Tempura chicken is a popular dish in Japanese cuisine. The crispy batter goes excellent with dipping sauces and is great for an easy weeknight meal or party serving platter.
But apart from dipping sauces, you might be wondering what else you can serve with tempura chicken for a complete meal.
We've put together some of the tastiest side dishes to pair with your tempura chicken below to give you some cooking inspo.
Tempura chicken is relatively high in fat and calories since the chicken is covered in batter and light breadcrumbs and then deep-fried in oil.
Therefore, tempura chicken is considered a very unhealthy dish. However, you could always air fry or bake your tempura chicken to reduce the amount of oil you are using, pairing it with veggies for more nutrition.
If you are struggling to think of a side to have with your tempura chicken, we have some great side dish ideas below to make a tasty dinner.
If you have yet to try a ramen egg with your Japanese food before, you are missing out! Ramen eggs are full of flavour since they are marinated in a sweet soy sauce overnight.
This popular tempura ingredient makes a great side with your classic tempura chicken and adds a punch of flavour, good carbs to pair would be rice or noodles.
Toasted broccoli in sesame oil goes well with all kinds of tempura because these crunchy veggies add different textures to the plate, making a quick salad. The sesame oil gives a lovely addition to the flavour too.
Japanese sticky rice is much easier to make than it sounds and is the most fantastic base for chicken tempura when paired with green veggies and some dipping sauces.
Powered Japanese potatoes are a must as a side dish for tempura chicken if you love mashed potatoes.
These powered potatoes are cooked and shaken until very soft and fluffy, then mixed with sugar, soy sauce and butter to create unique flavours. The texture of these potatoes makes it a light side in comparison to standard mashed potato.
Classic stir-fried veggies add a boost of nutrition and colour to your plate with tempura, some staples to include in your stir-fry mix are; broccoli, peppers, onion, mushrooms, ginger, garlic cloves and chilli.
Pour on some soy sauce of sweet chilli sauce for extra flavour.
Black eye peas, cool beans salad and all kinds of high protein salads with veggies make a great side dish to your tempura chicken and are super easy to make. Add some chilli and garlic for an extra flavour boost.
If you are yet to try roasted miso garlic cauliflower, you are missing out. To make this side dish, brush your cauliflower with miso sauce and roast it in the oven until baked.
Noodles work well with tempura, especially when paired with a soy sauce base. You can also make ginger noodles for some extra flavour punch. Packet noodles often contain oil, so look for fresh options when possible.
Most variations of tempura are eaten with dipping sauces in Japanese restaurants. For example, there is Tentsuyu, a very light and refreshing dipping sauce often eaten with shrimp tempura, egg tempura or chicken tempura.
You also have your standard sweet and sour sauce and sweet chilli sauce.
If you're looking to make some chicken tempura and veggies for dinner, you can make this meal even healthier by baking your tempura instead of frying it.
We've listed the recipe below, which serves four people in total.
Tempura rolls typically have rice on the outside with a sheet of nori surrounding the roll, and some veggies are also put inside the roll, making them healthier than plain tempura.
Tempura can be eaten on top of rice but is not limited, you can also enjoy it with noodles and veggies.
Tempura is said to be a healthier batter than others since it requires less oil for frying and has an airier batter, meaning less grease is involved.
Both katsu and tempura can appear similar since they are coated and deep fried, but katsu is different because the batter contains breadcrumbs, making it heavier.
Tempura is traditionally eaten salted without sauce, or with a dipping sauce. Most of the time, this is straight after frying.
Tempura is typically served as a light snack in between meals or as a starter, it could be made into a main meal when paired with veggies and a side.
Overall, chicken tempura is a great dish to pair with traditional Japanese dipping sauces, but can also be eaten with sides such as sticky rice, miso cauliflower, powdered Japanese potatoes and noodles.
To make chicken tempura lighter, we recommend baking it or air frying it to use less oil. If your looking for other meal inspirations, check out our guide to what to serve with spring rolls here.