Crispy, succulent, and super-duper tasty appetizers, perfectly balanced in sweetness, spiciness, and tartness that will titillate your taste buds and keep you coming back for more. With an unlimited choice of dipping sauces, these scrumptious chicken bites are a guaranteed hit with any crowd, picky eaters, and all; so let’s indulge.😋
If you haven’t had chicken lollies before, then you don’t know what you’ve been missing. These chicken bites are utterly scrumptious and finger-licking, lip-smacking addicting! My mouth is watering just thinking about them.
The first time I had chicken lollipops was at an Indian restaurant. The sweet, salty, and spicy flavours hit every taste bud just right, plus the perfectly cooked chicken — slight crunch on the outside and juicy on the inside, boy was in love! Then the dipping sauce … wowza!🤯 It was so good I could feel it in my toes … they were tingling!!! Did I say I was in love? Okay so now you know.💁🏾
From then on, I knew it was imperative that I learn how to make my own chicken lollies; they were just too yummy for me not to look for a way to share with my family and friends. Fortunately for me, the internet did not disappoint. I found countless chicken lollipop videos, from how to make your own lollipops from scratch using chicken wings or chicken thighs, to a million and one ways on how to cook them. I tried out a good number of recipes and have now settled on a personalised version of making my own. Today these bad boys have become a staple in my home for any and every occasion and the verdict is always the same: We want some more!!!
Chicken lollipops (or chicken lollies as I love to call them ) are a fancy way of making chicken wings into lollipop shapes or drumettes, and cooking them so as to obtain a crispy outer coating and juicy succulent meat inside, tossed in a tangy and spicy mix of Chinese sauces — to put it simply, chicken lollipops are a mind-blowing snack! They are such super fun and tasty appetizers, perfect for all occasions, and a sure hit with any crowd. You may even decide to have your chicken lollies as a main dish, along with some rice or noodles and they are just. As already mentioned above, I love my chicken lollipops, whether as appetizers or as a main dish. I just want them very spicy, with a very hot and extra spicy dipping sauce. Yum Yum Yummeeeeeee.
Chicken lollipops are traditionally made from chicken wings (though some people prefer to use chicken drumsticks) wherein the meat is cut from the bone end and pushed down to resemble a lollipop, then breaded with a seasoned batter and deep-fried in hot oil to obtain a crispy texture on the outside and juicy on the inside. However, when making mine I prefer to go the healthier route by skipping the breading and frying, and instead opting to marinate the drumettes overnight in a spicy mixture and then bake them in a 350°F oven to juicy perfection.
If you want to be extra special, why not whip up a super tasty sauce to coat your chicken in once you take them out of the fryer or oven. Let me tell you, this just takes your chicken lollies to the next level. Next level of tastiness, deliciousness, flavourfulness, in fact, everythingness.
I make my sauce by sautéeing chopped onions, garlic, ginger and green chillies in some hot oil. Then I add in some red chilli paste, soy sauce, a pinch of brown sugar, salt to taste and some water. Bring to boil until it thickens then add my chicken in the sauce, tossing well for a couple of minutes for the chicken lollipops to be well coated in the sauce. This sauce can also be used as a dip whether you choose to coat your chicken in it or not. Of course, feel free to personalise as you want, but rest assured your lollipops will be a roaring hit.
Bite-size finger foods are always a hit at any gathering, and nothing is as scrumptious, flavourful and has a cool name like chicken lollipops. You can make them for your kids’ birthdays parties, play dates, dinner parties or as a simple snack for game day or movie night with friends and family. Kids love holding them like lollipops and biting into them, so you can pack them into their lunch boxes, or even add them to your picnic basket. Any way you cook chicken lollipops, they’re finger-licking, lip-smacking awesome!
Prepping the chicken wings is a little fiddly at first. But once you’ve done the first couple, the rest are a lot quicker. The basic idea here is to give your chicken wings a lollipop shape. Each chicken wing will yield 2 chicken lollipops, with all the meat scooped down and the bone is cleared for easy handling.
To make the lollipop or drumette, you have to prepare the wings by turning the meat portion inside out, separate the flesh from the bone at the bottom portion, scrape the flesh towards the top part with the help of your knife then use your hand to turn the meat portion inside out to create a lollipop. You can leave the skin on, or you can remove the skin before you start if you prefer. I like to leave the skin on, as it crisps up nicely when cooked. Yum.
The technique to do this is actually very simple as seen in the video below, but if you don’t want to deal with the hassle you can buy pre-made lollipops from the store and they will do just fine.
♦ In a bowl, mix all the ingredients you wish to use as a marinade. For my marinade, I love to use ginger, garlic and onion paste, a sprig or 2 of thyme, soy sauce, salt to taste, and lots of chili and black pepper powder. As mentioned above, I love mine super spicy!
♦ Add in the chicken drumettes to the spicy mix, coat well, and let it rest for at least 3 hours (best to be left overnight).
♦ Preheat oven to 350°F. Arrange the chicken lollies in a single layer on the wire rack set over a baking pan or in a lightly greased baking sheet. Bake until the chicken is nicely browned and slightly charred, and completely cooked through, for about 35 minutes, basting every 10 minutes with the marinade.
♦ Remove from oven and sprinkle on some sesame seeds or chopped spring onions, or maybe just make a very spicy sauce and coat your chicken lollies in it. Serve with the dipping sauce of your choice though they are delicious as is without any dipping sauce.
Pro tip: Always wrap up the exposed bones of your chicken lollies with some aluminium foil before putting in the oven or on a grill to cook, so the bone doesn’t burn and is clean to hold when biting through your chicken without fear of a bitter taste from a charred bone.
The great thing about chicken lollies is the many ways that you can choose to prepare them. You can fry it, bake it, mix it in the sauce after frying, bread it, or even stuff it before frying. So, whether you decide to buy the already packaged chicken drumettes from the supermarket or make your own lollipops from scratch using chicken wings or thighs, just make sure they are well marinated in the seasoning of your choice (garlic/ginger paste, paprika, salt, pepper, thyme, basil, sriracha, chilli powder, white/black pepper powder, ketchup, honey etc) before cooking them and try not to overcook them as well, so that they remain very tasty and juicy when you bite into them.
Chicken lollies are bite-size treats that everyone will love because not only do they provide the perfect balance of sweetness, spiciness and tartness, which suits the taste buds of many across the board with kids and adults alike, they are also attractive, memorable and have flair. Plus, with an unlimited choice of dipping sauces – Schezwan sauce, Hoisin sauce, spicy garlic chilli sauce, sweet chilli sauce, ketchup etc – what’s not to love? Either way, these amazing chicken lollipops are just so juicy, succulent, and such a treat to the entire family, including picky eaters — they will definitely be flying off the pan! So let’s get cooking!