Nothing is better than pulling out the old crockpot in the fall and making some easy and delicious crockpot meals. I love my crockpot, however, I do not use it as often in the warmer months as I do in the cozy fall and winter months. There is just something about the fall and winter that makes every single crockpot meal that much better.
If you love Kung Pao Chicken then you are going to love this version. It is so flavorful and so tender. It reminds me of the take out we get at our favorite local asian restaurant, and it makes our house smell so good. You can serve with white sticky rice or jasmine rice.
Now, this recipe is for the stove top but you can put this in the crockpot and it is a so delicious and makes your home smell amazing. I will leave the directions for the crockpot version at the end of the recipe so, if you prefer the crockpot version over the stove top version you can most certainly go that route.
If you would like to see how I make this in the crockpot you can check out my video on my channel. I post every Monday and Thursday. If by chance the recipe video is not on my channel wait until the next day on my uploading days. All of my videos go live at 7:00 A.M. I will leave my link below at the bottom so if you would want to check it out you certainly can.
Ok guys and gals, let’s get started.
2 tbsp Soy Sauce ( your favorite brand will do or you can coconut amino’s)
2 tbsp Water ( additional 2 tbsp water)
3 1/2 tsp ( 1 tbsp for crockpot)
3 Chicken Breast – (whole or cubed in 1 inch pieces)
3 tsp Sugar
1 1/2 tsp Sesame Oil ( your favorite brand)
2 tbsp Peanut Oil ( or what you have on hand. Leave this out for the crockpot version)
4 Cloves Garlic – Minced
1 Inch Piece Of Ginger – grated
6 Green Onions – cut in 1 Inch pieces
4 Cups Mixed Veggies of choice – (broccoli cut in medium size- Other veggies cut in 1 inch pieces)
1/2 Cup Peanuts – (salted or unsalted- if you use salted, mind your addition of extra salt)
Rice for serving
1 to 2 tbsp Red Pepper Paste (optional)
DIRECTIONS: STOVE TOP VERSION
- In a bowl combine half of the soy sauce, the water, and the cornstarch. Add the chicken and toss to coat well. Cover with a lid or plastic wrap and set aside for about 15 minutes.
- Whisk the other half of the soy sauce and cornstarch in a separate bowl. Add the sugar, sesame oil, and additional 2 tbsp water. Mix well. Set aside.
- In a large skillet or wok over med/high heat add the peanut oil. Let the oil get hot. Add the chicken and Let cook for 30 seconds before flipping/stirring. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes depending on how big your pieces are. Remove and set aside on a plate or bowl.
- If you need more oil you can add 1 more tbsp. Add the garlic, ginger, onions, and veggies. Toss to cook for about 4 to 5 minutes. You want the veggies to be tender crisp.
- Add the chicken back in and continue to cook until the veggies are tender crisp and the chicken is cooked through. This should take about another 5 minutes or so depending on how big your chicken pieces are.
- Add in the cornstarch mixture and toss to coat completely and cook until thickened. This should take about 1 minute or so to thicken.
- Remove to a serving plate and top with additional green onion slices. Serve over a bed of rice.
DIRECTIONS: CROCK POT VERSION-
- Spray your crock pot with a bit of oil spray of choice to prevent sticking.
- Add in your chicken, soy sauce, sugar, sesame oil, garlic, ginger, and peanuts. Stir to combine well. Cover with a lid and cook for 2 1/2 hours.
- When the 2 1/2 hours is up add in your veggies of choice. Toss to combine in the sauce. Cover with a lid and let cook for about 15 minutes. You want the veggies to be tender but with a slight crispness on the inside. A tender crisp texture. If you are using frozen broccoli add the fresh veggies first and let cook about 10 minutes. Then add in the frozen broccoli and then let cook about 5 to 8 minutes so the broccoli stays tender crisp and bright green. (If you prefer then more cooked and tender add them with the other veggies and cook for the entire 15 minutes).
- When the veggies are tender crisp or to your liking, combine the water and cornstarch and add to the chicken and veggies along with the green onion. Stir and let cook until thickened slightly. Check the kung pao chicken for seasoning and add more salt and pepper if needed.
- You are ready to serve over some rice.
- If you want this spicy- Add 1 to 2 tbsp ( or to taste) of red pepper paste. I find this at my local asian store. It comes in a red box that you can keep in your fridge. It is quite spicy so a little goes a long way. Start with a little because it can get way to spicy way to quickly. I recommend starting with a 1/2 of a teaspoon and adding more if you want. The name you are looking for when buying red pepper paste is “Gochujang”. If you can not find it you can look for “gochugaru” which is red pepper flakes. Both can be found at your local asian market or online. If you add gochugaru add about 1/2 a tsp as well and go from there as it is quite spicy as well when cooked.
- If you can not find either of those you can sub for “Sriracha”. Like with any spicy element you should start with a little and work your way up to the spice level you prefer or leave it out. I would not recommend using hot sauce of the American variety( such as franks, crystal, or tabasco) as it will alter the taste of the asian flare of this dish.
- Use whatever veggies you have on hand. I always have broccoli, carrots, and celery in my fridge and freezer so I usually gravitate toward these veggies. You can add in any veggie of choice such as: Onion, carrot, celery, broccoli, bell pepper, mixed asian veggies, water chestnuts, baby corn, bamboo shoots, bok choy, zucchini, green onions, or bean sprouts. The sky is the limit on the veggies you add. The only thing is to make sure that whatever veggies you add the equal out to 4 to 5 cups. Frozen veggies will cook down so keep that in mind when adding any frozen veggie to your mix. I always add an extra cup or so of frozen veggies. If I use fresh veggies I always do 4 cups.
- You can use salted, unsalted, or honey roasted peanuts in this dish. Keep in mind that you need to adjust the salt that you add to this. Remember that the soy sauce is salty and depending on if you use salted peanuts, it will add an extra salty bite. You can always add more salt at the end if you need to.
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