Peanut Chicken with Peanut Noodles
I love peanut sauce. I don’t even need the chicken, noodles, or vegetables.
I could eat just the peanut sauce by the spoonful.
It makes everything taste amazing including simple rice noodles and vegetables. It’s so easy to make at home, takes two minutes to whisk together, it’s far more cost-effective than those small storebought jars, and you control the ingredients. I adapted the peanut sauce portion of today’s recipe from my 2012 Peanut Noodles with Vegetables.
The dish is easy, ready in 20 minutes, and packed with so much flavor from the peanut butter, ginger, and sesame oil. Sesame oil provides the classic peanut sauce flavor profile and it’s a must-have.
There’s awesome texture contrast between the crispy sugar snap peas, crunchy carrots and peanuts, the tender chicken, and soft rice noodles. Look for rice noodles (sometimes called pad thai noodles) in the Asian aisle of mainstream grocery stores.
The dish is great warm but also tastes great chilled. The flavors develop over time and it tastes even better the next day. And homemade always tastes better than takeout.
Peanut Chicken with Peanut Noodles
Peanut sauce makes everything taste amazing including simple rice noodles and vegetables. It’s so easy to make at home and takes two minutes to whisk together. The dish is easy, ready in 20 minutes, and packed with so much flavor from the peanut butter, ginger, and sesame oil. Sesame oil provides the classic peanut sauce flavor profile and it’s a must-have. There’s awesome texture contrast between the crispy sugar snap peas, crunchy carrots and peanuts, the tender chicken, and soft rice noodles. The dish is great warm but also tastes great chilled. The flavors develop over time and it tastes even better the next day. Homemade is always better than takeout.
- 8 ounces rice noodles (sometimes called pad thai noodles), cooked according to package directions
- heaping 1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1/4 cup sesame oil
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1 to 2 teaspoons ground ginger, or to taste
- 1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
- 1 teaspoon pepper, or to taste
- pinch cayenne pepper, optional and to taste
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces and seasoned with salt and pepper
- 1 cup sugar snap peas or snow peapods
- 3/4 to 1 cup shredded carrots
- 1/2 cup red bell peppers, diced small
- 2 tablespoons cilantro leaves, finely minced
- 1/2 cup peanuts, roughly chopped if desired (I used honey-roasted peanuts)
- Cook rice noodles according to package directions, drain, place in a large bowl; set aside. Tip – After the noodles are in the bowl, drizzle a small amount of sesame oil over them to prevent them from sticking and clumping together.
- To a medium bowl add the peanut butter, sesame oil, apple cider vinegar, ginger, salt, pepper, optional cayenne, and whisk to combine until smooth and incorporated. Taste, check for seasoning and flavor balance, and make any necessary adjustments (i.e. more honey, more peanut butter, more salt, more sesame oil, etc.); set aside.
- To a large skillet, add the olive oil, chicken, evenly season with salt and pepper, and cook over medium-high heat for about 5 minutes, flipping intermittently so all sides cook evenly. Cooking time will vary based on thickness of chicken breasts and sizes of pieces.
- Add about 1/4 cup of the peanut sauce to the skillet with chicken, using caution because it will bubble up. Allow it to bubble for about 45 to 60 seconds, stirring intermittently to coat all pieces of chicken evenly. Transfer the chicken including the sauce from the skillet into the bowl with noodles and toss to combine.
- Add the sugar snap peas, carrots, bell peppers, cilantro, peanuts, and drizzle in the remaining peanut sauce. Toss to combine and serve immediately. Dish will keep airtight in the fridge for up to 5 days. Leftovers can be served chilled or reheated gently based on preference.
Peanut sauce adapted from Peanut Noodles with Vegetables
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