Sichuan Chow Mein

"This surprisingly simple Chicken Chow Mein takes less time to prepare than calling for take-out! The sauce is gingery and sweet with just enough delicious complexity to taste like a special-occasion meal. You can use a traditional wok or an extra-large skillet, and substitute proteins and vegetables as desired. My favorite veggies to toss in are cabbage, red bell peppers and snap peas, but I sometimes use asparagus, carrots or shiitake mushrooms as well. Try the noodles with sliced pork, beef or prawns to change it up!"
-- @justaddsalt_
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  • Recipe Card
Prep time 10mins
Cook time 40mins
Serves or Makes: 8

Recipe Card

Marinade & Stir Fry Sauce:


  • 2 inch piece fresh ginger, minced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup Lee Kum Kee Chili Garlic Sauce
  • 1/2 cup low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup chunky peanut butter
  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch, mixed with 1/4 cup water
  • 3 tablespoons Shaoxing rice wine or Ahi-Mirin sake

Noodles & Chicken


  • 6 boneless, skinless chicken thighs or 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 2 yellow onions
  • 1/2 head green cabbage
  • 2 red bell peppers
  • 1 cup snap peas
  • 1 cup bean sprouts
  • 4 pounds fresh chow mein noodles, or 2 16-oz. bags dried chow mein noodles*
  • 1/4 cup peanut oil, divided

Optional Garnish:


  • 1/2 cup toasted cashews
  • 10 green onions, thinly sliced
  • chopped fresh cilantro
  • Lime wedges


  • Step 1

    Prepare Marinade & Stir-Fry Sauce: Whisk all ingredients together in a small bowl and set aside.

  • Step 2

    Cut chicken into 1 1/2-inch by 1/2-inch slices. Place chicken in a medium bowl and drizzle with 1/4 cup marinade. Stir to coat.

  • Step 3

    Prepare Vegetables: Cut yellow onions in half and thinly slice. Trim cabbage and thinly slice. Cut red pepper in half, remove stem and seeds, and julienne. Trim snap peas and cut in half on the bias. Place sliced vegetables and bean sprouts into separate glass prep bowls.

  • Step 4

    Warm 1 tablespoon peanut oil in a wok or large skillet over medium-high heat until almost smoking. Use a slotted spoon to transfer half of the marinated chicken into pan. Chicken pieces should not touch in order to caramelize each piece. Sauté chicken until browned and just cooked through, about 4 minutes. Place chicken on a plate and cover with foil to keep warm. Repeat with remaining chicken.

  • Step 5

    Prepare Chow Mein Noodles: If using fresh noodles, cook according to package directions. (Some are immersed in hot water, others just need separating.) If using dried noodles, bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a boil. Add noodles and boil for 5 to 6 minutes until al dente. Drain.

  • Step 6

    Add remaining peanut oil to wok or large skillet and heat on medium-high. Add onions and sauté until translucent. Add cabbage and peppers and sauté for 4 minutes more. Stir in snap peas and bean sprouts and cook until heated through, about 1 minute.

  • Step 7

    Add stir-fry sauce to wok with vegetables, reduce heat to medium, and toss to coat.

  • Step 8

    Add chicken and noodles and toss until warm and combined.

  • Step 9

    Transfer chow mein to a serving platter and garnish with cashews, green onions, chopped cilantro and a squeeze of lime. Serve immediately.

  • Step 10

    *Note: There are as many types of chow mein noodles as there are provinces in China. Try looking on Amazon for dried noodles, or Trader Joe’s and most Asian markets carry them fresh and ready to cook. I often buy the KAME brand udon noodles or Wel-Pac Lo Mein noodles, which are a bit thicker than typical chow mein noodles. Don’t worry about the exact number of ounces. All come in different size packages, but you can use up to 5 lbs. of noodles and still have plenty of sauce.