Spicy Joes Szechuan Chicken
Our Szechuan chicken recipe is so quick and easy to make with just the right amount of spice, with seasoned chicken, a variety of peppers and a fantastic homemade Szechuan sauce. Perfect for an delicious weeknight treat.
- FOR THE SZECHUAN CHICKEN
- 1 pound chicken breast, chopped into bite-sized pieces (you can also use chicken thighs if you’d like)
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1/2 cup corn starch
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil (or use olive oil)
- 1 large bell pepper, chopped
- 2 serrano pepper chopped (optional for extra spicy!)
- 10 dried chile de arbol peppers (optional for extra spicy, or use other dried red chilies you love)
- 1 tablespoon Szechuan peppercorns (or use black peppercorns)
- 1/4 cup peanuts, chopped (plus more for garnish – cashews are great here, too!)
- FOR THE SZECHUAN SAUCE
- 1/4 soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil
- 1 tablespoon ground ginger fresh minced ginger is good, too
- 1 tablespoon honey or more for sweeter
- 1 tablespoon chili garlic sauce
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder fresh minced garlic is good, too
- 1 teaspoon sriracha or more to taste
- 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 1/2 cup chicken stock
- 1-2 tablespoons cornstarch, for thickening
- 1/2 – 1 teaspoon szechuan peppercorns lightly toasted and ground (or use black peppercorns instead)
- 1/2 – 1 teaspoon Chinese 5 spice
- FOR SERVING
- Cooked white rice or noodles, spicy chili flakes
Add the chopped chicken to a large bowl. Add soy sauce, salt and pepper and toss to coat. Marinate for 10 minutes.
FOR THE HOMEMADE SZECHUAN SAUCE
While the chicken is marinating, whisk all of the ingredients except the cornstarch together in a small pot.
Bring the pot to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 3 minutes.
To thicken the sauce, dissolve 1 tablespoon cornstarch in 2 tablespoons of water until well mixed. Stir it into the szechuan sauce and stir until it thickens up, 2-3 minutes. For thicker szechuan sauce, use 2 tablespoons cornstarch. Remove from heat and set aside.
FOR THE SZECHUAN CHICKEN
Heat the oil in a large pan to medium heat.
Toss the chicken with 1/2 cup corn starch to coat. Add it to the pan and cook, stirring, 5-6 minutes, or until it is cooked through. Remove the chicken and set it aside.
Heat the pan back to medium-high heat and add the peppers. Cook for 5 minutes to soften.
Add the peppercorns and chopped peanuts and cook another 2 minutes, stirring.
Add the chicken back to the pan along with the homemade Szechuan sauce. Reduce the heat and simmer for 5 minutes.
Serve with rice or noodles. Garnish with extra chopped peanuts and spicy chili flakes.