Stir-Fried Kung Pao Chicken With Chili Peppers

Kung Pao Chicken With Chili Peppers

Juhari Muhade / Getty Images

Prep: 25 mins
Cook: 20 mins
Total: 45 mins
Servings: 3 to 4 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
596 Calories
44g Fat
17g Carbs
34g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 3 to 4
Amount per serving
Calories 596
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 44g 56%
Saturated Fat 8g 42%
Cholesterol 95mg 32%
Sodium 771mg 34%
Total Carbohydrate 17g 6%
Dietary Fiber 2g 6%
Protein 34g
Calcium 93mg 7%
*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.)

In this healthier version of traditional Kung Pao Chicken, the chicken is stir-fried instead of deep-fried, reducing the fat content.


  • 2 chicken breasts (boneless, skinless, 7 to 8 ounces each)
  • 8 small dried red chili peppers
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 green onions (spring onions, scallions)
  • 4 tablespoons oil (for stir-frying, or as needed)
  • Optional: 1 teaspoon Szechuan peppercorn
  • 1/2 cup peanuts (or cashews)
  • Optional: few drops sesame oil
  • For the Marinade:
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons Chinese rice wine (or dry sherry)
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • For the Sauce:
  • 2 tablespoons dark soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Chinese rice wine (or dry sherry)
  • 1 teaspoon sugar

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Cut the chicken into 1-inch cubes.

  3. Combine marinade ingredients, adding the cornstarch last. Marinate the chicken for 25 minutes.

  4. While the chicken is marinating, prepare the sauce and vegetables: In a small bowl, combine the dark soy sauce, rice wine, and sugar. Set aside.

  5. Cut the chilies in half so that they are approximately the same size as the chicken cubes. Remove the seeds.

  6. Peel and finely chop the garlic. Cut the green onion on the diagonal into thirds.

  7. Heat the wok over medium-high to high heat. Add 2 tablespoons oil.

  8. When the oil is hot, add the chicken. Stir-fry until it turns white and is 80 percent cooked. Remove from the wok.

  9. Add 2 tablespoons oil. When the oil is hot, add the garlic and stir-fry until aromatic (about 30 seconds).

  10. Add the chili peppers and the Szechuan peppercorn if using. Stir-fry briefly until they turn dark red.

  11. Add the sauce to the wok. Bring to a boil.

  12. Add the chicken back into the pan. Stir in the peanuts and the green onion.

  13. Remove from the heat and stir in the sesame oil. Serve hot.

  14. Enjoy!