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Quick and Easy Kung Pao Chicken

Quick and Easy Kung Pao Chicken. You can easily make this take out favourite in less time than it takes to order take out… plus you can make this dish as spicy or mild as you like, the heat is very easy to control.

Kung Pao Chicken close up photo of pne serving for recipe featured image

Quick and Easy Kung Pao Chicken.

Kung Pao Chicken is my favourite take-out lunch these days, especially when I crave something spicy. I’ve been playing around with a few recipes at home lately and really like this simple version.

This is not only a very simple but very fast recipe for a weekday dinner. You can have this one on the table in 20 minutes much like our incredibly popular version of Beef and Broccoli.

Kung Pao Chicken photo of a singe serving on a white plate with chopsticks

Quick and Easy Kung Pao Chicken.

TOP TEN Asian Cooking Ingredients to keep on hand.

Depositphotos stock image of hoisin sauce in a white bowl

Hoisin Sauce is one of the best and most versatile Asian cooking ingredients to have on hand at all times.

This recipe also makes use of some basic Asian cooking ingredients that I always keep in the fridge or cupboard. My TOP TEN Asian cooking ingredients that I always try to have on hand are:

  1. Hoisin sauce
  2. Fish sauce
  3. Toasted sesame oil
  4. Ginger root. ( I keep mine in the freezer and then easily grate it frozen)
  5. Rice wine vinegar.
  6. Five Spice powder.
  7. Low sodium soy sauce (recommended for all my recipes that call for it) 
  8. Oyster Sauce
  9. Sesame seeds
  10. Crushed chili paste ( sambal oelek or similar)
Roasted cashew nuts.

Roasted cashew nuts are another ingredient I like to garnish some Asian dishes with, both for great flavour and added crunchy texture.

Looking for more chicken dinner ideas. Be sure to check out this collection of our Most Popular Chicken Recipes of the last decade.

Our top Ten Chicken Recipes of the past 10 years. Image collage for Pinterest

Originally published Oct 2009. Updated Nov 2020.

Like this Easy Kung Pao Chicken recipe?

We’ve got lots of other ideas for delicious weekday meals in our Quick & Easy Meals Category.

Quick and Easy Kung Pao Chicken

Quick and Easy Kung Pao Chicken (Original 2009 photo)

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Kung Pao Chicken photo with title text added for Pinterest

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Kung Pao Chicken close up photo of pne serving for recipe featured image
Yield: 4 Servings

Quick and Easy Kung Pao Chicken

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes

Quick and Easy Kung Pao Chicken - you can easily make this take out favourite in less time than it takes to order take out...plus you can make this dish as spicy or mild as you like, the heat is very easy to control.

Ingredients

  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut small cubes
  • 2 tablespoons peanut oil, or canola oil
  • 4 cloves minced garlic
  • pinch fresh ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons additional peanut oil
  • 4 to 6 whole chiles, You can substitute chili sauce or crushed chili paste, like Sambal, to better control the heat to your taste. Start with about a teaspoon for mild heat.
  • ¼ cup rice wine
  • 2 tbsp Hoisin sauce
  • 2 tbsp Black Bean Sauce, you can replace this with more hoisin if you prefer.
  • 3 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp fresh grated ginger root
  • ½ tsp Chinese 5 spice powder
  • 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • 2 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp dark soy sauce
  • ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 diced red pepper
  • 4 green onions chopped in 1 inch pieces

Cornstarch slurry

  • 1 ounce 1 water
  • 1 tsp 1 corn starch

Garnish (optional)

  • Toasted cashews or peanuts

Instructions

  1. In a hot wok, add the peanut oil and saute the chicken with the garlic and pepper until almost completely cooked. Remove the chicken from the wok for the time being.
  2. To the hot wok add the additional oil and chilies.
  3. Toss the chilies in the oil for a few seconds before adding all the following ingredients quickly and all at once (I like to mix them together before starting to cook): the rice wine, Hoisin sauce, Black Bean Sauce, sugar, grated ginger root, Chinese 5 spice powder, toasted sesame oil, ight soy sauce, dark soy sauce and freshly ground black pepper.
  4. Reduce the heat on the wok to medium and bring the sauce to a simmer before adding the chicken back to the wok along with the red pepper and chopped green onions.
  5. Cook for an additional minute.
  6. To thicken the sauce stir in a slurry of about 1 ounce water mixed with 1 tsp corn starch. If you want he sauce thicker, just make a little more of the slurry to add.
  7. Serve on a bed of rice or Chinese noodles and garnish with toasted peanuts or cashews.

Nutrition Information

Yield

4

Serving Size

1 serving

Amount Per Serving Calories 449Total Fat 20gSaturated Fat 4gUnsaturated Fat 0gCholesterol 109mgSodium 1101mgCarbohydrates 23gFiber 2gSugar 15gProtein 39g
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gail

Wednesday 13th of May 2020

Could the chicken be switched out for pork because spouse inadvertently took out pork sirloin chops from the freezer and I am making this dish soon? I don't want to refreeze the meat but the profile seems very interesting to me.

Anonymous

Friday 11th of May 2012

Any idea where to find rice wine and black bean sauce in st. Johns?

Barry C. Parsons

Sunday 13th of May 2012

Some of the larger supermarkets carry more of these things now but you could always try Magic Wok store on Duckworth St.

Anonymous

Tuesday 3rd of April 2012

Yum!! Chinese 5 spice is also delicious on sweet potato fries in the oven. Thanks for the great recipe!

Barry C. Parsons

Monday 12th of October 2009

Any supermarket or Bulk Barn, the latter bing much less expensive.

Lynn Peddle

Monday 12th of October 2009

Looks like a fast and simple recipe...but where's the best place to buy Chinese 5 spice in St. John's?

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