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Chicken Tempura Roll Recipe

Tempura is a classic Japanese dish in which seafood such as shrimp or white fish is lightly battered and then deep-fried to perfection. It’s a light and delicious treat that works as great as a main dish as a snack.

But not everyone enjoys seafood and is looking for something a little more palatable that their whole family can enjoy.

This is where chicken tempura rolls come in. They have the same light, eggy batter that seafood tempura has. But this time, chicken is rolled into sushi rice, resulting in a wonderfully tasty dish everyone will love.

How to Make Chicken Tempura Roll

To make things easier here, we’ll be using pre-breaded frozen chicken tenders. If this isn’t ideal for you, they are straightforward to make yourself at home first, then once they’re done, set them aside and follow this recipe.

The only particular utensil you’ll need here is a bamboo rolling mat to roll the chicken tenders into sushi rolls. These can be picked up at most supermarkets or Asian food markets.

You can’t go wrong with a Chicken Tempura Roll. Not only do they look fantastic once prepared, but they deliver on the taste front, so you are guaranteed to impress your guests even though this is such a simple meal.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of sushi rice (this is more sticky than regular rice)
  • ½ cup of rice vinegar
  • ½ lb of pre-cooked and pre-breaded frozen chicken tenders
  • 2 tablespoons of low-sodium soy sauce
  • ½ teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes
  • ¼ cup of sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of fresh ginger root, minced
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • ⅔ cups of thawed orange juice concentrate
  • 1 ½ cups of sliced almonds (chopped and toasted)
  • 3 small green onions
  • 1 pre-sliced and peeled large navel orange
  • ½ teaspoon of sesame oil
  • 1 small sweet red pepper, julienned

Number of portions: 4

Instructions

We’ll be dividing this recipe into three stages. First, we will prepare the rice, then the chicken tenders, and finally, roll them together.

It’s essential to use sushi rice here as it’s more sticky than regular rice and will create that nice sushi roll we’re looking for much more effectively than regular rice.

Unlike a regular raw meat sushi roll, everything here will be well cooked, so there’s no need to worry if you’re not ordinarily comfortable preparing meals with raw meat.

Step 1:

We will start by preparing the rice. Take the sushi rice and wash it in a large bowl of water. Keep draining the water and re-washing the rice 3-4 times until the water stops turning milky and stays clear.

Once the rice is washed, transfer it to a large saucepan.

Step 2: 

If you have a rice cooker, you can use that for the best results. Alternatively, you can still cook this by boiling it in a saucepan.

If cooking in a saucepan, add 2 cups of water to the rice and leave it for 30 minutes to soften up (there is no heat applied at this stage).

Step 3: 

After 30 minutes, you can cover the saucepan and cook it on high heat until the water starts to boil. Then bring the heat back down so it’s simmering, and let it continue cooking for 15-20 minutes or until all the water is gone.

Then turn the heat off and all it to sit for ten more minutes.

Step 4:

Mix the salt, vinegar, and sugar in a small bowl. Keep mixing it all until both the salt and sugar have fully dissolved.

Step 5:

Transfer the rice into a separate bowl and sprinkle about ⅓ of a cup of the vinegar mixture over it. Then gently fold the rice over using a wooden spoon to work the vinegar mixture in, fluff, and cool the rice.

Once this is done, place a damp towel over the rice bowl to keep it moist, then set it aside.

Step 6:

Next, we need to prepare the chicken tenders. Start by cooking them as indicated on the packet instructions.

Step 7:

Once cooked, take them out of the oven and cut them into long, thin strips.

Step 8:

Mix the juice concentrate, red pepper flakes, ginger, soy sauce, and oil together in a small bowl.

Take ½ of this mixture and set it aside for serving.

Step 9:

Add the chicken to the remaining half of this mixture and toss them about to coat them all evenly.

Step 10: 

Finally, we need to combine the chicken and rice and roll them into the sushi roll. Start by taking your bamboo sushi mat and covering it with plastic wrap.

Step 11:

Take about ¼ of the toasted almost and spread them evenly on the mat. Use a rough guide of about 9×6” as your flat area where you will fit the ingredients. Wet your fingers with a little of the vinegar mixture we set aside earlier and press a thin layer of rice over the top of the almonds.

Step 12:

Take some of the chicken, orange strips, red pepper, and onion and arrange them along the bottom of the 9×6” square of almonds and rice we just laid out. Try to fill out roughly the bottom 1 ½” with ingredients.

Step 13:

Now begin to roll the mat up and away from you to create the sushi roll. Ensure you use enough pressure to seal the ingredients and allow the rice to stick together, making a solid roll.

Step 14:

Unroll the bamboo mat leaving us with our chicken sushi roll, cut this roll into thinner slices, and arrange them neatly on a plate.

Repeat this process as often as possible until all the rice and other ingredients are used up.

Step 15:

You’re done! Simply serve your chicken tempura with the bowl of sauce we prepared earlier for dipping.

Ingredient substitutions

The fundamentals of rice and chicken mean that you can use almost anything you can imagine to alter and augment the flavor of these delicious chicken tempura rolls.

Here are a few of our top suggestions to give you some inspiration. Sesame seeds

If you’re not keen on the sliced almond base, we used here, give black or white sesame seeds a try. They add a wonderful texture to the sushi rolls and are healthy too!

Spicy sriracha mayo

The vinegar sauce we served with this is something you might expect to see served with real tempura. Suppose you’re looking to make it a bit more accessible. Try swapping it out for spicy sriracha mayo. This is a little palatable to those who aren’t used to the more robust vinegar flavor.

Turkey

If you’re finding just regular chicken tenders a little too bland, swapping them out for turkey tenders is a great way to inject a little more life into the dish.

What to serve Chicken Tempura Roll with

The great thing about these rolls is that they can be used both as a main course or a snack. This means there are many dishes you can serve, and they will always taste great.

Soups

If you have a nice soup ready to go but need something to bulk it up, grab some of these chicken tempura rolls from the fridge, and it’ll be just the thing to complete the meal. Fried vegetables

With these rolls using primarily protein and carb-based foods, a nice bowl of fried and seasoned vegetables can complete the puzzle and give you a well-rounded meal.

How to reheat Chicken Tempura Roll

These are essentially sushi rolls, so they do not need reheating as regular tempura would. You can remove them from the fridge and let them come back up to room temperature. 

Reheating doesn’t do much to help rejuvenate the texture of the roll.

How to store Chicken Tempura Roll

One of the big benefits of using cooked chicken here is that it will store much better than regular sushi, which uses raw meat. However, as we have used sushi rice here, it does tend to go hard and not taste great, so you can’t store it for too long.

How to store Chicken Tempura Roll in the fridge

Cover the plate of chicken tempura roll slice with plastic wrap and place in the fridge. It will stay here for about 24 hours. Any longer, and the rice will become too hard.

How to store Chicken Tempura Roll in the freezer

Chicken tempura rolls freeze very well. The trick is to wrap and freeze each roll/slice separately so they aren’t too difficult to separate later. Vacuum packs are great for this.

To defrost, remove them from the freezer and place them in the fridge for 6-7 hours. Don’t let them sit at room temperature, or they will become soggy and unappealing.

They can be frozen for up to 6 months.

chicken tempura roll

Chicken Tempura Roll Recipe

Ever wanted to try your hand at tempura sushi but are turned off at the prospect of using raw meat? Then these chicken tempura rolls are going to be perfect for you! They’re absolutely delicious and work great as both a main dish or a quick snack!
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 50 mins
Course Main Course, Snack
Cuisine American
Servings 4
Calories 1014 kcal
Equipment
  • 1 saucepan
  • plastic wrap
  • 1 Bamboo sushi rolling mat
  • 1 large bowl
  • 1 Cutting board
Ingredients
  
  • 2 cups sushi rice
  • 1/2 cup rice vinegar
  • 1/2 lb pre-cooked and pre-breaded frozen chicken tenders
  • 2 tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp fresh ginger root minced
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2/3 cup thawed orange juice concentrate
  • 1 1/2 cups sliced almonds chopped and toasted
  • 3 small green onions
  • 1 pre-sliced and peeled large navel orange
  • 1/2 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 small sweet red pepper julienned
Instructions
 
  • We will start by preparing the rice. Take the sushi rice and wash it in a large bowl of water. Keep draining the water and re-washing the rice 3-4 times until the water stops turning milky and stays clear.
    Once the rice is washed, transfer it to a large saucepan.
  • If you have a rice cooker, you can use that for the best results. Alternatively, you can still cook this by boiling it in a saucepan.
    If cooking in a saucepan, add 2 cups of water to the rice and leave it for 30 minutes to soften up (there is no heat applied at this stage).
  • After 30 minutes, you can cover the saucepan and cook it on high heat until the water starts to boil. Then bring the heat back down so it’s simmering, and let it continue cooking for 15-20 minutes or until all the water is gone.
    Then turn the heat off and all it to sit for ten more minutes.
  • Mix the salt, vinegar, and sugar in a small bowl. Keep mixing it all until both the salt and sugar have fully dissolved.
  • Transfer the rice into a separate bowl and sprinkle about ⅓ of a cup of the vinegar mixture over it. Then gently fold the rice over using a wooden spoon to work the vinegar mixture in, fluff, and cool the rice.
    Once this is done, place a damp towel over the rice bowl to keep it moist, then set it aside.
  • Next, we need to prepare the chicken tenders. Start by cooking them as indicated on the packet instructions.
  • Once cooked, take them out of the oven and cut them into long, thin strips.
  • Mix the juice concentrate, red pepper flakes, ginger, soy sauce, and oil together in a small bowl.
    Take ½ of this mixture and set it aside for serving.
  • Add the chicken to the remaining half of this mixture and toss them about to coat them all evenly.
  • Finally, we need to combine the chicken and rice and roll them into the sushi rollStart by taking your bamboo sushi mat and covering it with plastic wrap.
  • Take about ¼ of the toasted almost and spread them evenly on the mat. Use a rough guide of about 9x6” as your flat area where you will fit the ingredients. Wet your fingers with a little of the vinegar mixture we set aside earlier and press a thin layer of rice over the top of the almonds.
  • Take some of the chicken, orange strips, red pepper, and onion and arrange them along the bottom of the 9x6” square of almonds and rice we just laid out. Try to fill out roughly the bottom 1 ½” with ingredients.
  • Now begin to roll the mat up and away from you to create the sushi roll. Ensure you use enough pressure to seal the ingredients and allow the rice to stick together, making a solid roll.
  • Unroll the bamboo mat leaving us with our chicken sushi roll, cut this roll into thinner slices, and arrange them neatly on a plate.
    Repeat this process as often as possible until all the rice and other ingredients are used up.
  • You’re done! Simply serve your chicken tempura with the bowl of sauce we prepared earlier for dipping.
Nutrition
Serving: 4gCalories: 1014kcalCarbohydrates: 115gProtein: 39gFat: 47gSaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 36mgSodium: 959mgFiber: 15g

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