Szechuan Chicken / Szechuan Chilli Chicken

Szechuan Chicken / Schezwan Chilli Chicken /Sichuan Chicken with chilies is a popular Indo Chinese fusion dish with unique, bold flavours. Originated from the Sichuan province of South Western China, Szechuan Chicken or Szechwan chicken is prepared with a special Sichuan pepper to give the punch. However, in India, Szechuan Chicken got a makeover and is prepared with a Szechuan style Chili paste/ sauce adapted to match Indian tastes.  Sweet, Sour, Salty and Spicy Chilli Chicken that will captivate you with its unique fragrance. You might also like my Honey Chilli Chicken, anoher flavorful Chilly Chicken recipe.

Indians love Chinese food; Chicken Soup, Spring Rolls, Drums of Heaven, Noodles, Vegetable Fried Rice, Veg. American Chop Suey, Chilli Fish, Spicy Fried rice, Chilli garlic Fried rice, Honey Chilli chicken, Gobi Manchurian, Paneer Chilli, Chilli Pork, Soya Manchurian all are quite popular in India. Most of the typical street food shops serve these Chinese dishes and add Monosodium Glutamate, the flavor enhancer that intensifies the flavors to lure customers. MSG is claimed to be risky for your health if taken regularly. Since there are a lot of controversies involving MSG, reputed restaurants and Star Hotels have started claiming that they serve MSG free food.

We all love Chinese food and I try my best to recreate our favorite dishes at home. Szechuan Chicken with chilies or Szechuan style chilli chicken is extremely delicious and fills the house with its distinct aroma; even my neighbors ask me what I have been cooking! You may use peanut oil, sesame oil or any vegetable oil for this dish, although authentic cuisine calls for Chilli oil.

The Schezwan chili sauce is available in super markets, but I always prepare this wonderful Szechwan chilli garlic paste at home in advance, and it never fails to deliver the punch. I have used dried Kashmiri chilies to make the paste, which gives it a tempting fiery red color. It can be used for Lollipop Chicken and many other Indo-chinese dishes. Homemade chilli paste brings that refreshing, bold and distinct Szechuan flavors to the Szechuan Chicken dish. Enjoy this fiery Szechuan Chicken as starters or serve with Noodles, Fried rice, Naan, Chilli Garlic Fried rice or Roti. Yes. It is hot …and finger licking good!

Cuisine : Indo-chinese

Serves: 4

Ingredients for Szechuan Chilli Paste:

Dried Kashmiri Red Chili: 12-15 nos.
Vinegar: 2 ½ tbsp
Ginger: 1 small piece
Garlic: 6 cloves
Soy Sauce: 1 tbsp
Salt: ½ tsp
Sugar: ½ tsp
Sesame oil: 1 tbsp

Ingredients for Szechuan Chilli Chicken:

Chicken Breast: 300 gms
Ginger Garlic paste: ½ tsp
Szechuan Chilli Paste: 1 tbsp
Pepper Powder: ½ tsp
Soy Sauce: 1 tbsp
Salt: as required
Corn Flour: 2 ½ tbsp
Oil: for frying
Dried Red chilies: 3 – 4 nos
Green chilies (optional): 2 nos.
Ginger: a small piece
Garlic: 4 cloves
Onion: 1 no.
Capsicum/ Bell Pepper: 1 no.
Szechuan Chilli Paste: 1 ½ tbsp
Dark Soy Sauce: 1 ½ tbsp
Tomato Sauce: 2 tsp
Chicken stock / Water: 1 cup
Corn flour: 1 ½ tsp
Spring Onion: 3 stems


Boil the dried red chilies in little water for about 3 – 4 minutes. Let it cool and coarsely grind with Vinegar, salt, sugar, Soy sauce, ginger and garlic.  Heat 1 tbsp Sesame oil and sauté this paste for a minute. Allow to cool.

Szechuan Chicken / Szechuan Chilli Chicken Szechuan Chicken / Szechuan Chilli Chicken

Clean and cut the chicken into bite size cubes. Marinate chicken with salt, 1 tbsp Szechuan Chilli Paste, Soy Sauce, Ginger Garlic paste and pepper powder for half an hour. Just before frying, add Corn Flour and mix well. Deep fry in oil till slightly brown. Keep aside.

Szechuan Chicken / Szechuan Chilli Chicken Szechuan Chicken / Szechuan Chilli Chicken Szechuan Chicken / Szechuan Chilli Chicken

Remove excess oil and add the sliced red chilies  and julienned ginger(add sliced green chilies as well if you want it spicier). Drain and keep aside for garnishing. Add chopped garlic and cubed Onion and stir fry for a minute.Next add the cubed Bell Pepper/ Capsicum and fry for few seconds.

Szechuan Chicken / Szechuan Chilli Chicken Szechuan Chicken / Szechuan Chilli Chicken Szechuan Chicken / Szechuan Chilli Chicken Szechuan Chicken / Szechuan Chilli Chicken

Mix in 1 ½ tbsp. Szechuan Chilli Paste and fry for another minute. Mix the Soya sauce and Tomato Sauce with 1 cup water and add to the pan. Let it boil and add the chopped Spring Onion bulbs and the fried Chicken pieces. Cook covered on low flame for two minutes. Adjust the salt.

Szechuan Chicken / Szechuan Chilli Chicken Szechuan Chicken / Szechuan Chilli Chicken  Szechuan Chicken / Szechuan Chilli Chicken  Szechuan Chicken / Szechuan Chilli Chicken

Mix corn flour in little water and add to the gravy, stirring continuously to thicken the gravy and coat the pieces.

Szechuan Chicken / Szechuan Chilli Chicken Szechuan Chicken / Szechuan Chilli Chicken

Lastly, add the chopped Spring onion greens and serve Szechuan chicken/ Chilli Chicken as appetizer or  with Fried rice, Noodles, Naan or Roti.


  • Add more green chilies if you like it spicy.
  • You may use store bought Szechuan Chilli sauce, but for best flavors make homemade paste. You can make excess paste and store in air tight container and keep in the refrigerator for a month.
  • The Onions and capsicum should not be overcooked so just stir fry for a minute to make it crunchy.
  • You may use Red and Yellow Bell Peppers/ Capsicum for more visual appeal.
  • White Onion, is the best choice for Chinese dishes as it stays crunchy.
  • Adjust the water measure, if you want more gravy.
  • Always be careful with salt while making Chinese dishes as the sauces are salty.
  • Authentic Szechuan Chicken is prepared with Chilli Oil and Szechuan Peppers which gives it a pungent and spicy flavor. You may use peanut oil, Sesame oil or veg. oil.
  • I have used Kashmiri Chilli to make the paste as it gives a fiery orange color to the dish.
  • You may garnish with toasted sesame seeds for more appeal.

Please try this Szechuan Chicken/ Szechuan Chilli Chicken recipe and let me know if you like it or share with your friends through the share buttons on the side. It will definitely inspire me to add more homemade recipes for you. Thanks and God Bless!!

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