This Chicken Stir Fry recipe is the ultimate quick and easy dinner full of fresh vegetables and tender chunks of chicken in a delicious homemade sauce. It couldn't be easier to prepare!
Everyone will love this classic Chicken Stir Fry loaded with chicken breast, mushrooms, broccoli, and peppers all coated in a traditional honey and soy sauce-based stir fry sauce.
Stir fry chicken is a family favorite, a true classic when it comes to stir-fries. No need to order takeout when the craving for stir fry hits as this recipe is sure to please.
You can easily get it on the table and into hungry mouths in about 20 minutes. Plus it works with any combination of chicken and veggies you like.
Why You’ll Love This Chicken Stir Fry
Here are just a few of the reasons why we think this recipe will be a big hit for you and your family.
- Quick and easy: This easy chicken stir fry comes together in just 20 minutes. If you prep the sauce and used chop the veggies or as part of your weekly meal prep routine, you can get this healthy dinner on the table even faster.
- Versatile: Stir fries are so versatile. That’s why we love them so much. Use whatever protein you have on hand whether it be chicken, meat, or tofu. It doesn't matter if the meat is already cooked you can still add it to the vegetables and mix it with the sauce.
- Healthy: This chicken stir fry is loaded with healthy protein and fresh vegetables for a well-balanced meal.
You can also change up the way you want to serve this chicken and vegetable stir fry. It goes well over white or brown rice, cauliflower rice, rice noodles, or quinoa.
Key Ingredients and Easy Swaps
Here is everything you need to make this tasty chicken stir fry.
- Chicken: Cubed chicken breasts work well in this recipe but you could also use chicken thighs if you aren’t a fan of breasts. Sliced beef, pork, shrimp, or curved tofu will also taste great in this stir fry.
- Coconut oil: We like using coconut oil as it is suitable for high-heat cooking but olive oil or any other high-heat oil will also work.
- Vegetables: We used a combination of onions, broccoli, mushrooms, bell peppers, and carrots but the great thing about stir fries is that any vegetable works. Try using cauliflower, zucchini, snow peas, water chestnuts, sugar snap peas, asparagus, or bok choy.
- Stir Fry Sauce: This classic sauce is made with low sodium soy sauce (or tamari), chicken broth (or vegetable broth), sesame oil, rice vinegar, honey (or maple syrup), fresh garlic, and fresh ginger mixed with some cornstarch so it gets nice and thick. Use powdered garlic and ginger if that's all you have.
- Garnish: Top the stir-fry with green onions and sesame seeds. If you don’t have any sesame seeds you can also top it with cashews.
- Shortcuts: Make this dish even faster by using pre-chopped bagged vegetables and using store-bought teriyaki sauce or stir-fry sauce to speed things up.
How To Make Chicken Stir Fry
Just four simple steps to create this chicken stir fry.
- Prepare the stir-fry sauce: Mix together the soy sauce, broth, sesame oil, rice vinegar, sweetener, garlic, ginger, and cornstarch. Give the sauce a quick taste and adjust it to your needs. Add some red pepper flakes or Sriracha for something spicy.
- Cook the chicken: Get a skillet or wok nice and hot. Add the oil and then add the chicken in a single layer once the oil is hot and shimmering. Cook the chicken for a couple of minutes until it is lightly browned. Turn it over so all sides get nice and brown. Remove from the pan and set aside. Make sure not to overcook the chicken so it doesn't get tough or chewy.
- Next up are the veggies: Add the onion, broccoli, mushrooms, bell peppers, and carrots to the pan and cook until they are tender-crisp. If needed, add an extra drizzle of oil to the pan. It is important not to overcook the vegetables. Vegetables in a stir-fry should have some crunch and texture.
- Mix it all together: Add the chicken back to the pan along with the stir-fry sauce. Cook for 1-2 minutes until the sauce thickens. Serve immediately, adding some sesame seeds or green onions if you like.
Ways to Serve Chicken Stir Fry
There are so many different ways to serve this chicken stir fry.
- Grains: Chicken stir fry can be served over steamed white or brown rice, with this healthy fried rice, or over red or white quinoa. Cauliflower rice is also a good option.
- Noodles: There are so many different kinds of noodles to choose from; rice, soba, udon, glass or shirataki will all work well. For a lower-carb option choose a vegetable-based noodle like zucchini, or to add more vegetable goodness use carrot or sweet potato noodles.
- Garnishes: Change up the green onions and sesame seeds for toasted peanuts, cashews, or almonds. You can also add chopped cilantro or Thai basil.
How to Store and Reheat
This stir-fry keeps great in the fridge and is perfect for meal prep.
- Fridge: Leftover chicken stir fry will last for 4 days stored in an airtight container in the fridge.
- Freezer: Store leftover chicken stir fry for up to 4 months in the freezer.
- Thaw: Thaw frozen leftovers in the fridge overnight.
- Reheat: Reheat in a pot on the stove over medium heat until warmed through or placed in the microwave.
Customize this Stir Fry with Chicken
The options for changing up this recipe for chicken stir fry are endless but here are a few.
- Swap the protein: Change the chicken for beef, salmon, shrimp, tofu, edamame, or a combination of these. Just be careful as these proteins have different cook times.
- Change up the veggies: Any veggies you have in your fridge will likely work; snow or snap peas, cauliflower, bok choy, and asparagus. If possible choose local and seasonal for the best flavor. Frozen vegetables are also a great option.
- Modify the sauce: Make the sauce more or less sweet according to your tastes. Add some sriracha or red chili flakes to spice it up. Use pineapple juice instead of water. Add some peanut butter or almond butter. This sauce is versatile.
Tips for Making the Best Stir Fry
Stir fries are quick to make, but sometimes it can be tricky to make sure the chicken and vegetables come out perfectly cooked. Follow these tips to make the best stir-fried dishes.
- Always use a hot pan: Make sure the pan is nice and hot before adding the chicken so it starts to sizzle as soon as you place it in the pan.
- Place ingredients in a single layer: Add the chicken in a single layer so it browns instead of steaming. This way it is nice and tender on the inside and darkened and caramelized on the outside. If you need to, cook the chicken in batches.
- Cut proteins and veggies to a uniform size: In order for the chicken and vegetables to cook up at the same pace it is best to cut them the same size. We recommend cutting everything before you begin to cook the stir fry. Make sure if you handle raw chicken to wash your hands and the utensils carefully.
- Don’t overcook the chicken or vegetables: Be mindful not to overcook the vegetables as they should have some crunch. Overcooking will make for a soggy stir fry.
How to Thicken Stir Fry Sauce
One of the most common complaints about stir-fries is that the sauce isn't thick enough. Here are a few things that help thicken the sauce.
- Cornstarch: Add cornstarch or arrowroot powder to the homemade stir-fry sauce so that it will thicken in the skillet or wok.
- Flour: Toss the chicken in a couple of tablespoons of flour or cornstarch before stir-frying it. This helps the chicken brown and helps thicken the sauce.
- Reduce the sauce: Reduce the sauce by bringing it to a slow simmer so some of the water can evaporate. This can be done in the pan or in a small saucepan.
- Let it cool: Let everything sit for a few minutes before serving. Sauce will naturally thicken as it cools.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are the most common questions about making this easy chicken stir fry.
To prepare the ultimate stir fry here are a few things you can do!
- Use a wok as it has a shorter cook time and more surface area than a typical skillet
- Don’t overcrowd the pan so everything browns instead of steams,
- Add some water or broth if you find the vegetables are sticking to the pan
Yes, you absolutely can prepare a stir fry at home without using a wok. You can use a large skillet to cook everything.
Yes, we find the best way to make a stir fry is to cook the protein and the vegetables separately and then bring them together with the sauce.
Chicken Stir Fry
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- 1 lb boneless skinless chicken breast, chopped (bite-size)
- 1 tbsp coconut oil (or other high heat oil)
- 1/2 onion, sliced thin
- 2 cups broccoli florets (smaller florets or cut in half)
- 1 cup mushrooms, sliced
- 1 red bell pepper, sliced thin
- 1 carrot, sliced thin (on the diagonal)
- 1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce (sauce)
- 1/4 cup chicken broth (or vegetable, sauce)
- 1/2 tbsp sesame oil (sauce)
- 1/2 tbsp rice vinegar (sauce)
- 1/2 tbsp honey (or pure maple syrup or brown sugar, sauce)
- 1 clove garlic, minced (sauce)
- 1 tsp fresh ginger, minced (sauce)
- 1/2 tbsp cornstarch (more for extra thick, sauce)
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- Nutritional Information
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* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
The Nutritional Values provided are estimates only and may vary based on the preparation method.
This stir fry can be made with any combination of vegetables you like. If you are using quick-cooking vegetables, add them a few minutes after starting the other vegetables.
Double the sauce ingredients if you like a saucy stir-fry or want extra to drizzle on rice or quinoa.
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