Bright and colourful, this Sweet and Sour Chicken Stir Fry is super fast to make! The sweet and sour sauce is truly like what you get at good Chinese restaurants, but not tooth-achingly sweet. This is not a deep fried version of Sweet and Sour Chicken, it’s a much healthier stir fry.
Make this using whatever veggies you have, switch up the chicken with prawns/shrimp, pork, beef or even fish. This is a winner!
I know my local supermarkets pretty well. I know exactly where to go for most items (except cling wrap, which, for some reason, I always forget which aisle it’s in and Woolies people tell me it’s the single most asked question) and I know the aisles pretty well.
At least, I thought I did. It dawned on me the other day that there is one whole section of the supermarket that I don’t know at all – the prepared meal base aisle. You know the section of the supermarket that sells things like Honey Mustard Sauce in jars and vacuum seal packs?
I am honestly not trying to sound snobby because I don’t judge. She who does the drive through of shame through KFC and Maccers on the odd occasion cannot judge. 😉
Anyway, I actually stopped to take a look the other day and was quite astonished at the range of meal bases that are on offer. Everything from Chow Mein, to Chicken Cacciatore, Goulash, Chilli Con Carne – all the favorites. Including Sweet and Sour Sauce.
I have no idea what the jar stuff tastes like, but I’m pretty sure it won’t be as nice as homemade. And it’s so darn fast to mix together!
PS It looks watery but once simmered, it thickens. 🙂 See? Look how nicely it coats the stir fry?
Oooh – quick little tip for you for chopping capsicum / bell peppers. Doesn’t it annoy you when the seeds inside fly around all over the place?
Well, maybe it doesn’t annoy you, but it annoys me! So this is how I chop capsicum. Fast and mess free!
Now, when it comes to stir fries, I am very generous with my sauce. Because the 7 year old inside this 30 something year old body still thinks that the best part of stir fries is scooping up the rice soaked in the delish sweet and sour sauce.
So as with all my stir fries, there is plenty of sauce. Plenty!! – Nagi x
- 1/2 cup white sugar (Note 1)
- 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
- 3 tbsp pineapple juice (from the canned pineapple pieces)
- 3 tbsp ketchup (Australia: tomato sauce)
- 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce (Note 2)
- 1 tsp soy sauce , light or all purpose (Note 2)
- 1 tsp Oyster Sauce (Note 2)
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 tbsp cornflour / corn starch + 2 tbsp water , mixed together
- 1 1/2 tbsp peanut oil (or vegetable)
- 1 garlic clove , minced or finely chopped
- 1 onion , halved and sliced (brown, yellow or white) (see photo in post)
- 400 g / 13 oz chicken thigh fillets , cut into bite size pieces (Note 3)
- 1 red capsicum / bell pepper , cut into bite size pieces
- 1 green or yellow capsicum / bell pepper , cut into bite size pieces
- 1 can (8oz/250g) canned pineapple pieces in natural juice. Separate pineapple from juice.
- Sliced shallots / scallions , for garnish
Mix together Sauce ingredients. Mix together Thickener in a separate small bowl.
Heat oil in a wok or skillet over high heat. Add garlic and onion, cook for 1 minute.
Add chicken and stir fry until it it is white all over but still pink inside.
Add capsicum and stir fry for 2 minutes.
Add Sauce ingredients. Stir until sugar has dissolved and the sauce begins to bubble.
Add Thickener. Bring to simmer, stirring constantly. Then cook until it thickens to a syrup consistency - about 3 minutes.
Stir through pineapple pieces (just to warm) and remove from stove.
Serve with rice, garnished with shallots if desired.
1. I know 1/2 cup of sugar sounds like a lot, but it works out at 1 1/2 tbsp per serving, which isn't too bad!
I use 1/4 cup when I'm trying to be healthy. 🙂 It's still quite sweet, but not restaurant sweet. Using 1/2 cup makes it closer to restaurant sweet, but definitely not tooth-achingly sweet. I use less sugar than many recipes you'll find on the internet - some use 1 cup of sugar!!
2. These 3 ingredients are what makes this sauce more like the Sweet & Sour sauce that is served at Chinese restaurants. They are my "secret ingredients"! You can omit one (substitute with more of one of the others) and it will still taste similar. But please don't leave out all 3! The sauce will taste quite flat and bland.
3. If you are using chicken breast which is leaner, I would recommend tenderising it. Combine 1 tsp baking soda and chicken in a small bowl. Set aside for 20 minutes. Rinse thoroughly, then pat dry with paper towels.
4. Nutrition per serving, stir fry only. If the sugar is reduced to 1/4 cup, then it reduces to 351 calories per serving.
LIFE OF DOZER
I can’t help but think that if he was just 10 cm / 4 inches shorter, he wouldn’t be able to see what’s on the table and he wouldn’t suffer so much……