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Salt and Pepper Chicken Recipe

Homemade salt and pepper chicken, a delicious Chinese-style takeaway that you can easily make at home. Either fried or baked.
Course Poultry
Cuisine Chinese
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 522kcal
Author Adina

Ingredients

  • Vegetables:
  • 75 g/ 2.6 oz/ about ½ an onion
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 3 green onions
  • ½ red bell pepper
  • 1 long green chili use to taste
  • each ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt and pepper
  • Fried salt and pepper chicken:
  • 800 g/ 1.8 lbs boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • 40 g/ 1.4 oz/ 1/3 cup cornstarch
  • ¾ tablespoon fine sea salt
  • ¾ tablespoon ground black pepper
  • ¾ tablespoon Chinese five-spice powder
  • 240 ml/ 8 fl.oz/ 1 cup oil
  • Baked salt and pepper chicken Note 1
  • 800 g/ 1.8 lbs boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • ¾ tablespoon fine sea salt
  • ¾ tablespoon ground black pepper
  • ¾ tablespoon Chinese five-spice powder

Instructions

Vegetables:

  • Slice the onion and the garlic. Cut the green onions into thin rings. Deseed the peppers and slice them as well. Set aside until ready to cook.

Fried chicken:

  • Mix together cornstarch, salt, pepper, and Chinese five-spice powder in a large bowl. Cut the chicken thighs into bite-sized pieces.
  • Heat the oil in a pan, wok, or skillet (Note 2).
  • When the oil is hot, place ½ of the chicken pieces into the bowl with the cornstarch and spices and toss until coated.
  • Immediately and carefully place them into the hot oil and fry until golden brown, about 2-3 minutes, moving the pieces a few times in between. Check if the meat is cooked through by cutting a piece in the middle. Remove with a slotted spoon and place on kitchen paper towels to remove the excess fat.
  • Repeat with the second batch, only coating the chicken pieces with cornstarch just before adding to the frying pan.
  • Pour away all the fat from the pan, keeping only about 2 tablespoons of it. Add the vegetables and stir fry for about 2 minutes. Add salt and pepper, mix well.
  • Mix with the chicken pieces and serve.

Baked chicken:

  • Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius/ 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a baking tray with baking paper.
  • Mix together cornstarch, salt, pepper, and Chinese five-spice powder in a large bowl.
  • Cut the chicken thighs into bite-sized pieces. Toss with the oil, add to the bowl and toss to coat with the spices.
  • Bake for 10 minutes.
  • Place under the grill (or turn on the oven grill) and grill for about 2-3 minutes to make the chicken crispier. Keep an eye on the grill, the chicken should not get too dark.
  • While the chicken bakes prepare the vegetables and stir-fry them in a large pan with 1-2 tablespoons oil.
  • Mix the chicken and veggies and serve.

Video

Notes

  1. Basically, the same ingredients without the cornstarch. I've tried both versions, the oven-baked chicken tastes better without the cornstarch.
  2. Make sure the oil has the right temperature for frying, about 180 degrees Celsius/ 355 degrees Fahrenheit. You can also check by frying a cube of bread, if it takes about 10-15 seconds to get brown then the oil has the right temperature.
  3. The nutrition for the fried chicken is calculated considering only 4 tablespoons of oil, as you will discard most of the frying oil anyway. The nutrition calculation is only an approximation. The oven-baked chicken has about 420 calories per serving.

Nutrition

Serving: 1/4 of the dish | Calories: 522kcal | Carbohydrates: 17g | Protein: 50g | Fat: 30g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 23g | Cholesterol: 244mg | Sodium: 1845mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 2g