Thai Basil Chicken (Kai Kraphao)
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4 servings
Adapted from Simply Thai Cooking, by Wandee Young and Byron Ayanoglu.
  • 10 ounces (284 g) chicken breast, boneless and skinless
  • 1/2 medium bell pepper (green or red), cut into 1/2-inch squares
  • 5 tablespoons sunflower oil
  • 1 teaspoon chopped garlic
  • 6 fresh hot chiles, roughly chopped (adjust to your heat tolerance)
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 1 teaspoon palm sugar (or light brown sugar)
  • 1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon oyster sauce
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 20 whole leaves fresh Thai basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon cold water

  • steamed brown jasmine rice
  1. Slice the chicken breast into thin strips, 1/4-inch (5 mm) thick by 2 inches (5 cm) long and about 1 inch (2.5 cm) wide. To achieve very thin slices, put the chicken breasts into the freezer for about 20 minutes to harden slightly, then slice. Set aside.
  2. Pour oil into the cold wok and add the garlic and chiles. Cook over high heat until the aromas start to release. Add the sliced chicken and stir-fry for about 2 minutes.
  3. Add the fish sauce, sugar, and soy sauce and stir-fry for another minute. Add the oyster sauce and 2 tablespoons of water and cook for 30 seconds.
  4. Add the peppers and 16 of the basil leaves and stir-fry for 2 minutes, until the peppers start to soften.
  5. Dissolve the cornstarch in 1 tablespoon of cold water, add to the wok, and stir-fry for 1 minute, until the sauce thickens.
  6. Remove from heat and transfer to a serving dish. Garnish with the remaining basil leaves and serve immediately with steamed jasmine rice.
More Information


Recipe Notes:

I use and recommend Three Crabs Fish Sauce for best flavor.
Recipe by Andrea Meyers at