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Coca-Cola Chicken

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close up shot of coca-cola chicken on a plate
Our Coca-Cola chicken features drumsticks simmered in a tangy sauce, giving it a great flavor that the whole family will love.
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Table of Contents
  1. Coca-Cola Chicken Ingredients
  2. How To Make This Coca-Cola Chicken Recipe
  3. How To Serve
  4. Storage
  5. More Recipes You’ll Love
  6. JUMP TO RECIPE

Deliciously sticky and sweet, these Coca-Cola chicken drumsticks are a great way to make chicken. Tender chicken is simmered in a tasty mix of soda and other flavorful and simple ingredients for this amazingly easy dish.

close up shot of coca-cola chicken on a plate

Coca-Cola Chicken Ingredients

Coca-Cola Chicken raw ingredients that are labeled

You’ll need:

  • 4 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
  • 2 pounds of chicken drumsticks (8-9 drumsticks) 
  • 1 cup finely diced sweet yellow onion
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic
  • 2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger
  • 2 (12-ounce) cans of Coca-Cola
  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons light brown sugar, packed
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt

SUBSTITUTIONS AND ADDITIONS

HOT SAUCE: Add a dash of hot sauce to the ingredients for an extra kick.

COCA-COLA: If you prefer to use Diet Coke in this popular dish, you are more than welcome to substitute it for regular Coke.

CHICKEN: You could also turn this recipe into Coca-Cola chicken wings or Coca-Cola chicken thighs. The cooking times may be slightly different than recommended in this recipe, so it is best to check that the internal temperature reaches 165°F.

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How To Make This Coca-Cola Chicken Recipe

STEP ONE: Using a 4 to 5-quart Dutch oven on medium-high heat, add 2 tablespoons of oil. 

STEP TWO: Add the chicken drumsticks, and sauté for 3 minutes on each side. Remove the drumsticks and set them aside.

chicken drumsticks being sautéed in a pot of oil

STEP THREE: Add the remaining oil to the Dutch oven. Add the onion, and sauté uncovered for 2 minutes, stirring often. Keep the heat on medium-high.

onions being sautéed in a pot

STEP FOUR: Add the garlic and ginger. Continue cooking and stirring often, for 1 to 1½ minutes. Keep the heat on medium-high.

garlic and ginger added to the pot of onions

STEP FIVE: Add the 2 cans of Coca-Cola, soy sauce, brown sugar, black pepper, and salt. Continue stirring often, and cook uncovered for 5 minutes. 

OUR RECIPE DEVELOPER SAYS

Depending on the type of soy sauce you are using, you may need to adjust the quantity of salt you are adding. If you have a light soy sauce, you may want extra salt, whereas a regular soy sauce will be saltier and may require less than the called for ½ teaspoon of salt.

brown sugar, salt, pepper, coca-cola, and soy sauce added to the ingredients in the pot

STEP SIX: Reduce the temperature to medium heat, and return the chicken drumsticks to the pot. Cook for 20 minutes uncovered, turning the chicken once.

chicken drumsticks added to the coca-cola sauce in the pot

STEP SEVEN: After cooking the chicken for 20 minutes, remove the chicken from the pot and set it aside. Increase the heat to medium-high. Allow the sauce to reduce for 5 to 8 additional minutes. Once the sauce reduces, remove the pot from the heat. Ladle the sauce over the chicken, and serve while hot. 

PRO TIP:

If you want your sauce to be thicker, you can stir in a cornstarch slurry before pouring the sauce over the chicken.

How To Serve

Serve this delicious recipe at dinner time with cornbread, cheese biscuits, or potato salad on the side along with a green salad. These are a great entree choice any time of year.

For a similar slow cooker chicken recipe that uses chicken breasts with Coca-Cola, check out our slow cooker Coca-Cola chicken. For more easy recipes featuring chicken, try our crispy honey chicken.

Storage

IN THE FRIDGE: Any leftovers of this chicken dish should be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

IN THE FREEZER: Freeze this cola chicken for up to three months in an airtight container or plastic freezer bag.

close up shot of coca-cola chicken on a plate

This is a fun twist on sweet and sour chicken with a secret ingredient added. Whip up a batch the next time you are searching for a delicious dinner idea. The Coca-Cola not only flavors the chicken perfectly but also tenderizes the meat.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Can I use Diet Coke?

If you prefer to use Diet Coke in this recipe, you are more than welcome to substitute it for regular Coke.

Can I use different types of chicken such as wings or thighs?

You can use chicken wings or chicken thighs in this recipe. We would recommend sticking to chicken with bone-in as boneless chicken requires a much longer cooking time than the smaller bone-in chicken pieces.

Do I have to marinate the chicken in the sauce before cooking?

This recipe doesn’t require any marinating ahead of time. You will cook the chicken right in the sauce and it will flavor it while it simmers.

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close up shot of coca-cola chicken on a plate

Coca-Cola Chicken

5 from 6 votes
Our Coca-Cola chicken features drumsticks simmered in a tangy sauce, giving it a great flavor that the whole family will love.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings 4

Ingredients
  

  • 4 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
  • 2 pounds chicken drumsticks 8 to 9 pieces
  • 1 cup sweet yellow onion, finely diced
  • 1 tablespoon fresh garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons fresh ginger, grated
  • 24 ounces Coca-Cola
  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons light brown sugar, packed
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt

Instructions
 

  • Using a 4 to 5-quart Dutch oven on medium-high heat, add 2 tablespoons oil.
  • Add the chicken drumsticks, and sauté for 3 minutes on each side. Remove the drumsticks and set them aside.
  • Add the remaining oil to the Dutch oven. Add the onion, and sauté uncovered for 2 minutes, stirring often. Keep the heat on medium-high.
  • Add the garlic and ginger. Continue cooking and stirring often, for 1 to 1½ minutes. Keep the heat on medium-high.
  • Next add the 2 cans of Coca-Cola, soy sauce, brown sugar, black pepper, and salt. Continue stirring often, and cook uncovered for 4 to 5 minutes.
  • Reduce the heat to medium, and add back in the chicken drumsticks. Cook for 20 minutes uncovered, turning the chicken once.
  • After cooking the chicken for 20 minutes, remove the chicken from the pot and set aside. Increase the heat to medium-high. Allow the sauce to reduce for 5 to 8 additional minutes. Once the sauce reduces, remove the pot from the heat. Ladle the sauce over the chicken, and serve while hot.

Notes

  • Depending on the type of soy sauce you are using, you may need to adjust the quantity of salt you are adding. If you have a light soy sauce, you may want extra salt, whereas a regular soy sauce will be saltier and may require less than the called for ½ teaspoon of salt.
  • If you want your sauce to be thicker, you can stir in a cornstarch slurry before pouring the sauce over the chicken.

Nutrition

Sodium: 1271mg | Calcium: 40mg | Vitamin C: 3mg | Vitamin A: 72IU | Sugar: 23g | Fiber: 1g | Potassium: 444mg | Cholesterol: 140mg | Calories: 474kcal | Trans Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 15g | Fat: 28g | Protein: 29g | Carbohydrates: 27g | Iron: 2mg
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  1. Debbie says

    5 stars
    I don’t cook with coke a cola but I I’ll sure try it now! Sounds delicious 🤤 I do use red flakes from time to time because it gives some foods a good taste.

    • Debbie says

      5 stars
      For the side dish I would make either potato salad or macaroni salad to go with the coke a cola chicken.

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