Moo goo gai pan is a delicious chicken and mushroom stir fry with a light, clear sauce. An easy chicken & vegetable stir fry ready in 20 minutes!
Moo goo gai pan is a tasty stir fry made with sliced chicken, mushrooms, and vegetables stir fried together in a light, clear Chinese sauce.
The direct translation for ‘moo goo gai pan’ means button mushrooms with sliced chicken. ‘Moo goo’ means button mushrooms and ‘gai pan’ means sliced chicken. That’s why you’ll always see sliced chicken and mushrooms in this dish, along with other vegetables.
Why this recipe works
- It’s a delicious, healthy recipe that’s made with lean, boneless, skinless chicken breast and an assortment of vegetables.
- A quick and easy weeknight meal that tastes even better than takeout and ready in 20 minutes!
- It’s low carb friendly because the sauce isn’t as sweet as other stir fry sauces and you can serve this with cauliflower rice.
- Versatile recipe – make this with any vegetables you have on hand. It’s traditionally made with chicken but any protein would taste amazing! Try it with shrimp, pork, beef, or fish!
Ingredients you’ll need
- Chicken – I used boneless, skinless chicken breast, sliced thinly. You can use any cut of chicken you’d like.
- Mushrooms – traditionally button mushrooms are used but I opted for shiitake mushrooms since they have more flavor. Use any mushrooms you like!
- Vegetables – about 4 cups for 4 servings. Use any combination of vegetables you have on hand. Broccoli, snow peas, carrots, and onions are excellent in this recipe.
- Water chestnuts – great for adding crunchy texture!
Moo Goo Gai Pan Sauce
The sauce is a light, clear sauce usually called Chinese white sauce. It’s made from clear vegetable or chicken broth, flavored with garlic and ginger, and thickened with cornstarch.
The ingredients are clear chicken or vegetable stock, garlic, ginger, salt, sweetener (optional), sesame oil, and cornstarch.
Step by step instructions
- Start by marinate the chicken while prepping the other ingredients.
- Mix the ingredients for the white sauce sauce together in a medium size bowl.
- Cook the chicken in a pan or wok for 2 to 3 minutes and set it aside.
- Stir fry the mushrooms, broccoli, carrots for about 3 minutes.
- Add the chicken back into the pan along with the bamboo shoots and water chestnut. Continue cooking for 1 minute.
- Add the sauce into the pan and quickly toss everything together until the sauce thickens and becomes clear. This should take about 2 minutes.
- Once the white sauce turns clear and thickens up, it’s ready to serve.
Sprinkle sesame seeds for garnish and serve immediately.
Variations & substitutions
- Substitute with any vegetables you have on hand. You want about 4 cups of vegetables for 4 servings.
- Vegetable options: cabbage, bok choy, celery, baby corn, sugar snap peas, and zucchini would all make great additions to this recipe!
- Protein options: This dish is traditionally made with chicken but you can substitute with any protein of your choice! Shrimp, pork, beef, or other seafood would delicious as well.
- If you want to make a spicy moo goo gai pan, I recommend any of the following to add a bit of heat: chili pepper flakes, lao gan ma, sriracha, Szechuan chili peppers.
Frequently asked questions
This is a popular Americanized Cantonese dish made with sliced chicken and button mushrooms.
‘Moo goo gai pan’ means button mushrooms with sliced chicken. ‘Moo goo’ translates to button mushrooms and ‘gai pan’ translates to sliced chicken. That’s why you’ll always see sliced chicken and mushrooms in this dish, along with other vegetables.
The sauce is a Chinese white sauce that’s made of clear chicken or vegetable broth, garlic, and ginger. It’s a light sauce that’s thickened with cornstarch. The absence of soy sauce gives this a light color which is why it’s called a white sauce.
This recipe has 326 calories per serving and is made with lean, skinless, boneless chicken breast. You can choose to use any vegetables you’d like but traditionally mushrooms are always included.
You can make this a part of a low carb meal by serving this with cauliflower rice and using low carb vegetables.
More chicken stir fry recipes:
- Chicken Chow Mein with Vegetables – Better than Takeout!
- The Best Chicken Lo Mein
- Panda Express Kung Pao Chicken Copycat
- Panda Express Mushroom Chicken Copycat
- Honey Garlic Chicken Stir Fry
- Panda Express String Bean Chicken Breast Copycat
- PF Chang’s Inspired Chicken Lettuce Wraps
- Sweet & Tangy Pineapple Chicken Stir Fry
Moo Goo Gai Pan
- 1 lb boneless skinless chicken breast – sliced thinly
- 1 ½ cups shiitake mushrooms – sliced
- 2 cups broccoli – cut into bite size pieces
- 1 cup carrots – sliced
- 1 cup snow peas
- ½ cup onions – chopped
- 8 oz sliced water chestnut
- 8 oz bamboo shoots
- 2 Tablespoons avocado oil – for stir frying
- toasted white sesame seeds – (optional) for garnish
- Marinate the chicken while you prep the vegetables and prepare the sauce.
- Mix together the ingredients for the sauce in a medium sized bowl and set it aside.
- Heat a pan or wok over medium high heat and add the oil. Once the pan is hot, add the sliced chicken to the pan and let it cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Remove it from the pan and set it aside.
- Add the mushrooms, broccoli, carrots, and onions to the pan. Stir fry together for about 2 to 3 minutes and then add the snow peas and cook for another minute.
- Add the chicken back into the pan along with the water chestnut and bamboo shoots.
- Finally add the sauce to the pan and toss to combine everything together until the sauce thickens up and becomes clear. Keeping things moving in the pan so the sauce evenly coats the vegetables. This should take about 1 to 2 minutes.
- Garnish with sesame seeds and serve immediately.
*Nutritional information is an estimate, calculated using online tools.