December 23, 2019

Healthy Chicken and Broccoli Stir Fry

This healthy and easy chicken and broccoli stir fry is a quick weeknight dinner that will not disappoint. This stir fry has it all – tender chicken, crisp broccoli, and flavorful sauce that comes together in under 15 minutes. This healthier version of a takeout favorite is sugar-free, gluten-free, and completely Whole30 compliant. Serve the stir fry on it’s own or with cauliflower rice or white rice for dinner that everyone will love!

chicken and broccoli stir fry over rice

Quick, Simple, and Delicious: Sweet and Spicy Stir Fry with Chicken and Broccoli

Healthier takeout! Are you into it? I feel like you should most definitely be into it, but if you’re not convinced, don’t roll your eyes at me just yet. 

If you’re asking if it’s possible to make a healthier version of your favorite stir fry takeout at home that actually tastes great and doesn’t take a ton of time? The answer is YES. One hundred and ten percent yes. 

This quick and easy Chicken and Broccoli Stir Fry has everything you are craving in a good stir fry: 

  • Tender flavorful chicken
  • Crisp veggies
  • An extra yummy, slightly sweet and sticky stir fry sauce that you just can’t seem to get enough of (the most important part!)

This recipe has it all and, in addition to being ridiculously tasty, the best part of this recipe is that it truly is QUICK. I’m talking fifteen minutes, or less, and you have a healthy filling dinner on your table. 

What I don’t really love about takeout is the added sugar or oils that often come along with it. Thankfully this recipe avoids all of that and is made with high quality oil, is sugar and gluten-free, and Whole30 compliant. It’s a simple healthy meal that everyone will love. 

Why I Prefer to Use Chicken Thighs in This Recipe

While most chicken stir fry recipe calls for chicken breast, I prefer to use boneless skinless chicken thighs in all of my chicken stir fry recipes. Chicken thighs are more tender, more flavorful, and also a lot easier to cook in my opinion. 

One of the worst things is when a stir fry has tough flavorless chicken and using chicken thighs instead of breasts avoids this altogether. Chicken thighs typically stay tender and juicy even if you cook them a little longer than what is really necessary. Essentially, they are hard to “mess up”. 

While I love using chicken thighs in this recipe, feel free to use chicken breast instead! Just make sure to watch them carefully so they don’t overcook and become tough.

This Simple Stir Fry Sauce Ingredients

coconut aminos with red pepper flakes

 

While most stir fry sauces are filled with sugar, this easy sauce is completely sugar free and using just a few simple ingredients to achieve maximum flavor. 

Coconut Aminos: The base of the sauce in this stir fry is a substitute for soy sauce called coconut aminos. Coconut aminos are made from the sap of the coconut palm tree and are commonly used as an alternative to soy sauce in Paleo and Whole30 compliant dishes. Unlike traditional soy sauce, they also have a slightly sweet flavor which works to give the sauce a slightly sweet flavor without any added sugar.

Sesame Oil: Sesame oil is another key ingredient in this sauce and gives it that traditional stir fry flavor. A little sesame oil goes a long way. 

Fish Sauce: Fish sauce is made from anchovies and sea salt and gives the sauce a savory depth of flavor. If you don’t have a bottle of fish sauce, I highly recommend grabbing some to have on hand for curries or stir fry recipes like this one. 

Arrowroot Starch: Arrowroot starch is a grain free alternative to cornstarch. It can  cornstarch 1 to 1 in most recipes and slightly thickens this sauce to help it stick to the 

 

How to Make Chicken and Broccoli Stir Fry

raw chicken with ginger garlic and salt in clear mixing bowl

Step 1: Prep Your Chicken 

To prep the chicken, cut the boneless skinless chicken thighs into small pieces and add them to a mixing bowl. Next, add the ginger, garlic, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Stir until everything is well combined and then set aside. If you have the time, you can prep the chicken the night before and allow it to marinate overnight. 

Step 2: Stir Fry the Chicken and Veggies

Next, cook the chicken over medium-high heat in a large skillet. I love using avocado oil for cooking, but you could also use coconut oil if you prefer. You’ll cook the chicken for around six minutes until it is browned and completely cooked through, and then remove it from the pan. 

Once the chicken is finished cooking, add the broccoli florets and one-third a cup of water. The water helps to steam the broccoli a bit while it cooks. The broccoli should only take around four to six minutes to cook. You still want it to be crisp and a bright green color when you add the chicken back to the pan. 

 

Step 3: Add the Sauce and Serve 

Once the broccoli is cooked, and you’ve added the chicken back to the pan, it’s time to add in the stir fry sauce. Pour the sauce over the chicken and broccoli, give it a stir and allow it to cook for around one minute, and then remove the skillet from the heat. The arrowroot starch will cause the sauce to thicken just a bit once it comes in contact with the heat so that it coats the chicken and veggies. 

Finish off the stir fry with plenty of fresh green onion, sesame seeds, and red pepper flakes if you like more heat.

How to Serve Your Stir Fry

This hearty stir fry is really great all on it’s own but it also pairs nicely with cauliflower rice for a great Whole30 compliant or low carb meal. You can also serve it with a side of white rice to soak up all of that delicious sauce!

A Few Other Homemade Takeout Recipes You’ll Love!

Print

Healthy Chicken and Broccoli Stir Fry (Whole30, Gluten-Free, Low Carb)

  • Author: Ashlea Carver
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Asian
  • Diet: Gluten Free
/
Scale:
  • Author: Ashlea Carver
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Asian
  • Diet: Gluten Free

Ingredients

  • 1 pound chicken thighs, cut into small pieces
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp ginger, minced
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes 
  • 1 tbsp avocado oil
  • 4 cups broccoli florets
  • ⅓ cup water
  • ¼ cup coconut aminos
  • 1 tsp fish sauce
  • 1 ½ tsp sesame oil
  • ½ tbsp arrowroot starch
  • Green onion, for garnish
  • Sesame seeds, for garnish

Method

  1. Add the chicken thighs, garlic, ginger, salt, black pepper, and red pepper flakes to a small bowl and stir until well combined. 
  2. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Once hot, coat the pan with oil and then add in the chicken. Cook the chicken for 6-8 minutes until browned and cooked through. Once cooked, remove the chicken from pan and set aside. 
  3. While the chicken is cooking, make the sauce. Add the coconut aminos, fish sauce, sesame oil and arrowroot starch to a small bowl and whisk until well combined. 
  4. Next, add in the broccoli florets and ⅓ cup of water. Cook the broccoli until it is bright green and slightly tender, around 4-6 minutes. 
  5. Next, add the chicken back to the skillet and then add the sauce. Give everything a stir to combine chicken, broccoli, and sauce are all well combined and cook for one more minute. The sauce should thicken a bit as it heats. 
  6. Remove the skillet from the heat, finish with sliced green onions and sesame seeds, and then serve the stir-fry immediately. Enjoy!

Keywords: chicken and broccoli stir fry, stir fry, chicken and broccoli, healthy chicken and broccoli

This post contains affiliate links.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    18 comments
  1. Full disclosure, I made this recipe for the first time last week because I made it exactly 7 days on the Whole30 before realizing it just wasn’t for me, but I still had loads of coconut aminos and arrowroot powder that I didn’t want to go to waste. I also always buy the big bags of raw broccoli from Costco and always seem to have so much left at the end of the week.

    And oh man, it’s going to be my new Monday night staples! This recipe literally tastes better than all of the mediocre Chinese takeout places in my area and it’s SO quick and easy to make, which I desperately need because I work full time and also have a one year old daughter who demands most of my attention.

    I used chicken breasts because it was what I had on hand and they only took about 4 minutes to cook. I also used chicken broth instead of water for the broccoli (again, trying to use things up) and served with white rice. When I tell you I inhaled this food I am not exaggerating. I grabbed a fork and ate it right from the pan and it was so hot it burned my mouth and I didn’t even care. My husband gets home from work super late so I left his plate sitting out for a few hours. He loved it even at room temperature and didn’t make any comments about it being “too healthy” or “Whole30” like he usually does.

    Thank you so much for this recipe! I don’t know what kind of voodoo magic makes these simple ingredients taste better than delicious Chinese takeout but I’m so excited!

  2. Excellent…I added a side of rice for my hubby while I just ate this from a bowl! Definitely a keeper! Thank you!

  3. Great flavor and easy to make. We added 1 sweet onion, 2 green peppers, half lime, and a little extra ginger. Turned out perfect!!

  4. I made this tonight but the sauce was too thick…almost gelatinous. Should I cut down the amount of arrowroot starch? Have you ever had this issue? Thanks for the help!

  5. Super good….super easy!

    This is the first recipe I have made after following on Instagram for awhile. I have been craving Chinese for awhile, and this hit the spot – in a much healthier way. Limited prep time, quick cooking, easy ingredients and instructions – all a win in my book. As someone else previously said, I will double the recipe next time!

  6. This has become a staple in our dinner rotation! I have made it 3 times in the past 2 weeks and keep stocking up on ingredients to make it again! So delicious, so easy, and so healthy. I love adding roasted cashews as well. Have sent it to multiple friends… can’t recommend enough!

  7. Just had this for dinner tonight and it was great! I’ve tried several asian-inspired Whole 30 recipes and this was the easiest and tastiest so far. My husband declared it was good enough to be in the “regular” non-Whole 30 rotation (when we’re not doing a Whole 30).

  8. Just made this for dinner and WOW! Great flavors that come together beautifully. I added some sautéed mushrooms and it’s was a match made in heaven. We’ve already made you egg roll in a bowl and buffalo cauliflower and those were also delicious. My husband and I keep saying “thanks Ashlea!” before we dig in. These recipes have been giving us life on Whole 30. Thanks Ashlea!!

  9. I made this recipe for my family tonight and it was a hit! Even my kids liked it! So good. I didn’t have any fish sauce, but it was still delicious. Served it with rice and a side of snow peas.

  10. I’m a new follower of yours and I’m so excited to try your recipes! This one was amazing and we will definitely be making it again!

  11. I made this for the family tonight and it was a hit! The kids kept running into the kitchen asking what smelled so good! I dialed the red pepper back to 1/4tsp (because kids) but otherwise made as directed. I think that next time I make this I’ll throw in some toasted cashews. And also double the recipe because it’s gone and I don’t have any leftovers lol. Thank you for a delicious, healthy recipe that the whole family enjoyed!

    • I’m so happy you and the kids loved it, Rebecca! I love that you made a double batch. Such a good idea!

  12. This is super easy & delicious! Way simpler than a recipe for the same dish in a diff paleo cookbook I’ve made before. Way to go!

  13. This was a great recipe! Was looking for a quick and healthy meal to make tonight, and this was exactly what I was looking for. Simple ingredients and great flavor. Looking forward to trying more of your recipes!

more posts You might also like