Chinese Cashew Nut Chicken Recipe That You Need to Try – Seaco Online
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Chinese Cashew Nut Chicken Recipe That You Need to Try

You've probably come across cashew nut chicken recipe Chinese on many menus if you're a fan of Chinese cuisine. This delicious dish is a stir-fry favourite that features a lightly sweet brown sauce complemented by roasted cashew nuts. Unlike other nutty stir-fry dishes like Kung Pao chicken, which is cooked with chillies and roasted peanuts, cashew chicken has a mild flavour that's perfect for those who prefer a less spicy dish.

A wok sizzles as diced chicken, cashew nuts, and vegetables stir-fry in a savory Chinese sauce

This Chinese cashew chicken recipe is easy to make at home and is perfect for those who want to enjoy their favourite dish without having to order takeout. The dish features sautéed chicken, bell peppers, broccoli, and cashews in a brown garlic sauce. You can use chicken breasts for the best result and include loads of cashew nuts for a crunchy texture. If you're feeling adventurous, you can also add seafood to the dish, such as shrimp or scallops, to give it a unique twist.

Key Takeaways

  • Cashew chicken is a mild, nutty stir-fry dish that's perfect for those who prefer less spicy food.
  • This Chinese cashew chicken recipe is easy to make at home and features sautéed chicken, bell peppers, broccoli, and cashews in a brown garlic sauce.
  • You can add seafood like shrimp or scallops to the dish to give it a unique twist.

History and Origin

A Chinese chef stir-fries cashew nuts, chicken, and vegetables in a wok over high heat, creating a savory and aromatic dish

Cashew chicken is a Chinese-American dish that has become a popular takeout option in the Western world. It is believed to have originated in Springfield, Missouri in the early 1960s. The dish was created by David Leong, the owner of Leong's Tea House, who was trying to create a new dish for his restaurant.

Unlike Kung Pao Chicken, which is cooked with chillies and roasted peanuts, cashew chicken has a mild, lightly sweet brown sauce that is the perfect complement to roasted cashews. The dish is usually made with stir-fried chicken, but it can also be made with seafood such as shrimp or scallops.

Cashew chicken has become a staple in Chinese-American cuisine, and it can be found on many Chinese restaurant menus. The dish is often served with rice, and it is a popular option for takeout.

If you're looking to add a twist to your cashew chicken recipe, you can try using seafood instead of chicken. Shrimp or scallops are great options, and they pair well with the cashews and the brown sauce. Just be sure to adjust the cooking time accordingly, as seafood cooks much faster than chicken.

Overall, cashew chicken is a delicious and easy-to-make dish that is perfect for a quick and satisfying meal. Whether you're ordering takeout or making it at home, this Chinese-American classic is sure to be a crowd-pleaser.

Ingredients Breakdown

A pile of cashew nuts, diced chicken, soy sauce, ginger, garlic, and green onions sit on a wooden cutting board. A bowl of cornstarch and a bottle of cooking oil are nearby

When it comes to making a delicious cashew nut chicken recipe, it is important to have the right ingredients. Here is a breakdown of the ingredients you will need to create a tasty Chinese-style cashew chicken dish.


The main protein in this recipe is chicken. You can use either chicken breast or chicken thigh, boneless and skinless, depending on your preference. For a seafood twist, you can also use shrimp or prawns as a substitute.


Vegetables play a crucial role in adding texture and flavour to this dish. The most commonly used vegetables in cashew chicken are onions, bell peppers, broccoli, carrots, and water chestnuts. However, you can also add other vegetables such as green onions, scallions, or ginger to give your dish a unique twist.

Sauce Components

The sauce is what brings all the ingredients together and gives the dish its flavour. The main sauce components include soy sauce, garlic, sesame oil, chicken broth, and olive oil. You can also add additional ingredients such as honey or brown sugar for sweetness, or chilli flakes for a bit of heat.

Rice and Alternatives

Cashew chicken is typically served with steamed rice. However, if you are looking for a low-carb alternative, you can try using cauliflower rice instead. This will give you the same texture and flavour as rice, but with fewer calories.

Making a delicious cashew nut chicken recipe is easy as long as you have the right ingredients. Whether you choose to use chicken, shrimp, or prawns, the key is to balance the flavours of the protein, vegetables, and sauce components. So, get ready to impress your family and friends with this tasty Chinese-style dish!

Cooking Techniques

Cashew nut chicken stir-fry in a sizzling wok. Ingredients include chicken, cashew nuts, vegetables, and Chinese spices. Steam rising, aroma filling the air

When it comes to cooking Cashew Nut Chicken, there are a few essential techniques to keep in mind that will help you achieve the best results. Here are some tips to help you master the art of stir-frying this delicious Chinese dish.

Stir-Frying Essentials

Stir-frying is the key to creating a delicious and authentic Cashew Nut Chicken dish. To stir-fry your chicken, you will need a wok or a large frying pan. The high heat of the wok or frying pan will help to cook the chicken quickly and evenly, while also giving it a nice crispy texture.

To ensure that your chicken cooks evenly, it is important to cut it into small, bite-sized pieces. You can also tenderise the chicken by marinating it in a mixture of Shaoxing wine, rice vinegar, and cornstarch for 10 minutes before cooking.

Marinating Tips

Marinating your chicken is an important step in creating a delicious Cashew Nut Chicken dish. Not only does it add flavour to the chicken, but it also helps to tenderise it, making it easier to cook.

To marinate your chicken, mix together some Shaoxing wine, rice vinegar, and cornstarch in a bowl. Add the chicken to the bowl and stir to coat it evenly. Let the chicken marinate for at least 10 minutes before cooking.

Sauce Preparation

The sauce is what gives Cashew Nut Chicken its signature flavour. To prepare the sauce, you will need a mixture of soy sauces, oyster sauce, hoisin sauce, honey, brown sugar, and rice wine vinegar.

Mix all of the ingredients together in a bowl and set aside. You can also add some cornstarch to the sauce to help thicken it up and create a glaze for the chicken.

When stir-frying the chicken, add the sauce to the pan and stir to coat the chicken evenly. Cook for a few minutes until the sauce thickens and becomes glossy.

If you want to add seafood to your Cashew Nut Chicken, you can use shrimp or scallops. Simply stir-fry the seafood along with the chicken and other ingredients, and adjust the cooking time accordingly.

Nutritional Information

A plate of cashew nut chicken with Chinese characters, surrounded by nutritional information labels and a pile of cashew nuts

If you're looking for a healthy and satisfying meal, then cashew nut chicken is a great option. This dish is packed with protein, fibre and healthy fats, making it a nutritious choice for any meal of the day.

A single serving of cashew nut chicken contains approximately 400-500 calories, depending on the recipe and portion size. The dish is relatively low in carbohydrates, with around 20-30 grams per serving. It's also a good source of fibre, with some recipes containing up to 5 grams per serving.

Cashew nut chicken is a great source of protein, with around 30-40 grams per serving. This makes it a great option for those looking to build muscle or maintain a healthy weight. The dish is also relatively low in sugar, with most recipes containing less than 10 grams per serving.

To make your cashew nut chicken even more nutritious, you can add some vegetables to the recipe. Broccoli, carrots, and bell peppers are all great options, and will add some extra fibre and vitamins to your meal.

If you're looking for a seafood alternative to cashew nut chicken, then shrimp or prawns are a great option. They're high in protein, low in calories, and have a delicious flavour that pairs well with cashews and fragrant spices. Simply substitute the chicken for shrimp or prawns in your recipe, and enjoy a juicy and tender seafood dish with all the depth of flavour of the original recipe.

Serving and Pairing Suggestions

A plate of cashew nut chicken with steamed rice and stir-fried vegetables, accompanied by a pot of green tea

Side Dishes

To complement the nutty and savoury flavour of cashew chicken, you can pair it with fragrant jasmine rice or Chinese crispy noodles. If you want to add more crunch to your meal, you can also try serving it with rainbow noodle salad or veggie stuffed spring rolls. Cooked lettuce with oyster sauce and garlic is also a great option if you want something more tangy.

Wine Pairings

If you're looking for a wine pairing, go for a light-bodied red wine such as Pinot Noir or a crisp white wine like Sauvignon Blanc. These wines will complement the sweetness of the sauce and the complexity of the dish without overpowering it.

Storing Leftovers

If you have leftovers, you can store them in an airtight container in the fridge for up to three days. To reheat, simply microwave or reheat in a pan with a splash of water.

When it comes to seafood, you can add shrimp or prawns to the dish to give it a seafood twist. Just make sure to cook the seafood separately and add it to the dish towards the end of cooking to avoid overcooking. Alternatively, you can try substituting the chicken with prawns or scallops for a seafood version of the dish.

Overall, cashew chicken is a versatile dish that can be paired with a variety of side dishes and wines. Its sweet and savoury flavour makes it a crowd-pleaser, and it's easy to make at home without breaking the bank.

Frequently Asked Questions

A sizzling wok tosses cashew nut chicken with colorful vegetables in a bustling Chinese kitchen. Steam rises as the chef adds a savory sauce, creating a tantalizing aroma

What ingredients are needed for an authentic Chinese cashew chicken?

To make an authentic Chinese cashew chicken, you will need boneless chicken breast, cashew nuts, soy sauce, oyster sauce, sesame oil, cornstarch, garlic, ginger, green onions, and vegetable oil. Some recipes may call for additional ingredients like hoisin sauce, Shaoxing wine, and dried red chili peppers.

How do you prepare a simple cashew chicken dish in Chinese style?

To prepare a simple cashew chicken dish in Chinese style, start by marinating chicken breast in soy sauce, oyster sauce, sesame oil, and cornstarch. Then, stir-fry the chicken in a wok with garlic, ginger, and green onions until cooked through. Add cashew nuts and continue to stir-fry until the nuts are lightly toasted. Serve hot with steamed rice.

What are the best tips for making a flavourful Chinese cashew nut chicken?

To make a flavourful Chinese cashew nut chicken, use high-quality ingredients and marinate the chicken for at least 30 minutes before cooking. Be careful not to overcook the chicken, as it can become tough and dry. Use a wok or large skillet to stir-fry the ingredients quickly over high heat, and be sure to add the cashew nuts towards the end to prevent them from burning.

Can you suggest a good side dish to serve with cashew nut chicken?

A simple steamed rice is a classic side dish to serve with cashew nut chicken. You can also serve it with stir-fried vegetables like broccoli, bok choy, or snow peas. For a seafood twist, try serving it with stir-fried prawns or scallops.

How does the taste of traditional Chinese cashew chicken differ from Western variations?

Traditional Chinese cashew chicken has a mild, lightly sweet brown sauce that complements the roasted cashews. Western variations may be sweeter or spicier, and may include additional ingredients like bell peppers, carrots, or pineapple.

Is there a low-carb version of Chinese cashew chicken for those on a diet?

Yes, you can make a low-carb version of Chinese cashew chicken by omitting the cornstarch and serving it with cauliflower rice instead of steamed rice. You can also add more vegetables like broccoli, mushrooms, or zucchini to make it more filling. For a seafood twist, try using prawns or scallops instead of chicken.