Spicy Chicken Vegetable Stir Fry is a fabulous way to eat healthy, light, and low carb. You control the spice level, and mix in your favorite veggies for this mouthwatering dish
It’s no secret that I’m a 100% dark meat girl when it comes to chicken. My parents never cooked with white meat, so I hardly ever ate it. And those few times I did eat chicken breast, it was always dry and overcooked. So of course that didn’t help anything. Yes, dark meat chicken has a few more calories, but it’s a sacrifice I’m willing to make for more flavor.
It’s also no secret that I’m a big fan of carbs. Starchy carbs. Those carbs that people say aren’t so good for you. When I first learned to cook, I wasn’t good at portion control for rice or pasta. And since I don’t do leftovers, I ate what I cooked. Not good for my waistline. Thankfully I’ve gotten much better about those portions over time. I don’t even bother trying diets that eliminate or severely restrict carbs. I know I won’t make it over the long haul, and I know I’ll be miserable. What’s the point of that? Instead, I compromise. I cut back on starchy carbs, and incorporate more meals that are full of protein, vegetables, and healthy carbs. A few of my favorites on the blog are:
Every winter my eating habits leave a lot to be desired. Between the holidays, work stress, and just wanting yummy deliciousness when the weather is brutal, I lean towards comfort food. And then January hits, and I realize that I have less than 4 months until the OKC Half Marathon. The first year I ran (2013), I went all-in on diet and training, and ran a great time. Every year since, my diet and training haven’t been as good, and neither have my times. So once again, I’m on a mission to beat my best time. I’m already adding more of my favorite leaner meals into my weekly meal plan, but there’s always room for more.
A couple of weeks ago I was on the hunt for a new recipe, but nothing jumped out at me. I had thawed out chicken, and had some green vegetables I needed to use. After staring at the fridge and pantry for about 10 minutes, I decided to create a stir fry. But not just any boring stir fry…a Spicy Chicken Vegetable Stir Fry
Yes, yes, and YES! This Spicy Chicken Vegetable Stir Fry is fabulous.
WHAT MAKES SPICY CHICKEN VEGETABLE STIR FRY SPICY?
What I love about the spicy sauce is that it uses ingredients you probably already have in your pantry.
- I use Low Sodium Soy Sauce, or Gluten Free Soy Sauce. It has less than half the sodium of regular, yet does not sacrifice any flavor
- Raw Honey – I discovered raw honey a couple of years ago at a farmer’s market. Raw tastes so much better than regular, and you can find raw honey in most grocery stores
- Sriracha – I have a big bottle in my fridge at all times. It is spicy, and a little goes a long way
- Ground Chili with Fried Garlic – I added it because I had it in the fridge, and couldn’t remember the last time I used it
- Cornstarch – used to thicken the sauce
Look at that gorgeous marinade color! I marinate the chicken in the sauce for 30 minutes, and then drain the marinade into a small saucepan. I cook down the marinade, and then add it to the stir fry for the last couple minutes. Cook the marinade for 10-15 minutes before adding it to the stir fry! The last thing you want to do is add used marinade to cooked food. You won’t like the result.
VEGGIES, VEGGIES AND MORE VEGGIES!
One of the best things about this Spicy Chicken Vegetable Stir Fry is versatility. I use green beans, asparagus, broccoli crowns and snow peas. However, you can use your favorite vegetables. I add onions and garlic, because I add them to pretty much everything. I slowly cook the garlic and onions first, and then turn up the heat and saute the vegetables. Once they’re almost done, I move the veggies to the side and add the chicken.
IMPORTANT REMINDER ABOUT THE MARINADE
As I mentioned previously, I cook down the marinade in a separate small saucepan. Do not…I repeat DO NOT add the uncooked marinade to the cooked veggies and chicken! You can cook down the marinade while the chicken and vegetables cook. I purposely make more marinade than I really need, because when it becomes the sauce it will reduce some. I also add a little cornstarch to thicken the sauce. Once the chicken cooks through, I add the sauce and combine everything well together.
The first time I made Spicy Chicken Vegetable Stir Fry I went WAY overboard on the spice, and my mouth was on fire. Thankfully I had some cooked rice in the fridge, and added it to the bowl. I learned my lesson, adjusted the spice, and keep this dish low carb. Of course, rice is personal preference.
Spicy Chicken Vegetable Stir Fry will definitely be a regular on my meal plan as I train for the half marathon, and truly all year long.
SHOP THIS RECIPE
- 10 ounces boneless, skinless chicken thighs, diced
- 1 1/2 tablespoons avocado oil or canola oil
- 2 cloves raw garlic, sliced thinly
- 1/4 cup yellow onion, sliced
- 1/2 cup green beans, sliced lengthwise in half
- 10 spears asparagus, cut into 2" slices
- 1 cup broccoli florets
- 1/2 cup snow peas, sliced in half
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- 1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons raw honey
- 2 teasppoons Sriracha hot sauce (more or less, to taste)
- 1 teaspoon ground chili with fried garlic (more or less, to taste)
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
Combine all marinade ingredients in bowl. Add chicken, and marinate in fridge for about 30 minutes. Drain marinade into small saucepan
Add 1/2 tablespoon oil to wok and heat over medium-low heat. Add sliced garlic and saute about 3 minutes, until golden brown. Watch carefully, so garlic does not burn. Remove garlic and set aside. Add onions, and saute about 5 minutes, until golden. Remove onions and add to garlic.
Cook marinade over low heat for 10 minutes. Add cornstarch, and stir well, until sauce thickens.
Add 1 tablespoon oil to skillet, and turn heat to medium-high. When oil begins to sizzle, add green beans, broccoli and asparagus, and saute for about 5 minutes. Add snow peas, onion and garlic, and saute for another 2-3 minutes. Move all vegetables to sides of skillet
Add remaining 1/2 tablespoon of oil plus chicken to center of skillet. Saute chicken about 3 minutes per side, until chicken is cooked through.
Turn heat to low, add cooked marinade, and combine all ingredients well.
Serve alone, or over rice