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Thai Cashew Chicken

Cook Time:
10 mins
Prep Time:
15 mins

Chef notes

Cashews are grown in southern Thailand and are a huge staple in our diet. This recipe is very different from its Chinese cousin because of its spice and delicious stickiness from chile paste in soybean oil and black soy sauce.


  • 2 cups high-temperature cooking oil, for frying
  • 1/2 cup raw cashews
  • 6-8 dried Thai chiles
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 12 ounces chicken breast or boneless thigh, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 pinch ground white pepper
  • 1/2 onion, halved then sliced with the grain
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, cut into thick matchsticks
  • 1/2 green bell pepper, cut into thick matchsticks
  • 2 tablespoons chile paste in soybean oil
  • 2 tablespoons oyster sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Thai black soy sauce
  • cooked jasmine rice, for serving



Bring the cooking oil in a medium pan to 350 F.


Carefully drop the cashews and chiles into the oil and fry for about 1 to 2 minutes, until fragrant. The chiles will turn bright red and the cashews should be golden-brown. Drain them well and set aside. Discard all but about 2 tablespoons of oil from the pan.


To the same pan, stir in the garlic and cook until light brown and fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in the chicken and stir-fry for about 1 minute, until the outside is seared, and it is cooked to about medium, but not fully cooked yet. Stir the onions and bell peppers into the pan and cook until light brown and soft, about 1 to 2 minutes. Add the chiles and cashews and stir fry for about 1 more minute until all ingredients are combined and hot.


Pour in the chile paste in soybean oil, oyster sauce and black soy sauce and stir-fry everything together until all of the flavors combine and the sauce reduces to a glaze, about 1 minute. Taste and adjust any of the seasonings if you'd like, then serve over a bed of hot rice.