9jalist-Logo may

Chicken chow mein, a beloved classic of Chinese cuisine, is a tantalizing dish that combines the comforting flavours of stir-fried noodles, succulent chicken, and an array of vibrant vegetables.

With its roots deeply embedded in the rich culinary traditions of China, chicken chow mein has transcended cultural boundaries to become a popular favourite in various parts of the world. 

From its satisfying textures to its harmonious blend of savoury sauces, each bite of chicken chow mein offers a delightful gastronomic experience.

This article delves into the origins, preparation, and key ingredients that make chicken chow mein an enduring culinary delight. So grab your chopsticks and prepare to embark on a flavorful journey through the captivating world of chicken chow mein.

Chicken chow mein
Chicken chow Mein served on a plate with chopsticks


What is Chicken Chow Mein?

Chicken chow mein is a popular Chinese dish consisting of stir-fried noodles, chicken, and various vegetables.

The dish typically includes ingredients like chicken breast or thigh meat, noodles (such as chow mein noodles or egg noodles), onions, bell peppers, carrots, bean sprouts, and sometimes other vegetables like mushrooms or snow peas.

The ingredients are stir-fried together in a wok or skillet with a sauce made from soy sauce, oyster sauce, and other seasonings.

Chicken chow mein is known for its savoury and flavorful taste and its combination of soft and crispy textures. It is often garnished with green onions or cilantro for added freshness and served as a main course.

It can be enjoyed in Chinese restaurants or made at home with various adaptations and personal preferences in terms of ingredients and flavours.

SEE ALSO: Chow Mein vs Lo Mein: A Review of Chinese Noodles

Ingredients for Chicken Chow Mein

  • Chow Mein Noodles: Chow mein noodles are made with wheat and egg. They are very similar to Italian pasta noodles and have a wonderful bite to them. Most grocery stores carry dry chow mein noodles in the Asian aisle. But, if you are lucky, you will find pre-cooked chow mein noodles in the refrigerated section that can be thrown straight into your pan.
  • Vegetables: Carrots, cabbage, green onions, and bean sprouts are the perfect combination of veggies to use for chow mein. However, they can easily be replaced with other veggies like bok choy, celery, broccoli, spinach, kale, or baby corn. Feel free to get creative and use whatever you like or whatever you have in your fridge! 
  • Meats: Great quality chicken breasts are your best bet for slicing into chow mein-ready strips. Feel free to swap chicken out for beef, shrimp, or pork if you like.

SEE ALSO: How to Make Carrot and Coriander Soup

How to make Chicken Chow Mein

  • In a small mixing bowl, combine the ingredients for chow mein sauce: oyster sauce, sesame oil, soy sauce, chicken broth, and cornstarch. Set aside. 
  • Cook noodles according to package instructions, and set aside. 
  • Heat a large wok or pan. Add a bit of oil to the pan and cook the chicken until it’s golden brown. Remove chicken and set aside.
  • Add carrots, cabbage, and pressed garlic and saute for a few minutes until veggies are slightly softened. 
  • Add chicken back to the pan, followed by cooked noodles, and pour the sauce right on top. Cook for about 2 minutes, distributing all that saucy goodness around evenly.
  • Add chopped green onions and remove from the heat. Serve hot!
Chicken chow mein
Chicken chow mein with lots of vegetables

SEE ALSO: How Many Ounces in a Shot (Food Conversion Guide)

Chow Sauce 

Chow mein sauce is a key component of the popular Chinese dish, chow mein. It is a savoury sauce that adds flavour and moisture to stir-fried noodles and vegetables. While there are variations in chow mein sauce recipes, here is a recipe for making chow mein sauce;


  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon oyster sauce
  • 1 tablespoon hoisin sauce
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • ½ cup chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • ½  teaspoon sugar (optional)

SEE ALSO: 21 Kerala Famous Food


  • In a small bowl, whisk together the soy sauce, oyster sauce, hoisin sauce, cornstarch, and sugar (if using) until the cornstarch is dissolved.
  • In a separate saucepan, heat the chicken or vegetable broth over medium heat until it starts to simmer.
  • Slowly pour the sauce mixture into the simmering broth while continuously stirring.
  • Cook the sauce for about 2-3 minutes, stirring constantly, until it thickens and becomes glossy.
  • Remove the sauce from the heat and stir in the sesame oil. Taste and adjust the seasoning according to your preference, adding more soy sauce or sugar if desired.
  • The chow mein sauce is now ready to be used in your chow mein recipe. Add it to the stir-fried noodles, chicken, and vegetables, tossing everything together to coat the ingredients evenly.
Chicken Chow Mein
Chicken Chow Mein

SEE ALSO: Matar Paneer Recipe: (How to Make Mutter Paneer)

What is the best type of Noodles to use for Chicken Chow Mein

The best type of noodles to use for chow mein are specifically labeled as chow mein noodles. These noodles are made from wheat flour and are typically thin and egg-based. They are slightly chewy and can hold up well to stir-frying without becoming mushy.

If you can’t find chow mein noodles, you can use egg noodles or spaghetti as a substitute. Look for noodles that are similar in thickness and texture to chow mein noodles. Avoid using delicate noodles that can easily break apart or become overly soft during stir-frying.

It’s worth noting that some chow mein recipes may call for crisp or crunchy chow mein noodles as a topping rather than using them as the main noodles in the dish. These crispy noodles are often deep-fried and used as a garnish for added texture.

In such cases, the main noodles used for stir-frying would still be the thin and chewy chow mein noodles mentioned earlier.

Ultimately, the choice of noodles depends on personal preference and availability. So, feel free to experiment and use the noodles that you enjoy or have on hand while keeping the texture and thickness in mind.

SEE ALSO: Saffron Rice Recipe

What to serve with Chicken Chow Mein

1. Vegetable and Pork Spring Rolls

These crispy veggie and pork spring rolls can be made ahead and frozen, so they’re perfect for those evenings when you’re entertaining guests but don’t have a great deal of time on your hands.

2. Steamed prawn wontons

The combination of chicken chow me in, and prawn wonton is a delicious combination of flavour variety. This recipe for steamed prawn wontons is simple, straightforward, and absolutely delicious! It gets better when served with ginger vinegar sauce, so don’t be tempted to skip that step.

3. Egg Fried Rice

Egg-fried rice is a staple Chinese dish because of how versatile it is. You can keep it super simple or throw in extra veggies, prawns, and protein to use up any leftovers you might have in your kitchen.

4. Scallion pancakes 

They’re flaky, crispy, light, and multilayered, and though they require some skill and plenty of practice, you can pair this side dish with chicken chow mein because it’s a fairly simple but delicious combination.

SEE ALSO: Chicken Soup Recipe

5. Spring Rolls

Spring rolls are another popular Chinese appetizer that can be served alongside chicken chow mein. These fried or baked rolls filled with vegetables and sometimes meat make for a delicious and crispy side dish.

6. Sesame Cucumber Salad

Make a simple sesame cucumber salad by tossing thinly sliced cucumbers with soy sauce, rice vinegar, sesame oil, and sesame seeds. This refreshing salad provides a cool and tangy contrast to the warm chow mein.

7. Steamed Vegetables

Serve a side of steamed vegetables such as broccoli, carrots, snow peas, or bok choy. Steamed vegetables provide a fresh and nutritious element to balance the flavours of the chow mein.

8. Chinese Cabbage Salad

Prepare a refreshing Chinese cabbage salad with thinly sliced Napa cabbage, carrots, bell peppers, and a tangy dressing. The salad’s crisp texture and zesty flavours can complement the savoury chow mein.

Chicken Chow Mein
Chicken Chow Mein

SEE ALSO: Chicken Lemon Pepper Recipe: (How to make the best Chicken Lemon Pepper)

Chicken Chow Mein Nutritional Facts

There are 513 calories in 1 order (604.000g) serving size of Restaurant, Chinese, chicken chow mein. The calorie breakdown is 30% fat, 39% carbs, and 32% protein.

Calorie Information

Amounts Per Selected Serving %DV

Calories 513 (2146 kJ) 26%

Carbohydrate 200 (837 kJ) 8%

From Fat 152 (636 kJ) 6%

From Protein 163 (682 kJ) 6%

Fats and Proteins

Amounts Per Selected Serving %DV

Protein 41g 82%

Total Fat 17g 22%

Saturated Fat 3g 15%

Trans Fat 0g

Polyunsaturated Fat 7g

 Monounsaturated Fat 4g


Amounts Per Selected Serving %DV

Total Carbohydrate 50g 18%

 Dietary Fiber 6g 22%

 Sugars 11g


Amounts Per Selected Serving %DV

Vitamin A 115µg 13%

Vitamin C 12mg 13%

Vitamin E 3mg 17%

Vitamin K 133µg 166%

Thiamin (B1) 0mg 16%

Riboflavin (B2) 0mg 11%

Niacin (B3) 9mg 55%

Vitamin B6 1mg 62%

Vitamin B12 0µg 18%

Chicken Chow Mein
Chicken Chow Mein


FAQs About Chicken Chow Mein

What are the main ingredients in chicken chow mein?

The main ingredients in chicken chow mein typically include chicken (sliced or diced), chow mein noodles, vegetables (such as bell peppers, onions, carrots, and bean sprouts), and a savory sauce. The sauce usually includes a combination of soy sauce, oyster sauce, sesame oil, and other seasonings.

Are chow mein noodles the same as regular noodles?

Chow mein noodles are not the same as regular noodles. Chow mein noodles are typically thin and crisp, similar to fried or steamed egg noodles. Regular noodles, on the other hand, can vary in thickness and texture, and they are often boiled or cooked differently.

Is Chow Mein the same as Lo Mein?

While both Chow Mein and Lo Mein are Chinese noodle dishes, they are not the same. The main difference lies in the preparation of the noodles. Chow Mein noodles are typically stir-fried until they become crispy, while Lo Mein noodles are boiled and then mixed with the sauce and ingredients.

Are there any vegetarian or vegan versions of Chow Mein?

You can easily make vegetarian or vegan versions of Chow Mein by omitting the meat and using tofu or a variety of vegetables as the main protein source. Just ensure the sauce and noodles are vegan-friendly.

Can I use different meats instead of chicken to prepare chow mein?

You can substitute the chicken with other meats such as beef, pork, shrimp, or tofu to make Beef Chow Mein, Pork Chow Mein, Shrimp Chow Mein, or Vegetable Chow Mein, respectively.


Chicken chow mein stands as a testament to the versatility of Chinese cuisine. Its combination of tender chicken, stir-fried noodles, and vegetables creates a symphony of flavours that leave taste buds yearning for more.

Whether enjoyed in a bustling Chinese restaurant or lovingly prepared at home, this iconic dish has captivated palates worldwide.

Through its popularity and adaptation in different regions, chicken chow mein has transcended cultural boundaries, finding its place on menus across the globe. Its ability to be customized and modified according to personal preferences and dietary needs further underscores its appeal and accessibility.

So, whether you savour chicken chow mein as comfort food, a celebratory dish, or simply an exploration of Chinese cuisine, it remains an enduring favourite that continues to delight and satiate appetites with its exquisite blend of flavours and textures.

As you embark on your culinary adventures, may each bite of chicken chow mein transport you to a world of tantalizing tastes and cultural richness.

About Author