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Hot and spicy hunan-style chicken recipe

Hot and spicy hunan-style chicken recipe

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  • Ingredients
  • Meat and poultry
  • Poultry
  • Chicken
  • Cuts of chicken
  • Chicken thigh

This is one of my favourite chicken dishes. It's easy, quick and very tasty. Serve over freshly cooked plain rice.

21 people made this

IngredientsServes: 4

  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon black peppercorns
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons dark soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons dry sherry
  • 6 boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into chunks
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh root ginger
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped garlic
  • 1 tablespoon crushed chillies
  • 4 spring onions, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon hot bean sauce
  • 2 tablespoons Chinese black vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil

MethodPrep:10min ›Cook:10min ›Ready in:20min

  1. Stir together the honey, peppercorns, salt, soy sauce and sherry in a large bowl; add the chicken and toss to coat.
  2. Heat the oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add the ginger, garlic, crushed chillies and spring onions; cook and stir until fragrant, no more than 30 seconds. Stir in the chicken and soy sauce mixture; fry another 3 minutes. Reduce heat to low, cover. Simmer until the chicken is no longer pink in the centre, 5 to 10 minutes. Whisk together the bean sauce, vinegar and sesame oil in a small bowl; pour over the chicken and stir. Turn heat to high and allow to cook 1 minute. Serve immediately.


Hot bean sauce and Chinese black vinegar can be found in Chinese/Oriental stores.

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Reviews & ratingsAverage global rating:(29)

Reviews in English (25)

Very very tasty even though I read it wrong and had to adapt to what was in the cupboard.So teaspoon of peppercorns was a tablespoon.No fresh ingredients so used 3 tablespoons chilli ginger & garlic out a grinder thing I had.Used 2 tablespoon rice vinegar and 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar and no hot sauce.Incredibly hot very quick to make and will definitely be making again but a touch cooler.Thanks Dan-27 Nov 2017


We thought this was really yum Dan! I used lite soy sauce and because I didn't have black vinegar, I used rice vinegar instead. This is a keeper and thank you so much!-06 Jun 2012

by merlion

This is one of the yummiest Chinese dish I have had from here!! Thank you so much for a great tasting recipe. I doubled the recipe and used Szechuan peppercorns instead because we enjoy them more than regular peppercorns in Chinese food. This is definitely a keeper!-19 Sep 2012

Spicy Hunan Chicken Recipe

Spicy Hunan Chicken Recipe is a classic Chinese stir fry dish made with tender pieces of chicken, bell pepper, carrot and broccoli tossed in a savory and SPICY ginger garlic sauce. Make this delicious restaurant favorite at home with the spice level that you can handle.

Confined at home for the last year without any vacationing or dining out has been a real challenge for all of us. However, the only way we cope up is by making dishes from around the world that take our taste buds on a vacation (something is better than nothing, right?)!

Though not hugely popular like orange chicken, sesame chicken, sweet and sour chicken, this stir fry is more common in authentic menus and is perfect for a weeknight meal or even for entertaining. I will break down this chicken recipe and try to answer all your questions as well as offer some tips and tricks.

The addition of dry red chili peppers might not be authentic, we loved the bold and complex addition. You can totally skip it, if desired.

What is Hunan chicken?

This spicy dish hailing from the Hunan province of China is traditionally made loaded up with chilies and tossed in a tangy sauce. I’ve toned down the spiciness a bit for my own version, but it still packs some heat! You can always add more or less spice as you see fit.

What an easy recipe this was! The hardest part is chopping all the veggies up. You can chop them up small, big, use completely different mix-ins it’s up to you. While my recipe includes my own stir fry favorites, I have a list for you below with other veggies you can include to customize your own Hunan chicken.

Recipe Summary

  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon black peppercorns
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons dark soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons dry sherry
  • 6 boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into chunks
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger root
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon crumbled dried red chile pepper
  • 4 green onions, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon hot bean sauce
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil

Stir together the honey, peppercorns, salt, soy sauce, and sherry in a large bowl add the chicken and toss to coat.

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.

Add the ginger, garlic, red chile pepper, and green onions cook and stir until fragrant, no more than 30 seconds. Stir in the chicken and soy sauce mixture fry another 3 minutes. Reduce heat to low, cover. Simmer until the chicken is no longer pink in the center, 5 to 10 minutes.

Whisk together the bean sauce, vinegar, and sesame oil in a small bowl pour over the chicken and stir. Turn heat to high and allow to cook 1 minute. Serve immediately.

Which Is Healthier?

For people who want to eat a lower calorie dish, go for Hunan chicken as it’s stir-fried rather than deep-fried.

When it comes to a healthier dish, both contain essential spices, but Hunan has more veggies, which makes it a good choice.

The fermented chili bean paste has plant-based protein that is proven to lower blood pressure and prevent osteoporosis.

Meanwhile, the peppercorns enhance the absorption of nutrients and improve digestive health.

Hunan Chicken Recipe

This Hunan Chicken is a quick and easy stir-fry dish to prepare. It is also quite healthy since it uses white meat. We love making it at home quite often because it is the perfect and quick weekday dinner. It is easy to make with a few budget-friendly ingredients and ready in less than 30 minutes.

This is a classic Chinese dish that will please everyone. We love making it with chicken breast, as the meat comes out juicy and tender. The meat is cooked together with vegetables in a deliciously spicy and savory sauce.

Also, if you have a celebration coming up, and want something delicious and quickly made, then this recipe is the one to make.

What is Hunan chicken?

Hunan chicken is stir-fried chicken breast with lots of vegetables that originated from the Chinese province of Hunan. This dish incorporates the Hunan sauce which makes it, well, distinctively Asian. It is made with chili and lots of veggies and has a distinctive sweet and spicy taste.

It is one of those dishes that quickly became popular in American-Chinese restaurants, and is now enjoyed pretty much everywhere in the States. However, unlike the original Chinese version, this recipe was modified a bit to be on a sweeter and savory taste, and less spicy, but equally delicious.

What is the difference between HUNAN and SZECHUAN CHICKEN?

While both dishes have the same origin and have chicken as their main ingredient, there are some minor differences between the two.

Hunan version is generally hotter and spicier, while the Szechuan Chicken is generally battered prior to being added to the pan and is sweeter and less spicy.

What does Hunan chicken taste like?

This dish has a sophisticated taste and texture because of the variety of ingredients used. The chicken itself is battered in cornstarch and fried, making it crispy on the outside but tender on the inside. It has a rich Asian flavor because of the sauce.

The chili bean paste adds that Chinese flair to this recipe alongside the oyster sauce.

It is on a spicier side, but you can tone it down by limiting the amount of chili paste that goes into it. In addition, the sugar, fermented rice wine, and soy sauce balance nicely out all the spiciness. It has the right amount of sweetness to it, with some hint of sourness all rolled into one savory hot meal.

What vegetables are in Hunan chicken?

The vegetables that are most commonly used in this recipe are garlic, ginger, green onions, and chili peppers. These four vegetables add spice and zest and enhance the flavor of the chili bean paste.

However, you can easily modify it with your favorite veggies. Some nice addition would be carrots, broccoli, zucchini, bamboo shoots, mushrooms, and corn. These vegetables are rich in vitamins, high in fiber, and low in calories. Also, they add a nice color and texture to this dish.

What is in Hunan chicken Chinese food?

Aside from the battered chicken seasoned with salt and pepper, Hunan chicken has a spicy and flavorful sauce. It is this sauce that ties together the whole dish. There is a number of variations of the sauce but one thing that makes it Hunan is the use of chili.

To make the sauce, combine minced garlic, ginger, chili bean paste, green onions (or scallions), soy sauce, oyster sauce, sugar, salt, and chili peppers or sauce. Then, add in some rice wine and chicken broth. To thicken the sauce, add a mixture of cornstarch dissolved in water.

What percentage of carbs are in Hunan chicken?

The carbohydrates from Hunan chicken amounts to about 12 to 16% of your daily caloric requirement. As vegetables also have carbohydrates, this value will vary depending on the vegetables that you incorporate.

Astray Recipes: Hunan spicy chicken

Mix chicken shreds with marinade mixture. Mix sauce ingredients and set aside. Cut up onions and assemble remaining ingredients. Heat 1½ cups oil in wok just until smoking. Add chicken and stir constantly with large chopstick or wooden spoon until shreds separate and turn white. Remove chicken with slotted spoon and place in bowl until ready to use. Pour off all but 2 Tbsp of the oil from the wok. Heat oil until smoke appears. Add onions, ginger, and garlic, and stir-fry until onions soften, about 2 minutes. Add chicken and toss together thoroughly. Stir sauce and pour into the wok. Stir together until well coated. Add sesame oil, turn off heat, and stir well. Remove from wok and serve immediately.

Based on a recipe for Spicy Shrimp from The Chinese Banquet Cookbook by Eileen Yin-Fei Lo Posted to r.f.r by: [email protected] (Carol Miller-Tutzauer)

NOTES : MC formatted by Holly Butman Recipe by: Eileen Yin-Fei Lo

Posted to MC-Recipe Digest V1 #772 by Holly Butman [email protected] > on Sep 05, 1997

Traditional Hunan Chicken Recipe

Tender and juicy pieces of beautifully caramelized, richly flavored pieces of Hunan chicken tossed with vegetables roasted with garlic and ginger. This chicken is not only delicious but also healthy and light. This is a traditional Hunan style chicken recipe, which is different from westernized Hunan recipes that tend to be overly fatty, sweet and gloppy.

My 7-year-old daughter after she finished eating this chicken for lunch said “Daddy, the chicken was so!… so!… so!…” She was overwhelmed with emotions and had a hard time finding the right word to describe how good she thought the chicken tasted. I get compliments on my cooking very regularly, but that one was very special to me. I agree, the chicken was superb. A perfection.

My favorite meat for making Hunan chicken is breast meat. When cooked right, it tastes much better than red chicken meat. It’s less fatty and healthier too.

To cook the chicken I suggest using a wok. A while ago I bought a Korean made non-stick, flat bottom wok (it’s very similar to this one) to cook Asian dishes. I came to love that wok so much that I use it for practically everything that needs pan frying. I even fry sunny-side up eggs in it. Everything just comes out better in it. It’s a magical wok.

I cut chicken breasts into about 1-inch pieces, lay them in one layer inside the wok and cook them over a fairly high heat on one side for about 1 minute until nicely caramelized, then flip to the other side and cook for another minute or so, undisturbed. I then continue stir-frying until the temperature inside the largest pieces reaches 160F. An instant read thermometer comes really handy here. As soon as the chicken is ready I dump it onto a large ceramic platter to cool down. This way I get the meat that is perfectly cooked, tender and juicy.

Unlike for example in Szechuan Chicken recipe, or the Hunan Beef recipe, I used neither the deep-frying nor the shallow-frying methods to cook the Hunan chicken. This time I only used 2 tablespoons of peanut oil. To my surprise, that turned out to be plenty enough. I really like this method because it’s much more economical and adds a lot less fat into the food.

Do you love many different options for hot chicken? Several recipes that you can make at home. No matter whether you prefer hot wings, spicy Chinese chicken recipes, or other simple spicy recipes, there are hundreds to find online. Luckily, with hundreds of recipes online there is access to all the hot chicken recipes that you love. Also, you will have the ability to make them perfect for yourself. It is both money-saving and the freshest meal you could ever eat!

Buffalo Chicken Recipes

You have the option here to make either Buffalo chicken wings, chicken tenders, chicken fingers or use Buffalo sauce for all other chicken pieces.

Whether you decide to bake, fry, slow cook, grill, saute, or another cooking method, it is all about the Buffalo sauce you love the most. Being a popular chicken recipe and appetizer throughout the U.S., there are hundreds of different recipes such as Buffalo chicken rolls, chicken sandwiches, and others.

That way you can search for recipes to make the Buffalo chicken wings or others that are perfect for your own personal taste. From mild to hot, flavors accented with garlic to other seasonings, there is much to enjoy in this spicy hot chicken.

Simple Hot Chicken Recipes

Some of the most common hot chicken recipes that you will be able to locate online are hundreds of Chinese specialties. Some of these include Hunan-style chicken and Chinese hot-and-spicy chicken, where you will be able to save yourself the trip and expense of going out to eat.

Luckily, you will also come across many different online listings for recipes for some simple and straightforward hot chicken recipes that you are able to bake, fry, grill, and more. Some of these include spicy chicken breasts, spicy paprika-lime chicken, and hot-and-spicy chicken skewers. With all of these recipes available, you have the ability to cook chicken in the manner that it tastes freshest and the best overall for you.

You can also touch up these recipes from the marinades and seasonings assigned in the instructions to match your perfectly desired flavors.

At this point, you can search online for recipes with hundreds available all over to provide the many different hot chicken meals that you love at your favorite restaurants. Again, you will have the ability to work as your own chef, while saving the money and time that you would spend in a restaurant looking for so many of these recipes. This way, it is all yours, especially now while being stuck at home!

Both Hunan and Szechuan cuisine makes extensive use of chiles to cleanse the palate and to cope with the humid climate. (Hot foods such as red chili peppers dry out and cool down the body, making it easier to handle the heat and dampness). However, while Szechuan recipes frequently call for chili bean paste, Hunan dishes are normally made with fresh chile peppers, including the seeds and membranes which contain most of the heat.

Chili peppers, shallots, and garlic are staple foods. Rice is the staple grain–Hunan produces rice in higher quantities than any other province in China. Poultry and meat dishes are also popular (Hunan is China's second-largest supplier of beef, pork, and mutton). Hunan's lakes provide an abundance of fish and shellfish as well as unusual foods such as turtle. "Sweet and sour," "hot and sour" and "hot and spicy" are popular flavor combinations in Hunan cooking.

When it comes to smoked and preserved meats, Hunan cooking displays the influence of both its western neighbors. Recipes featuring smoked meat are found in both Hunan and Szechuan cuisine and the preserved pork products that have made Yunnan famous are widely available here as well.