Szechuan Chicken

Szechuan chicken is a spicy and flavorful dish that hails from the Szechuan province in China. It is known for its bold flavors, fiery heat, and numbing sensation from the use of Szechuan peppercorns. Here’s a typical way to prepare Szechuan chicken:

To make Szechuan chicken, start by marinating bite-sized pieces of chicken breast in a mixture of soy sauce, rice wine, and cornstarch. This helps to tenderize the chicken and adds flavor.

Next, heat a wok or large skillet over high heat and add oil. Stir-fry the marinated chicken until it is cooked through and slightly browned. Remove the chicken from the pan and set it aside.

In the same pan, add more oil if needed and stir-fry minced garlic, ginger, and dried red chilies until fragrant. Be careful not to burn the garlic or chilies.

Return the chicken to the pan and add a sauce made from soy sauce, rice vinegar, sugar, and chicken broth. Bring the sauce to a simmer and cook until it thickens slightly.

Finally, add Szechuan peppercorns and chopped green onions to the pan and stir to combine. The Szechuan peppercorns will add a unique numbing sensation and citrusy flavor to the dish.

Serve the Szechuan chicken hot, over steamed rice. You can also add vegetables such as bell peppers, broccoli, or carrots to the dish for added color and nutrition.

Szechuan chicken is a spicy, savory dish that is sure to please anyone who loves bold flavors. Adjust the amount of heat to suit your taste, and enjoy this classic Chinese dish!

Servings : 6 servings ;Prep Time10 mins ;Cook Time15 mins; Total Time25 mins
For the Szechuan sauce
▢2 tablespoons cornstarch
▢⅓ cup water
▢½ cup soy sauce or coconut aminos
▢2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
▢1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
▢1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
▢2 teaspoons fresh minced ginger
▢½ tablespoon honey
For the Szechuan chicken
▢1½ pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, thinly sliced
▢½ cup cornstarch
▢¼ cup avocado oil, or another neutral high smoke point cooking oil
▢5 scallions, chopped (green and white parts separated)
▢4 bell peppers, red and green, cut into thin slices
▢10 dried red chilis, or use 2 to 3 teaspoons of red pepper flakes
▢2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
▢sea salt and ground black pepper to taste
For the sauce
In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the cornstarch and water until smooth.
Add the soy sauce, hoisin sauce, toasted sesame oil, rice wine vinegar, minced ginger, and honey, and whisk until smooth. Set aside.
For the Szechuan chicken
Add the chicken and cornstarch to a medium-sized mixing bowl and toss to coat the chicken with the cornstarch.
In a large, heavy-bottomed pan or wok, heat half of the avocado oil over medium-high heat.
Add the chicken and sauté for 3 minutes, browning the chicken on all sides.
Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside.
Add the remaining avocado oil and allow to heat for about 20 seconds.
 the white parts of the scallions, sliced bell peppers, and dried red chilis to the pan and sauté until the chilis start to hydrate and the bell peppers begin to soften, about 10 minutes.
the garlic and sauté for 15 seconds or until fragrant.
Return the chicken to the pan, stir in the Szechuan sauce, and continue to cook until the chicken is cooked through and the sauce has thickened, about 5 minutes.
Season with salt and ground black pepper and garnish with the green parts of the scallions.
Wooden Spoon
Mixing Bowls
Chicken: I used boneless skinless chicken breasts, but boneless chicken thighs are also a good option.
Avocado Oil: I like this oil for high-heat cooking, but you can also use vegetable oil, peanut oil, or other high-smoke point oil.
Dried Chilis: You can get a bag of these at your local import/export store, a well-stocked grocery store, Amazon, etc… However, if you can’t find any, use a couple of teaspoons (or to taste) of red pepper flakes.
Use the right pan. It is important to use a heavy-bottomed pan with a large surface area – think Wok – when making delicious stir-fries.
Don’t crowd the pan when cooking the chicken. If the pan is loaded, the chicken will steam and not brown

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