At first, it may seem strange to combine peanut butter with meat. But it’s definitely worth a try, a simple and quick dish will be the result. You can easily become addicted to this peanut butter chicken, so make a big portion at first because it will be hard to stop eating 🙂
In my opinion, chicken meat alone is not really exciting. But in return, it is very easy (and fast!) to make, and with a few ingredients you can make special dishes from it. You don’t need to cut the chicken into small pieces because it will cook perfectly in the peanut butter sauce.
For making this peanut butter chicken, you will need a few kinds of vegetables (mostly onions and tomatoes), coconut milk, seasonings and peanut butter, of course.
Peanut butter chicken needs peanut butter
In this recipe, peanut butter gets the main flavoring role. Creamy, silky, supplemented with a little extra coconut milk you will get juicy chicken bites resting in a fantastic peanut sauce. Each type of peanut butter will be good to add. Smooth or crunchy, it depends on your taste. If you want to add a little extra smokey-roast flavor to it, try my double-roasted peanut spread, you won’t regret it. I used that too, so the peanut butter chicken got a nice deep brown color and a little extra taste.
In addition to peanut butter (or peanut spread) and coconut milk, tomatoes also play a very important role in this recipe. I used two types: sun-dried tomatoes and canned cherry tomatoes. Instead of canned tomatoes, you can use fresh tomatoes of course, in the same amount, about 250-300 grams.
Here in Hungary, in March, it is difficult to buy really delicious, ripe tomatoes, that’s why I decided to use the canned version. Plus, cherry tomatoes are always a little sweeter than normal size tomatoes, so there was no question for me to use that.
Serve with black rice
As a side dish, we had black rice, first in our lives. First, but not last! In taste, there is no significant difference compared to white rice. But its consumption has a very good effect on the body, as black rice is high in fiber, protein and antioxidants. You can read more about benefits of consuming black rice here, on Healthline.
Interestingly, contrary to its name, it does not have a black color, but rather a purple color when cooked. The only downside to black rice compared to white rice is that it takes a little more time to cook. While white rice is ready in 20 minutes, black rice should be cooked for 30-35 minutes. But in return it is much less likely to become sticky, which is more common in the case of white rice.
Under the recipe, in the Bonus Tips section, you will find a few more garnish ideas for peanut butter chicken.
Peanut Butter Chicken
- 800 g skinless, boneless chicken breast (cut into chunks)
- 2 tablespoons of dark soy sauce
- 200 ml coconut milk
- 1 big onion (sliced)
- 1 spring onion (sliced)
- 1 medium bell pepper (sliced)
- 5 cloves of garlic (sliced)
- 30 g sun-dried tomatoes (about 5, chopped)
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil
- 1 can of cherry tomatoes (400 g can)
- 100 g peanut butter (or peanut spread)
- salt, pepper, ground coriander and chili flakes to taste
Prepare the chicken
- Cut the chicken breasts into larger pieces. Sprinkle with the soy sauce and half of the coconut milk. Stir well to coat the chicken breast pieces. Cover the bowl with foil and put in the fridge for an hour.
Make the peanut butter chicken
- Prepare all the vegetables listed above.
- In a huge non-stick pan heat up the olive oil and put the chicken pieces into it (save the soy sauce and coconut mixture for later). Cook them for about 5 minutes on high heat until they become golden brown.
- Reduce the heat to medium, add the onion, spring onion, garlic and sun-dried tomato pieces, stir well, cover the pan with a lid and cook for about 5 minutes until the onions become tender.
- Add the bell pepper slices and cook for another 5 minutes.
- Add the whole can of cherry tomatoes and the soy sauce and coconut milk mixture to the pan. Stir well. Gently press the tomatoes a little with the wooden spoon to release their juice. Cook without lid for about 10 minutes on medium heat.
- Turn the heat to medium low. Mix the remaining coconut milk with the peanut butter (or peanut spread) and pour into the pan. Add salt, pepper, ground coriander and chili flakes (I used half teaspoon of each). Cook the peanut butter chicken for about 20-30 minutes on medium low heat until the peanut sauce thickens a bit.
- Serve with rice or other side dish of your choice.
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Of course, you can try other side dishes with peanut butter chicken. For example, it fits very well with mashed potatoes and french fries, but you can also serve it with pasta or steamed vegetables. You just have to pay attention to one thing: peanut butter chicken has a very rich and intense flavor, so choose something simple as a side dish.
I used skinless and boneless chicken breast, it worked perfectly. However, it is really worth trying this recipe with a slightly juicier meat, such as chicken thighs. The result will be quite different, as the thighs are a little more greasy, so the sauce will also have a richer taste. Try to buy skinless and boneless thighs, because it will be more easier to work with it. It is not necessary to cut the chicken into very small pieces, as they will cook in the sauce properly.