Deep-fried Kung Pao Chicken with Peanuts

Kung Pao Chicken
MasonRobinson/Moment Open/Getty Images
  • 60 mins
  • Prep: 50 mins,
  • Cook: 10 mins
  • Yield: Serves 4 to 6
Ratings (20)

Kung Pao Chicken, named after a court official or "Kung Pao," is a spicy Szechuan dish made with diced chicken, peanuts and chili peppers. This recipe calls for deep-frying; for a lighter version, try Kung Pao Chicken Stir-fry.

What You'll Need

  • 2 boneless chicken breasts (about 6 ounces each)
  • For the Marinade:
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Chinese rice wine (or dry sherry)
  • 2 teaspoons cold water
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • For the Sauce:
  • 1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons light soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar (black or red, or red wine vinegar)
  • 1 tablespoon chicken broth (or water)
  • 3 teaspoons sugar (granulated)
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 3 to 4 drops sesame oil
  • 1 tsp. cornstarch
  • For the Stir Fry:
  • 6 to 8 small dried red chili peppers (or as desired)
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 cup peanuts (skinless, unsalted)

How to Make It

1. Cut the chicken into 1-inch cubes. Mix in the soy sauce, rice wine or sherry, water and cornstarch. Marinate the chicken for 30 minutes.

2. In a small bowl, mix together the sauce ingredients, whisking in the cornstarch last.

3. Remove the seeds from the chile peppers and chop. Peel and finely chop the garlic.

4. Heat the oil for deep-frying to between 360 and 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Carefully slide the chicken into the wok, and deep-fry for about 1 minute, until the cubes separate and turn white.

Remove and drain on paper towels. Drain all but 2 tablespoons oil from the wok.

5. Add the chilies peppers and stir-fry until the skins starts to darken and blister. Add the garlic. Stir-fry until aromatic (about 30 seconds). Add the deep-fried chicken back into the pan. Stir-fry briefly, then push up to the sides of the wok and add the sauce in the middle, stirring quickly to thicken. Stir in the peanuts. Mix everything together and serve hot.

Reader Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Comments: Perfect results and better than the Kung Pao chicken found in the city malls. I found that 3 dried red chillies was plenty hot enough for me.Rated by Mike

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Main Chinese Recipes File

Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
Calories 582
Total Fat 50 g
Saturated Fat 8 g
Unsaturated Fat 20 g
Cholesterol 47 mg
Sodium 703 mg
Carbohydrates 15 g
Dietary Fiber 2 g
Protein 21 g
(The nutrition information on our recipes is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. Individual results may vary.)