Sticky Basil Chicken
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Sticky Basil Chicken – Skip takeout and make this AMAZING chicken that tastes like it’s from an Asian restaurant at home in 15 minutes!! So EASY with the perfect balance of sweet, spicy, and plenty of fresh basil!!
Easy Sticky Basil Chicken Recipe
This recipe is a spinoff of my Better-Than-Takeout Sticky Chicken. I love that chicken so much and decided to make a basil-infused version.
The chicken is ridiculously tender and loaded with authentic Asian flavors that keep you going back for one more juicy bite.
The sauce is just sweet enough, but is balanced with the tang of the vinegar, the saltiness from the soy sauce, and you can make it as spicy (or not) as you like with the chili garlic sauce.
This homemade non-fried version of sticky chicken that’s made in one skillet and ready in 15 minutes will knock your socks off. It tastes like it’s from a restaurant and you don’t even need to leave your house.
It’s hassle-free and perfect for busy weeknights.
You probably have almost everything on hand to make it and if you don’t, not to worry because all the ingredients are easily found at your local grocery store.
How To Make Sticky Basil Chicken
To a large skillet, add boneless skinless chicken breast pieces that have been dredged in egg, flour, and corn starch.
Cook until the chicken is done, about 8 minutes, and then add the sauce.
Finish with a big handful of torn fresh basil leaves and garnish with sesame seeds if you like and dig in!
What’s In The Sticky Sauce?
This sauce is a mixture of:
- Soy sauce
- White sugar
- Brown sugar
- Chili garlic sauce
Is Sticky Basil Chicken Spicy?
I added 3 heaping tablespoons chili garlic sauce to the sauce mixture and the chicken and sauce had a nice kick.
If you’re sensitive to spicy foods, dial that quantity back. Start with one tablespoon and work up from there. Or if you don’t want any spiciness, it’s easy to omit.
But in my opinion for most homemade versions of Asian-inspired recipes or to recreate an Asian restaurant dish, there needs to be at least some spiciness.
What Kind Of Basil To Use?
I really wanted to make “Thai Basil Chicken” which is a fairly popular Thai restaurant recipe.
However, it’s tricky to find Thai basil unless you live near a Thai or Asian market, and even if you do, it’s likely not convenient to go there solely to track down Thai basil. I never want anyone to go on a goose chase that I wouldn’t go on myself. So because of that, we have Sticky Basil Chicken rather than Thai Basil Chicken.
I used fresh basil from Trader Joe’s but if you have basil from your garden, that would be lovely.
How Is This Recipe Different Than Thai Basil Chicken?
Primarily, I used regular basil and not Thai basil, but if you can find Thai basil and want to use it, go for it.
Basil Trivia coming up from what I have learned on the internet. There are two types of Thai basil: regular Thai basil and Holy Basil. Holy basil is more typically used in the restaurant version of this dish but is also harder to find that Thai Basil, which is already hard to find. So count me out, I have no patience driving around looking for ingredients especially given the state of the world now.
Also in restaurant versions of Thai basil chicken, the sauce isn’t as thick or sticky, and the chicken doesn’t tend to have any breading on it (no flour or corn starch) so that’s another difference.
But truth be told, I love chicken that has exactly this texture and prefer this to any restaurant version of traditional Thai basil chicken.
- 1/3 to 1/2 cup honey
- 1/4 cup ketchup
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar (or regular or rice vinegar)
- 3 to 4 tablespoons lite or lower-sodium soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar, packed (light or dark)
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 1 to 4 tablespoons chili garlic sauce, to taste (I used 3 heaping tablespoons and there was a nice kick; reduce to 1 tablespoon or less if you're very sensitive to spicy foods)
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/3 cup corn starch, for dredging
- 1.75 pounds boneless skinless chicken breast, cut into bite-sized pieces
- 3 to 4 tablespoons olive oil, plus more if necessary
- 1 big handful fresh basil leaves, torn into large pieces, or as desired; plus more for garnishing optionally
- sesame seeds, optional for garnishing
- Sauce - To a medium bowl, add all the ingredients, and whisk to combine; set aside.
- Chicken - Add the egg to a small bowl, the flour to a separate shallow bowl, and the corn starch to another shallow bowl.
- Add the chicken to the egg bowl (I add it all at once and smoosh it around with my fingers), pick it up and transfer it to the flour bowl and coat it with flour (doesn't have to be 100% completely and perfectly coated), pick it up and transfer it to the corn starch bowl and coat it with corn starch.
- To a large skillet, add the oil, the chicken, and cook over medium to medium-high heat for about 8 minutes, or until the chicken is seared, lightly browned or golden on the outside, and cooked through; slip intermittently to ensure even cooking.
- Reduce the heat to medium, add the sauce to the skillet, and stir to combine. Stir the sauce nearly continuously for about 5 minutes, or until the sauce has thickened up and likely it will have reduced and absorbed into or clung to the chicken and there won't be much excess.
- Turn the heat off, add the handful of torn basil, and stir to incorporate and until wilted.
- Optionally, garnish with additional basil and/or sesame seeds and serve immediately. Chicken will keep airtight in the fridge for up to 5 days or in the freezer for up to 4 months.
Adapted from Better-Than-Takeout Sticky Chicken
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 711Total Fat: 26gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 19gCholesterol: 215mgSodium: 806mgCarbohydrates: 51gFiber: 2gSugar: 24gProtein: 67g
Nutrition information isn’t always accurate and is computer generated. Because it's unlikely that you'll need all the flour or corn starch used in coating the chicken, nor will you likely consume every drop of sauce, I believe the stats are a bit artificially high because they take it all into account. This is my opinion only.
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