Chicken and String Beans Recipe (Panda Express Copycat)

One of my personal favorite dishes from Panda Express is their chicken and string beans recipe. I have made a lot of chicken and string bean recipes before, but this one is a must-try! 

chicken and string bean recipes
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Say hello to the Panda Express String Bean Chicken Breast Copycat! As a dietitian, I’m always looking for recipes that are both delicious and nutritious, and this one is perfect for those busy weeknights and you can easily meal prep it. 

The combination of juicy chicken breast and crisp fresh green beans, all stir-fried together with an Asian combo of soy, ginger, and garlic is so delicious. But what’s really cool about this recipe is that it’s not just tasty – it’s also healthy!

Let’s break it down. First up, we’ve got chicken breast, the superhero of lean proteins. It’s great for keeping your muscles strong, helping with weight management, and keeping your energy levels up. Plus, it’s super versatile and cooks up quick.

Then there are those fresh green beans (which you can sub for frozen green beans). Crunchy, colorful, and packed with all sorts of good stuff like vitamins, minerals, and fiber. They’re like little nutrient powerhouses, helping with digestion, boosting your immune system, and keeping you feeling full and satisfied.

And let’s not forget about the sauce – the delicious mix of soy, ginger, and garlic is what really brings it together and reminds of the Panda Express version.  

So, next time you’re craving some takeout, why not whip up this Panda Express String Bean Chicken Breast Copycat instead? It’s quick, it’s easy, and best of all, it’s good for you. Go ahead, dig in and enjoy!

Chicken and String Beans Recipe (Panda Express Copycat)

Why You’ll Love This Chicken and String Beans Recipe

Get ready to fall head over heels for this chicken and string beans recipe! Here’s why it’s bound to become your new favorite:

  1. Quick and Easy: With just 15 minutes of your time, you can make a dish that tastes like it came straight from a restaurant kitchen. This easy recipe is perfect for busy weeknights when you need something delicious in a hurry.
  2. Nutritious and Delicious: As a dietitian-approved dish, this healthy stir fry is a one-pot recipe that comes together so quickly. The main ingredients are loaded with protein from the tender chicken breast, and fiber, it’s a wholesome choice for any mealtime.
  3. Versatile: Don’t be afraid to get creative with this recipe! Just like other stir fries, you can switch up the veggies, add some extra spice, or toss in your favorite nuts for an added crunch. This green beans stir fry is so versatile, so feel free to make it your own.
  4. Budget-Friendly: This Panda Express String Bean Chicken Breast Copycat  version is not only healthier but also easier on the wallet. Plus, you can easily customize the recipe to use whatever ingredients you have on hand. This is also great option to make extra for leftovers for another weeknight dinner.
  5. Family-Friendly: This chicken and string beans recipe is perfect for the whole family. It’s mild enough for kids to enjoy, yet flavorful enough to satisfy even the most discerning palates.
  6. Satisfying: There’s something so satisfying and comforting about digging into a plate of tender chicken and green bean stir fry. It’s hearty, wholesome, and guaranteed to leave you feeling full and content.

Ingredients to Make this Chicken and String Beans Recipe

Since we are making our own ginger soy sauce, there are two parts to the ingredients – the sauce and the stir fry itself. You can definitely opt to use store-bought if you prefer, but I highly recommend making your own.

Chicken and Vegetables

  • Chicken Breast: I like to use boneless skinless chicken breasts for this recipe. You can also use chicken thighs if you prefer or any other protein source.
  • Green Beans: Crisp green beans not only add vibrant color to the stir fry but also provide a crisp bite. You can use either fresh or frozen. 
  • White sweet onions: To make this chicken and string bean recipe close to the copycat, we need to add some sliced onions! If you do not like onions, you can omit and use another vegetable you like. 

Chicken Marinade

  • Soy Sauce: Soy sauce infuses the chicken with savory umami flavor, enhancing its taste and lending depth to the overall dish.
  • Chicken or Vegetable Broth: adds moisture and depth to the marinade.
  • Cornstarch: Cornstarch acts as a binding agent in the marinade, helping to coat the chicken evenly and create a velvety texture upon cooking
  • Brown Sugar: Brown sugar provides a touch of sweetness to balance the savory elements of the marinade, creating a harmonious blend of flavors.

Sauce

  • Chicken broth: Chicken broth adds depth of flavor to the sauce, while also serving as a base for the other ingredients. You can substitute for water if you do not have this on hand. I use a low sodium chicken broth since the other ingredients may also be salty. 
  • Soy sauce: I prefer to use reduced-sodium soy sauce to help control the saltiness in the dish.
  • Brown sugar: For that sweet, caramelized flavor in the sauce. You can substitute with honey or agave if desired.
  • Cornstarch: Helps to thicken the teriyaki sauce.
  • Rice vinegar: Adds a subtle tanginess to the sauce.
  • Sesame Oil: Sesame oil imparts a nutty aroma and distinctive flavor to the sauce, enhancing its depth and providing a subtle yet essential element of Asian cuisine.
  • Garlic: Garlic adds aromatic warmth and pungent flavor to the sauce, elevating its taste profile and infusing the dish with irresistible aroma.
  • Ginger: Ginger brings a zesty and refreshing kick to the sauce, imparting a subtle heat and brightening the overall flavor with its unique spicy-sweet notes.

How to Make Chicken And String Beans Recipes

Follow these simple steps to create this chicken and string bean stir fry:

Marinate the Chicken for the chicken and string beans recipes

  1. In a large bowl, combine the soy sauce, chicken broth, cornstarch, and brown sugar to create the marinade.
  2. Add the thinly sliced diced chicken to the marinade, ensuring each piece is coated evenly. Let it marinate for at least 15-20 minutes to allow the flavors to meld.

Prepare the Sauce for the the chicken and string beans recipe

  1. In a small bowl, whisk together the chicken stock (or water), low-sodium soy sauce, dark soy sauce, brown sugar, cornstarch, rice vinegar, and sesame oil. Set the sauce ingredients aside for later use.

Cook the Stir Fry

  1. Heat avocado oil in a large frying pan, wok, or large skillet over medium-high heat.
  2. Add the chopped white onions to the skillet and sauté until they start to soften and turn translucent.
  3. Next, add the marinated chicken to the skillet and cook until it’s no longer pink and starts to brown.
  4. Toss in the green beans and continue cooking until they are tender yet still crisp.
  5. Stir in the minced garlic and grated ginger, cooking until fragrant.
  6. Finally, pour the prepared sauce over the chicken and vegetables, stirring well to coat everything evenly.
  7. Allow the sauce to simmer and thicken slightly, ensuring all the ingredients are heated through.

Tips for Making Chicken and String Bean Stir Fry

Thinly Slice Chicken: For quick and even cooking, thinly slice the chicken breast into strips about ¼ inch thick. This ensures that the chicken cooks through quickly and remains tender.

Prep Ingredients in Advance: Before you start cooking, make sure all your ingredients are prepped and ready to go. This includes slicing the vegetables, mincing the garlic, and grating the ginger. Having everything ready beforehand will streamline the cooking process.

Marinate the Chicken: Allow the chicken to marinate for at least 15-20 minutes. The best way to do this is to prepare it ahead of time so the marinade ingredients can infuse into the pieces of chicken and have it taste more like the Panda Express copycat recipe. 

Cook in Batches: To prevent overcrowding the pan and ensure proper browning, cook the chicken and vegetables in batches. This allows each ingredient to cook evenly and develop a golden exterior.

Don’t Overcook the Vegetables: Green beans should be cooked until they are crisp-tender, retaining their vibrant color and slight crunch. Be careful not to overcook them, as they can become mushy if left on the heat for too long.

Thicken Sauce to Preference: If you prefer a thicker sauce, allow it to simmer for a few extra minutes until it reaches your desired consistency. Conversely, if you prefer a thinner sauce, you can adjust the amount of cornstarch or chicken stock accordingly.

Adjust Seasonings: Taste the dish before serving and adjust the seasonings if necessary. You can add more soy sauce for saltiness, brown sugar for sweetness, or a splash of rice vinegar for acidity to balance the flavors to your liking. Remember just a little bit goes a long way, so make sure to taste test.

Popular Substitutions & Additions

These are some substitutions and additions you can make to this chicken and green beans recipe:

Brown Rice or cauliflower rice: to make this dish more filling, serve your chicken and string bean stir fry over cooked brown rice. Brown rice adds fiber and nutrients to the meal, making it a satisfying and filling choice. And if you prefer something more low carb, you can use cauliflower rice. This bean chicken stir fry served over rice is a great option to add volume to this meal.

Vegetable Oil: While avocado oil is recommended for stir frying due to its high smoke point, vegetable oil can also be used as a substitute. Vegetable oil is neutral in flavor and works well for cooking at high temperatures.

Olive Oil: For a healthier option, use olive oil instead of vegetable oil. Olive oil adds a rich, fruity flavor to the dish and offers heart-healthy benefits. 

Garlic Powder and onion powder: If you’re out of fresh garlic, you can use garlic powder or onion powder as a substitute. 

Lemon Juice: For a bright and tangy twist, drizzle a bit of lemon juice over the finished stir fry just before serving. Lemon juice adds a refreshing acidity that balances the savory flavors of the dish.

Switch up the veggies: Add sliced bell peppers such as red peppers, yellow peppers, or orange peppers, for extra color and sweetness.You can also add carrots and mushrooms to add more volume and veggies to this meal.  

Add some heat: To add some heat to your stir fry, sprinkle red pepper flakes, white pepper or sweet chili sauce over the chicken and vegetables during cooking. Start with a small amount and adjust to taste according to your spice preference.

Sriracha Sauce: For those who love extra heat, drizzle sriracha sauce over the finished stir fry or stir it into the sauce mixture before cooking. Sriracha adds bold flavor and fiery heat that complements the other ingredients.

Add shaoxing wine. If you consume alcohol, add shaoxing wine instead of broth of chicken stock to the sauce for a more authentic flavor.

Storing and Reheating Chicken and String Bean Stir Fry

Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 3-4 days.

Reheat on the stovetop on medium heat or medium high heat in the microwave until warmed through (do not overcook).If you reheat in the microwave, make sure to cover it loosely with a microwave-safe lid or paper towel. Microwave on high in 30-second intervals, stirring in between, until the stir fry is heated through, about 1-2 minutes.You may also want to add a little additional sauce before serving, as it may dry out a bit during storage and reheating.

How long do chicken and string bean recipes last in the fridge?

The chicken and string bean stir fry will typically last in the refrigerator for about 3 to 4 days when stored properly in an airtight container. 

Can I freeze this string bean chicken recipe?

Yes, you can freeze this recipe for longer-term storage. But keep in mind the veggies may become soggy or softer than you’d like.  The texture of the chicken may also become slightly tougher upon thawing. To freeze, place leftovers in a freezer-safe container or bag and store them for up to 3 months.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Panda Express String Bean Chicken healthy?

While Panda Express String Bean Chicken can be a tasty option, its healthiness can depend on things such as portion size, cooking methods, and ingredients used. Generally, a dish like String Bean Chicken can be a good source of protein from the chicken and fiber from the string beans. However, it may also contain a lot of additives like added sugars, sodium, and fats that do add many more calories.

Are canned string beans healthy?

Canned string beans can still provide nutritional benefits, but they may not be as nutrient-dense as fresh or frozen varieties. Canned string beans are often cooked during the canning process, which can result in some loss of nutrients. Also canned string beans may contain added sodium or preservatives for flavor and preservation.

How long do I cook string beans for?

String beans typically require a relatively short cooking time to retain their crispness and vibrant color. To cook string beans, simply blanch them in boiling water for about 2-3 minutes until they are crisp-tender. Alternatively, you can stir-fry or sauté string beans in a hot skillet or wok for 4-5 minutes until they are tender yet still slightly crunchy.

Chicken and String Beans Recipes

Incorporating fresh ingredients and authentic flavors, this crispy chicken stir fry recipe is the perfect addition to your dinner rotation and makes a quick and easy weeknight meal. This is one of those quick and easy stir fry recipes that is best enjoyed with a side of white rice or cauliflower rice. This easy stir fry recipe is a complete meal that is well rounded and can really help you reach your daily values for nutrition like protein and fiber needs.

Pair it with a side of steamed white rice or cauliflower rice for an easy dinner recipe that’s perfect for busy nights or easy weeknight dinners.

With its flavors and simple preparation, this easy chicken stir fry is a great recipe to have on hand for those nights when you need a quick and delicious dinner option. Whether you’re craving Chinese food or looking for a healthy chicken stir fry recipe, this crispy chicken stir fry is sure to satisfy your cravings. Plus, it’s a freezer meal-friendly dish, making it a convenient option for meal prep and planning ahead.

More Quick and Easy Dinner Recipes

If you try this Chicken and String Bean Stir Fry recipe, or any other recipe on The MomNutritionist, then don’t forget to rate the recipe and leave a comment below! And if you took some pictures of this chicken and string beans recipe, share it on Instagram so I can repost on Stories!

chicken and green beans stir fry recipe

Chicken and String Beans Recipe (Panda Express Copycat)

This quick and easy Chicken and String Beans Recipe, is inspired by Panda Express. This easy-to-make stir fry is made from tender chicken breast slices and crisp string beans, tossed in a savory soy ginger garlic sauce. Perfect for a quick weeknight meal perfect for the whole family.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Marinade 30 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Course Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine asian, Chinese
Servings 4 servings
Calories 267 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 lb chicken breast thinly sliced, about 1/4 inch thick
  • 1 1/2 cups green beans cut into 2 inch pieces
  • 1 cup white onions chopped
  • 2 tablespoons avocado oil
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds optional, for serving

Chicken Marinade

  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons chicken stock
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon brown sugar

Sauce

  • 3 tablespoons chicken stock
  • 3 teaspoons low sodium soy sauce
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon rice vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 3/4 teaspoon ginger grated

Instructions
 

  • In a medium size bowl, combine the ingredients for the marinade and add in the thinly sliced chicken breast, beans and onions. Allow this to marinate in the fridge for at least 30 minutes to overnight.
  • In another small bowl, add all the ingredients for the sauce and set aside.
  • Heat a large skillet over medium high heat and add oil. Wait until the pan is hot and then lay the chicken pieces flat in a single layer* – leave out the marinade. After 1-2 minutes, flip over the chicken and repeat. Remove the chicken from the pan.
  • Add the green beans and white onions to the pan and sauté for 2-3 minutes. Lower the heat to medium and add the chicken back in.
  • Mix the sauce and add as much sauce as you like, use less if you prefer less sauce. Sauté everything together for 1-2 minutes until the sauce has thickened.
  • Top with sesame seeds. Serve immediately.

Notes

*To get a good sear, don’t crowd the pan and leave the chicken pieces alone until you get a golden brown color.
Store leftovers in an airtight container and keep in the fridge for up to 3 days. 

Nutrition

Calories: 267kcalCarbohydrates: 12gProtein: 27gFat: 12gSaturated Fat: 2gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0.01gCholesterol: 73mgSodium: 547mgPotassium: 625mgFiber: 2gSugar: 5gVitamin A: 320IUVitamin C: 10mgCalcium: 57mgIron: 1mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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