Spicy Thai Basil Chicken

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Thai Chicken.  Spicy Thai Chicken.  With fresh basil.  A classic Thai-style dish, and probably would take you less time  to make this dish than to blow dry your hair. 

Unless you are one of those lucky ones that takes less than 5 minutes to blow dry and pull a straightener through- and your done.

I hate you people.  Well, hate is a harsh word- but I can’t help but hold a slight taste of bitterness towards you.   

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40 minutes for me.  Not only do I have A LOT of hair- it is wavy/curly/frizzy when air-dried- which takes approx 3 days to fully dry- and then its time to wash it again. 

A mad cycle of annoyance- so I take the 40 minutes of torture to make it look good.

To be clear- this recipe takes less time for ME to cook than to blow dry MY hair- less than 20 minutes.

I’ll take it. 

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The sauce is slightly spicy, and a tad salty with the addition of the fish sauce.  The sugar cuts both of these nicely- so you have a well flavored dish in your future. 

If you can’t find fish sauce- replace it with more soy sauce, peanut sauce, or even hoisin.  Any of those would be a great addition. 

BUT- you must not forget the spice in this dish- the chile garlic paste is a favorite of mine, I always have some in the fridge. 

You can also substitute Siracha, jalapeno, or Thai bird chiles.  Up to you- but if you leave any of those out all together you can’t call it spicy anymore..

How about Mellow Basil Chicken

Ehhh.. not the same. 


Spicy Thai Basil Chicken

Yield: 4 servings

Serving Size: 3/4 cup each (chicken only)

Spicy Thai Basil Chicken

Adapted from Cooking Light


  • 2 teaspoons canola oil
  • 1/2 cup minced shallots
  • 3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 6 (4-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 2 teaspoons lower-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons chile paste with garlic
  • 1 teaspoon water
  • 1/2 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup sliced basil leaves
  • Cooked brown rice


Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add shallots and garlic to pan; cook for 30 seconds or until fragrant. Add chicken to pan; cook 13 minutes or until chicken is done. Combine fish sauce and the next 6 ingredients (through salt) in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk. Add fish sauce mixture to pan, and cook for 1 minute or until mixture thickens, stirring to coat chicken. Remove from heat. Stir in basil.

Nutritional Information:

Calories: 236; Fat: 6 g; Carbohydrate: 5.6 g; Fiber: 0.1 g; Protein: 40 g; Sodium: 393 mg



  1. Looks so awesome–better than any take out!

  2. Anything spicy I’m on it. This one looks very tasty and would love to try this tonight.

  3. this looks FABULOUS! right up our alley!

  4. Made this tonight it was great! Only change I made was a doubled the sauce.

  5. This is just as simple and tasty as it looks- I had been looking online for a Thai style spicy basil recipe.
    Mine went vegetarian with seitan and a bunch of veggies thrown in at the end and had it as lettuce wraps-
    Thanks for the great recipe

  6. Cassandra says:

    I live in Canada and I don’t think I’ve ever seen chili paste…what section of the grocery store would it be in?

    • Cassandra – I just returned from the store with this recipe and had the same question. Chile paste is in the Asian section, most likely right next to the Sriracha sauces.

  7. I made this recipe last night for dinner. Followed it as is except doubled the sauce because my husband likes extra sauce. We absolutely loved it and he just asked me to make it for dinner again tonight. I am going to leave out the 1/8th tsp salt because even using low sodium soy salt, I thought it was just a tad salty (maybe the fish salt?) It is incredibly easy to make so that’s what I’m gonna do. Thanks for the great recipe!

  8. I made this tonight for my mom and myself for dinner and we loved it! I did modify the recipe a bit though. I only used two chicken breasts and made a cup of rice for the two of us which was just the right amount. I also cut the sugar from the sauce and used the sauce as marinade for the chicken. (I then made another batch of the sauce and used it as the recipe said) in addition I added half a bag of bird eyes snap pea mix with carrots and mushrooms to add more vegetation. (: Overall we loved the recipe and the mixed veggies really added to the dish.

  9. hi


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