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This delicious Chicken Chow Mein recipe is super quick and easy – a dream of a family friendly one pot stir fry. Rustle it up in about 20 minutes and you’ve got a nutritious fakeaway noodle dinner with those scrumptious Chinese-inspired flavours.

A big pan filled with chicken chow mein, ready to serve.

Welcome to another favourite takeaway one pot dinner, made at home – Chinese Style Chicken Chow Mein.

Technically we need a couple of extra bowls in the mix when preparing this easy Chicken Chow Mein recipe (one for mixing the sauce and one for soaking the noodles), but it’s still definitely a one pot meal as it all gets cooked in just one pan.

It’s also unbelievably easy to make and delicious.


Why you’ll love this Chicken Chow Mein recipe

⭐️ Better than a takeaway – healthier, cheaper, quicker

⭐️ Super speedy and simple store cupboard ingredients

⭐️ A one pot midweek saviour!


A close up of cooked noodles, chicken and vegetables in a dark, sticky Chinese-style sauce for a simple Chicken Chow Mein recipe.

About Chicken Chow Mein

The origins of a traditional centuries-old Chow Mein dish come from China, where it was a ‘chaomian’.

It’s a dish that includes stir fried noodles, vegetables and usually meat, with chicken being the most common.

The dish travelled across to America with Chinese settlers, where it became the dish we know well today (‘chow’ meaning stir-fried and ‘mein’ meaning noodles), although food historians have noted that the flavours and style of the dish does vary around the United States these days. 

This version of the recipe is very simplified, but if you fancy trying out a more authentic Cantonese Chow Mein, take a look at this recipe from the blog Made with Lau.

How we came up with this version:

In the first version of this recipe we tried prepped all of the veggies from scratch, but after the next test with the shop-bought prepped ingredients (we used the one from Aldi), we weren’t looking back. 

It does have sweetcorn kernels in it, which wouldn’t be my first choice for the recipe, but for us it was worth it for the time saved on lots of chopping.

Of course, if you’d prefer to prepare your own veg for this recipe, go ahead (see instructions below).

We also tested with less soy and oyster sauce, as this sauce can be quite salty, BUT in the end we opted for more as it gives that classic takeaway colour and tang.

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Chicken Chow Mein Ingredients

The ingredients for an easy chicken chow mien recipe all laid out on the counter.

For the sauce:

  • Cornflour
  • Soft dark brown sugar
  • Garlic – this can be fresh or from a jar
  • Dark soy sauce
  • Oyster sauce
  • Chicken stock

‌For the stir fry:

  • Sunflower oil
  • Chicken breast
  • Chinese 5 spice
  • Stir fry veg bag – Or separately prepared veg (see below)
  • Dry noodles

How to make Chicken Chow Mein

Step 1 in the recipe method for Chicken Chow Mein.

1. Mix the sauce ingredients together in a bowl and set aside. Place the noodles in a bowl with boiling water to soak.

Step 2 in the recipe method for Chicken Chow Mein.

2. Fry the chicken in hot oil and 5 spice as per the recipe below.

Step 3 in the recipe method for Chicken Chow Mein.

3. Add in the vegetables until softened.

Step 4 in the recipe method for Chicken Chow Mein.

4. Stir in the sauce and coat the ingredients before adding your noodles in.


Substitutions

  • Vegetarian: You can replace the chicken with a protein alternative if you want to make it a veggie dish. Also swap the stock to vegetable.
  • Stir fry veg: You can choose a bag of whatever you’d prefer in it. Some supermarkets offer a choice. Anything that stir fries in about 5-10 minutes is ideal.

Leftovers

In the fridge You can keep this recipe in the fridge for 3 days. Reheat fully by before serving. It may need an extra splash of water to loosen the sauce up first.

In the freezer This is at its best when eaten fresh, but if you do want to freeze it, you can. Just wait until it’s totally cold and then put into a freezer proof container and freeze for up to 3 months. Defrost thoroughly before reheating.

Top tip

Prepping your own vegetables

If you can’t get a bag of stir fry veg, replace it with:

  • 1 medium carrot, sliced into batons
  • 1 red pepper, sliced
  • 1 green pepper, sliced
  • 1/2 cabbage, shredded
  • 150g bean sprouts

FAQs

Can I make this gluten free?

Yes, you can. Make sure you use gluten free noodles, a tamari-style of gluten free soy sauce and gluten free oyster sauce.

Is this sauce salty?

Yes! This is the nature of this type of soy sauce-based dishes. You can, of course, use reduced sodium sauce.

What is the Chow Mein sauce made up of?

For this recipe, it’s a simple concoction of soft dark brown sugar, garlic, dark soy sauce, oyster sauce and stock, all thickened with cornflour.

These are all ingredients I always have in, so it’s an easy and inexpensive meal if you’re the same.

What kind of noodles should I use?

I use the dried egg noodles that take just a few minutes to soften in boiling water before adding them into the pan to mix with everything else.

You can also use straight to wok noodles if you prefer.

Is there a good pan you could recommend for this recipe?

You could either use a wok if you have one that’s big enough, or any kind of decent saute pan.

I recently tasked myself with trying out a variety of one-pan pans in a quest to find out which ones were up to the important job of making an all-in-one meal. Read my pan review here. I hope it helps!

Do you have any other noodle-based dishes to try?

Yes! Try out my Sticky Beef Noodles, Slow Cooker Chicken Noodles with Curry Sauce, my Honey Garlic Beef Noodles (also a slow cooker recipe), my Peanut Butter with Halloumi Noodles or my 15-minute Gyoza Noodle Soup.

Let me know how you got on and what you thought of these recipes. Please rate the recipe using the ⭐️ below.

Also I’d LOVE to see your cooking creations. If you’d like to share yours with me, you can tag me on Instagram (@tamingtwins).

5 from 34 votes

Easy Chicken Chow Mein {One Pot}

The simplicity of this easy Chicken Chow Mein recipe makes this a fine choice of midweek quick dinners or a weekend fakeaway. Delicious, all made in one pan, and takes about 20 minutes.
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients 

For the sauce:

  • 2 tbsp Cornflour
  • 1 tbsp Soft dark brown sugar
  • 2 Cloves Garlic, Crushed
  • 4 tbsp Dark soy sauce
  • 4 tbsp Oyster sauce
  • 300 ml Chicken stock

For the stir fry:

  • 1 tbsp Sunflower oil
  • 650 g Chicken breast (approx x4), Cut into strips
  • 2 tsp Chinese 5 spice
  • 600 g Stir fry veg bag
  • 250 g Dry noodles
  • 4 Spring onions, Finely chopped (optional)

Instructions 

  • Put the cornflour in a small bowl, add the sugar, garlic, and enough soy sauce to mix a smooth paste. Add the remaining soy sauce, oyster sauce and chicken stock. Whisk until smooth and set aside.
  • Place noodles in a separate bowl. Pour boiling water straight from the kettle over the noodles, pop a plate over the top and leave to soak while you cook the stir fry.
  • Heat the oil in a large frying pan or wok and add the chicken with the 5 spice. Stir fry for 6-7 minutes until the chicken is almost cooked.
  • Stir the noodles with a fork to make sure they are softening evenly.
  • Add the vegetable mix to the chicken and stir for a further 4-5 minutes until softened a little.
  • When the noodles are just cooked, drain.
  • Add the sauce to the chicken and vegetables and cook for 3-4 minutes until thickened and coating the ingredients.
  • Add the drained noodles and toss to coat everything well. Garnish with the spring onions if using.

Notes

If preparing the veg yourself, you’ll need: 
  • 1 medium carrot, sliced into batons
  • 1 red pepper, sliced
  • 1 green pepper, sliced
  • 1/2 cabbage, shredded
  • 150g bean sprouts
Alternatively, use whichever vegetables you like to stir fry!
Cornflour: When you mix the sauce it’s important to start with the cornflour in the bowl and add a little liquid at a time, otherwise the cornflour will form lumps that are almost impossible to get rid of!
 

Nutrition

Calories: 635kcalCarbohydrates: 78gProtein: 53gFat: 13gSaturated Fat: 2gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0.1gCholesterol: 159mgSodium: 1880mgPotassium: 1238mgFiber: 9gSugar: 6gVitamin A: 7713IUVitamin C: 19mgCalcium: 97mgIron: 5mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Family Food
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Sarah Rossi founder of TamingTwins.com and author of 'What's for Dinner?' books.

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1 Comment

  1. 5 stars
    Literally just made and eaten this and, if there was any left, I’d be going back for seconds. Unfortunately, my family have demolished it. Quick and easy to make and absolutely delicious!!@