Kkanpunggi is spicy garlic fried chicken stir-fried with vegetables and a sweet, sour, spicy sauce. It’s a Korean Chinese dish, originating in China but modified to suit Korean tastes, with Korean ingredients.

I can remember eating this only a few times as a kid. When we went to a Korean Chinese restaurant, I almost always ordered jjajjangmyeon! But I can remember having it once and admiring the beautiful balls of chicken the restaurant made. In Chinese, kkan means dry, pung means stir fry and gi means chicken.

In my version I infuse the cooking oil with coarse red chili flakes, garlic, leeks to make the lightly fried chicken spicy, garlicky, and leek-y. You can use the oil for other stir-fried dishes featuring vegetables, mushrooms, or meat. Someday I’ll post the shrimp version of this recipe, it’s also delicious. And if you want a nonspicy version, just leave out the spicy stuff.

This dish is fast to make: it fries quickly because it’s made with boneless pieces of chicken. It also creates a delicious aroma that will fill your kitchen. Few people can resist kkanpunggi!

kkanpunggi (깐풍기)


Makes 2-3 servings


  • ½ pound chicken breast (about 230 grams), cut into bite size small pieces
  • ½ teaspoon minced ginger
  • 1 teaspoon soy sauce
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ½ cup potato starch
  • 1 egg white (If you use 1 pound chicken, use 1 whole egg)

Spicy garlic- and leek-infused oil:

  • ¼ cup vegetable or corn oil
  • ½ cup thinly shredded leek
  • 4 garlic cloves, cut into halves
  • 1 tablespoon coarse red chili flakes

Vegetables and seasonings:

  • 1 green chili pepper, deseeded, sliced thinly
  • 1 fresh red chili pepper, deseeded, sliced thinly
  • 1 green onion, chopped
  • ½ medium sized onion, chopped
  • 3-4 small dried red chili peppers

Sweet and sour sauce (all mixed together in a small bowl):


  • 1 cup cooking oil (grapeseed oil, vegetable oil, or corn oil)
  • 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil


Prep the chicken

  1. Combine the chicken, ginger, soy sauce, and ground black pepper in a bowl. Mix well with a spoon and let sit for 10 to 20 minutes.
  2. Add the egg white and ½ cup potato starch. Mix well by hand.prep chickenprepped chicken

Prep the spicy garlic- and leek-infused oil

  1. Heat up a small pan with ¼ cup cooking oil. When the oil is heated, lower the heat to medium and add the garlic and leek. Stir them with a wooden spoon for a couple of minutes until the garlic and leek turn light golden brown and crispy.
  2. Take the garlic and leek out with tongs and put them in a small plate. 
    fried leek
  3. Turn off the heat and add the chili pepper flakes to the hot oil. Stir it and let it cool for a few minutes. Strain the oil.infused-oil

Fry the chicken

  1. Heat up 1 cup of cooking oil in a 12 inch skillet or frying pan for 3-4 minutes over high heat (335-350°F).
  2. Turn down the heat to medium high and fry the chicken. When the bottom of a piece of chicken turns crunchy and light golden brown, turn it over with your tongs. It’s ok if the skillet is crowded, but split the chicken pieces with your tongs if they get stuck together. Keep rotating the chicken pieces and turning them over so they’re cooked evenly, about 5 minutes.frying
  3. Take them out and strain, and turn off the heat.
  4. Heat up a large pan. Add the spicy garlic leek infused oil. When the oil is heated, add the onion, green onion, red chili pepper, green chili pepper, and the small dried red chili peppers. Stir over medium high heat until the onion starts turning crispy for about 2 to 3 minutes. Add the sweet and sour sauce and stir it for about 20 to 30 seconds. Turn off the heat.
    kkanpunggi (깐풍기) saucekkanpunggi-sauce
  5. Reheat the oil in the skillet and fry the chicken one more time for about 3 to 5 minutes, turning over with your tongs until it’s very crunchy and golden brown. Strain.double-frying
  6. Reheat the sauce until it’s sizzling. Add the chicken, the fried leek and garlic, and a drop of toasted sesame oil. Stir and mix to coat the chicken.kkanpunggi (깐풍기)kkanpunggi (깐풍기)


  1. Serve right away. Goes well with Coke : )

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  1. Gman Stockholm, Sweden joined 1/23 & has 1 comment

    This is the best! I use it as filling for spring rolls! Thank you Maangchi!

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  2. I made this using Quorn pieces instead of chicken for myself and another batch with chicken for my boyfriend

    Very tasty. The sweet & sour sauce goes very thick and coats the quorn or chicken giving it a very appealing look

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  3. Buster2k07 Kansas City, MO joined 2/21 & has 2 comments

    I made this tonight. So amazing! I did not have any red chili’s, but the spicy green chili’s I had did the trick. Amazing flavor! The crispy garlic and leek added a great depth of flavor. The rice syrup also adds a unique sweetness to this dish. Thank you Maangchi!

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  4. lyric22 Austin, Texas joined 4/13 & has 3 comments

    Couldn’t help myself – here’s another pic – really does go well with Coke!

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  5. lyric22 Austin, Texas joined 4/13 & has 3 comments

    Hey Maangchi!!! Made this with my friend and it was so incredibly delicious – the leek was the secret ingredient and even though I forgot the egg (oops!) it came out great – can’t wait to make it the correct way haha and thanks again!

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  6. Peterinto Toronto joined 6/20 & has 1 comment

    I made this the other day and it was amazing. I’ve been making lots of Chinese and Thai food lately but this recipe is really good.

    I just added a little Gochujang sauce to the sweet and sour sauce and I also didn’t use nearly as much oil in the final dish as I found it looked way too much. But it was amazing and one of my favourites.

    Thank you for a great recipe and video.


  7. irishrose629 Alabama joined 5/20 & has 1 comment

    My husband and I made this last night and it was incredible. We were a little nervous to try and only used one small chicken breast, now this morning he is mad because there are no leftovers!! We had so much fun making this together :) thank you for sharing this fantastic recipe. I do have one question though, can you make a batch of the infused oil to keep on hand?

  8. NotunChef New York joined 5/20 & has 1 comment

    This turned out amazing, thank you for this recipe. I added a little honey in the sauce for an added sweetness and glaze and substituted the leeks with thinly sliced onion :)

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  9. pallavbhargava Chicago joined 5/20 & has 1 comment


    Thanks for sharing the recipe. It satiated all my cravings!


  10. brinacyl london joined 5/20 & has 1 comment

    Hi there! Can i use firm tofu cut i to cubes instead of the chicken?

    many thanks

  11. dylangaine Brooklyn, NY joined 4/20 & has 1 comment

    Hi, I was very excited about trying this when I saw your video- I made it tonight and it turned out great! I used honey instead of rice syrup and AP flour instead of potato starch cuz that’s what I had. I have never made anything like this before, so I was nervous, but it turned out delicious! Thank you for creating the video!

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  12. tonytwist Toronto, Canada joined 4/20 & has 1 comment

    Hi, can I substitute the potato starch with corn starch?

  13. Chef Steph Owings Mills, MD joined 11/19 & has 1 comment

    Hello, Maangchi’s, I have followed you foryears and everything I make of yours turns out fantastic. Thank you! Here is my version made with fried rice.

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