Kung Pao Chicken

The chicken is stir-fried instead of deep-fried, reducing the fat content in this healthier version of a popular dish. It is quite spicy, with the inclusion of dried red chillies, but you can also add a fresh long red chilli for additional kick!

Kung Pao Chicken


  • 500g skinless chicken thighs, diced
  • 2 tablespoons peanut or rice bran oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 8 dried red chillies, seeded and chopped
  • 1 teaspoon crushed Sichuan peppercorns
  • 2 spring onions, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons salt-reduced soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon shaoxing rice wine
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/3 cup (50g) raw cashew nuts or peanuts, toasted
  • steamed rice, to serve


  1. To make the marinade, combine all of the ingredients in a shallow bowl. Add the chicken and toss to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  2. Heat 1 tablespoon of the peanut oil in a wok or large non-stick frying pan over high heat. Add the chicken, in two batches if necessary, and cook for 5 minutes or until just golden. Remove to a plate.
  3. Heat another 1 tablespoon of the oil in the wok and add the garlic and stir-fry for 30 seconds. Add the chilli, Sichuan pepper and the white part of the spring onion and stir-fry for 1 minute, or until fragrant.
  4. Combine the soy sauce, rice wine and sugar in a small bowl, then add to the chilli mixture in the wok and stir well. Add the chicken and stir-fry for about 2 minutes to heat through. Stir in the spring onion greens and cashew nuts. Remove from the heat, divide among serving bowls and serve with steamed rice.

Serves: 4
Preparation: 10 minutes, plus 30 minutes marinating
Cooking: 15 minutes

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