There are very few recipes in the world that need just a few simple ingredients and a little kitchen time to come out looking insanely delicious, and this Thai basil chicken recipe aka Pad Kraprow Gai is one of them.
Pad Kraprow Gai
With simple ingredients you likely already have on hand, this recipe comes together in minutes. You'll love the balance of salty and sweet with just enough heat from the chilies to warm the dish. It's ideal for serving with rice but could also be served alone, over cauliflower rice, or with your favorite vegetable side dishes.
If you like the idea of more stir fry in your menu, make sure you also check out this aloo gobi which is an Indian potato and cauliflower similar to a stir fry.
Give this easy recipe a try once and you’ll find yourself wondering why you’ve been ordering takeout all this while.
Variations of Thai Basil Chicken Stir Fry
The beauty of this stir fry is that you can tweak it around a lot, and play with the flavors and additions depending on what you have at hand, and it’ll still come out just as delicious. This recipe uses shallots to get a nice element of crunch into the recipe, and a delicious fresh flavor. You can also add in some more veggies of your choice to make it a healthier meal. Here are some good ideas.
- Bell peppers
- Green beans
- Baby corn
- Broccoli florets
- Bok choy
- Red onions
Ingredients For the Thai Basil Chicken
If you’ve been experimenting with Thai and Asian cooking, you’re probably going to have all these ingredients in your pantry, ready to go!
- ⅓ cup chicken broth
- 1 tablespoon oyster sauce
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons fish sauce
- 1 teaspoon brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 2 chicken thighs
- ¼ cup shallots
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1 tablespoon Thai chili
- 1 cup fresh basil
Kitchen Tools Needed
How to Make the Thai Basil Chicken
In a small bowl, whisk together the chicken broth, oyster sauce, soy sauce, fish sauce, and brown sugar, then set it aside.
In a wok or large pan, heat the vegetable oil over medium heat. Add the chicken pieces and cook, stirring regularly, for 2 to 3 minutes.
Add in the shallots, chiles, and garlic, stir and continue cooking for 1 minute.
Next, add ½ of the sauce mixture and stir to combine. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes until it begins to caramelize.
Add the rest of the sauce, and continue cooking for 4 to 5 minutes until the chicken is cooked through.
Reduce the heat to low and add in the basil and stir. Continue cooking for 1 to 2 minutes, until the basil has wilted.
Serve with rice.
Frequently Asked Questions
For this recipe, it is best to use the Holy Thai basil. It has a nice, intense flavor with a bit of a spicy kick to it, and is great for all your Thai culinary creations. If you can’t get your hands on it, you can use the Italian basil, no doubt.
The reason this recipe calls for chicken thighs is that it is the softest, most tender cut of meat. This also makes it incredibly quick to cook, and you’ll also get a lot of flavor into your recipe.
However, if you’ve got chicken breasts, you could use them too instead of the thighs. Just make sure you cut them into those perfect little strips or cubes, and cook them well.
This dish is super easy to make and store. If you’ve got leftovers, just transfer them to an airtight container and put them in the refrigerator. These can stay good in there for 3-5 days. Then, all you need to do is get it out, microwave it or reheat it in a pan, and serve!
Yes, you totally can! This easy freezer-friendly meal can be your savior for those days when you don’t feel like cooking a lot. Just make sure you’re using a freezer-safe container to store it so that it doesn’t end up having the freezer burn.
Tips & Tricks to Make the Thai Basil Chicken
Ready to give this Thai basil chicken a shot? Keep these little tips and tricks in mind to really take the recipe up a notch.
- If you don’t have the Thai bird chilies that this recipe calls for, you can substitute them with another kind of chili. Of course, getting the real thing is definitely a good idea, but if you don’t want to go for a grocery run, some hot chilies can make for a good swap.
- Honey can act as a great substitute for brown sugar in this recipe. It can lend the dish that subtle touch of sweetness that you’re looking to get.
- Make sure you use the same skillet or pan to cook all the ingredients. This will help keep all the flavors intact.
- Got some ground chicken? You can use that too instead of the cubed chicken, and the flavors will be just as delicious.
- You can also try this stir fry in a seafood version. Use medium-sized deveined prawns and reduce the cooking time by a minute or two!
Serving Ideas & Suggestions
Traditionally, this Thai basil chicken tastes best when served on a bed of Jasmine rice, but if you really want to go all out and team it up with some more Thai foods and sides, here are a few good ideas.
- Serving the chicken with the no-fail combination of Jasmine rice, but still, want something on the side? Whip up a quick coleslaw with some Asian flavors and a light dressing.
- If you don’t have the time to put the coleslaw together, you can also just serve it with a simple side salad of sliced cucumbers and red onions or try some tangy Japanese cucumber salad.
- You can also try whipping up a Thai green papaya salad if you’re trying to keep it authentic.
- Want to try out an entire Thai spread for the weekend? Team this chicken stir fry up with some Thai fried rice, Thai drunken noodles, and some nice iced tea to wash it all down.
- To make this dish even more filling, top it with a fried egg.
Easy Thai Basil Chicken Stir Fry | Pad Kraprow Gai
- ⅓ cup Chicken broth
- 1 tsp Oyster sauce
- 2 tsp Soy sauce
- 2 tsp Fish sauce
- 1 tsp Brown sugar
- 2 tsp vegetable oil
- 2 Chicken thighs cubed
- ¼ cup Shallots sliced
- 1 tsp Minced garlic
- 1 tsp Minced Thai chiles
- 1 cup Basil leaves shredded
- In a small bowl, whisk together the chicken broth, oyster sauce, soy sauce, fish sauce, and brown sugar, then set it aside.
- In a wok or large pan, heat the vegetable oil over medium heat. Add the chicken pieces and cook, stirring regularly, for 2 to 3 minutes.
- Add in the shallots, chiles, and garlic, stir and continue cooking for 1 minute.
- Next, add ½ of the sauce mixture and stir to combine. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes until it begins to caramelize.
- Add the rest of the sauce, and continue cooking for 4 to 5 minutes until the chicken is cooked through.
- Reduce the heat to low and add in the basil and stir. Continue cooking for 1 to 2 minutes, until the basil has wilted. Serve with rice.