Thai Chicken Stir-Fried with Coconut, Chili & Lime (Easy!)

Thai Chicken Stir-Fry
So Good Thai Chicken Stir-Fry!. D.Schmidt for About.com
    20 mins
Ratings (28)

This Thai chicken stir-fry is authentic and easy to make, with a no-fail stir-fry sauce that pleases every palate. The recipe is very versatile, so you can easily alter it according to how many people you're cooking for, or the types of vegetables you have on hand. This is a 'saucy' stir-fry with the spicy-salty-sweet flavors of Thai cuisine coming through beautifully. Makes a quick and delicious dinner for you and your loved ones - just serve with rice and dig in!

What You'll Need

  • 2-3 boneless chicken breasts, cut into strips or bite-size pieces, OR 5-6 chicken thighs
  • 1 shallot OR 1/4 cup purple onion, finely chopped
  • 5-6 cloves garlic, minced or finely chopped
  • 2 thumb-size pieces galangal OR ginger, thinly sliced into matchsticks
  • 1 fresh red chili, thinly sliced, OR 1/4 to 1/3 tsp. dried chili (chili flakes)
  • 7-8 shiitake or other type mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 cups green beans
  • optional: 2-3 kaffir lime leaves
  • 1 red bell pepper, sliced into strips
  • generous handful fresh basil
  • 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
  • STIR-FRY SAUCE:
  • 2/3 cup coconut milk
  • 2+1/2 Tbsp. fish sauce
  • 3+1/2 Tbsp. fresh lime juice
  • 1+1/2 Tbsp. soy sauce
  • 1/3 to 1/2 tsp. dried crushed chili (chili flakes)
  • 2+1/2 tsp. brown sugar

How to Make It

  1. Combine 'stir fry sauce' ingredients together, stirring well to dissolve the sugar. Taste-test, looking for spicy-salty-sweet flavors balanced with the rich taste of the coconut milk. Adjust these flavors to suit your taste, adding more lime juice if too salty or sweet (note that it will be less salty when combined with the chicken and vegetables).
  2. Place chicken in a bowl and pour over 1/4 cup of the stir-fry sauce, or enough to coat chicken. Toss well and set aside.
  1. Warm a wok or large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add oil and swirl around, then add the shallot/onion, garlic, galangal or ginger, and chili. Stir-fry until fragrant, 1-2 minutes. Add chicken, green beans and kaffir lime leaves (if using). Stir-fry 5-6 minutes or until cooked, adding more of the stir-fry sauce as you go.
  2. Add mushrooms, red pepper, and enough stir-fry sauce to keep ingredients moist and simmering. Simmer 3-5 minutes, or until the vegetables have turned bright in color but still retain some crispness. Note: at this stage you can add as much or little sauce as you like.  Keep in mind this stir-fry is never dry - the sauce is meant to also flavor the rice or noodles it is served with.
  3. Reduce heat to minimum and do a final taste-test, adding a little more fish sauce if you'd like more flavor or saltiness, or more lime juice if too salty or sweet.
  4. Top with a sprinkling of fresh basil and more fresh-cut chili, if desired.  Serve with plenty of Thai jasmine rice or noodles.

Leftover Sauce: Depending on how many vegetables you're using, you may have leftover sauce. Store it for 5 days in a covered jar or other container in your refrigerator for future stir-fries, such as a vegetable side dish (stir-fried broccoli, green beans, and/or bok choy work well in addition to the vegetables suggested here), or shrimp or tofu stir-fry. Enjoy!