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Salt and Pepper Chicken

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Mild or super spicy, salt and pepper chicken just plain gets it!

When I make salt and pepper chicken for my wife and me, we like it super spicy!

The kids aren’t so keen on the spicy dishes so when they are around, it’s got to be mild. Either way, this salt and pepper chicken is delicious and can be made to taste.

Salt and pepper chicken

Do you like your spicy or mild? When you make salt and pepper chicken, you can decide the heat.

About this salt and pepper chicken recipe…

This recipe comes from a Chinese restaurant from my home town of Turlock, California.

It’s no longer in business but at the time it was they place to go for Chinese food in the town. For that matter, it was the only place to go out for Chinese food. You see, my home town was a bit boring when it came to food and pretty much everything else.

Still, this salt and pepper chicken recipe was my favourite and as I was a friend of the owner’s son, I got the recipe!

The restaurant might now be long gone but it’s delicious food lives on!

Make this recipe your own…

As I mentioned above, you should adjust the flavours to taste.

There aren’t a lot of ingredients but the ingredients that go into the stir fry be a bit spicy. I love a good and spicy salt and pepper chicken and usually use more chillies than called for in this recipe.

You could do the same or reduce the amount used to your own preferences. 



Step by step…

Ingredients for salt and pepper chicken

It’s always a good idea to get your ingredients prepared before you start cooking.

Dusting chicken with flour mixture

Marinate the chicken in the marinade ingredients for 30 minutes or overnight. The longer the better. Then dust with the flour mixture.

checking oil temperature

Heat the oil to 175c/350f. If you don’t have a thermometer, just stick some wooden skewers or chopstick in. If it bubbles, your oil is ready.

Frying chicken

Fry in batches! If you add too much chicken, your oil will cook down and you will be left with soggy chicken instead of crispy.

Fried chicken on paper towels

Place the fried chicken on paper towels to soak up any excess oil. Set aside.

Frying garlic and chillies.

Heat the oil in your wok over medium high heat. When hot, add the chillies and garlic and fry for about 30 seconds.

Adding the remaining veggies to the wok

Stir in the sliced onion, bell peppers and spring onions (scallions).

Adding chicken to wok

Now add the fried chicken and dried chillies and stir and toss until the chicken is heated through.

Salt and pepper chicken cooking in wok

Once good and hot, your salt and pepper chicken is ready to serve.

Salt and pepper chicken

So good and so very easy to whip up in minutes.

Finished salt and pepper chicken

Dig in!

If you like this salt and pepper chicken recipe, you might enjoy these too…

Korean fried chicken
Sesame Chicken
Korean Beef Bulgogi
Wild Duck Pho
Chicken Rendang
Beef Rendang

Yield: 4

Salt and Pepper Chicken

Salt and pepper chicken
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes


  • 500g (1 ¼ lb) skinless chicken thighs or breasts, cut into 2.5cm (1 inch) pieces
  • Oil for deep frying
  • 2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 2 red chillies, thinly sliced
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 green bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 4 spring onions (scallions), thinly sliced
  • 4 dried red chillies, cut into thirds and seeds removed
  • 1 large egg white
  • 1 tbsp Chinese rice wine or dry sherry
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp cornflour (corn starch)
  • 130g (1 cup) cornflour (corn starch)
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • ½ tsp Chinese five spice
  • ½ tsp Chinese chicken powder (OPTIONAL) see note below


  1. In a large mixing bowl, whisk all of the marinade ingredients together until thick and smooth. Add the chicken and mix well with to coat. Allow to marinate while you prepare the rest of the ingredients or overnight. The longer the chicken marinates, the better.
  2. Mix all of the dry ingredients together on a large plate and set aside until you are ready to fry the chicken.
  3. To fry the chicken, fill your wok about a third full with oil and bring to 175c/350f over medium high heat Dredge the marinated chicken in the flour mixture and be sure to shake off any excess flour. Fry the chicken pieces in batches for about 3 to 4 minutes or until light and crispy on the exterior.
  4. Transfer to paper towels to soak up any excess oil and continue until all the chicken is cooked. Discard or sieve the oil into a container to use again and wipe your wok dry. Heat a wok over high heat. You can start cooking when a bead of water dissolves on contact with the hot wok.
  5. Heat about 2 tbsp rapeseed (canola) or peanut oil in the wok and add the slivered garlic and chillies. Stir into the oil to coat and then add the sliced onion and spring onions (scallions). Stir to combine.
  6. Now add the fried chicken and sliced bell peppers and continue cooking until the chicken is heated through and the bell peppers are cooked but still have a bit of crunch to them.
  7. Serve immediately with white rice.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 332Total Fat: 22gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 17gCholesterol: 88mgSodium: 1946mgCarbohydrates: 22gFiber: 3gSugar: 10gProtein: 14g

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I hope you enjoy this salt and pepper chicken recipe. If you do try it, please leave a comment. I’d love to hear from you.
Chinese salt and pepper chicken



Saturday 29th of April 2023

We love you Dan you save our dinners every Friday and Saturday. Me and my hubby count the days down until we can have a drink and do a random recipe of yours. I think we've done all of them but this salt and pepper chicken suits all my family. Korean chicken is also amazing..!

Dan Toombs

Thursday 4th of May 2023

Thanks so much for letting me know. Cheers to you both! Dan


Monday 20th of December 2021

Tried this tonight and definitely an instant family favourite. Ive tried different salt and pepper previously, but this is now my go to.

Well done and I'll be counting down the months until the book comes out ๐Ÿ‘

Dan Toombs

Thursday 23rd of December 2021

Thanks very much, I am really glad you enjoyed the recipe. Dan

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