Soft tender baked chicken first doused in a spicy chipotle buffalo sauce(made vegan!), then rolled in crispy chow mien noodles. Threaded with pastrami and brushed with olive oil to finish, these Asian Buffalo Chicken Skewers are a real burst of flavour!
First looks can be deceiving. People, books, movies…and food, are not always what they seem to be from the outside. So I forewarn you- don’t be fooled by a first look at these chicken skewers! They may seem to be an-albeit pretty-simple breaded chicken recipe. BUT. The layering of flavour and spice will raise your eyebrows on the first bite! Kind of like these Hawaiian Chili Peppa Chicken Tenders….
I was really inspired to create this recipe from a lack of ingredients in my house. I knew we were making chicken and pastrami, baked and breaded, because I think it’s a great lunch combo, and a lot of people ask me for Saturday(shabbat) lunch ideas that are fresh and new. Different- bring in the buffalo sauce, and Asian- pop open a bag of Chow Mein noodles.
Breading is always best when it’s homemade, and for a lack of cornflakes in my cabinet(I was sure I had some left but I guess the kids went on a cereal frenzy again), we reached instead for some dried chow mien noodles. Make sure they are ready to eat- sometimes you’ll find these called wonton strips. These are crispy and crunchy and airy, and when spruced up with cayenne and garlic powder, and blended to a coarse crumb in the food processor, provide a flavourful and very exciting element to breaded chicken. Wake up and open your cabinet! Try something different! (is what I told myself).
That’s the first step, the breading. Next is the dipping sauce.
Spicy Vegan Buffalo Sauce
Obviously, this recipe isn’t vegan but the buffalo sauce is!
You’ll need a bottle of tabasco sauce(I’ll provide links below)- I used chipotle flavour. You could substitute for regular tabasco but the chipotle adds a really cool flavour! Pop that into the food processor with sweet chili sauce, white vinegar, garlic powder, pepper, and coconut oil. Most buffalo recipes call for butter or margarine, which I think- well, I think they need to be substituted lol. I’m not such a fan of margarine in cooking!
Coconut oil is an easy fix- its creamy, and doesn’t actually impart coconut flavour into the food. Also, it tenderises the chicken! Double whammy people- I mean let me tell you how personally impressed I was with the softness and tenderness of the chicken! soooooo tender. Next day dry chicken? GOODBYE.
What you Need:
(affiliate links to products on amazon)
Making the Skewers
Sooooo, like I said this recipe got a little warped along the way. I planned to roll up the pastrami in chicken breast, but when I went and opened the package, I found little chicken tenders. Like what? I didn’t even know they sold such a thing! So I stood dumbstruck at my sick and my hubby asked what’s up? “well how do I make a chicken roll up with a chicken tender” was my question. The answer? you don’t. You make threaded chicken skewers.
Which, BTW are super fun to eat and look amazing on a platter!
Each tender gets a nice dunk in the buffalo sauce, and then rolled in spicy chow mien crumb. Bread all the tenders and set them aside. To thread the skewers, you’ll add a piece of pastrami first, and then weave the sharp point of the skewer through a chicken tender, so it looks like an “S”. Depending how long your tenders are, you can add 2, or three, with another slice of pastrami at the top. Press everything together in the centre of the skewer, and lay them on a baking sheet.
Lastly, add some olive oil to a small bowl, and gently brush all the chicken and pastrami. This will get it nice and crispy and golden in the oven! Sprinkle over some brown sugar on the pastrami ONLY. This gives the pastrami a little caramelisation and crisp- so delish!
I hope you love these Spicy Asian Buffalo Chicken Skewers like we do- be sure to leave a review and a comment below if you make them, and always share your photos with us on Instagram! As always, Happy Cooking!
Spicy Asian Buffalo Chicken Skewers with Crispy Pastrami
Chow Mein Crumb
- 6 cups ready to eat chow mein noodles/wonton strips (one package)
- 2 tsp garlic powder
- 2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
- 1/4 cup Tabasco Chipotle Sauce (sub regular tabasco sauce)
- 1 Tbs coconut oil
- 1/2 Tbs white vinegar or rice vinegar
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1/8 tsp Black pepper
- 1 package chicken tenders, or chicken breasts cut into finger length tenders
- 1-2 packages pastrami
- 1 package thin wooden skewers
- 1/4 cup olive oil, possibly more (for brushing)
- 2 Tbs brown sugar
Chow Mein Crumb
- Add chow mein noodles, garlic powder, salt, and cayenne pepper to a food processor fitted with the "S" blade. Pulse or blend until it turns into a coarse crumb- there should be visible pieces of crumb, not a fine powder. Place in a bowl for dipping, or a shallow plate.
- No need to wash the food processor, unless you're really one for dishes. Add all the buffalo sauce ingredients and blend for about 30 seconds, until everything is combined. Add the chicken tenders to a container and pour over the buffalo sauce. Mix to combine. If you want to make these in advance you can let the chicken marinate in the sauce until you're ready to bake!
Make and Bake
- To prepare the chicken, take each piece out of the buffalo sauce, making sure it is fully coated. Lay on the plate of chow mien crumb and cover on both sides- no chicken should be visible under the crumb coating. Finish all the tenders.
- Preheat oven to 350 F /175 C. To prepare the skewers, thread a piece of pastrami onto the skewer first, and then a tender, starting at one end of the chicken and weaving the pointy tip of the skewer in and out about three times, until the chicken is in an "S" shape. Push it down to compress it into the centre of the stick. Use 2-3 tenders for the middle of each skewer, and finish with another piece of pastrami. Lay the skewers on a baking sheet, making sure they don't touch so they can crisp up nicely. Add olive oil to a small shallow bowl and brush over the skewers, coating the chicken and pastrami on one side ONLY. No need for extra work. Alternatively, you could spray with baking spray, but, personally, I like the taste of the olive oil. Add the brown sugar to a pinch bowl and sprinkle a little over the pastrami, to help it crisp and caramelise a bit.
- Bake in the oven for 15 minutes. Enjoy hot, or at room temperature! Reheat in a warm oven. These stay nice and tender the next day. You can fully make the skewers in advance, wrap tightly with Saran Wrap, and store in the fridge until ready to bake.