This easy chicken stir-fry is made with boneless thighs, garlic, ginger, scallions and served with a classic Vietnamese dipping sauce.

Sweet Five-Spice Ginger Chicken

This quick and easy chicken stir-fry has its roots in Vietnamese cuisine. Tender chunks of boneless chicken seasoned with five-spice powder are stir-fried with garlic, ginger, and scallions and coated in a simple, sweet-and-salty combination of fish sauce and honey.

Served Vietnamese-style with steamed rice (we used brown), sliced tomato, cucumbers and a drizzle of Nuoc Cham, that all-purpose Vietnamese dipping sauce, it makes a distinctively different, satisfying dinner.

Sweet Five-Spice Ginger Chicken

Sweet Five-Spice Ginger Chicken

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This easy chicken stir-fry is made with boneless thighs, garlic, ginger, scallions and served with a classic Vietnamese dipping sauce.


  • 1 to 1-1/4 lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 1/2 teaspoon five-spice powder, plus more to taste
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons fish, or soy sauce
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, very finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, very finely chopped
  • 3 to 4 scallions, sliced
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste

For the Nuoc Cham (Vietnamese dipping sauce)

  • 1/4 cup warm water
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 clove garlic, pressed or very finely minced
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce, or more to taste
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon Sriracha, or more to taste
  • 1 tablespoon shredded carrots, optional


  • Start by making the Nuoc Cham. Combine the warm water and sugar stirring until sugar has dissolved completely.
  • Add the garlic, fish sauce, lime juice, and Sriracha. Stir to combine, taste and adjust the flavors as desired.
  • Set aside and add the carrots just before serving.
  • Trim any excess fat from the chicken thighs, cut them into 3/4-inch pieces and transfer to a mixing bowl. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon of the vegetable oil, season with five-spice powder and toss to coat.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the fish (or soy) sauce, honey, and water until well blended. Set aside.
  • Heat the remaining tablespoon of oil in a wok or skillet over high heat. Add the garlic and ginger, and stir fry just until fragrant, about 1 minute.
  • Add the chicken and stir-fry until the chicken is golden brown and cooked through, about 3 minutes longer.
  • Add the fish sauce-honey mixture and toss to coat the chicken thoroughly. Cook for 1 minute, taste and season with freshly ground black pepper and a little more five-spice powder if desired.
  • Stir in the sliced scallions and remove from the heat.
  • Plate individual servings over steamed white or brown rice, garnish the plate with slices of fresh tomato and cucumber and drizzle with Nuoc Cham.
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