Easy Thai Peanut Chicken Recipe

Thai peanut chicken recipe prepared in bowl.

What’s the ultimate combination of chicken and peanut butter? Easy answer: Thai Peanut Chicken. There’s some variation of peanut chicken on every Thai menu I’ve ever seen. This Thai peanut chicken recipe isn’t necessarily authentic — but it is easy for anyone to prepare and absolutely delicious.

My chicken peanut butter story

When I was a kid, I was mildly obsessed with chicken and peanut butter. I would demand dinner at the nearby Thai restaurant for my birthday. I would also demand that we order chicken satay as an appetizer and Pad Thai as one of the main dishes. And yes, I was a difficult child 🤣.

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I remember those dishes had an addictive flavor and texture. Something about the savory chicken matched with sweet and sticky peanut butter — I couldn’t get enough.

My family moved away from my favorite restaurant ages ago, but I still think of that place as “the best” Thai food I’ve ever had. I found a close replacement when I lived in Missouri (of all places!). Today, I’m in Santa Fe and the Thai food options I’ve tried here are just OK.

When I’m craving a garlicky, gingery peanut butter and chicken combo, this Thai peanut chicken recipe satisfies. It’s less complex than a restaurant version, but still has great flavor.

Thai chicken peanut recipe.
©Blog Chef.

Ingredients for this Thai peanut chicken recipe

Here’s what you need to make this Asian-inspired dish:

  • 1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 3 tablespoons fresh garlic
  • 1 ½ tablespoon fresh ginger
  • Vegetable oil or avocado oil for cooking
  • ¾ cup green onions
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1/3 cup dry roasted peanuts
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
  • 2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • ¼ teaspoons cayenne pepper (or more if you want)
  • ¼ cup of water
  • Fresh basil (optional, for garnish)
  • Rice, noodles, or pasta

Substitution options

Meat. You could make this with chicken thigh meat in lieu of chicken breast.

Veggies. Try swapping out the bell pepper and green onion for snow peas or snap peas, julienned carrots, bean sprouts, spinach, or edamame.

Vinegar. You could use lemon juice, rice wine vinegar, or rice wine instead of the white wine vinegar.

Soy sauce. Tamari or coconut aminos work well as soy sauce substitutes.

Spice. Adjust the amount of cayenne pepper to suit your taste, or add a couple teaspoons of hot chili oil to the finished dish.

Garnish. My recipe calls for fresh basil as a garnish, but you could also use cilantro and lime wedges.

Thai peanut chicken recipe prepared in bowl.
©Blog Chef.

Prep steps for this Thai peanut chicken recipe

As with many Asian-inspired dishes, this recipe does require some prep work. Give yourself 15 minutes of lead time to chop and mince your ingredients before you start cooking.

1. Chop and mince

Veggies for Thai peanut chicken recipe.
©Blog Chef.

Mince fresh garlic and ginger. Then chop 3 green onions and slice 1 bell pepper. On a separate cutting surface, cut the chicken breast into 1-inch chunks.

Cubed chicken for Thai peanut chicken recipe.
©Blog Chef.

2. Make the Thai peanut sauce

Ingredients for Thai peanut sauce.
©Blog Chef.

The hardest part of making this Thai peanut sauce is measuring out 6 different ingredients as follows:

  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
  • 2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Add the above to a bowl and mix until the ingredients are well-combined. Cover the bowl and set aside.

3. Stir fry chicken

Chicken breast chunks, stir frying in pan.
©Blog Chef.

Next, place a wok or large skillet over medium-high heat. Add 2 teaspoons of oil plus the garlic, ginger, and chicken pieces. Stir fry until the chicken is done, which should take about 5 minutes. The chicken will release juices in the pan as it cooks, so it’ll look watery.

Using a slotted spoon, remove the cooked chicken from the pan and set aside on a plate.

4. Stir fry veggies

Stir frying vegetables.

Now, add another teaspoon of oil along with the sliced bell pepper and chopped green onions. Stir fry the veggies until they reach the level of doneness you like. If you like them just crisp-tender, this takes 2 minutes or so. I like my veggies a touch softer, so I cooked them for 4 minutes.

Again with a slotted spoon, remove the veggies and place them on top of the chicken.

5. Heat the sauce

Thai peanut sauce, cooking in pan.

Turn the heat down to medium and add the peanut sauce mixture to the same pan. Stirring constantly, bring the sauce to a slight boil. It will get thick. Add 1 tablespoon of water at a time to maintain a saucy texture.

Dab a spoon into the sauce and give it a taste. Add more cayenne if it needs heat or more peanut butter (a tiny bit at a time, stirring constantly) if you want to go bold on the peanut flavor.

6. Combine and serve

Place the chicken and veggies back into the pan with the sauce and stir everything quickly. Turn off the heat.

Serve Thai chicken pasta over white rice or thin noodles or pasta. Top with roasted peanuts and fresh basil.

Yield: 4 servings

Thai Peanut Chicken Recipe

Overhead view of Thai peanut chicken recipe, prepared in bowl.

This is a a straightforward Thai peanut chicken recipe that'll satisfy any Asian food craving. Whip up a quick sauce and stir fry cubed chicken breast and veggies. Toss everything together and serve over noodles.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 8 minutes
Total Time 8 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1” chunks
  • 3 tablespoons fresh garlic, minced
  • 1 ½ tablespoon fresh ginger, minced
  • Oil for cooking
  • ¾ cup green onions, chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, sliced
  • 1/3 cup dry roasted peanuts

Sauce

  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
  • 2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • ¼ teaspoons cayenne pepper (or more to your taste)
  • ¼ cup of water
  • 2 tablespoons fresh basil, sliced (optional, for garnish)

Instructions

  1. Prep your ingredients first. Mince the garlic and ginger, chop the green onion, slice the red bell pepper. Also cut your chicken breast into small cubes.Veggies for Thai peanut chicken recipe.
  2. Mix soy sauce, peanut butter, white wine vinegar, sesame oil, brown sugar, and cayenne pepper in a bowl. Stir until well combined and set aside.Ingredients for Thai peanut sauce.
  3. Heat oil in a large skillet to medium-high heat. Add garlic, ginger, and chicken. Stir fry until chicken is no longer pink inside, which should take about 5 minutes. Remove from pan and set aside.Chicken breast chunks, stir frying in pan.
  4. Add another teaspoon of oil to the pan. Stir fry red bell peppers and green onions for about 2 minutes or until they have reached desired tenderness. Remove veggies from pan and set aside.Stir frying vegetables.
  5. Lower the flame to medium heat and add the peanut sauce mixture to the pan. Heat while stirring constantly. When sauce mixture starts to bubble, add a ¼ cup of water and mix well to thin it out a bit.Thai peanut sauce, cooking in pan.
  6. Once sauce is done, return chicken and veggies to pan and stir so the sauce coats everything. Turn off the heat. Serve chicken over white rice or noodles.

Notes

You could substitute cubed boneless, skinless chicken thigh for the chicken breast.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

4

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 382Total Fat: 19gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 13gCholesterol: 96mgSodium: 786mgCarbohydrates: 12gFiber: 3gSugar: 4gProtein: 42g

Nutrition information isn’t always accurate.

More Thai-inspired dishes

Want more Thai food at home? Try these:

Chicken Pad Thai Recipe
Thai Chicken Pasta Recipe
Pad Thai

28 thoughts on “Easy Thai Peanut Chicken Recipe”

  1. I just found your blog and I’m already in love… this recipe looks great and I can’t wait to try some of your other ones.

    I love Chinese food and all your food looks great… I’m going to be trying some of your recipes tonight! 🙂

  2. Bobby,

    Thai Peanut chicken recipe is excellent. After seeing the pictures, i cannot stop myself to appreciate your photography talent.

    Thanks for posting

    Alice

  3. I am never let down when I come to your website. You have amazing recipes with great demonstrations of the steps. Keep it up 🙂

  4. This looks absolutely lovely, I tried one of your other recipes a few months ago and was delicious and quite easy to cook (especially for me who can’t really cook) will definitely give this one a go!!!

  5. OK, I used this recipe but after a tweak here & a tweak there I realized I used it was being used more as a guide than an actual recipe.. but I followed the sauce pretty close *swapped honey for brown sugar & sriracha for cayenne* and I am so happy! This peanut sauce will be getting made just to toss on noodles if I have nothing else to eat. Freakin’ yum.

    ps – thanks for submitting it to Photograzing so I could find it 🙂

  6. LOVED this recipe! I made it tonight. I will definitely make this again– the only things I changed a bit is to use red pepper flakes, instead of cayenne. I LOVE water chestnuts, so I think I’ll add that for “crunch” next time– I know, not really authentic Thai. I also garnished with cilantro. Simple and delicious peanut sauce. Thank you!

  7. Fantastic aromas, flavor and colors! Very well done, and thank you for sharing and inspiring!!

  8. I’ve made this twice, using sri racha instead of the cayenne pepper, and it turned out wonderfully both times. Thanks for the recipe!

  9. I tried this and it was sooo good and very easy to make. My whole family loved it. I also shared your website with a friend and she tried it and loved it too!

  10. I made this but we didnt care for it….my son makes a really good peanut chicken and this looked close but unfortunately it wasnt what we were expecting

  11. I’ve made this a couple times too now with a few changes that make this recipe taste almost exactly like a similar dish at the Cheesecake Factory. The biggest difference in my version is that I serve the chicken, sauce, and peppers (no onions in our household) with linguine noodles instead of white rice and double the sauce to cover it all. I also like to throw in a handful of bean sprouts near the end and top it off with a sprinkle of coconut flakes and extra whole peanuts. I absolutely LOVE it!!!

  12. good recipe, but the second time I used more peanut butter and less cayenne pepper. Instead of peppers I use celery and carrots.

  13. Thank you! I’ve been looking for a recipe like this. I’ve tried several that tasted nothing like the one from my local Chinese restaurant. I think this is the one, because the one I’m trying to duplicate has sesame oil.

  14. just made the recipe. used crunchy peanut butter, more brown sugar, and more pepper flakes and sliced red peppers in the sauce.
    was delicious! thanks for the recipe.

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