Easy Kung Pao Chicken. Make your fave Chinese food at home! Spicy, savory, easy and delicious. . . you’ve got to try this!
This might seem like an odd recipe to be sharing, the week heading into the Christmas holiday . . but for me and my family, by this time in December, we are a little turkey-ed and ham-ed out so Asian food looks and sounds awfully good to us!
We usually do steaks for Christmas and Asian food right after and into the New Year . . so, pin this recipe and save it for a day soon where Chinese food sounds good to you!
I also love supporting local Asian food restaurants but sometimes you need to cook at home. Some of you may not have a good Asian food restaurant close by and I really want to convey that cooking Asian food at home is not difficult. You will have to go to an Asian food grocery store, but if you like and eat Asian food and haven’t visited one in your area, now is the time!
I hope you check out my recipe over at The Kitchenthusiast!! And yes, I am using my favorite pan again!
Kung Pao Chicken
For the marinade:
- 3 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
- 4 teaspoons Chinese rice wine
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 1 to 1 1/2 pounds boneless skinless, chicken thigh meat, cut into 1 to 1 1/2-inch cubes
For the kung pao chicken sauce:
- 2 tablespoons good-quality balsamic vinegar
- 2 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
- 1 to 2 heaping tablespoons Korean hot pepper paste; 2 tablespoons will make this very spicy
- 1 heaping tablespoon hoisin sauce
- 2 teaspoons sesame oil
- 2 teaspoons honey or to taste
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon ground Sichuan pepper
For the kung pao chicken:
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vegetable oil
- 8 to 10 dried red chilies
- 3 scallions diced fine
- 1/2 green bell pepper chopped into 3/4 inch pieces
- 1/2 red bell pepper chopped into 3/4 inch pieces
- 2 to 3 garlic cloves minced
- 1 heaping teaspoon freshly grated ginger
- 1/3 cup unsalted dry-roasted peanuts for garnish
- First, you need to marinate your chicken. Using a small bowl, stir together the soy sauce, rice wine, sugar, sesame oil and cornstarch until the cornstarch is dissolved. Place the chicken in one layer in a baking dish and pour the soy sauce mixture evenly over the chicken. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight for best results, flipping the chicken just once halfway through.*
- When ready to cook, leave the chicken on your kitchen counter and start making the sauce. Using another small mixing bowl, combine the balsamic vinegar, soy sauce, gochujang, hoisin sauce, sesame oil, honey, cornstarch, and Sichuan pepper. Stir together and taste, adjusting any ingredients as needed. Set aside.
- Using skillet or pan over medium-high heat, heat the vegetable oil and after a minute or two, add in the dried chilies and stir-fry for about 1 to 2 minutes, or until the oil starts to become slightly fragrant. Add the marinated chicken and stir-fry until no longer pink, for about 3 to 5 minutes.
- Next, add the scallions, bell peppers, garlic, and ginger. Mix together and stir fry for about 2 to 3 minutes. Pour in the sauce and toss together to coat. Let your Kung Pao Chicken cook for another 3 to 4 minutes, or until the chicken is completely cooked through and is no longer pink. Sprinkle on and mix in the peanuts and cook for another 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer to a serving plate, garnish with more scallions and peanuts if desired and serve with rice and enjoy!
- *If you don’t have time to marinate your chicken overnight, marinate for at least 30 minutes in the refrigerator.
To see the rest of the instructions and complete recipe card, please visit The Kitchenthusiast
Disclosure: This is a sponsored post in partnership with KitchenAid USA. All opinions expressed here are 100% my own. Thank you for supporting me in working with the brands and products that I use and love.
Laura (Tutti Dolci) says
Oh yes, Chinese food sounds pretty perfect to me! I love Kung Pao chicken and I can’t wait to try your recipe!
Favorite pans are for using!
And I’ll take Kung Pao literally every day over turkey or pretty much anything else. It’s sooooo good. I can’t wait to try it your way!
Dannii @ Hungry Healthy Happy says
I don’t think that this is an odd recipe for this time of year. I think it’s the perfect quick, easy and delicious meal to make amongst all the other chaos that is going on.
Gayle @ Pumpkin 'N Spice says
Kung pao chicken is one of my favorite dishes to order out, though I’ve never made it at home before! This sounds delicious, Alice! I love all of the flavorful ingredients in here!
David @ Spiced says
Christmas week or the middle of July…I don’t care when it is because this kung pao chicken looks amazing! Happy holidays, Alice! 🙂
Jen | Baked by an Introvert says
I typically don’t order kung pao chicken when I order out but I could certainly get down with making this at home. It sounds so flavorful and easy to put together. Great recipe, Alice!
Cheyanne @ No Spoon Necessary says
Chinese food actually sounds quite fabulous right about now, Alice!! I have been craving something other than the normal holiday food, so this Kung Poa Chicken needs to get up in my belleh! Pinned! Cheers, my friend!
This sounds wonderful to me, and it is welcome change from all the holiday fare. Kung Pao Chicken is my favorite Chinese dish. I hope you have a great holiday season.
Jess @ whatjessicabakednext says
Love Chinese food anytime! Never tried kung pao chicken before, but it sounds and looks delicious. Definitely going to try this soon! Thanks for sharing, Alice! 🙂
Love Kung Pao Chicken, it is one of my favorite Asian dishes! Pinned to try your recipe!
Meghan | Fox and Briar says
This looks like just what I want to eat, any time of year! I think after awhile all the turkey and ham and cookies get a little old. I have been looking for some recipes to mix it up, and this is perfect. Pinning!
This is perfect timing, we always have Asian take out of some kind on Christmas Eve, maybe this year we’ll change it up and make it at home 🙂
Jennifer Farley says
One of my favorites!
Oh, yeah! I am now officially craving Chinese food! This looks amazing, Alice.
Taylor @ Food Faith Fitness says
I don’t think I can even wait one day for this! Kung Pao Chicken is one of my favorites ever and this looks amazing!
Sarah @Whole and Heavenly Oven says
Would you believe that this girl has NEVER had kung pao chicken before?? That’s changing right now because this seriously looks INCREDIBLE, Alice!!
This kung pao chicken looks amazing! It’s one of my husband’s favorites!
Merry Christmas, Alice, hope you have a wonderful holiday with your family!
Can I just say I’m glad you posted this because I can’t really look at Christmas cookies anymore? I haven’t even baked any yet, either! It’s all about real food for me right now, and this looks like something I want for dinner ASAP! Merry Christmas to you and your family, Alice!
I really am so glad to see this, really wanted to see something savory. I love love kung pao chicken, and we do order when we go out, but nothing like home made. My family love Chinese food and I do try to make it quite often, Pinning this for sure.
Thanks for sharing and the Merriest Christmas to you my friend.
Ashley | The Recipe Rebel says
This is one of our favorites to get when we eat out — love that we can make it at home now! Totally not disappointed that it’s not something red and green 😉 Merry Christmas Alice!
Ashlyn | Dollop of Yum says
This Kung Pao Chicken looks amazing! Love a homemade alternative to a typically take out dish.
Brielle @ Breezy Bakes says
We did Thai for Christmas Eve! Sometimes you just need a break from the traditional. I wouldn’t mind a steak dinner right about now!