This Chicken and Pepper Stir Fry recipe is a delicious and easy-to-make dish that combines protein, veggies, and everyday ingredients. It’s a flavorful meal that can be enjoyed with steamed rice or extra veggies. Let’s dive into the details and learn how to make this cozy bowl of goodness!
We all love a good stir fry, don’t we? They’re quick, simple, and a great way to use up any leftover produce. Just chop it, toss it, and let the delicious stir fry sauce work its magic on the veggies.
This particular recipe is a favorite because it allows me to utilize the bell peppers that I buy in bulk. We enjoy them as snacks and in salads, and I even pack them in my son’s lunchbox. But using them in a stir fry for dinner adds a whole new level of crunchy sweetness.
Ingredients & Common Substitutions
Before we get started, let’s talk about the main ingredients and possible substitutions you can make. Here are a few notes and shopping tips:
- Chicken Breasts: Boneless, skinless chicken breasts are the easiest and quickest to cook. Thinly sliced chicken breasts work best to save time and effort. You can also use chicken thighs, but they will require a longer cooking time.
- Bell Peppers: I recommend using at least two different colors of bell peppers for visual appeal. Each color has a slightly different flavor profile, with green peppers being the mildest and red, orange, and yellow peppers having a sweeter taste.
- Avocado or Canola Oil: These oils have a high smoke point, making them ideal for stir frying at high heat without burning or imparting a bitter taste.
- Garlic and Ginger: Freshly minced or grated garlic and ginger are the best choices for maximum flavor. If unavailable, jarred or frozen versions are good alternatives.
- Chicken Broth: Opt for low-sodium chicken broth to have better control over the saltiness of the finished stir fry.
- Brown Sugar, Soy Sauce, Hoisin Sauce, and Toasted Sesame Oil: These pantry staples add depth and complexity to the stir fry sauce. Toasted sesame oil, in particular, is a wonderful ingredient for various Asian-inspired dishes.
- Cornstarch: Used to thicken the sauce, arrowroot powder can be used as a substitute.
- Cashews, Green Onions, and Sesame Seeds: These optional garnishes enhance the overall texture and flavor of the dish.
How To Make a Chicken & Bell Pepper Stir Fry
Now, let’s get cooking! Here’s a step-by-step overview of how to make this delicious stir fry:
Step One: Warm oil and sauté the veggies. Heat oil in a wok or skillet over medium-high heat. Begin by sautéing ginger and garlic until fragrant, then add the bell peppers and cook until tender-crisp. Remove the peppers separately to ensure they don’t become overcooked and mushy.
Step Two: Whisk together the sauce. In a bowl, combine chicken broth, soy sauce, hoisin sauce, brown sugar, and toasted sesame oil to create a flavorful sauce.
Step Three: Cook the chicken. Start by searing the chicken to achieve a slightly crisp exterior. Then, add the sauce and continue cooking until the chicken is tender and infused with flavor.
Step Four: Thicken the sauce. Simmer the sauce briefly and thicken it with a cornstarch slurry to achieve the desired consistency.
Step Five: Finish and serve. Mix in the sautéed bell peppers and cashews, and add any desired garnishes. Serve with a big smile because dinner is ready!
Can I make a stir fry in a regular skillet?
Absolutely! You don’t need a specialty wok to create a fantastic stir fry at home. A large skillet with medium to high sides works just fine. However, if you find yourself making stir fry frequently, investing in an inexpensive wok can enhance your culinary experience. Fancy woks with unique finishes and additional tools can even make great gifts!
What are the benefits of using a wok?
Compared to a standard skillet or frying pan, woks offer several advantages. They require less cooking oil, have a larger capacity, and cook food more quickly. The small bottom surface area and high sloped sides create a dual-zone cooking effect, allowing for precise control over the cooking process. Steaming and simmering are also easier in a wok.
To summarize, for everyday family dinners, you can make delicious stir fry in any skillet you have. But if you want to elevate your cooking experience, using a wok and learning more about authentic stir fry techniques is worth considering.
This chicken and bell pepper stir fry pairs perfectly with simple steamed rice. Whether you prefer white, brown, or cauliflower rice, any choice will complement the flavors beautifully. You can also serve the stir fry as-is or add extra veggies like snow peas or edamame for added color and nutrition. For those who enjoy a complete Chinese-inspired meal, steamed dumplings, egg rolls, or spring rolls make excellent accompaniments.
If you’re feeding kids or have picky eaters, consider adding sweet fruits such as mandarin oranges, pineapple, or mango to the dish. These unexpected additions round out the meal and cater to a larger variety of tastes.
Storage & Reheating
- Storage: Leftovers can be stored in airtight containers in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. To keep the cashews crunchy, it’s best to add them just before serving.
- Reheating: Warm the leftovers in the microwave or on the stovetop over medium-low heat. If the sauce seems too thick, add a small splash of water or broth to adjust the consistency.
Unfortunately, I don’t recommend freezing the leftovers as it may affect the texture of the bell peppers.
More Stir Fry and Similar Recipes
If you love these flavors, I highly recommend trying my favorite chicken and asparagus stir fry. You’ll also enjoy pineapple chicken, bourbon chicken (a tasty take-out fake-out), and delicious teriyaki chicken. Don’t forget to rate the recipes and leave a comment below to share your cooking experience with others.
Enjoy your delicious Bell Pepper Stir Fry and happy cooking!