Kung Pao Chicken (Chicken & Peanuts)

Kung Pao Chicken (Chicken and Peanuts)

When I make, or eat, Kung Pao Chicken, aka “Chicken and Peanuts”, I immediately think of my Dad. He was the one in our family who liked to experiment in the kitchen, and truly is the one who inspired me to be the best home cook I can be. Kung Pao chicken was one of his specialties. I remember seeing dozens of spices and fresh ingredients spread out across the counter. The kitchen would be a disaster by the time dinner was ready. But we were always so delighted with the end result.

I love Kung Pao chicken because it’s the perfect balance between salty, sweet, sour, spicy, and savory. And it’s an easy recipe you can make at home, and is usually kid friendly! (2/3 of my kids like it, and I consider that a win.)

There is an authentic version of Kung Pao chicken, and the home cook version — using ingredients you can find in any grocery store — and often times, using ingredients you already have in your pantry or fridge. This recipe is the for the home cook, and I hope you will enjoy. 🙂

Kung Pao Chicken (Chicken & Peanuts)

Print Recipe
Serves: 4-6 Cooking Time: 20 minutes


  • 2 tbsp. vegetable oil
  • 2 stalks green onions, white, sliced (reserve green tops)
  • 2 lbs. chicken breast, diced into small chunks
  • 1 cup roasted and salted peanuts
  • ----
  • 1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp. water
  • 1 tbsp. arrowroot or cornstarch
  • 2 tbsp. sherry wine (cooking wine or regular wine ok, too)
  • 2 tbsp. rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp. honey
  • 1/2 tsp. ground ginger
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 stalks green onions - green part only (see above), sliced
  • 1/2 Crushed red pepper



Pour oil in wok or large sauce pan. Heat wok on high heat. Add diced chicken to wok and cook for a 3-5 minutes until slightly browned. Add white parts of green onions and peanuts. Combine


Combine next 7 ingredients (up to green onions) in bowl and stir well, making sure arrowroot is well dissolved in liquid. Pour wet ingredients into wok and bring to light boil, only for about 30 seconds, and then turn to low. The high heat will thicken the sauce. Turn heat to low and cook for another 10-12 minutes.


Add sliced green onions and crushed red pepper and serve with brown rice.

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