Peanut Chicken Stir Fry made with lean ground chicken, cabbage slaw, and a quick and easy homemade peanut sauce. A great healthy recipe that comes together in less than 20 minutes and can be easily adapted for a gluten-free, paleo, or Whole30 diet.
This healthy Peanut Chicken Stir Fry tastes just like chicken satay without all the work of marinating skewers, making a complicated sauce, and grilling. It's ready in less time than it takes to order takeout, is made with ingredients you likely have at home and is full of flavor. It's a meal you can feel good about eating.
Whenever we order Thai food, we order at least two orders of Chicken Satay. It's one of our favorites and we are always fighting for the last skewer. And let's be honest, a big part of that is the amazing peanut sauce that comes with any good chicken satay. Yum. I would eat that stuff on almost anything. So when I was brainstorming new chicken stir-fry recipes last week, a chicken satay stir-fry was one of the first things I thought about.
To keep things really easy and fast, I decided to start with ground chicken so there was no need for slicing the chicken beforehand. It's only a small step but it saves at least 5-10 minutes in prep work.
Next, I decided to use a store-bought veggie mix, another great way to save time. I used the Cruciferous Crunch mix from Trader Joe's since I had some on hand. It's basically a mix of shredded kale, red cabbage, green cabbage, broccoli, and Brussel sprouts. Then I threw in some carrots as well. However, you could use any veggie mix you like. Coleslaw or broccoli slaw mix would be the easiest.
Then all you need is a delicious peanut sauce. This one uses a combination of peanut butter, soy sauce, ginger, lime juice, honey, and curry powder. It's sweet, savory, and has a kick of spice from the curry powder. You will want to eat it on everything, believe me.
A few notes about this peanut sauce. Typically chicken satay includes coconut milk of some kind. If you want to incorporate that flavor, you could substitute canned coconut milk for the water.
Easy ways to Customize this Chicken Peanut Stir-Fry
- Protein: This probably doesn't need to be mentioned, but you can definitely try different proteins in this dish. Use ground chicken, beef, or turkey. You could also use chicken breast, chicken thighs, or thinly sliced sirloin steak. I also imagine it would work with tofu but I haven't tried it yet.
- Veggies: I find the easiest option is to use a packaged vegetable mix. Normally I reach for something that is cabbage-based, but any combination of veggies will work. For the photograph, I used the Cruciferous Crunch mix from Trader Joe's and added some carrots.
- Heat: If you like things spicy, you can add some Sriracha to the peanut sauce. Yummy,
- Coconut: For more coconut flavor, which is traditional in chicken satay, you can replace the water in the sauce with canned coconut milk.
- Special diets: For a gluten-free, Paleo, or Whole30 version you will want to replace the soy sauce with coconut aminos. You will also want to sub in honey for paleo and leave out the sweetener for Whole30 or use some finely minced dates. Then use arrowroot in place of the cornstarch.
- Curry powder: You can use almost any kind of curry powder for this recipe or substitute it with a Thai red curry paste.
Side Dish Ideas
This is one of those dishes that can serve as a meal all on its own or you can beef it up with a side dish. Here are some of the ones we use the most:
- Quinoa or brown rice: Serving this with a side of rice, quinoa, or another whole grain is a great option. This is also a great way to prep grain bowls ahead of time for meal prep.
- Cauliflower rice: For a low carb or Paleo option, you can use cauliflower rice in place of regular rice. Make your own at home or grab a store bought package of frozen cauliflower rice. For meal prep, I add the frozen cauli rice right to the container. It will defrost in the fridge on its own.
- Soba Noodles: This recipe is really delicious on a bed of Asian style noodles. I love buckwheat soba noodles but you could use rice noodles, yakis-soba noodles, or even spaghetti tossed with soy sauce.
- Spaghetti squash or zucchini noodles: Veggie noodles are another option for a lower calorie dish.
- Lettuce wraps: If you love ordering lettuce wraps when you are out, why not make them at home with this peanut chicken? Serve some sliced green onions, sprouts, and chopped peanuts on the side.
Looking for more healthy Asian recipes?
Peanut Chicken Stir Fry
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- 2 tsp. sesame oil
- 8 oz. shredded cabbage slaw (any kind)
- 1.33 lbs. 99% lean ground chicken (or turkey)
- 3 tbsp. soy sauce (or coconut aminos)
- 3 tbsp. peanut butter (or almond butter)
- 3 tbsp. water (hot)
- 1 tbsp. honey (leave out or use Stevia for LC )
- 1 tbsp. cornstarch (or arrowroot)
- 1 tbsp. lime juice
- 2 tsp ginger, minced
- 2 tsp curry powder
* 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.
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