Black Pepper-Garlic Chicken

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Here's one on my favorite Stir-fry recipes, inspired by Black Pepper Chicken served at Panda Express Restaurants.  The savory sauce took a bit of tinkering, but I think this copycat version is really close... and it's delicious, too!

Please...  don't forget to start this recipe with Velveted Chicken.  It's a very simple technique that'll turn any Chicken Stir-fry into a mouth-watering Asian masterpiece!

  • 1 lb. Velveted Chicken (recipe link above)
  • 2 cups thinly sliced Celery
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced Onion- red or yellow
  • 1/2 cup sliced Green onions
  • 1-2 teaspoons chopped garlic
  • 2 Tablespoons Canola or Peanut Oil for frying
  • Sesame Seeds for garnish- optional
Sauce Ingredients:
  • 1/4 cup Oyster sauce
  • 2 teaspoons Soy Sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Black Pepper (to taste)
  • 2-3 teaspoons mild Molasses or honey (to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon Rice Vinegar or Rice Wine (Sake)
  • 1/2 teaspoon Sesame Oil
  • Large stainless steel skillet or wok. Teflon-coated pans are not suitable and can be damaged by high heat.
  • Wooden spoon

Stir all of the sauce ingredients together in a small bowl, allowing about 10-15 minutes for the flavors to mingle/mature while you slice the vegetables. Before stir-frying, taste the sauce and adjust the heat and sweetness as desired.


Heat 2 Tablespoons oil in a large skillet or wok over medium-high heat until almost smoking.

Add the sliced red/yellow onions to the skillet, stirring constantly for about one minute. At this point, your skillet has cooled down significantly.  Crank the heat up to high if neccessary.

Add the sliced celery, green onions and chopped garlic to the skillet. Stir constantly for 1-2 minutes until the celery is tender-crisp.

Add the stir-fry sauce. Heat and stir until the sauce is bubbling hot.

Add the velveted chicken, reduce the heat to medium and stir to coat. Let the chicken heat through, about 1-2 minutes longer.

Serve over prepared Basmati or Jasmine Rice.  Garnish with sesame seeds and additional sliced green onions as desired.

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WUVIE2 years ago
I am sitting here eating this very dish as I type this. Will definitely make again. In fact, I've saved this recipe to my special folder with clear plastic pages, so you KNOW this was a good one if it goes into the plastic page binder, LOL.

The only alterations I made to the recipe was to use 1 cup of asparagus spears instead of 2 celery, and served it over brown rice. We didn't have any purple onion, which really adds to the appeal, but yellow served a fine purpose.

This time, I used honey, but next time will definitely use mild molasses for the color.

Thank you so much for sharing this. I now know the velvet chicken process, and will no longer grill, chop and then add chicken to all of my dishes. Thank you, thank you!

P.S. The sesame seeds were used, but didn't get into the picture. :-)
WUVIE WUVIE2 years ago
Oh, wait, yes, there are sesame seeds in the picture.
bajablue (author)  WUVIE2 years ago
bajablue (author)  WUVIE2 years ago
Oh wow... this looks amazing, WUVIE! ;-p~ lol... I completely approve of your changes... as fresh asparagus is right up there with fresh green beans, imo.

Thank you so much for commenting... and I appreciate that you took the time to photograph and share your rendition, too!!!
faure.lyman8 months ago

Celery is often called a "negative calorie food" but it certainly isn't lacking in nutrition. The health benefits of celery include: prevent cancer, control blood pressure, weight loss, and so on. Share with you: http://www.healthdoyen.com/health-benefits-of-celery.html

candyylove2 years ago
I Love this so Much!
& it was pretty quick to make too
I Need More o_o
13, 7:51 PM.jpg
bajablue (author)  candyylove2 years ago
So happy to hear! Thanks for sharing your photo, too! :-D
vincent75202 years ago
Yummy ! Yummy ! …
I want more.
Chopsticks, no forks ! ;-)
bajablue (author)  vincent75202 years ago
By golly, vincent... you can have as much as your tummy can hold!!! ;-)
vincent75202 years ago
Yummy ! Yummy ! …
I want more.
Chopsticks, no forks ! ;-)
vincent75202 years ago
Yummy ! Yummy ! …
I want more.
Chopsticks, no forks ! ;-)
WUVIE2 years ago
After the recent addition of Black Pepper Chicken on Pei Wei's menu, hubby and I decided we needed to simply make our own. Thank you SO much for the recipe. As soon as I make it, I'll post a response. Hope it is as good as yours!
bajablue (author)  WUVIE2 years ago
Please DO let me know how you like it, WUVIE! I don't think you'll be disappointed! ;-)
bmorgan92 years ago
I love Black Pepper ANYTHING! I am the owner of Pepper-Passion and we love good pepper and recipes that feature it. The only way this waill taste the way you want is to use freshly ground pepper. If you want it to be authentic in the Singaporean style, use Lampong or Sarawak back peppercorns. I would also consider changing the 1 teaspoon to 1 Tablespoon.
bajablue (author)  bmorgan92 years ago
Thanks for your input, Mr. Morgan! I'm sure our readers will take your suggestions under advisement! ;-)
Mlks612 years ago
I made this today after having a similar dish at a restaurant and it was fabulous!!
bajablue (author)  Mlks612 years ago
So happy you enjoyed it and took the time to post a nice comment, Mlks61.

You just made my entire day!!! ;-D
nezumish2 years ago
I made this for dinner tonight, and I do have to say... it was everything I had hoped it to be. I velveted the chicken, made it just as instructed... I can't wait to make this again!
bajablue (author)  nezumish2 years ago
That's so great to hear... Thank you nezumish!!!
Kazz092 years ago
This looks incredible. I'm going to try it this weekend.
bajablue (author)  Kazz092 years ago
I really hope you like it! ;-)
adamadkison2 years ago
I've made this every night for a week now, and it just keeps getting better. Thanks for posting this!!

.. now if I can just figure out these captchas..
bajablue (author)  adamadkison2 years ago
lol... Thanks and YAY!  ... and what the heck is a "captchas", pray tell??? 8-/

They are secret words you have to decode before you can post comments, to prevent bots!
bajablue (author)  adamadkison2 years ago
I.did.not.know.this! Thanks for letting me know! ;-)
mccoyqin2 years ago
looks so delicious. i am hungry now 1
bajablue (author)  mccoyqin2 years ago
Thank you... easy to make... time to EAT, I think! ;-D
sunshiine2 years ago
Yay you! Congrats!
bajablue (author)  sunshiine2 years ago
lol... you forgot to say "I told you so!"  I just wanna know how you do that!!! 
Congrats is more positive hehe!
bajablue (author)  sunshiine2 years ago
MaryT8M3 years ago
CONGRATULATION!!! I'm SO happy for us both!
bajablue (author)  MaryT8M3 years ago
Big CONGRATS back at you, MaryT!  ;-D

YAY for all the Winners and remember not to run with scissors... or any other sharp objects! ;-)
awww damn
bajablue (author)  MaryT8M2 years ago
awww damn
yh i am hungry by look this.
bajablue (author)  papercrafter4083 years ago
Thank you papercrafter!
vipercmd3 years ago
I made this dish for supper tonight along with following your instructable for velveting the chicken breast. My teenage daughters also pass along their thanks! :)

Since my wife was out for the day and evening my daughters suggested that I make this again tomorrow for lunch. Thanks for this instructable!
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