much moisture.
  • Some recipe suggests marinating the chicken for a few hours.  It is not necessary as the chicken steak is thin can absorb the flavor in a very short time.
  • Getting sweet potato flour in some countries may be difficult. You can use cornstarch as the substitute when necessary.
  • Some people likes to have a chicken with a more crunchy coating. To do this, set the chicken aside for half a minute and double coat it by putting into the bed of sweet potato flour for the second time.
  • Taiwanese use white pepper to prepare the chicken, but black pepper is an adequate substitute. However, it just won’t give you the taste of the authentic Taiwanese chicken steak that you get at the night market in Taiwan.

Taiwanese chicken steak

The deep-frying process

  • Deep fried the chicken immediately after dipping it into the mixture of rice and potato flour. If you set it aside for too long, the chicken will absorb the flour coating and it will not longer turns out crunchy and crispy.
  • Use a large wok or pan to deep fried the chicken steaks. You may face the situation where there is insufficient space to deep fried the chicken without curling it up to the edge of the wok.
  • Deep fried the chicken at or above 180°C/350°F to make it crispy. The chicken should be sizzling, and even popping.
  • The composition of the seasoning sprinkled on the surface of the chicken steaks can be modified according to your preference. You can start with the standard formula by mixing some fine salt, white pepper, and chili powder. You can add a small amount of five-spice powder or ground Szechuan peppercorn.

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Taiwanese chicken steak- how to get the outstanding crunchy texture was last modified: December 25th, 2017 by KP Kwan


  • KP Kwan

    Reply Reply August 6, 2016

    Hi, this is KP Kwan. I am happy to see you at this comment area, as you have read through my recipe. I am happy to reply any questions and comments as soon as possible.

  • wlong

    Reply Reply August 8, 2016

    Not sure if I mentioned this before but your sodium amount in the recipe is way off.

    Two serving with 2 teaspoons of salt equals 4650 grams of sodium which in the U.S. is 325 grams per serving over the amount of sodium (2000 per person) for one day’s TOTAL intake.

    Recipe looks good and will try it with reduced sodium and hope it doesn’t change the taste to much.

    • KP Kwan

      Reply Reply August 8, 2016

      Thank your for pointing out the sodium content. A significant amount of sodium comes from the seasoning sprinkled on the chicken. I did not sprinkle all on the chicken, and keep the remainder for future use. So you I suggest you just mix a quarter teaspoon of salt, pepper, and some chili powder, so there will be no wastage. I have amended the recipe and reduce some salt too. Appreciate your attention. It should not affect the flavor.

  • Jason

    Reply Reply June 11, 2017

    I was thinking to add rice flour on mixture B and additional breadcrumbs to make it even more crispy. Does rice flour makes chicken even more crispier when fried if i’m not mistaken? I got his idea from my father. And instead of using 1 tbsp of water how about susbtitute it for 1 tbsp of egg white?

    • KP Kwan

      Reply Reply June 11, 2017

      Hi Jason,

      Rice flour can make it crispy so go for it. If you want to make it very crispy, try adding some baking powder to the flour mix. I suggest every 100g of flour for coating, add 4g of baking powder.
      As for egg white, it may not has much impact as the amount is small.


      KP Kwan

  • Lanny

    Reply Reply October 18, 2017

    Since 99% my customer is Moslem, how can I substitute the white wine ? Thank you.

    • KP Kwan

      Reply Reply October 18, 2017

      Hi Lanny,
      I completely understand your concern since I am leaving in Malaysia, a country with a large Muslim population just like you.
      I usually just substitute the alcohol with chicken stock, and it does working well.


      KP Kwan

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