Kung Pao Chicken

Kung Pao Chicken

With all of this talk about Chinese food it was about time that I got down to cooking some! There are several different types of Chinese cuisine and I would have to say that my favourite is the cuisine that comes from the Sichuan province for its use of chilies and the mouth numbing Sichuan peppercorns. Kung pao chicken is a quick and tasty dish that hails from the Sichuan province and uses both chilies and Sichuan peppercorns and it is a dish that I keep coming back to for more. This recipe is really easy to make though some of the ingredients may not be in every pantry. Although you can replace some of the ingredients with more commonly available ones, I recommend that you try to track down some of the Sichuan peppercorns as they really bring a lot to the table. This is mainly a meat dish that is intended to be served with other vegetable dishes but you can easily add some extra vegetables to the chicken and quickly stir fry them as I did this time with a red bell pepper. This time I also served the kung pao chicken with some steamed baby bok choy in an ouster sauce with fried shallots.

Kung Pao Chicken

Kung Pao Chicken

A popular and tasty Chinese sauteed chicken dish form the Sichuan province that uses red chilies and Sichuan peppercorns.


Servings: makes 4 servings

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Marinate Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes

Printable Recipe
Ingredients
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons Shaoxing (rice wine) or dry sherry
  • 1 teaspoon corn starch
  • 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 pound chicken breast, cut into bite sized pieces
  • 1 tablespoon light soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon dark soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Chinkiang (Chinese black vinegar) or balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons chicken broth or water
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 3 tablespoons oil
  • 10 dried red chilies
  • 1 teaspoon to 1 tablespoon Sichuan peppercorns, toasted*
  • 1 tablespoon garlic, grated
  • 1 tablespoon ginger, grated
  • 4 green onions, sliced
  • 1/4 cup peanuts
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
Directions
  1. Mix the soy sauce, Shaoxing, corn starch, and sesame oil and marinate the chicken in it for at least 20 minutes.
  2. Mix the soy sauces, Chinkiang, broth, sugar and corn starch and set aside.
  3. Heat one tablespoon of the oil in a pan over medium-high heat, add the chicken and saute until just about cooked and set aside.
  4. Heat the remaining oil in a pan over medium-high heat, add the chilies and peppercorns and saute until fragrant, about a minute.
  5. Add the garlic and ginger and saute until fragrant, about a minute.
  6. Add the sauce mixture, bring to a boil, add the chicken, green onions and peanuts, remove from heat and stir in the sesame oil.

* If you are new to Sichuan peppercorns you might want to start with 1 teaspoon and build up to the full tablespoon that I go with.

Similar Recipes:
Shrimp Kung Pao
Mapo Tofu
Dan Dan Mian
Green Beans with Sichuan Pork
Orange Chicken
Sweet and Sour Chicken
Mapo Eggplant
Bang Bang Chicken
Honey Lemon Chicken and Asparagus Stir Fry

50 comments:

Steve @ the black peppercorn said...

Hey Kevin. Glad to have found another food blogger from Toronto! Been scanning through your site and I love it! This kung poa looks like a great dish! It is one of my favorite chinese dishes, especially with lots of chilies! I am hoping to do some chinese food for chinese new yew next week, likely gonna do some turnip cake! YUM!

daphne said...

Oh a Chinese classic! and best of all, you did it so well-not the heavy oily salty version!

vanillasugarblog said...

and the leftovers are so good in moo shi pancakes. Well, if there are any leftovers. LOL

Girlie Blogger said...

You put the "POW!" in Kung Pao Chicken. That's a LOT of red peppers!

Happy Chinese New Year!

www.thegirlieblog.com

beti said...

I've always wondered if I could make it and if it would taste the same as the one in chinese restaurants, it looks pretty good I will sure give it a try!

Jennifer said...

Congratulations on getting Blogger's Blog of Note! I love your blog! This food looks amazing!

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Oh that looks so good! A fatastic dish.

Cheers,

Rosa

Maja said...

This sounds mouth-watering recipe!

Joanne said...

I don't think I've EVER seen a kung pao chicken that isn't SMOTHERED in oil...but you've done it! I can feel the heat and the flavor from here!

Leslie said...

mouth Numbing? Yikes. Still sounds amazingly flavorful!

Agnes said...

You're making me so hungry!

Anonymous said...

Kevin so glad I found your site. Great recipes

Vinita said...

This looks so good!! I can't wait to go to the Chinese store here and get some rice wine vinegar and Sichuan peppercorns. Thanks for sharing and would love to add your blog to my list of go-to blogs.

Lydia Lyn said...

Congratulations on being honored as a Blog of Note! I hope to have the same badge on my vest someday.
www.theholeinmyhandbag.blogspot.com

Anonymous said...

Excelentt!!

Wendy @ Salt and Wine said...

Woo hoo! Congrats on being blog of note! Long time follower here (even if I don't always comment). Happy to see you were chosen. :)

overworked supermom said...

oh my, I can't wait to try this!

Alexandra said...

Interesting recipe on kung pao chicken. I was searching for it. I will try making it soon. Regards from NJ!

giz said...

I loooove Kung Pao Chicken and I'm looking at all the peppers and thinking that it must have been fire.

LDH said...

Wow ~ this looks so fabulous! I am copying the recipe and hope to make soon!

Kindly, Lorraine

Y u think said...

I love Chinese, I think I will try to cook this - it will be a first for me.

cholesterol lowering diets said...

Chinese new year is near! What a fun and bright dish this is. Congrats in making it to the blog of note!

Rosie Publications said...

Wow, this recipe looks fantastic! Thanks for sharing. I love chicken dishes.

Боби said...

It's amazing!

Tushar Kumar said...

Looks awesome!

Tanapat Surisang said...

It's delicious food,I like it.

Tanapat Surisang. allofthailand.blogspot.com

Littlemisssunshine said...

Looks and sounds delicious!!! Thank you for sharing!!

Rocky Mountain Woman said...

I make a version of this that is a little heavier on the oil. I am going to try this one next time!

Tyna said...

That recipes make me hungry after having breakfast. You make it looks perfect. I just dont like the rice, it makes me fatter :)

Sue @ Cakeballs, cookies and more said...

just found your post I am from the area too, I will be following you now, I know how hard it is to work with a small kitchen.

Haven said...

Oh! I haven't done a lot of Chinese cooking, though I love to eat it! I especially like spicy, yet not oily, food. I will definitely have to try this!

Michael said...

This food looks so good. I am hunger now.

Amy said...

One of my absolute favorite Chinese food dishes. I'm definitely giving it a try at home!

Tawcan said...

Looks amazing. Definitely one of the classic Chinese dishes. Definitely have to come back to this site and check out more recipes.

Chris said...

You are a true talent, Kevin. Every time I visit I think you have outdone yourself.

Jessica Mariella said...

Great photo! I have never tried Kung Pao chicken, but this photo makes we want to try it!

www.oliviajasonkim.com said...

looks good. will have to try it out. thanks and great pics. olivia

Anonymous said...

I made your Kung Pao Chicken as well as your dumpling recipes last week for a dinner party. Both were a hit!! Thanks for sharing these!

kara said...

My husband loves kung pao chicken. I will make this for him!

Sam said...

i'm going to make this tomorrow, thanks! One thing I would like to say to everyone who talks about oil quantities.... Fear not good fats! Thanks again! :)

Amy said...

Made this tonight and I wanted to check-in about the amount of sichuan peppercorns in this recipe. Should that maybe be 1 tsp instead of 1 Tbs? I ask because it was the only thing I could taste in the finished dish, and on reviewing other recipes of similar size, 1 tsp seems more standard. In related news, my mouth has been numb for hours XD

Kevin said...

Amy: I guess you build up a tolerance for them. :) I like to go with the full tablespoon but if you prefer you can easily go with less. I have update the recipe to indicate this. Thanks

Anonymous said...

made this tonight, WAY to salty (and i am known for over-salt everything!!), and really gritty? are sechuan peppercorns suppose to be like eating sand? was i supposed to grind them after toasting them?

Kevin said...

Anonymous: This dish is not a salty one and I am not sure why yours came out so. I kind of like the texture of the Sichuan peppercorns but if you do not you can do one of two things: 1. As you say, grind them, but there will still be a bit of a gritty texture. 2. Saute them in the oil that you will be cooking with and then remove them from the oil before continuing. This will impart some of their fragrance and flavour to the oil but it will not be nearly as strong.

jason@readchinesemenu said...

Thanks so much for the Kung Pao chicken recipe. This is exactly what I wanted to make tonight.

Anonymous said...

Have been looking for a authentic Gongbaojiding recipe for quite some time. Tried this one tonight, it's great, thanks!

@nc said...

Hi Kevin. I tried this recipe today and I have to agree with the previous comments. The peppercorns were way too much. I'm Indian (with high tolerance for heat) and I've ordered hot Chinese dish, so I thought that I could take this. But what I felt about Sichuan peppercorns is that its not about the heat, it's a tangy sourness and numbing feeling. I don't know if the sauce had to do with the sourness too. Anyway it was a disaster and it went right into the trash lol! It reminded me of the recent ford focus "sour chicken" commercial and couldn't stop laughing! I'm not saying that your recipe is bad, I may have gone wrong somewhere. Damage control included dumping sugar, honey, sweet chili sauce, hoisin sauce - it just got worse. I think it's funny so thought I should share my experience. :)

Kevin Lynch said...

@nc: Did you use the full tablespoon or did you start with the teaspoon as recommended in the recipe? The peppercorns should not be responsible for an overpowering sourness...

Anonymous said...

is it compulsory to add shaoxing wine or dry sherry in marinade? i want to avoid this as we are non alcholic family, any other substitution or suggestion for this.
thanks.

Kevin Lynch said...

Anonymous: Yes, you can omit the shaoxing wine in marinade!

Post a Comment