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A bowl of spicy Thai basil chicken garnished with Thai basil.

Spicy Thai Basil Chicken (Pad Gra Pow Gai)

  • Author: Asha
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 2 servings 1x
  • Category: Main Dish
  • Cuisine: Thai


Delicious, spicy Thai basil chicken features tender chicken stir fried with shallots, chilis, garlic, and fresh Thai basil. 



Stir Fry:

1/2 pound (227g) boneless, skinless chicken thighs *

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 shallot

1-2 Thai chilis, to taste **

2 cloves garlic

1 cup (20g) Thai basil leaves ***


1/4 cup (60ml) chicken broth

1 tablespoon soy sauce

1 tablespoon oyster sauce

2 teaspoons fish sauce

2 teaspoons brown sugar

Serve with:

jasmine rice


I highly recommend doing all preparations ahead of time because this spicy Thai basil chicken dish cooks incredibly quickly. Once you've begun cooking, you won't have time to measure out sauce ingredients or do any chopping.

Make the Thai basil chicken sauce by whisking together the chicken broth, soy sauce, oyster sauce, fish sauce, and brown sugar until the sugar has dissolved. Set it aside for now.

Cut the chicken into large bite-size pieces.

Mince the garlic and thinly slice the shallot and chilis. You can use as many Thai chilis as you want, depending on how spicy you like it.

Heat vegetable oil in a wok or large skillet over high heat. Sauté the chicken pieces until they lose the raw pink colour, about 2-3 minutes.

Stir in the shallot, chilis, and garlic, and stir fry until the shallots begin to caramelize, about 2-3 minutes.

Pour in the prepared sauce, and continue stir frying until most of the liquid has been cooked off, about 1-2 minutes. You want it to be a bit saucy but not too saucy.

Remove the pan from the heat. Add in the Thai basil leaves and fold them into the chicken stir fry. They will cook from the heat from the chicken.

Serve Thai basil chicken with a side of fragrant jasmine rice and garnish with a sprig of Thai basil.


* Boneless, skinless chicken breast meat works great as well.

** I used two chilis and it had a nice, medium spicy kick. One chili would be mild-medium, and one chili with the seeds removed would be mild. Or you could omit the chili if you don't want spice at all. Don't forget, chilis can vary greatly in spiciness, so this is just a rough guide.

*** Get Thai holy basil if you can find it or Thai basil as a second choice. If you can't find either, use regular sweet basil and add a tiny pinch of ground anise.


  • Serving Size:
  • Calories: 213
  • Sugar: 5.7 g
  • Sodium: 1043.8 mg
  • Fat: 15.4 g
  • Carbohydrates: 10.3 g
  • Protein: 10 g
  • Cholesterol: 35 mg

Keywords: Thai basil chicken

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