Kung Pao Chicken | 宫保雞丁

This marks my 4th Chinese themed recipe for this Chinese New Year season. This dish is originated from China, Sichuan province. This is a classic dish in Sichuan cuisine which uses chicken as it's primary ingredient. What makes this dish so unique is the usage of Sichuan peppercorns. The peppercorns are famous for it's spicy and numbing effects on the palate. You can read about it's roots and history from Wiki.

There're lots of different variations across China and America. Today I am using an American-Chinese cooking technique and recipe; the chicken is finely diced and cook on low heat under 3 mins. You must be wondering "why low heat?" This is because if the chicken is cooked on high heat, it will lose it's tender juiciness while cooking. The trick is to dice the chicken small and uniformly.

You can use a wok if you have one. I am using my skillet so that you lovely people knows that this dish can be done in a skillet or pan. This is a rather spicy dish. Don't say I didn't warn ya. My daughters, despite not eating anything spicy, devoured this dish within mins. They said, "this is spicy but it tastes so good." I hope you will give this recipe a try.


(Serve 4)

  • Chicken:

  • Chicken Thigh Skinless Boneless, 400g

  • Soy Sauce Preferably Kikkoman, 1 TBSP

  • Sea Salt, 1/4 TSP

  • ShaoXing / Hua Tiao / Sherry Wine, 1 TBSP

  • Corn Starch, 1 TBSP

  • Canola / Peanut / Vegetable Oil, 1/2 TSP

  • Sauce:

  • Granulated Sugar, 2 TBSP + 1 TSP

  • ShaoXing / Hua Tiao / Sherry Wine, 1 TBSP

  • Soy Sauce Preferably Kikkoman, 1.5 TBSP

  • Sea Salt, 1/4 TSP

  • Lao Gan Ma Spicy Chili Crisp, 2 TSP

  • Roasted Chili Powder, 1 TSP

  • Chicken Stock, 1/4 Cup

  • Kung Bao Chicken:

  • Canola / Peanut / Vegetable Oil, 1 TBSP

  • Sichuan Peppercorns, 1/3 TSP

  • Dried Chilies Halved Deseeded, 12 Adjust To Preference

  • Garlic Finely Minced, 3 Cloves

  • Ginger Finely Minced, 1/2 Inch

  • Green Onion White Parts Only Finely Sliced, 3 Stems

  • Slurry, 1 TSP Potato Starch + 1 TSP Water

  • Unsalted Peanuts, 75g

  • Black Vinegar, 2 TBSP

  • Green Onion Green Parts Only Finely Sliced, 3 Stems


  • Cast Iron Skillet / Pan / Wok


  1. Prepare the chicken.

  2. Finely dice the chicken to about 1 cm or 1/3 inch in size.

  3. Transfer into a shallow bowl.

  4. Add in soy, salt and shaoxing.

  5. Mix to combine well.

  6. Add in corn starch.

  7. Mix to combine well until the corn starch has fully dissolved.

  8. Add in oil and mix to combine well.

  9. Cover with cling film.

  10. Set aside in the fridge to marinade for at least 30 mins.

  11. Prepare the sauce.

  12. In a bowl, add sugar, shaoxing, soy, salt, chili crisp, chili powder and chicken stock.

  13. Stir to combine well and until the sugar has dissolved.

  14. *To make roasted chili powder, simple roast a few dried chilies in a skillet until aromatic and toasty. Transfer into a spice grinder and blitz until powder form.*

  15. Cooking the kung bao chicken.

  16. In a skillet or wok over low heat, add oil.

  17. Once the heat is slightly heated up, add in pepper corns and dried chilies.

  18. Saute until aromatic for about 30 secs.

  19. Add in the marinaded chicken.

  20. Spread the chicken out and cook for about 30 secs.

  21. Flip the chicken and cook for another 30 secs.

  22. Turn the heat up to medium.

  23. Add in garlic, ginger and green onion.

  24. Saute until aromatic.

  25. Add in the sauce and saute to combine well.

  26. Cook for about 30 secs.

  27. Add in the slurry and saute to combine well.

  28. Cook for another 30 secs.

  29. Remove from heat.

  30. Immediately add in peanuts and saute to combine well.

  31. Lastly add in black vinegar and saute to combine well.

  32. Immediately transfer onto serving plate.

  33. Garnish with green onions.

  34. Serve immediately.

#chicken #宫保雞丁 #kungpao #chinese

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