Extra-Spicy General Tsoʼs Chicken

Chicken thighs are combined with hot chilies and a spicy sauce in this famous dish that is named after a nineteenth-century Chinese military officer.

Serves: 4Hands-on: 25 minutesTotal: 55 minutesDifficulty: Easy

Serves: 4


  • 1 large egg white
  • 2 tsp. Chinese rice wine
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 Tbsp. cornstarch
  • 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1" cubes
  • 2 Tbsp. plus 1 tsp. dark soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp. white wine vinegar
  • 3 Tbsp. water
  • 1 tsp. hoisin sauce
  • 2 tsp. granulated sugar
  • 2 cups vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp. minced garlic
  • 6 small dried red chili peppers


  • In a bowl, stir together the egg white, rice wine, salt, and the cornstarch. Add the chicken and marinate in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
  • In a small bowl, combine the dark soy sauce, white wine vinegar, water, hoisin sauce, and sugar. Set aside.
  • Heat a wok or skillet over medium-high heat until it is nearly smoking. Add 2 cups oil. When the oil is hot, add the chicken. Stir-fry the chicken cubes until they turn white (about 30 seconds), using a spatula to separate the cubes. Remove from the wok and drain in a colander or on paper towels.
  • Remove all but 1 tablespoon oil from the wok or skillet. When the oil is hot, add the garlic and chili peppers. Stir-fry for 10 seconds.
  • Add the chicken back into a pan. Stir-fry the chicken for 1 minute, then push to the sides of the pan and add the soy sauce mixture in the middle. Bring the sauce to a boil. Stir-fry for 1–2 more minutes to mix the sauce with the chicken. Serve hot.