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Healthy Chicken Stir Fry Recipe

My healthy chicken stir fry recipe includes loads of fresh veggies and a delicious savory-yet-sweet sauce!

A bowl of healthy chicken stir fry on top of a bed of rice with a spoon and chopsticks next to it.

 

Here’s an absolutely scrumptious but healthy chicken stir fry recipe for y’all!

I’ll be using fresh vegetables and vibrant, whole ingredients. And I’ll even give you gluten free and soy-free options.

Plus, this is infinitely customizable by switching out the types of vegetables that you use. That way you can select from veggies the whole family enjoys!

Okay, let’s make it!

Chicken, avocado oil, broccoli, red bell pepper, and mushrooms on a white countertop with subway tile backsplash.

Ingredients:

First, here’s everything you’ll need:

  • 1 pound of chicken – I like to use boneless skinless chicken breasts. I’m sure you could also use boneless skinless chicken thighs instead.
  • 1-2 tablespoons of avocado oil – I like avocado oil because it has a fairly neutral flavor and a high smoke point. You could use expeller pressed coconut oil if you prefer. I don’t really recommend using olive oil since it has a stronger flavor.
  • 1 red bell pepper – Obviously you can use a yellow or orange bell pepper if you like, but I love the color that the red bell pepper gives this dish.
  • 2 cups of broccoli florets
  • 4 ounces of mushrooms – you can use baby portabella, button, shiitake, or whatever kind of mushroom is your favorite.

All of the ingredients needed to make a stir-fry sauce: chicken broth, rice vinegar, maple syrup, soy sauce, toasted sesame oil, cornstarch, red pepper flakes, garlic, and ginger.

For the stir-fry sauce you’ll need:

This is definitely a savory sauce, but it does have that hint of sweetness from the maple syrup. It also has a nice balance of sour and sweet with the blend of the rice vinegar and maple syrup. 

  • ½ cup of broth – you can use chicken broth or beef broth. Make sure to select a low sodium or sodium-free broth. Either that, or select a low-sodium soy sauce. If you use a high sodium broth and soy sauce, your stir-fry sauce will be way too salty!
  • 2 tablespoons of rice vinegar – You can substitute another kind of vinegar if you must, but I really like the rice vinegar here.
  • 2 tablespoons of maple syrup – I like to use maple syrup instead of brown sugar because the maple syrup is less processed. Just this little bit of sweetness really makes this sauce sing.
  • ¼ cup soy sauce – use gluten-free soy sauce if you’re avoiding gluten. If you’re avoiding soy, you can substitute coconut aminos and reduce the maple syrup to 1 tablespoon.
  • 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil – make sure you get *toasted* sesame oil – regular sesame oil is not as flavorful.
  • 1 tablespoon of minced or grated fresh ginger: You could substitute a teaspoon of dried ginger in a pinch, but it won’t have the same depth of flavor as fresh ginger. 
  • 2 cloves of garlic – Garlic lovers, feel free to increase this amount to fit your preferences!
  • ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes – this is optional, but it adds a lovely hint of heat. Feel free to leave it out, or double it if you like things spicier.
  • 2 tablespoons of cornstarch – You can substitute 1 tablespoon of arrowroot powder for a grain-free version.

Whisking together the ingredients for the stir-fry sauce for a healthy chicken stir-fry.

How to Make a Healthy Chicken Stir Fry:

Start by whisking together all of the ingredients for the stir-fry sauce in a measuring cup or small bowl. Set aside.

Red bell pepper, mushrooms, and broccoli sliced and prepared for a stir-fry.

Cut the bell pepper into largish chunks.

Slice the mushrooms.

Cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces.

Cooking the chicken in a cast iron skillet for the stir fry.

Heat a large cast iron skillet or wok over medium heat. Add 1 tablespoon of avocado oil and allow to heat. Add the chicken and cook, flipping once or twice, until nicely golden brown and cooked all the way through.

This should take about 5-8 minutes, depending on how large your chicken pieces are. Cut into a large piece to check for doneness at the 5 minute mark.

removing the cooked chicken to a plate.

Remove to a plate and set aside. You can line the plate with paper towels if the chicken is super greasy.

Increase the flame to medium-high heat.

If needed, you can add another tablespoon of avocado oil to the pan.

Adding the mushrooms to the pan to stir fry.

Add the mushrooms and cook for a couple of minutes, stirring frequently.

Adding the broccoli florets to the skill to sauté.

Add the broccoli, and cook for 4 minutes.

Adding the red bell peppers to the stir fry.

Finally, add the bell pepper and cook for 2 minutes, or until tender crisp.

You want to add the vegetables at different intervals because they tend to cook at different rates. If you were to add the bell pepper at the beginning, it would be mushy by the time the mushrooms were done cooking.

Resist the urge to over-cook the veggies. You don’t want mushy vegetables in your stir-fry!

You’re aiming for tender-crisp. 

A large cast iron skillet filled with healthy chicken stir fry with loads of veggies.

As soon as the bell peppers have cooked for 2 minutes, add the chicken back to the pan, and pour the stir-fry sauce on top. Cook, stirring frequently, until the mixture thickens and comes to a boil.

Adding a tablespoon of grass-fed butter to a bowl of healthy chicken stir fry on top of white rice.

Serving:

Remove from heat, and serve immediately over a steaming bowl of white rice.

BTW, make sure to check out this post for why I eat white rice instead of brown rice

To enhance the flavors even more, serve with sliced green onions and toasted sesame seeds.

And the only thing left is to add a tablespoon of grass-fed butter. You’ll never go back once you try it.

Different kinds of vegetables that you can use to make a stir-fry laid out on a white counter.

Variations:

I love a good chicken and broccoli stir-fry, but there are many different kinds of vegetables that will work well in this stir-fry. For example, you could use green beans, snow peas, carrots, zucchini, onions, green peas, etc. Just pay attention to the cooking time for each vegetable, and stagger when you add them to the skillet.

For example, you could add onions and carrots to the pan and cook for 2 minutes, then add mushrooms and cook for 5 minutes, and finally add bell peppers and cook for 2 minutes.

You could also serve this over rice noodles or udon noodles instead of rice, or even use zucchini noodles or cauliflower rice for a completely grain-free meal.

I’ll bet this would be incredible with shrimp.

Have fun and try different flavor combinations! The possibilities are pretty much endless.

Cooking Time for Stir Fry Vegetables:

Here are some approximate cooking times for various stir fry veggies for you to reference:

  • Green beans: 6 minutes
  • Snow peas: 3-4 minutes
  • Carrots: 8 minutes
  • Onions: 7-8 minutes
  • Zucchini: 5 minutes
  • Mushrooms: 8 minutes
  • Bell peppers: 2-4 minutes
  • Broccoli: 6-8 minutes

An orange bowl of rice with chicken stir fry on top. Learn how to make my healthy chicken stir fry recipe with these step by step instructions!

Meal Prep:

Here are some meal prep tips to help the cooking process go faster!

  • You could wash and slice all of the vegetables beforehand. Store in the refrigerator in an airtight container for 3-5 days. Some vegetables will keep longer (such as carrots, broccoli, onions, etc.), while others will not store well once processed (such as mushrooms).
  • You could also stir together the sauce ingredients minus the garlic and ginger. Store in the refrigerator for about 5-7 days, and whisk in the garlic and ginger at the last minute.
  • You could use pre-cooked chicken, or even rotisserie chicken to cut down on cooked time even more.

 

So there you have my utterly delicious chicken stir fry recipe! Here’s a video tutorial in case you learn better that way!

More Healthy Chicken Recipes:

Easy Weeknight Dinners:

Healthy Chicken Stir Fry Recipe

A delicious and healthy chicken stir fry recipe with loads of fresh vegetables and an all natural stir fry sauce.

Course Main Course
Cuisine Chinese
Keyword Chicken
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 280 kcal
Author Erica Kastner

Ingredients

For the stir-fry sauce:

  • ½ cup low-sodium broth (you can use chicken or beef broth here, or even water in a pinch)
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup (substitute brown sugar in a pinch)
  • ¼ cup soy sauce (see note for gluten and soy free options)
  • 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil (make sure you get *toasted* sesame oil - regular sesame oil is not as flavorful)
  • 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (this is optional but it adds a lovely hint of heat. Feel free to leave it out, or double it if you like things spicier)
  • 1 tablespoons Cornstarch (see note)

For the Stir Fry:

  • 1 pound of chicken, cut into bite-sized pieces (I like to use boneless skinless chicken breasts)
  • 1-2 tablespoons of avocado oil
  • 4 ounces fresh mushrooms, sliced (you can use baby portabella button, shiitake, or whatever kind of mushroom is your favorite)
  • 2 cups fresh broccoli florets
  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into medium-large chunks

Instructions

For the Stir Fry Sauce:

  1. Start by whisking together all of the ingredients for the stir-fry sauce in a measuring cup or small bowl. Set aside.
    Whisking together the ingredients for the stir-fry sauce for a healthy chicken stir-fry.

For the Stir Fry:

  1. Heat a large cast iron skillet or wok over medium heat. Add 1 tablespoon of avocado oil and allow to heat. Add the chicken and cook, flipping once or twice, until nicely golden brown and cooked all the way through. This should take about 5-8 minutes, depending on how large your chicken pieces are. Cut into a large piece to check for doneness. Remove to a plate and set aside.
    removing the cooked chicken to a plate.
  2. Increase heat to medium-high. If needed, you can add another tablespoon of avocado oil to the pan.

  3. Add the mushrooms and cook for 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the broccoli, and cook for 4 minutes. Finally, add the bell pepper and cook for 2 minutes, or until tender crisp.
    Adding the red bell peppers to the stir fry.
  4. You want to add the vegetables at different intervals because they tend to cook at different rates. If you were to add the bell pepper at the beginning, it would be mushy by the time the mushrooms were done cooking.

  5. Resist the urge to over-cook the veggies. You don’t want mushy vegetables in your stir-fry!
  6. As soon as the bell peppers have cooked for 2 minutes, add the chicken back to the pan, and pour the stir-fry sauce on top. Cook, stirring frequently, until the mixture thickens and comes to a boil. Remove from heat, and serve immediately.

    A large cast iron skillet filled with healthy chicken stir fry with loads of veggies.
  7. To enhance the flavors even more, serve with sliced green onions and toasted sesame seeds.
    Adding a tablespoon of grass-fed butter to a bowl of healthy chicken stir fry on top of white rice.
  8. I also like to add a tablespoon of grass-fed butter. You’ll never go back once you try it.

Recipe Notes

  • Use gluten-free soy sauce if you’re avoiding gluten. If you’re avoiding soy, use coconut aminos and reduce the maple syrup to 1 tablespoon.
  • You can substitute 1 tablespoon of arrowroot powder for the cornstarch for a grain-free version.

Variations:

  • There are many different kinds of vegetables that will work well in this stir-fry. For example, you could use green beans, snow peas, carrots, zucchini, onions, green peas, etc. Just pay attention to the cooking time for each vegetable, and stagger when you add them to the skillet.
  • You could also serve this over noodles instead of rice, or even use zucchini noodles or cauliflower rice for a completely grain-free meal.
  • I’ll bet this would be incredible with shrimp.
  • Have fun and try different flavor combinations! The possibilities are pretty much endless.
Recipe Rating




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