Whenever I’m having a gathering of friends or family, whether it’s for a game day or birthday party, there’s nothing easier to serve than piles of chicken wings or chicken nuggets that everyone can help themselves to.
However, these can be a little plain on their own, so I love to add a fun and varied selection of dips that my guests will enjoy. You might enjoy simple chicken dipping sauces such as ketchup or Ranch dressing, but after a while, these start to get a little dull!
So if you are looking to try out something new and impress your friends and family during your next party, today I’ve gathered together fifteen delicious dipping sauce recipes for you to try!
Chicken is one of the most versatile meals on the planet, and one thing that contributes to its versatility is the wide range of dipping sauces that people serve with it. From sweet to savory, there is a chicken dipping sauce for practically any taste.
Below we’ll go over some of the best chicken dipping sauces in the world and how you can make some of them in your own kitchen. Whether you’re looking for a low-calorie sauce to spice up a light lunch or you want to serve up some popular classics for a party, you’re sure to find your next favorite sauce here.
Popular Dipping Sauces for Chicken
Even though there are dozens of sauces for chicken served at homes and restaurants across the world, certain sauces are so popular that you can be certain to find them at practically any takeaway or fast food restaurant. According to Mashed website, these are the three sauces that won the three-way tie for most popular chicken dipping sauce in the world:
- Ketchup: Ketchup (also known as catsup) is a smooth bright red table condiment created from vinegar and tomatoes. Popular on beef as well as chicken, ketchup is easily of the most popular dipping sauces in the world.
- Barbeque: Barbeque sauces are as varied as the regions they come from, but most are spicy sauces that include strong spices along with tomato paste and vinegar. Other potential ingredients include mayonnaise or sweeteners like molasses and brown sugar.
- Ranch: Originally a salad dressing, ranch is an American invention created from buttermilk, herbs, spices, onion, and mustard. Other common ingredients include sour cream and mayonnaise.
If you go to a restaurant that revolves around fried chicken, chances are you’ll come across these three staples somewhere on the sauce list. Sometimes flavors such as barbeque and ranch are mixed together.
What Is the Most Common Dipping Sauce?
The most common dipping sauce served with chicken is ketchup. Since it has a mild flavor that is almost universally agreeable, even with small children, it can be found almost anywhere chicken is served.
What Is Chicken Dipping Sauce Made Of?
Most chicken dipping sauces are a mixture of one of the following ingredient types:
- Acid: Common acids used in chicken dipping sauces are citrus juices and vinegar. These give dipping sauces a sharp tang that helps cut through the fatty mouthfeel of the grease when you’re eating fried chicken.
- Cream: Some dipping sauces are cream-based or oil-based, and these tend to rely on spices for flavor and their creamy bases for a rich taste. Creams and oils are often added to chicken dipping sauces to counteract spicier ingredients, such as sriracha.
- Sugar: Many chicken dipping sauces include some kind of sugar or other sweetener. Popular dipping sauces that are sugar-heavy include Polynesian sauce as well as other Asian sweet and sour sauces such as lemon or orange sauce.
- Herbs and spices: Herbs and spices are what give chicken dipping sauces their intense flavor. The profile of the herbs and spices used depends on the dipping sauce. Some dipping sauces are deliberately very complex and spicy, while others are more mild and muted.
Keeping these concepts in mind, you can put together any number of different ingredients to come up with a completely new dipping sauce for chicken. All it takes is combining these ingredients in a balanced proportion to each other. A sauce that is only sweet with no acid will come across as too sweet, while spicy dips without fat to cut them can be too harsh.
What Chicken Dipping Sauces Have No Mayo?
A major turn-off for many people in chicken dipping sauces is mayo. While some people absolutely love this white egg-based condiment, other people despise it. It also has a lot of fat and calories compared to some other sauce ingredients.
So what do you do when you want a chicken dipping sauce but you don’t want one that has mayonnaise in it? Here are a couple of suggestions for chicken dipping sauces that don’t incorporate any mayonnaise as an ingredient:
- Honey mustard sauce: Honey mustard sauce is a tangy yellow sauce made of honey, Dijon mustard, and vinegar. While some recipes for honey mustard incorporate mayonnaise for a creamier texture, it isn’t a necessary ingredient.
- Creamy sriracha sauce: Creamy sriracha sauce may have several ingredients, but the two major ingredients are sour cream and sriracha hot sauce. This can be a good alternative to a mayo-based creamy sauce. You can even use low-fat sour cream to make a healthy variation.
- Buffalo sauce: A spicy sauce that doesn’t incorporate mayonnaise is buffalo sauce. This classic chicken wings dipping sauce features cayenne peppers, vinegar, spices, and garlic powder.
These are just a few of the dipping sauces for chicken that you can make without mayo, so if mayo isn’t your thing, that doesn’t mean you don’t get any dipping sauce! Try one of the flavors above instead and find your new dipping sauce obsession.
Is Sour Cream Healthier Than Mayo in Chicken Dipping Sauces?
One option that many people use when making dipping sauces for chicken is to use sour cream as a substitute for mayonnaise. While sour cream adds creamy texture to sauces similar to mayonnaise, it doesn’t tend to have as many fat or calories.
If the amount of fat and calories present in mayonnaise is the main reason you’re avoiding it in your chicken dipping sauces, there are also low-fat varieties of mayonnaise available.
Low-Calorie Chicken Dipping Sauces
A major drawback of dipping sauces for chicken is that they can add a lot of fat and calories to a chicken dish that wouldn’t have them otherwise. Still, that shouldn’t keep you from adding delicious dipping sauces to your next chicken meal if you’re watching what you eat.
Here you’ll find three types of low-fat chicken dipping sauces that can add tons of flavor without adding tons of calories:
- Salsa: Salsa is a fresh, spicy condiment made of chopped tomatoes with aromatics like onion and herbs. Finely blended salsa can be used as a tasty sauce for chicken in Mexican dishes or for fried chicken tenders. Salsas can also incorporate fruit such as peaches or watermelon.
- Hot sauce: Hot sauce is always a good option for adding flavor to a dipping sauce without adding a lot of calories. The key to a good sauce that doesn’t incorporate a lot of fat or calories is pumping up the flavor with aromatics and spices like peppers.
- Mustard: Mustard is a spicy condiment made up of the crushed-up seeds of the mustard plant. There are many different kinds of mustard, such as Dijon mustard, yellow mustard, and whole grain mustard.
Adding dipping sauces to your chicken doesn’t mean you have to pack on a bunch of extra fat and calories. There are plenty of aromatic chicken dipping sauces that are low-calorie too.
6 Classic Dipping Sauce Recipes for Chicken
A great way to figure out which chicken dipping sauces you like the most is to try some dipping sauces recipes for your own. Here are some of the best chicken dipping sauces you can learn to make to elevate your next chicken tender dinner to super star levels.
1. Chicken Alfredo Sauce
Alfredo sauce is a cream-based Italian sauce that is created by incorporating butter and cream with a bunch of different herbs, garlic, and Parmesan cheese. Alfredo is a popular pasta sauce for both chicken and seafood such as shrimp.
Chicken Alfredo Sauce
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 2 cloves minced garlic
- 1/4 teaspoon white pepper
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 3/4 cup grated mozzarella cheese
- Black pepper to taste
How to Make Chicken Alfredo Sauce
To make chicken alfredo sauce, start by melting olive oil and butter over a saucepan on medium heat. Add garlic, cream, and white pepper, stirring frequently. Add Parmesan cheese and simmer 8-10 minutes while stirring occasionally, until the texture of the sauce is smooth. Add mozzarella and stir until fully melted, then serve with chicken. (via Food.com)
2. Copycat Chick-Fil-A Sauce
Chick-Fil-A sauce is the popular fast food chain’s version of “special sauce”, but this delicious dipping sauce for chicken is very easy to recreate at home if you don’t feel like going out. This sauce can help you create a food that tastes just like takeout at home, and this version is much healthier too.
Copycat Chick-Fil-A Sauce
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1/4 cup barbeque sauce
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise
- 2 tablespoons yellow mustard
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
How to Make Chick-Fil-A Sauce
Making a copycat Chick-Fil-A sauce is simple. Simply mix the above ingredients in a small mixing bowl and let stand in the refrigerator for an hour to let the flavors settle together. This condiment can be served either as a dipping sauce or used as a sauce on sandwiches. (via Family Fresh Meals)
3. Orange Chicken Sauce
Orange chicken is a popular Chinese-American dish with roots that originate from the Hunan region of China. This sweet and spicy sauce came to America with Chinese immigrants who used to cook leftover orange and lemon peels with soy sauce, garlic, and other aromatics to create a delicious sauce for dressing stir-fried chicken. With the addition of sugar and cornstarch, this citrus-flavored sauce became one of the most popular Asian sauces for chicken.
Orange Chicken Sauce
- 1 cup fresh orange juice (orange zest reserved from 1 orange)
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 2 tablespoons vinegar (rice or white)
- 2 tablespoons tamari soy sauce
- 1/4 teaspoon fresh grated ginger
- 2 minced garlic cloves
- 1/2 teaspoon red chili pepper flakes
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
How to Make Orange Chicken Sauce
To make orange sauce, combine fresh orange juice, sugar, vinegar, soy sauce, ginger, red pepper flakes, and minced garlic. Bring up to heat on medium heat for three minutes or until thoroughly warmed through. Combine cornstarch with two tablespoons of warm water to form a cornstarch paste, then add this paste to the heated sauce. Cook for five minutes or until thickened. Remove from heat and whisk in orange zest before serving. (via Modern Honey)
4. Chicken Cordon Bleu Sauce
Chicken cordon bleu or “blue ribbon chicken” is a chicken dish where flattened chicken breasts are rolled together with cheese and ham before being breaded and fried. This chicken dish is traditionally served with a creamy Dijon mustard sauce that also works perfectly as a dipping sauce for chicken fingers or nuggets.
Dijon Cream Sauce for Chicken Cordon Bleu
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 3 tablespoons white flour
- 2 cups whole milk
- 3 tablespoons Dijon or whole grain mustard
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder or 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- Salt and cracked black pepper to taste
How to Make Chicken Cordon Bleu Sauce
To create a Dijon cream sauce for Chicken Cordon Bleu, whisk flour into butter over medium heat before gradually adding milk, whisking to work out any clumps that may form until the sauce is smooth. Stir in mustard, garlic powder, salt, black pepper, and grated Parmesan. Serve sauce warm. (via La Creme de la Crumb)
5. Copycat Chicken-Fil-A Polynesian Sauce
Described as a sweet, tangy mixture between Asian sweet and sour sauce and barbeque sauce, Chick-Fil-A Polynesian sauce is one of the most popular dipping sauces that the chicken chain offers. Polynesian sauce is one of the oldest dipping sauces that Chick-Fil-A offers, predating their own special sauce by decades.
Copycat Chick-Fil-A Polynesian Sauce
- 1 cup French dressing
- 3 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
- 6 tablespoons honey
How to Make Chick-Fil-A Polynesian Sauce
This copycat recipe couldn’t be any easier to put together. Mix together French dressing, apple cider vinegar, and honey, then let sit in the fridge for at least one hour. This sauce can stay good up to 2-3 weeks after refrigerating in a sealed container. (via Kitchen Dreaming)
6. Lemon Sauce for Chicken
In Chinese cuisine, lemon sauce is a popular variation of orange sauce on chicken and contains lemon juice and zest instead of orange juice for a sharper, more tangy flavor. In Western cuisines, lemon juice is usually added to butter and garlic for a more savory variation. Either way, lemons are a perfect flavor pairing with chicken in many different dishes.
Lemon Butter Dipping Sauce for Chicken
- 8 tablespoons butter (1 stick)
- 2 minced cloves of garlic
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1/4 cup chicken broth
- 1/4 cup ground black pepper (more to taste)
How to Make Lemon Butter Dipping Sauce for Chicken
To make lemon butter dipping sauce for chicken, simply melt a stick of butter in a saucepan over medium heat, then add garlic and saute gently for 2-3 minutes or until fragrant. Add lemon juice, broth, and black pepper and allow the sauce to simmer another 5-10 minutes before serving. (via Natasha’s Kitchen)
15 Easy and delicious Chicken Dipping Sauce Recipes
1. Thai Dipping Sauce
If you are looking to spice things up a little bit, there’s nothing better than a Thai dipping sauce like this one from Boulder Locavore. With simple ingredients such as vinegar, ginger root, turbinado sugar, and chili flakes, you’ll create the perfect balance of sweet and sour tastes. A few drops of siracha will add a bit more spice to the sauce and further enhance the flavor of your chicken. You can create this dipping sauce in just five minutes, which you can then pour into small dishes to serve.
2. Homemade Honey Mustard Sauce
Using just three simple ingredients, this classic dipping sauce is one of my all-time favorites. The best thing about this quick dipping sauce is that it’s created using simple ingredients that you’ll probably already have in your pantry. The sweet and sour flavors perfectly complement each other, and the kick of Dijon enhances the taste of the sauce even further. Try this recipe from Pinch of Yum which takes only a few minutes to create and doesn’t require any heating or cooking. You’ll just put the five ingredients in a bowl together and whisk until combined.
3. Mustard and BBQ Sauce
Punch Fork shares this rich dipping sauce with us which involves combining honey mustard with BBQ sauce. This dipping sauce would make a great accompaniment for chicken wings on a game-night, yet it is versatile enough to serve with French fries or any other chicken dishes. The best thing about this dip is that it only takes a few minutes to prepare and is suitable for both vegetarians and those on a gluten-free diet.
4. Mayo And Chives Dip
Are you looking for a refreshing sauce to go with your chicken, steak, or sandwiches? Mantitlement shares this versatile sauce which has a complex range of flavors to create a delicious sauce for any dish. With just a few minutes in the kitchen and a selection of common ingredients, this dipping sauce will be your new go-to when you are catering for friends and family members. It’s made from mayo, mustard, soya sauce, Worcestershire sauce, butter, garlic, and chives. Once it’s made, store it in an airtight jar, as this is a sauce you’ll want to return to over and over again!
5. Garlic Aioli
Garlic aioli is one of the simplest yet tastiest dipping sauces you can make. With just three simple ingredients required to create it, you’ll enjoy the depth of the garlic and the way the addition of lemon juice contrasts with the creaminess of the mayo. It’s the perfect dip to enjoy alongside buffalo chicken wings. The Cookie Rookie shares the easiest way to make this dip, which you’ll make again and again to enjoy at all of your festivities throughout the year.
6. Basil Dipping Sauce
Try this creamy and tasty dipping sauce recipe by Hellmann’s. It’s ideal for serving with chicken skewers for an appetizer or on a buffet. Made with three main ingredients, which are basil, mayonnaise, and garlic, you will end up with a sauce that has a creamy texture and a strong flavor. No cooking is required for this dip since you’ll simply blend together the ingredients and it will be ready to serve! If you can, use the recommended olive oil mayonnaise, as this will give an extra richness to the sauce.
7. Zaxby’s Dipping Sauce
Allrecipes shares with us a different take on a traditional BBQ dip. This dipping sauce is perfect for you if you are looking for something with a similar taste to BBQ sauce yet with even more flavor. This recipe requires just mayo, ketchup, and Worcestershire sauce as the three main ingredients. Simply add in a pinch of garlic powder, black pepper powder, and salt, and you’ll be ready to serve this alongside your chicken dippers or wings! For best results, store your dip in the fridge for two hours before serving, to help the ingredients blend together perfectly.
8. Comeback Sauce
Comeback sauce is the ideal dip to serve alongside Southern fried chicken or to add to your finger food buffet. This dip has a hint of heat to it, and once you’ve tasted it, you’ll be hooked! You will need to combine mayo, ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, and loads of hot sauce for this dip. The great thing about this sauce is that you can customize it to fit you and your guests’ tastes, so if you are serving it to kids and teens, maybe reduce the amount of hot sauce you add. She Wears Many Hats shares detailed instructions for this tasty sauce, which will take you less than ten minutes to create.
9. Tahini Dip
If you are looking for a unique addition to your next party buffet, try out this popular Middle Eastern-inspired dip. Give Me Some Oven shares this simple recipe, and if you love the flavor of tahini, this will soon become one of your new favorite dips. It is super simple to make, and the only ingredients you’ll need are tahini, lemon juice, garlic, and cumin. Prepare this sauce a few hours in advance of serving, so that the flavors mingle together well for the best results.
10. Avocado-Cilantro Dip
Are you looking for a healthy dip to serve with your chicken? Paleo Leap has the perfect recipe for you, and this avocado-cilantro dip is super creamy and full of healthy nutrients. To create this sauce, you’ll just need avocado, cilantro, lemon juice, and garlic, and you’ll simply blend the ingredients together to get a smooth texture. For best results, use a food processor to make this dip, as it will ensure there are no lumps of avocado left after mixing everything together.
11. Mexican Salsa Dip Sauce
Better Homes & Gardens brings you an unusual dip recipe that has a Mexican twist to it. If you love salsa, this dipping sauce is the perfect choice for your next party and would make a great addition to your Taco Tuesdays. It’s super easy to make, and all you’ll need to create this dip is salsa, sour cream, and Mexican cheese. Mix everything together and enjoy the creamy and tangy flavors of this salsa dip with your chicken strips or fajitas.
12. Avocado Ranch
Scattered Thoughts of a Crafty Mom gives you another creamy avocado sauce that kids and teens will love. With just five ingredients, you can create a delightful dip to go with chicken, French fries, and sandwiches. You’ll simply add all of the ingredients into your blender and then blend until you get your desired consistency. Add more ranch seasoning until you get the perfect taste, and to find the perfect thickness, add in one teaspoon of water at a time to ensure it doesn’t get too runny.
13. Spicy Soy Sauce
Are you looking for a simple Asian dip sauce? Try this quick and easy spicy soy sauce from Culinary Ginger. It’s a versatile sauce that can go with almost anything and requires just three household ingredients that you probably already have in your kitchen. Simply combining soy sauce, honey, and chili flakes, you’ll have a tasty Asian dipping sauce. Just add sliced green onions and sesame seeds to garnish before serving.
14. Pizza Dip sauce
Better Homes & Gardens shares this unusual yet delicious dip that will be enjoyed by adults and kids alike. This Italian-style dip combines pizza sauce, olives, and Italian cheese, and you’ll simply mix everything together before putting your bowl into the microwave. You want to ensure the cheese is fully melted before serving, and you’ll have a creamy and cheesy dip that’s perfect for serving alongside your favorite chicken tenders or pizza.
15. Horseradish Sauce
This creamy and light horseradish sauce will make a great dip for your chicken. It has a rich texture and a tangy flavor thanks to the combination of sour cream, horseradish, and apple cider vinegar. For additional freshness, add chopped chives before serving, as suggested in this recipe from Natasha’s Kitchen. While this is a fantastic option for your chicken, you’ll also enjoy returning to this recipe again the next time you are cooking prime rib or beef tenderloin.
All of these chicken dipping sauces are extremely versatile, and you’ll enjoy using them alongside a variety of meals in the future. They’ll be the ideal addition to your party buffet at your next family gathering, and will go well with almost all types of finger foods. If you feel particularly creative, consider trying to create your own sauce, by adding or taking away different ingredients to suit your personal preferences. All of these dips and sauces are so quick to make, so there’s no excuse when you are next serving chicken to not spend a few additional minutes in the kitchen. When you find the perfect dipping sauce for your chicken dish, there’s nothing better, and it can really help elevate your dinner to the next level!