Gluten-Free Quick and Easy Popcorn Chicken

Quick and Easy Popcorn Chicken

Inspiration Bakery & Mixes Batter mix is very versatile. Elsewhere on the website are other recipes you can bake, like the traditional English recipe for Toad in a Hole, or recipes you fry in oil, like Zucchini Patties, Coconut Shrimp, and the list goes on. So delicious!
Here is another very simple gluten free recipe to make. Easy Gluten Free Popcorn Chicken using Inspiration Bakery & Mixes Batter Mix.
What’s the difference between Popcorn Chicken and Chicken Nuggets? Chicken nuggets are made of ground white and dark chicken compressed to make a nugget. Popcorn Chicken is made with whole pieces of chicken, typically dipped in buttermilk.
Some consider popcorn chicken an appetizer but you can serve them for dinner with French fries or tater tots dipped in ranch dressing, BBQ sauce, sweet chili sauce, or ketchup. No matter what the dip, they are so good!
This recipe gives you a dairy free option for those who cannot have buttermilk. It also contains a quick and easy solution to making your own buttermilk.
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 20 minutes
Course Appetizer, Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 10 people


  • 1 Small bowl for buttermilk or substitute
  • 1 Medium bowl or pie plate a pie plate works great for the gluten free tempura bread crumbs
  • 1 Baking dish 8x8 or 9x9 inch use for Batter mix
  • 1 Large bowl to hold chicken pieces
  • Measuring Cups and Spoons
  • 1 Strainer spoon to remove popcorn chicken from oil
  • 1 Large fry pan
  • 1 Dinner fork
  • 2 Large Baking sheets


Gluten Free Popcorn Chicken

  • ¾ cup Inspiration Bakery & Mixes Batter Mix
  • 1 ½ lbs Chicken breast For ease, buy chicken strips and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 2 cups Gluten Free panko crumbs or bread crumbs This recipe uses Kikkoman's Panko bread crumbs
  • 1 cup Buttermilk*
  • *Option for making buttermilk:  1 cup whole milk + 1 tablespoon white vinegar or lemon juice. Mix together and let sit for 5 minutes. It will thicken a little and curdle a little.
  • Dairy Free Option:  Use canned coconut milk, or other non-dairy milk without flavoring. Add 1 tablespoon white vinegar or lemon juice. 
  • 1 cup oil (enough to cover the bottom of the pan about 1-inch). Be prepared to add more oil if needed



  • Cut up pieces of chicken into approximately 1-inch cubes. Place in a bowl and set a-side.
  • Pour ¾ cup Inspiration Bakery & Mixes Batter mix into the 9x9-inch baking dish. Set a-side.
  • Pour 2 cups panko bread crumbs into a pie plate and set a-side.
  • Use a small bowl to pour the buttermilk in to and set a-side.
  • Place 1 cup oil in a frying pan. Make sure the oil is at least 1-inch deep.
  • Place a paper towel in one of the baking sheets. This will be used to place cooked popcorn chicken on to soak up any oil. Be sure to have more paper towels ready if needed. Once you fill up one layer of popcorn chicken, place another paper towel over the top and repeat if needed.

Prepare chicken before cooking

  • Place 10-12 pieces of cubed chicken into the Batter mix. Rolling each piece so it is completely covered.
  • Using a fork pick up each piece of chicken and dip in the buttermilk shaking any excess off.
  • Next, roll the piece of chicken into the panko bread crumbs and place on the other large baking sheet. Repeat this process until all the chicken pieces are covered.

Cook the popcorn chicken

  • Turn the pan of oil on medium or medium high. Temperature should reach 350° degrees F.
  • TIP: If you do not have a thermometer to check the temperature you can simply dip your hand in water. Shake a few drops of water into the oil. Once the oil pops, its ready to cook.
  • You may need to turn the burner down if the pieces of chicken brown too quickly.
  • Place 10-12pieces of popcorn chicken in the fry pan. Cook 2-3 minutes on each side. Turnover with a fork or spoon. Remove to the large baking pan lined with paper towels to soak up any excess oil.
  • Cook all the chicken. You are now ready to serve the popcorn chicken with your favorite dipping sauce.


Tip: To keep the chicken warm, you can turn the oven to 200° degrees F, then turn off. Place the large baking sheet with the cooked chicken in the oven to keep the popcorn chicken warm until served.
Keyword Chicken, Dairy Free, Finger Foods, Gluten-free, Popcorn Chicken

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