This Spicy Thai Basil Chicken is a quick and easy and super tasty weeknight stir-fry! Diced chicken breasts are tossed in a spicy, savory, and sweet sauce and served with warm steamed white rice and a yolky Thai style fried egg! Feel free to make it as spicy or mild as you like, vegetarian with tofu instead, and/or gluten-free if needed.
A generous pinch of Crushed Red Chili Pepper flakes, to taste
A generous pinch of Black Pepper, to taste
3 TBLS Water
5 TBLS Peanut Oil (or any other oil with a high burning point)
1 TSP Chili Oil (optional)
3 Eggs* (see notes)
1 bunch (a little over 1 cup) Thai Sweet Basil Leaves
2–3Thai Dried Red Chilies (optional), to taste – cut into halves and thirds depending on size (feel free to omit this if you’re not big on heat)
¼ cup + 2-3 TBLS Water (as needed)
Fresh Ingredients: Mince the garlic, shallots (or red onion if using), and red and green chilies. Dice the chicken into bite sized pieces and set aside.
Chicken Marinade: Mix together corn starch, 3 TSP low sodium light soy sauce, Shao Xing rice wine, and a dash of sesame oil in a large bowl. Add the diced chicken and mix to coat well with the marinade, then set aside.
Sauce Bowl: In a medium bowl, combine the remainder 4 TSP low sodium light soy sauce, sweet dark soy sauce, brown sugar, Sriracha sauce, oyster sauce, fish sauce, and gochujang. Mix thoroughly to combine and set aside.
Fresh Chili Paste (skip this step if finely mincing the chilies instead): Add about ½ a TSP of peanut oil to a mini blender jug and swirl it around to coat the sides and bottom. Add the red and green chili pieces and cover with the lid. Pulse until the chilies have formed into a coarse chili paste. Transfer to a bowl and set aside. (Note: Alternatively, smash the chili pieces in a mortar and pestle to form a coarse chili paste or finely mince them instead. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.)
Deep Fried Eggs: Heat 4 TBLS of peanut oil in a wok over high heat. Once hot and starting to smoke a little, turn down the heat to medium and crack an egg into the wok. Move quickly now and use a spatula to “spoon oil” on top of the egg repeatedly to help it cook. Once the white part is cooked but the yolk is still runny on the inside, turn off the heat and carefully transfer the egg to a paper towel lined plate to drain off any excess oil. Repeat for the remainder eggs. (Note: If you have health concerns about eating a semi raw egg, feel free to continue frying the egg until the yolk has fully set and the egg is cooked to your desired doneness.)
Prep For the Marinated Chicken: Turn on stove again and add a dash of sesame oil to the peanut oil already in the wok. Lift and rotate the wok in a circular motion so that the oil spreads around the perimeter, then place it back on the stove to let the oil heat up. Once hot, add the chicken and spread evenly in the wok. Let the chicken cook and brown for about 1 minute before starting to toss and flip the pieces. Once they are about three fourths of the way cooked, transfer the chicken pieces to a fine mesh strainer and hold above the wok to let the oil drain. (You can gently shake the strainer to speed up the draining process, but be careful not to shake too violently as it can cause some of the cornstarch to come off and make the chicken a bit mushy.) Transfer the chicken into another clean large bowl and set aside. Discard the oil and wipe out the wok with a paper towel. Set back the wok on the stove.
For the Spicy Thai Basil Chicken:
Turn on the stove and set to medium-high heat. Heat the remaining 1 TBLS of peanut oil, 1 TSP chili oil (if using), and 1 TSP of sesame oil in the wok.
Once the oil is hot, add the shallots and garlic. Sauté until fragrant – about 1 minute.
Add the Thai dried red chilies and stir-fry to combine.
Add the almost fully cooked diced chicken pieces and spoon the fresh red chili paste on top. Stir-fry and toss to coat the chicken with the paste.
Pour the contents of the “sauce bowl” over the chicken, and stir-fry to combine everything in the wok with the sauce.
Pour in ¼ cup water and stir to combine. Allow to simmer for 30 seconds to a minute. The sauce should start to thicken.
Add the crushed red chili pepper flakes and black pepper to taste (if using), and stir-fry to combine for 1-2 minutes.
At this point if it becomes too dry, stir in 2-3 tablespoons of water as needed.
Add the Thai sweet basil leaves and stir until wilted and the sauce has thickened again – about 1 minute. Then turn off the heat and transfer to a dish.
To Serve: Serve over steamed white rice, brown rice, or quinoa, and top each plate with a Thai Fried Egg and enjoy!
Feel free to adjust the quantity or leave out the fresh red and green chilies, Thai dried red chilies, and crushed red chili pepper flakes if you want to make this dish less spicy.
I recommend using 1 egg per serving, but it’s totally up to you how many you want to cook and have. In my house, EVERYONE wants their own Thai Fried Egg…and how could they not! 😉