Quick and Easy Chinese Chicken With Oyster Sauce

Chicken in oyster sauce recipe

The Spruce

  • Total: 30 mins
  • Prep: 20 mins
  • Cook: 10 mins
  • Yield: 4 to 6 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
309 Calories
17g Fat
16g Carbs
24g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4 to 6 servings
Amount per serving
Calories 309
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 17g 21%
Saturated Fat 3g 17%
Cholesterol 63mg 21%
Sodium 867mg 38%
Total Carbohydrate 16g 6%
Dietary Fiber 2g 8%
Protein 24g
Calcium 67mg 5%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Chinese restaurants typically turn out a high volume of dishes in a noticeably short time. The secret is stir-frying, a speedy cooking method that tosses bite-sized pieces of meat and vegetables in hot oil over a wok or skillet. You can use the same technique at home to replicate Chinese takeout or get a work-night dinner on the table in a hurry!

Prepared oyster sauce, available at most grocery stores, adds the essence of oysters to this dish. The finished flavor of a dish served with oyster sauce—combined with all of the other ingredients—becomes more savory than fishy.

Ingredients

  • 1 pound chicken (boneless breasts or thighs, chopped into bite-sized pieces)
  • For the Marinade
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rice wine
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • For the Sauce
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons oyster sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sherry (dry)
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • For the Stir-Fry
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil (divided)
  • 1 garlic clove (minced)
  • 1 teaspoon ginger (minced)
  • 2 green onions (sliced on the diagonal into 1-inch pieces)
  • 3 to 4 dried Chinese mushrooms (softened in warm water and sliced)
  • 1 can bamboo shoots (or 1 can baby corn, drained)

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for chicken in oyster sauce
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  2. Combine the first three marinade ingredients in a large bowl.

    Combine marinade ingredients
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  3. Add the chicken and toss to coat; sprinkle the cornstarch evenly across the meat and toss again.

    Add the chicken
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  4. Marinate the chicken in the refrigerator for 10 to 15 minutes.

  5. While the chicken marinates, dissolve the cornstarch in the water, then mix it with all of the other sauce ingredients in a clean bowl.

    Mix cornstarch
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  6. Heat a wok or deep heavy skillet on high and add 1 tablespoon canola oil. When the oil shimmers, add the garlic, ginger, and green onion, then stir-fry for about 1 minute or until fragrant and just starting to brown.

    Heat a wok
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  7. Remove the aromatics with a slotted spoon.

    Remove the aromatics
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  8. Add the chicken and stir-fry, stirring frequently, until the chicken changes color, about 3 to 4 minutes.

    Add the chicken
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  9. Remove the chicken from the wok and discard the unused marinade.

    Remove the chicken
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  10. Add the remaining oil, return the garlic, ginger, and green onion to the wok, and stir-fry the mushrooms and bamboo shoots or baby corn for 1 minute.

    Add the remaining oil
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  11. Return the chicken to the wok.

    Add chicken
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  12. Make a well in the middle and add the sauce, giving it a quick re-stir before combining it with the chicken and vegetables.

    Make a well in the middle
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  13. Stir-fry for an additional 1 to 2 minutes, or until the sauce thickens and coats all of the ingredients.

    Stir fry
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  14. Enjoy!

Tip

  • Try not to add too many things to the wok all at once. If you add too many items at one time, it will cool down your wok and your food will simmer or steam rather than fry. One of the tricks to stir-frying is to cook the ingredients in batches.