Crispy Lemon Chicken Chinese Fakeaway

You know when you try something new, sometimes it goes surprisingly well and others everything goes horribly wrong and you don’t know what happened? Well, my Crispy Lemon Chicken Fakeaway is somehow both of those things. It all went a little bit wrong. But, it tasted absolutely incredible. So, while it’s something I will definitely be making again, I may refine my method slightly in an attempt avoid burning the house down.

We still haven’t had our new house takeaway. We did, however, go to an awesome all you can eat restaurant without the kids, so it’s out of our system and when we do have a takeaway now, it’ll probably be an Indian or pizza. OR a kebab, I love a big greasy kebab, it’s disgusting!

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So, after the success of Hunky Husbands favourite Chinese meal fakeaway last week, I decided to have a go at mine this week. Crispy Lemon Chicken was my go to Chinese when I was younger and was a little unsure of new foods. Now, I’ll happily try anything but it’s still probably my favourite.

crispy lemon chicken piece


  • 4 Chicken Breasts
  • 1tbsp Reduced salt soy sauce
  • 125g Cornflour
  • 2 Lemons (juice and zest)
  • 4tbsp Sugar
  • 100ml Water
  • 50g Flour
  • Cooking oil

crispy lemon chicken ingredients

Last week was probably the first time I’d ever deep fried anything. So, this time I decided to try and do it a little differently. Basically, because I found all the dipping really annoying.

chicken in soy sauce and corn flour

This time, I chopped the chicken up much earlier in the day, probably about 5 hours before I needed it. I put it into a big Tupperware tub, added the soy sauce and 3tbsp of the cornflour, put the lid on and gave it a good shake. I then put it in the fridge until I needed it. You don’t really need to leave it, the soy is just so the cornflour sticks, but, the chicken was amazingly moist so I think it’s definitely a good idea.

marinading chicken

When you are ready to start cooking, prepare the sauce first. For this, take another 4tbsp of the cornflour and place in a small saucepan. Add the juice and zest of 2 lemons, the water, and the sugar and mix together well. Place on the hob, but don’t turn on yet.

lemon sauce for crispy lemon chicken

Add the rest of the cornflour to the chicken along with the plain flour. Put the lid back on, and shake again. You may need to roll some bits in a little extra flour to make sure it is all well coated.

coated chicken

Now, this is where I went wrong. Last week, I fried my chicken in the wok. It stuck a little and I lost some batter. So, this week, Husband said: “do it in the saucepan and wait until the oil boils” I waited and waited and waited until the smoke alarm went off. At which point he started shouting “the oils too hot, it’ll be on fire soon!!!” and I’m shouting, “but you said it would boil, it isn’t boiling!” To prove his point, he put some chicken in the oil, it went totally mental and was black within about 4 seconds!

So, don’t wait for the oil to boil. Just give it a few minutes until it’s very hot! You need about 1 inch in your pan, whatever you use. The moral of the story really is don’t mess with hot oil if you don’t know what you are doing. Or, buy an air fryer for your Crispy Lemon Chicken Fakeaway.

We then left our oil to cool a little before adding the chicken 4 pieces at a time and frying for around 30 seconds. We then took it out of the oil and placed on a baking tray. When all the chicken had been giving this flash fry treatment, we put it in the oven at 180 degrees for 15 minutes. Apparently, flash frying and then finishing in the oven ensures its cooked through while giving you a lovely crispy coating. Complete accident, but gorgeous chicken!

crispy chicken

While the chicken is finishing, cook some rice and slowly heat the lemon sauce, stirring constantly. The sauce does thicken very quickly, so keep stirring and remove from the heat as soon as it’s how you want it. It also changes colour. It starts quite chalky but becomes more syrupy and clear as it cooks.

crispy lemon chicken

When finished, serve the chicken on a bed of rice and drizzle with lemon sauce for the perfect Crispy Lemon Chicken Chinese Fakeaway.

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Crispy Lemon Chicken Chinese Fakeaway
Prep Time
1 hr 30 mins
Cook Time
30 mins
Total Time
2 hrs

Gorgeous Crispy Lemon Chicken Chinese Fakeaway

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Chinese
Keyword: chicken, fakeaway
Servings: 4 People
Calories: 600 kcal
Author: Donna
  • 4 Chicken Breasts Chopped
  • 1 tbsp Reduced salt soy sauce
  • 125 g Corn flour
  • 2 Lemons juice and zest
  • 4 tbsp Sugar
  • 100 ml Water
  • 50 g Flour
  • Cooking oil Enough to deep fry
  1. Cut the chicken into cubes and place in a tub with lid
  2. Add the soy sauce and 3tbsp of the corn flour
  3. Place the lid on the tub and shake well
  4. Place in the fridge and leave to marinade for as long as possible
  5. When ready to cook, begin heating around 1inch of oil in a saucepan
  6. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees
  7. While heating, add 4tbsp corn flour and the plain flour to the chicken and shake well
  8. Place the rest of the corn flour, lemon juice, zest, sugar and water into a small saucepan and set to one side
  9. Once the oil is hot, add the chicken 4 pieces at a time and leave for 30 seconds
  10. After this time, remove from the oil and place on a baking tray
  11. Repeat with all the chicken
  12. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes
  13. While baking, gently heat the lemon sauce, stirring constantly
  14. Remove from the heat when at desired consistency. This should only take a few minutes
  15. Serve the chicken on a bed of rice and drizzle with the lemon sauce
Recipe Notes

Prep time includes 1 hour marinading time. Could be more or less but I recommend at least 1 hour for exceptionally moist chicken.

For a healthier alternative, use an air fryer to crisp your chicken.











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