A favorite Spicy Crispy Chicken Burger that packs some heat, inspired by KFC’s Zinger Burger and the Indonesian-style crispy Ayam Geprek (“smashed chicken”).
Never would I have thought that US fast food joints would grip my attention and keep me on the edge of my seat over the past 2 years. But lo and behold, we’ve had the ongoing famous Chicken Sandwich Wars to keep us entertained!
Who’s the winner of this craze? You decide. But with all the chicken burgers that have been popping up, I started to get an intense craving for KFC’s Zinger Burger. Sadly though, it’s been discontinued in the US. So I decided to make one myself!
CRISPY CHICKEN ZINGER BURGER WITH A TWIST
The Zinger Burger or Zinger Sandwich uses KFC’s fried chicken recipe for the patty, with an added spicy heat to its seasonings. It’s served between toasted buns with some lettuce and a delicious creamy sauce.
I tweaked the method of preparing the chicken by incorporating ways from making Indonesian-style Ayam Geprek (“smashed chicken”). This means we don’t use the wet milky-style batter that’s more popular in the US. Instead, coat the chicken in a mixture of egg whites and flour, followed by an ice water bath, then again in the batter. The chicken will turn out super crispy and crunchy.
TIPS FOR SPICY CRISPY CHICKEN BURGER
- Ice Water Bath – I know this might sound a little strange, but trust me on this. By dipping the chicken in the ice water bath between coats of batter, the chicken absorbs and grabs on to the flour better. Allow the chicken to rest for a few minutes after the final coating before frying. You will end up with a crunchy crust on your chicken.
- Boneless chicken thigh – Use chicken thighs for a juicier patty.
- Zinger Burger Sauce – The sauce is a simple mix of mayo, sweet chili sauce, Sriracha, light soy sauce, vinegar and chili flakes (for extra heat).
Looking for more Chicken recipes? Check these out:
- Chinese Crispy Lemon Chicken
- Malaysian Creamy Butter Chicken
- Cheesy Korean Fried Chicken
- Easy 15-Minutes Chicken Teriyaki (No Mirin and Sake)
Spicy Crispy Chicken Burger
- 4 boneless chicken thighs see notes
- 2 egg whites
- 1 tbsp flour
- 1 tbsp gochugaru see notes
- 1 tbsp paprika
- 1 tbsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp sugar
- 2 cups flour
- 1 tbsp gochugaru
- 1 tbsp paprika
- 1 tbsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp baking powder
Spicy Creamy Sauce
- 2 tbsp Japanese mayo
- 1 tbsp sweet chili sauce
- 1 tbsp Sriracha
- 1/2 tbsp light soy sauce
- 1/2 tbsp rice vinegar or white vinegar
- 1/2 tbsp chili flakes
- 3 cups ice cold water
- burger buns
- American cheese slices
- Mix all the wet seasoning better in a bowl.
- Add chicken thigh and coat every single piece with the marinate.
- Marinate for at least 3 hours or overnight.
- Mix all the dry mix ingredients in a bowl.
- Mix all the sauce ingredients together in a bowl.
- Take a piece of the chicken thigh and lightly dredge it in the dry mix. Making sure every inch is coated.
- Dip the chicken in ice cold water for 5 seconds, careful not to rub off the flour coat.
- After lifting the chicken out of the water, wait for 10 seconds before putting it back into the dry mix so the water does not drip into the dry batter.
- Dredge the chicken again, making sure the every inch is coated.
- Repeat the process until you've done it a total of 3 times. Best to use new ice water for every piece of chicken.
- Let it rest for 5 minutes before frying.
- Deep fry in hot oil over medium heat until golden brown. Depending on your stovetop, mine took between 10-15 minutes.
- Let it rest. Optional: Fry for another 5-8 minutes for extra crispy chicken.
- Remove from oil and let it rest. During this time, sprinkle a pinch of salt and if you want, more gochugaru.
- Toast the burger buns.
- Spread a generous amount of the sauce on both burger buns.
- Add the chicken to the bottom part of the bun, a slice of cheese, lettuce and the top of the bun. Serve and enjoy!