The first time I made this dish, I was just throwing random ingredients into a wok, remembering a favorite cashew chicken dish from a Chinese restaurant I frequented as a graduate student. The result was serendipitously close and so ridiculously good, I knew I had to make it again (more methodically) to be able to share with you! And once I started refining the recipe, it ended up becoming part of our weekly rotation!
Packed with plenty of veggies that might not be one of your staples (see The Importance of Nutrient Density), this is a quick weeknight dinner for when you’re short on time. I like to keep chicken thighs on hand for dishes like this, as they’re relatively cheap and delicious. I move them into the fridge in the morning and then chop them while they’re still partially frozen right before I start cooking.
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Prep Time: 10-15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
- 3 tbsp avocado oil
- 3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
- 2 tsp finely chopped fresh galangal or ginger (can sub 1 tsp dried galangal)
- 2 lbs chicken thigh or breast, chopped into 1/2″ pieces
- 8oz mushrooms, sliced (I prefer oyster mushrooms in this dish)
- 5 oz can sliced bamboo shoots, drained and rinsed
- 5 oz can sliced water chestnuts, drained and rinsed
- 8 oz whole raw cashews (about 1 1/2 cups)
- 4-6 bunches bok choy (or tatsoi, pak choi or similar vegetable), about 1.5 lbs or 14-16 cups chopped
- 1 cup broth, divided
- t tsp coconut water vinegar or apple cider vinegar
- 2 tsp salt to taste
- 2 tbsp arrowroot powder
- Heat a wok over medium-high heat (you can also use a very large saute pan). Add oil, garlic and galangal, cook about 1 minute, until fragrant.
- Add chicken and cook stirring frequently until cooked through, about 5-8 minutes.
- Add mushrooms, bamboo shoots, and water chestnuts. Cook 3-4 more minutes, stirring frequently, until mushrooms are mostly cooked.
- Add bok choy, cashews and 1/2 cup broth. Cook until greens start to wilt, about 3-4 minutes, stirring frequently.
- In a small bowl, mix arrowroot powder, vinegar and salt with remaining 1/2 cup broth to make a slurry. Add the slurry to the wok and stir until thickened, about 2 more minutes.