This 20-minute firecracker ground chicken is the perfect low carb, high protein meal prep recipe. Each serving has 22 grams of protein, 0 grams of carbs, and just 185 calories. It’s super easy to make and goes perfectly with rice or cauliflower rice. Or you can get creative and use it to make things like lettuce wraps or a veggie stir fry with noodles.
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How to Make Firecracker Chicken with Ground Chicken
I doubt you’ll need much help with this recipe, but I’ve included a recipe walkthrough and ingredient notes in the post below nonetheless. Feel free to hit the jump to recipe button at the top of the post and hop back here if you have recipe or ingredient questions.
Brown one pound of ground chicken in 1/2 tablespoon of chili oil or your choice of oil.
The recipe calls for 92% lean ground chicken, but you could use leaner. You could also swap the ground chicken for ground turkey or your choice of ground meat.
Like I mention in my ground chicken breakfast sausage recipe, using a little bit of oil is not entirely necessary, but it adds a ton of flavor and helps the chicken brown nicely. That browning adds a ton of flavor you might miss out on otherwise. I would definitely use a leaner cut of ground chicken before omitting the oil if you wanted to save a few calories!
Make the firecracker sauce while the ground chicken cooks.
Everything you’ll need for the firecracker sauce:
- buffalo sauce
- cider or rice vinegar
- zero-calorie Swerve brown sugar (or dark brown sugar)
- garlic powder
- ground ginger
- red pepper flakes
- salt and pepper
Simply mix everything together and you’ll be ready to crack on.
If you’re unfamiliar with Swerve sweeteners, they’re zero-calorie, erythritol-based sugar substitutes that taste and cook like real sugar. I’ve used their brown sugar substitute to make everything from Nashville Hot ground chicken burgers to air fryer apple fritters.
You’ll find notes for nutrition facts with real brown sugar in the recipe card at the bottom of the post. I’ll also mention that my spicy coconut ground chicken uses honey and gochujang as a sticky sweetener substitute. That might be an option.
Update: If you like this sauce, you can use it to make my firecracker chicken meatballs recipe!
Mince the ground chicken and finish cooking before adding the sauce. Cook until the sauce thickens, about 2-3 minutes.
You’re looking for a thick, syrupy, slightly sticky sauce. As long as you keep everything moving around, you shouldn’t be at risk of burning anything. Give it time!
Serving Your Firecracker Ground Chicken
The classic rice and protein bowls are my go-to with this recipe. If you wanted to keep things lower carb, using cauliflower rice is the obvious choice. One “hack” you could pull from my ground beef and rice skillet is mixing half cauliflower rice and half regular rice to mask the veggie-ness.
You could also swap the rice for quinoa like in my spicy sesame ground beef and quinoa bowls. And if you wanted to add some veggies, you could pan roast some broccoli or something similar before cooking the chicken like in my sweet and spicy ground chicken and broccoli recipe.
To make things a bit more interesting, you could plug this firecracker ground chicken into something like these chicken lettuce wraps or my low carb noodle stir fry.
That should cover it. If you have a question about this recipe or its ingredients I forgot to cover, leave a comment below. Otherwise, enjoy your firecracker ground chicken! And if you enjoy it, recipe reviews are always appreciated.
Firecracker Ground Chicken
Ground chicken cooked in chili oil and tossed with a sticky sweet and spicy firecracker sauce.
- 1 lb Ground Chicken (92/8)
- 1/2 Tbsp (8g) Chili Oil
- 1/2 C (96g) Swerve Brown Sugar
- 1/4 C (60g) Buffalo Sauce
- 2 Tbsp (30g) Cider or Rice Vinegar
- 1 tsp Ground Ginger
- 1 tsp Garlic Powder
- 1/2 tsp Kosher Salt
- 1/2 tsp Black Pepper
- 1/2 tsp Red Pepper Flakes
- Heat a skillet over medium-high heat with the chili oil. Brown both sides of the chicken, about 3-4 minutes per side, before mincing and fully cooking.
- While the chicken cooks, whisk the remaining ingredients together in a mixing bowl.
- Once the chicken is fully cooked, add the sauce to the pan and cook until thick and syrupy.
- Serve with scallions and toasted sesame seeds over rice or cauliflower rice.
Nutrition Info Notes
- Each serving has 4 WW SmartPoints (blue).
- The nutrition facts do not include any nutrition info from the Swerve Brown Sugar. Erythritol has 0.2 calories per gram so the entire recipe has around 20 calories if you'd like to include it.
- With real brown sugar, each serving has 24g of carbs and 275 calories.
- Using 97/3 ground chicken adds 4g of protein and saves 5.5g of fat and 50 calories per serving.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 4 Servings Serving Size: 4 ounces
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 185Total Fat: 11gCarbohydrates: 0gProtein: 22g
Bill in Oregon
Saturday 4th of February 2023
Mason, made this last night to rave reviews from the S.O.! I ate the last bowl today for my lunch. Used regular brown sugar, rice vinegar and subbed Frank's Stinging Honey Garlic Sauce (on hand) for the buffalo sauce. I wanted a saucier sauce for over yakisoba noodles (1 pound) so added in some soy sauce, a good dose of the Franks sauce above and some honey. I slurped it up dude! It's gonna make another dinner rotation very soon....Bill in Oregon
Sunday 22nd of January 2023
Instead of using chili oil I used chili siratcha paste and a hit of canola oil and it’s perfect
Tuesday 17th of January 2023
This was AMAZING! Put it over cauliflower rice. I used chopped chicken thighs.
Friday 23rd of December 2022
I didn't have any brown sugar so I added honey and ketchup and a bit of maple syrup. Also didn't have enough franks hot sauce so I added some cayenne pepper. It was so good and so easy.
P.s. I used bacon grease with some cayenne pepper instead of chilli oil
Thursday 3rd of November 2022
Can I use Splenda Brown Sugar Blend instead of Swerve?
Friday 25th of November 2022
I don't think it measures 1:1 for sugar like Swerve does, so you may need to adjust the amount. It should say what the conversion is for brown sugar on the packaging.