Craving the flavors of Panda Express at home? Try this copycat Panda Express String Bean Chicken Breast! Tender chicken pieces and stir-fried green beans are tossed in a delicious Asian-inspired sauce made with soy sauce, ginger, and garlic. This dish is a surefire hit for any Chinese food lover!
String Bean Chicken Panda Express
If you're a fan of Panda Express string bean chicken breast dish and want to make it at home, you're in luck! This recipe will guide you through making a delicious copycat version of this popular American-Chinese stir fry dish in just 15 minutes. With crispy string beans and tender chicken breast, this recipe offers the perfect combination of flavors and textures. It's a quick and easy way to enjoy a takeout-inspired meal without leaving the comfort of your own home.
😍 Reasons to Love This Recipe
There are plenty of reasons to love this Copycat String Bean Chicken!
- Delicious flavor: This recipe offers all the savory, garlicky flavor of the original dish, with a touch of sweetness and plenty of umami from the soy sauce and oyster sauce.
- One-pot meal that offers a perfect balance of lean protein and vegetables.
- Quick and easy: This recipe is perfect for busy weeknights when you want a quick and satisfying meal.
- Healthy ingredients: Unlike some takeout options, this dish features lean protein and fresh vegetables, making it a healthier choice for you and your family.
- Customizable: You can easily adjust the level of spice to suit your taste preferences, adding more or less ginger or red pepper flakes as desired.
- Budget-friendly: Making this dish at home is often more cost-effective than ordering takeout, especially if you have many mouths to feed.
- Chicken breast: Use boneless, skinless chicken breast and slice it against the grain into thin ¼ inch slices. This will make the chicken more tender and easier to cook.
- Green beans: Use fresh string beans that have been washed and trimmed. Cut them into 2-inch pieces for easy cooking.
- Onion: It provides a nice crunch, adding texture to each bite. When selecting white onion, make sure it is firm and has a dry outer skin.
- Mirin or Shaoxing wine: Mirin is a sweet Japanese rice wine and Shaoxing wine is a Chinese cooking wine. If you can't find either of these, you can substitute with any other cooking wine.
- Oyster sauce: This adds a savory and slightly sweet flavor to the dish. Make sure to choose a high-quality oyster sauce for the best results.
- Soy sauce: Use low sodium soy sauce to control the saltiness of the dish.
- Rice vinegar: This adds a tangy flavor to the sauce. You can substitute with apple cider vinegar if you don't have rice vinegar.
- Garlic and ginger: Use fresh garlic and ginger for the best flavor. Grate the ginger finely to make sure it blends well into the sauce.
- Cornstarch: It helps create a velvety coating on the chicken, making it tender and juicy. In the sauce, it helps thicken and bind the ingredients together.
- Chicken stock: It adds depth and richness to the sauce, enhancing the overall flavor of the dish. You can use either store-bought or homemade chicken stock.
- Brown sugar: It adds a subtle sweetness that helps balance out the savory and salty flavors of the soy and oyster sauce.
- Sesame oil: It gives the dish its distinctive taste and aroma.
How to Make Panda Express String Bean Chicken
- Mix together the marinade ingredients in a medium-sized bowl. Add the thinly sliced chicken breast and stir until the chicken is evenly coated in the marinade. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, or overnight if possible, to allow the flavors to develop. If you're short on time, you can let the chicken marinate for as little as 10-15 minutes while you prepare the other ingredients.
- Combine all the sauce ingredients and keep it aside for later use.
- Heat the oil in a wok or pan over high heat until it is hot. Add the chicken pieces in a single layer without the marinade, making sure not to overcrowd the pan. Allow the chicken to cook undisturbed for 30 seconds to 1 minute until it turns golden brown and develops a good sear. Flip the chicken over and repeat the process. Once the chicken is cooked, transfer it to a plate.
- After sautéing the green beans and white onions for 2-3 minutes in the same pan, reduce the heat to medium and add the cooked chicken back into the pan. Pour the prepared sauce into the pan. If you want less sauce, use about half of it and stir it well beforehand as the cornstarch may have settled. Sauté everything together for 1-2 minutes until the sauce thickens.
📌 Tips For Crispy Green Beans
- Use French petite green beans as they have a naturally crisp and tender texture.
- If using regular green beans, blanch them in hot water before stir-frying to improve their taste and texture.
- Don't add too many extra vegetables to the pan, as this can cause them to steam rather than being stir-fried, which can result in a less crispy texture.
📌 Tips For Tender Stir-Fried Chicken Breast
- Thinly slice the chicken breasts into ¼ inch thickness for faster and more even cooking.
- Toss the chicken slices with a little bit of cornstarch or potato starch to help retain the meat juices and give it a slightly crispy texture.
- Heat a large-sized wok, cast iron, or stainless steel sauté pan over medium-high heat before adding the chicken. Sear the chicken quickly for about 30 seconds to 1 minute per side until lightly browned, then remove from the pan and set aside.
- Spicy Version: Add some chili flakes or chili oil to the marinade or sauce. You can also use garlic chili sauce for an extra kick.
- Vegetable Additions: To add more veggies to the dish, try adding some Chinese broccoli or snow peas.
- Sweeter Version: If you prefer a sweeter flavor, add some hoisin sauce to the marinade or sauce. You can also try adding honey or maple syrup.
- Gluten-Free Version: To make it gluten-free, use tamari instead of soy sauce and make sure the cornstarch is also gluten-free.
- Air Fryer Version: To make it in the air fryer, coat the chicken in the marinade and air fry for 10-12 minutes at 375°F. Toss with the sautéed green beans and onions and the sauce.
🗄️ How to Store Panda Express String Bean Chicken
Let it cool down to room temperature and then transfer it to an airtight container. You can keep it in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. If you need to keep it for longer, you can store it in the freezer for up to 3 months.
To reheat Panda Express String Bean Chicken, you can use the microwave or stovetop.
- Microwave method: Transfer the leftovers to a microwave-safe dish and cover with a lid or microwave-safe wrap. Microwave on high for 1-2 minutes, or until heated through.
- Stovetop method: Place the chicken and vegetables in a non-stick skillet over medium heat. Stir frequently until heated through, which should take about 5-7 minutes. Add a splash of water or chicken broth if needed to prevent the chicken from drying out.
Frequently Asked Questions
Compared to other menu items at Panda Express, string bean chicken is a healthier option due to its lower levels of starch and sugar. Each serving of Panda Express string bean chicken, which is 5.6 ounces, contains 190 calories and 13 grams of carbohydrates. However, this calorie count does not account for any rice that may be served alongside the dish.
Panda Express String Bean Chicken is a Chinese-style stir-fry dish made with thinly sliced chicken breast, fresh green beans, and white onions, all tossed in a flavorful sauce made with garlic, ginger, soy sauce, and other seasonings.
According to the Panda Express nutrition information, one serving (5.6 oz) of their string bean chicken contains 13 grams of carbohydrates.
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