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Spicy Cashew Chicken

This spicy cashew chicken is better than take out. Made with delicious fresh ingredients and ready in just 30 minutes. It’s fake out take out and it’s delicious!

When I’m writing a recipe I have a little notepad all my notes and directions go into. This notebook is filled with my work for the past 1-1/2 plus all my random recipe ideas and bored doodles. Normally this book does not leave the house because it’s pretty important. However, the other day I took it with me to store because I foolishly wrote my grocery list in the book.  So I went shopping and when I get home I realized my book was not in my bag.

Soooooo in classic freak out Brandy mode I drove like a bat out of hell to the store to try and find the book. The cart was no longer in the corral so I started having a meltdown as I was walking into the store. I’m not kidding when I say if you saw me you would have thought I had “issues.” I’m pretty sure I said f*ck under my breath the entire way into the store. As I approached the customer service desk I saw my book and literally screamed “MY BOOK!” The poor kid working behind the counter about had a heart attack, handed me my book and tried to tell me it was ok and I should maybe calm down.

This of course tells me two things.

  1. I should never take my book outside the house.
  2. I bet when I’m freaked out I look bat shit crazy because I’m pretty sure the kid from Stop & Shop was about to call security on my crazy ass.

Also I’m wondering if my excitement level and feeling after I found the book is the same as someone who scores a point (touchdown?) in the Superbowl. Obviously I’m a huge sport fan. Don’t be jealous. 

So now that we have established that I’m borderline crazy I’m here to bring you a recipe that you should try. Always trust a crazy person.

I made this recipe a few months ago but never quite felt like it was right for the middle of summer. I mean it was fine as a random dinner but not everyone wants spicy food in the middle of July. So now that the weather is finally turning chilly I’m all about the spice. Seriously, I have been drowning my food in Tabasco and adding jalapeños to just about everything. Now for this dish you get the spice from those little dried Thai bird chilies. Trust me when I say they might looks small and cute but they are hot. The longer they sorta sit around in your dish the hotter the dish becomes. So keep this in mind when you add the chilies.

Also please don’t eat the peppers. That would be a really bad idea….

I also used chicken thighs in this dish because lets face it – they’re the best. I love a good chicken breast but the thighs are where it’s at. Super tender, easy to cook and almost never get dried out. I also added in broccoli but feel free to add in any vegetable that you have on hand. I like to think of this dish as capable of handling whatever you throw it way.

{Looking for more quick and easy 30 minute meals? Try my easy beef and vegetable stir-fry, crispy pan roasted chicken thighs or my 20 minute kalamata olive, tomato and caper pasta.

Spicy Cashew Chicken

This spicy cashew chicken is better than take out. Made with delicious fresh ingredients and ready in just 30 minutes. It's fake out take out and it's delicious!

Yield: 4 servings

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes


  • 1-1/2 pound boneless skinless chicken thighs, cubed
  • Kosher salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 bunch scallions, white and green separated
  • 1/4 cup hoisin sauce
  • 1/4 cup chicken stock
  • 2 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup dried Thai bird eye chilies
  • 2 cups lightly steamed broccoli
  • 3/4 cup toasted cashews
  • White or brown rice, prepared


Season cubed chicken thighs and set aside.

In a large skillet set over medium heat add olive oil. Once the oil is hot add in chicken and sauté for about 10 minutes until the chicken starts to brown. Add in garlic and white parts of the scallions. Sauté for another 5 minutes until the scallions are soft and the garlic is fragrant. You don't want to garlic to burn so if you see this turn down the heat a little.

Add in hoisin sauce, chicken stock and soy sauce. Stir to combine and add in dried chilies. Be careful to not break apart the chilies too much. Just let them simmer with the chicken until the sauce becomes thick and coats the chicken.

Stir in steamed broccoli and toasted cashews. Sprinkle the top with reserved scallion greens and serve over rice.