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Empress Chicken (Chicken Stir Fry)

Empress Chicken (Chicken Stir Fry)

Velveting Chicken

This Empress Chicken Chinese recipe utilizes a process known as “velveting chicken”. It’s a key step in Chinese cooking so it’s not to be skipped. Essentially it’s coating the chicken in cornstarch and eggs before stir-frying to produce a juicy and silky textured chicken vs. tough and dry chicken.

Technically, the chicken is dredged in an entire wok full of oil, however that isn’t always an option when cooking Chinese food at home. Our version limits the amount of  oil, so you’ll still have the benefits of velveting the chicken without wasting a ton of time and resources.

Raw chicken coated with egg and cornstarch.

Cooking pieces of chicken to make Empress Chicken.

Recipe Variations

Spicy Chicken Stir Fry

Like some heat? Add an extra 1/2- 1 teaspoon of red pepper flakes to the sauce for an extra kick. 

Jalapeno Chicken Stir Fry

Throw in sliced jalapeños when you cook the garlic and chilis. 

Shrimp Stir Fry

Use a pound of peeled shrimp instead of chicken if shrimp recipes are your jam. No other edits are necessary, other than shaving the cook time down to about 3-4 minutes.

Chicken and Shrimp Stir Fry

Throw in a half pound of peeled shrimp and cut down the chicken to 1 pound. Cook the chicken first and the second batch will be the shrimp as you’ll need to shave down the cook time to about 3-4 minutes.

Pieces of cooked chicken coated in an stir fry sauce.

More Asian Recipes To Check Out

Egg Drop Soup
Korean Beef Bulgogi
Ahi Tuna Poke Bowl
Instant Pot Chicken Adobo
Sticky Asian Oven Baked Chicken Wings

Drink Recommendations

Red- Zinfandel, Lambrusco, Beaujolais or Pinot Noir.
White – Dry Sauvignon Blanc, Dry Riesling or Dry Sparkling.

Empress chicken in a white bowl with chop sticks balancing on the bowl.
Print Recipe
5 from 4 votes

Empress Chicken (Chicken Stir Fry)

Looking for a quick and easy chicken stir fry recipe? This delicious Empress Chicken recipe fits the bill. Juicy chicken is tossed in a sweet and savory stir fry sauce creating a velvety Asian-inspired dish. Serve over rice, noodles or vegetables. 
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time25 mins
Course: Dinner, Lunch, Main Course
Cuisine: Chinese
Keyword: Chicken Recipe, Dinner Recipes, Stir Fry Recipe
Servings: 4 People
Calories: 372kcal
Author: Darcey Olson
Cost: $10

Ingredients

SAUCE

  • tbsp Corn Starch
  • ¼ Cup Low Sodium Soy Sauce
  • 1 Cup Chicken Stock
  • 2 tbsp White Vinegar
  • 1 tbsp Brown Sugar
  • ½ tsp Grated Fresh Ginger

CHICKEN

  • Lb Boneless and Skinless Chicken Breast, Cubed (*Note 1)
  • 1 Large Egg, Whisked
  • 3-4 tbsp Cornstarch
  • 3-4 tbsp Un-toasted Sesame Oil or Peanut Oil (*Note 2)
  • 4 Dried Red Chili Flakes (*Note 3)
  • 2-3 Garlic Cloves, Finely Minced

Garnish

  • 2 Green Onions, Thinly Sliced
  • Toasted Sesame Seeds

Instructions

SAUCE

  • Add the corn starch to a small mixing bowl and slowly whisk in the soy sauce, until the cornstarch is dissolved. Whisk in the chicken stock, vinegar, sugar and ginger until well combined. Set aside.

CHICKEN

  • Add the diced chicken to a large mixing bowl. Pour the whisked egg over the chicken and toss to evenly coat.
  • Sprinkle 3 tbsp of cornstarch over the chicken and toss to evenly coat (use more cornstarch if need be). If the cornstarch isn't sticking to the chicken, use your fingers to gently press down on the chicken so it sticks.
  • Pre-heat a large skillet or wok over high heat. Add 3 tbsp of oil. Add more if needed to coat the bottom of the pan. Add half the chicken and cook, stirring frequently, for 5-6 minutes (or until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F.) Transfer the chicken to a plate and repeat with the second batch of chicken.
  • Add the red chilis and garlic to the same skillet and cook for approx. 30 seconds, stirring frequently so neither burns.
  • Add the chicken back to the skillet and stir to combine.
  • Re-whisk the prepared sauce and pour it over the chicken. Gently fold the chicken into the sauce until all pieces are evenly coated and the sauce thickens, approx. 1-2 minutes.
  • Transfer to individual serving bowls and top with green onions and sesame seeds. Enjoy immediately.

Notes

Note 1 - Use chicken thighs if that's what you have on-hand.
Note 2 - Do not use toasted sesame oil as it has a lower smoke point.
Note 3 - Omit the chilis if you're sensitive to any heat. They really only lend flavor to the dish vs. heat but we know some peeps can still "feel" the heat.

Nutrition

Calories: 372kcal | Carbohydrates: 19g | Protein: 42g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 152mg | Sodium: 880mg | Potassium: 937mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 601IU | Vitamin C: 68mg | Calcium: 38mg | Iron: 2mg
Recipe Rating




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