Much Better Than Takeout Kung Pao Chicken

Kung pao chicken is the best fast weeknight supper for heating up: spicy, appetizing, simply a tip of sweet, therefore, so addicting.

What is kung pao chicken?

Kung pao chicken is a traditional Chinese stir fry meal with diced chicken, dried chilis, and peanuts. It originates from the land of fire-y spicy hot Chinese food, Sichuan. It’s likewise a truly popular Americanized Chinese get order. Everybody enjoys kung pao chicken with its tender littles chicken and complex sauce of salty, sweet, appetizing, and spicy tastes.

This specific kung pao isn’t rather the method it’s made in Sichuan. In Sichuan, they classically dry fry it with simply a touch of sauce. This kung pao is a saucy riff, more in the design of takeout American Chinese kung pao. The sauce makes it best for consuming with rice.

Does this taste like Panda Express kung pao chicken?

This isn’t an ingredient-for-ingredient copycat dish for Panda Express however it is quite darn close!

How to make kung pao chicken

This stir fry comes together extremely fast and simple after you prep all of the components. If you desire do this faster than takeout will reach your door, prep whatever prior to you begin cooking.

  1. To begin with, make some rice. Unless you have actually wise and have rice meal-prepped in your refrigerator. Then because case, avoid this action since you’re currently winning at life.
  2. Cut up your chicken into bite sized pieces. Location them in a bowl with the marinade and reserve while your preparation the sauce components.
  3. Preparation the ginger and garlic. Blend up all the sauce components in a little bowl or liquid determining cup. Utilize a garlic press for the garlic and a ginger grater for the ginger. Both are big convenience.
  4. Time to prepare! It’ll take simply a couple of minutes: prepare the chicken, include the sauce, let it minimize a bit, and you’re prepared to consume.

kung pao chicken |

Kung pao chicken components

The majority of the components in this kung pao chicken can be discovered at your typical supermarket. You require chicken thighs, soy sauce, rice vinegar, cornstarch, sugar, garlic, ginger, scallions, and peanuts (or your nut of option). The other handful of components can be discovered at your friendly Asian supermarket, online, or in locations like Whole Foods.

The tough to discover things

  • Shaoxing white wine: This is the secret component that will make your Chinese food taste like dining establishment design Chinese food. Shaoxing white wine is a sweet, nutty, earthy Chinese rice white wine. Find out more about it by means of our supreme guide to Shaoxing white wine.
  • Hoisin sauce: Hoisin is practically offered all over now, from Target to your fundamental supermarket. It’s a thick, sweet brown sauce that’s utilized in marinades and as a dipping sauce. It’s extremely delicious: sweet and tasty, appetizing, and filled with umami. Hoisin can taste various based upon brand name, and for us, the very best brand name of hoisin is Lee Kum Kee. Reward, it is available in a capture bottle!
  • Sambal oelek: This is not a genuine component in kung pao chicken in Sichuan, however it loads a fresh chili-garlicky punch.
  • Entire dried chilis: These are entirely optional, however if you desire your kung pao to look genuine, you have actually got to have actually dried chilis! They offer entire Chinese dried chilis online and in Asian supermarket. We utilize dried paradise dealing with chilis however you can sub the chile de √°rbol you see in the Mexican aisle too. Many people do not consume the dried peppers, however some do, specifically if the peppers are high quality, cozy, and excellent.

making kung pao chicken |


Peanuts are the traditional nut in kung pao. They key is to fry them a bit to improve their nuttiness. I opted for a peanut-free kung pao with cashews. If you like, you can sub in any nut or leave them out totally. To fry your nuts: heat a little bit of oil in a non-stick pan or wok. Stir fry, moving continuously for 2-3 minutes up until they begin to smell roasty and tasty. Get rid of from the pan and reserved. If you’re not going to fry your nuts, make certain you’re utilizing toasted/roasted nuts.

Kung pao sauce

Kung pao sauce is a magic sauce that makes whatever taste excellent! It’s so tasty that they offer bottles of it at the shop (there’s even Panda Express kung pao sauce) however it’s actually simple to make in the house and shop in the refrigerator. From there you can include it to random clear out the refrigerator stir french fries and boom, instantaneous kung pao.

To make kung pao sauce, mix together 1 tablespoon + 1 tsp cornstarch, 1/4 cup hoisin sauce, 1/4 cup sambal oelek, 2 tablespoon rice vinegar, 2 tablespoon sugar, 4 cloves minced garlic, and 1 tablespoon grated ginger. Prepare in a non stick sauce pan over medium heat, stirring up until the sauce ends up being thick and shiny. Let cool entirely then put into a tidy container and keep in the refrigerator for as much as 2 weeks, firmly covered. Contribute to stir french fries throughout the last action, after whatever has actually been prepared.

kung pao chicken sauce |

Chicken breast or chicken thighs?

Chicken thighs transcend in this stir fry since they are extremely delicious and have more fat material than breasts. You can utilize breasts too, simply make certain you prepare them for less time.

Other proteins

You can likewise make this with:

  • sliced steak
  • sliced pork shoulder
  • company tofu

Tips and techniques

  • Cut your chicken into even pieces. Put in the time to slice up the chicken into little even pieces. It’ll prepare quicker and more equally.
  • Velour your meat. Marinading the chicken in Shaoxing white wine, soy sauce, and cornstarch is called velveting. It offers the chicken taste and the cornstarch safeguards the chicken from excessive heat that makes it juicer when it cooks. It’s what offers stir fried meats their smooth texture.
  • Toast the nuts. Toasting the nuts extracts the tastes making them more nutty and crispy.
  • Utilize a non stick pan. I like to utilize a non-stick pan since cornstarch has the propensity to stay with routine pans and with a non-stick you have the alternative of not utilizing as much oil. Some individuals believe that non-stick pans are not expert, since they do not provide you the maillard response (or wok hei, if you’re going that deep) you ‘d get with a routine pan, however when you’re making stir fry, not steak, it’s not a problem. Plus, the name of the video game is ease and if you have an aggravatingly tough to clean pan after supper is done, that’s hard. These pans are my preferred.

kung pao chicken |

What to serve with kung pao chicken

  • fluffy white rice
  • garlicky gailan
  • dan dan noodles
  • chili oil wontons

kung pao chicken recipe |

Kung Pao Chicken Dish

Extremely addicting and extremely simple to make in the house.
Serves 4
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Preparation Time 12 minutes Prepare Time 8 minutes Overall Time 20 minutes

Active Ingredients


  • 1 pound chicken thighs cut into bite size pieces
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Shaoxing white wine
  • 1 tsp cornstarch

Kung Pao Sauce

  • 2 tsp cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoon hoisin
  • 2 tablespoon sambal oelek
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 cloves garlic crushed
  • 2 tsp ginger grated

Stir Fry

  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 8-10 dried red chiles if wanted
  • 1/4 cup roasted cashews or peanuts
  • 2-3 green onions cut into 2″ lengths


  • Marinade the chicken thighs in the soy sauce, shaoxing white wine, and 1 teaspoon of cornstarch. Reserve while prepping your sauce.marinating chicken |
  • In a little bowl or liquid determining cup, blend together the staying 2 teaspoons of cornstarch with 1/4 cup water, hoisin, sambal oelek, rice vinegar, sugar, garlic, and ginger.kung pao chicken sauce |
  • Warm up the oil in a big non-stick frying or saut√© pan over medium high heat. Include the chicken and cook, stirring sometimes up until golden and prepared through. frying chicken |
  • Turn the heat to medium, include the peppers and the sauce and stir to coat. Cook, up until the sauce begins to thicken and turn shiny. making kung pao chicken |
  • Include the green onions and cashews. kung pao chicken |
  • Delight in hot!kung pao chicken |

Approximated Nutrition

Nutrition Information.
Kung Pao Chicken Dish.

Quantity Per Serving.

Calories 350
Calories from Fat 147

% Daily Worth *

Fat 16.3 g 25% Hydrogenated fat 3.6 g 23% Cholesterol 101mg 34% Salt 604mg 26% Potassium 388mg 11% Carbs 13.6 g 5% Fiber 0.9 g 4% Sugar 8.1 g 9% Protein 35.2 g 70% * Percent Daily Worths are based upon a 2000 calorie diet plan.

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