Chinese Black Pepper Chicken

Chinese takeout-style Black Pepper Chicken and a traditional cooking method to cook moist silky chicken in far less calories.

Chinese Black Pepper Chicken
Diet Info: DF GF F LF Na LS VG V Fa

Sharing today, Chinese takeout-style Chicken stir-fry with homemade black pepper sauce and not-fried but moist silken-ed chicken that just melts in mouth! 

Chinese Black Pepper Chicken is by far one of our favorite take-out chicken from Panda Express. This is one such Asian chicken stir-fry that is not sweet, has silky moist chicken, and subtle peppery bite. In one sentence, if you like black pepper and fan of Asian flavors then this recipe is for you! 

Whenever we eat out Chinese, specially a quick one such as Panda Express... no matter how much Vishal adores their orange chicken, he will always ask for a side of black pepper chicken in panda bowl. Few years ago, I started messing with these flavor at home. Now a days, we often make black pepper chicken at home! Actually, I even use the black pepper sauce to make some vegetarian black pepper tofu too!

So, today I thought to share with you this skinny, delicious, and ready in 20 minutes Chicken Takeout dinner! 

Get ready some rice, and let's get cooking!

Panda Express takeout style Chinese Black Pepper Chicken with flavorful black pepper sauce |

What is Silken Chicken

You know the best part? In Black Pepper Chicken, chicken is not deep fried rather marinated and poached which is called "silken-ed" in Asian cuisine. It takes almost same time as battered and fried chicken (staple Chinese take-out cooking technique) but chicken comes out super moist.. almost soft like silk. I think that's why the name.

Chinese Black Pepper Chicken with a poaching technique to cook chicken that makes moist chicken in far less calories |

To make Silken chicken, I marinate the chicken in easy-to-find pantry ingredients such as soy sauce, egg white, corn starch and some seasoning. After a brief marination, I poach the chicken in hot boiling water which seals the egg-based marinade onto the chicken, in 10-12 minutes chicken pieces look like silk and are silk moist tender.

You can ready one batch of chicken over the weekend and then use it for any kind of stir-fry you like. This is a low-calorie yet delicious way cooking chicken for all-purpose use.

Moist Chicken cooking in Black Pepper sauce with crunchy celery and scallions |

Once the chicken is ready, Black Pepper Chicken is ready in a breeze. I saute red onion and celery until these are crisp and crunchy, then add chicken and black pepper sauce. Let the flavors mingle for a while and..

Voila!! Chinese Black Pepper chicken is ready to be devoured.

I did not plan this recipe for today but I decided to post it for one of my follower who seems to really love my Chinese-style Chicken recipes like Sweet and Sour Chicken. Hence, posting little late today. I'm sure I will catch up with my friends who did not see a recipe on the blog this morning. :)

Oh, this makes me ask you, which one of my recipe is your favorite? I would love to hear your thoughts on that. Leave a comment below and let me know.

Enjoy! -Savita

Weekday Chinese dinner at home with easy Black Pepper Chicken stir-fry and rice |

Few more Chicken dinners from my recipe repertoire:

Coconut Cashew Curry Chicken and Rice with Mango Slow Cooker Mojo Chicken and Rice Bowl Restaurant Style Butter Chicken in Slow Cooker

Chinese Black Pepper Chicken

5 (1 review)
Chinese Black Pepper Chicken
Total Time: Prep Time: Cook Time: Cuisine: Asian () Difficulty: Easy
Yields: 3-4 Servings - Serves: 4
(Chicken cooking time depends on size of chicken pieces.)


Silken Chicken
Black Pepper Chicken
Serving Suggestions
Smart Swap: How about replacing chicken with fish such as shrimp or salmon?!


  • Step for Recipe - Chinese Black Pepper Chicken 1. Mix all silken chicken marinade ingredients - egg white, starch, 1 tbsp oil, salt, soy sauce, and vinegar in a small bowl. Add small cubed chicken and mix well. Refrigerate for 30 minutes. Or at-least 20 minutes while you prep the rest of ingredients. Additional Notes: If using pre-cooked chicken, skip this step.
    Step for Recipe - Chinese Black Pepper Chicken 2. In meantime, in a small bowl, add black pepper sauce ingredients - soy sauce, oyster sauce, sesame oil, vinegar, corn starch, and 1 tsp coarse ground black pepper (adjust per taste). Whisk well and set aside.
  • Step for Recipe - Chinese Black Pepper Chicken 3. Slice veggies - scallion, garlic, celery, onion and set aside.
    Step for Recipe - Chinese Black Pepper Chicken 4. Bring a pot of water (2-3 inch water) to rolling boil. Add marinated chicken with slotted spoon (so as leave behind marinade) and poach for 4-6 minutes (or until chicken is fully cooked). Additional Notes: You can also shallow fry this chicken if you prefer.
  • Step for Recipe - Chinese Black Pepper Chicken 5. After 3-4 minutes, take a piece and check for done-ness. Chicken should not be pink inside. Continue until full cooked.
    Step for Recipe - Chinese Black Pepper Chicken 6. Transfer chicken to a paper-lined bowl and set aside. Discard the poaching water and also discard the chicken marinade.
  • Step for Recipe - Chinese Black Pepper Chicken 7. In saute pan, heat 1 tbsp oil until shimmering hot. Add onion, half of scallions, and celery. Saute for 1 minute or until crisp tender.
    Step for Recipe - Chinese Black Pepper Chicken 8. Add cooked chicken and black pepper chicken sauce. Cook chicken and veggies in sauce for 1 minute or until sauce starts to thicken. Remove from heat. Sprinkle more black peppers (per taste) and remaining scallions.
  • Step for Recipe - Chinese Black Pepper Chicken 9. Serve over rice and enjoy!
Savita's Notes:

Same marinated chicken can also be shallow fried for crispy silken chicken for the black pepper recipe or any Asian stir-fry such as orange chicken or General TSO's chicken.


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5 Responses

  1. Im gathering ingredients to make this dish. Sounds delicious. I have one question. You say "pouch" the chicken. Do you mean "Poach"?
    I certainly meant to write “poach”. Thanks for pointing it out. I hope that is fixed now. Happy cooking!
  2. This recipe is wonderful but i think the next time I will double this delicious sauce.
  3. My kind of food, I love this recipe. I think I will make it soon!
    thanks, Adina! I hope you enjoy it.