A grown-up version of my childhood favorite chicken noodles
There are some things we loved eating when we were kids, and they still us back when we eat them now. Chow Mein is something that was a regular in our home. I love it, and I make it often, but we did grow up, after all, so shouldn’t the food we loved as a child grow up too? That’s what these Spicy Chicken Noodles are, grown up Chow Mein. The sambal oelek adds the perfect kick to this classic that will satisfy your inner child and your adult self. This recipe is also as easy as it gets, so it’s a win win situation!
Using pantry ingredients to your advantage in these spicy chicken noodles
I love using easy to find ingredients in my recipes. I’ve lived on three different continents, and finding ingredients ins’t as easy in remote cities wedged between valleys as it is in Chicago. That is why the ingredients I use in these spicy chicken noodles are easy to find, common ingredients. I always have soy sauce, vinegar and sambal oelek in my pantry, and I’m sure you do too. Fresh vegetables are where this recipe gets its relief from the spice, and cabbage, carrots and broccoli are as common as they get. I’ve made this with just cabbage and carrots, or the whole gang. The noodles turn out great every time, and you can use what you have! Please read the recipe notes below for variations and tips.
This requires a little technique but it’s worth it
Just a couple of steps and you’ll see how amazing the end results are! It’s very important to take your time and let the liquid evaporate from the chicken when you are sautéing it. This will help create a crispy crust while keeping the chicken tender from the inside. And that crust is what the spicy sauce clings to, creating a burst of flavor in every bite of these spicy chicken noodles. Another important step is to keep the vegetables crunchy. They keep their texture and their fresh flavor, which is something you need to cut through the spice.
Spicy Chicken Noodles
For the Chicken
- 1 pound boneless chicken cut into thin strips
- 1 tbsp vingear
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp sugar
- 1/4 tsp white pepper
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
For the Sauce
- 2-3 tbsp sambal oelek or 2 tbsp sriracha
- 2 tbsp soy sauce low sodium
- 2 tbsp oyster sauce
- 1 tsp sesame oil
- 2 tbsp ketchup
For the Noodles
- 2 tbsp oil flavorless
- 1 tbsp ginger, crushed
- 2 cups shredded cabbage
- ½-1 cup broccoli florets
- ½ cup carrots julienned
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- salt to taste
- 3/4 pound spaghetti prepared al dente
- Marinate the chicken for at least five minutes. In a wok heat the oil and add the ginger. Sauté for a minute, then add the chicken. Sauté on a medium high flame until the chicken is cooked through and the water has evaporated. This may take up to ten minutes. Once the water has mostly evaporated spread the chicken out in an even layer and let it sear for a minute or so on both sides so the chicken gets a nice golden crust.
- Then add the vegetables and sauté for a couple minutes. You want them to sear a bit but not cook through and get soggy.
- Add the prepared noodles and the sauce. Sauté for a few minutes, and then taste for salt and black pepper. Adjust the seasoning and serve immediately. Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight container.