Chicken with Cashews

Chicken with Cashews Recipe

This chicken recipe has been an outstanding favorite at our family’s landmark Cambridge restaurant for as long as I can remember. There, the cashews are deep-fried, but at home I prefer to toast the nuts instead. This reduces the amount of oil without altering the flavor.–Helen Chen

Chicken with Cashews Recipe

  • Quick Glance
  • 30 M
  • 30 M
  • Serves 3 to 4


  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 2 teaspoons Chinese rice wine or dry sherry
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated peeled ginger
  • 1 pound skinless boneless chicken breast, cut into 3/4-inch cubes
  • 2 tablespoons dark soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 4 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed with the side of a knife and peeled
  • 1 cup whole raw cashews, toasted at 350°F (175°C) oven until fragrant and golden
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil


  • 1. In a medium bowl, whisk together the cornstarch, wine, and ginger. Add the chicken and mix well.
  • 2. In a small bowl, whisk together the soy sauce, hoisin sauce, sugar, and 2 tablespoons water.
  • 3. In a wok or stir-fry pan, heat the canola oil over high heat. Add the garlic and stir until the oil is hot and the garlic sizzles. Stir up the chicken mixture and add it to the pan. Cook, stirring, until the chicken turns white, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove and discard the garlic, if desired.
  • 4. Reduce the heat to medium and add the soy sauce mixture. Stir until the ingredients are well blended. Add the cashew nuts and stir for another 30 seconds. Drizzle with sesame oil and mix well. Serve immediately.
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Recipe Testers Reviews

Tamiko Lagerwaard

Jul 08, 2009

This is a quick, easy, authentic and delicious dish. It was a perfect blend of salty from the soy and sweet from the hoisin, and the cashews added a perfect textural contrast to the chicken. There was the ideal ratio of sauce as well, which we spooned over brown jasmine rice. We loved this dish all around and were so pleased to have made restaurant-quality Chinese at home with so little effort and preparation. A definite staple for weeknight meals and the abatement of any Chinese-food cravings.


  1. Made this last night for dinner. I used boneless thighs, and it was very good. Perhaps next time I may use a bit less oil. You probably could omit the cashews and add some vegetables, as another option.

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