If you regularly follow That Salad Lady, you’re probably wondering how a stir fry recipe landed on our site. It all started with a TikTok video where our founder, Nina, shared her story of losing a whopping 65 pounds after eating vegetable stir fries for almost four months.
Growing up Nina hated eating vegetables, so this was a big deal. She was only convinced to try a veggie stir fry after her mom was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes and suggested they start eating healthier to lose weight together. As her family didn’t have a lot of money, stir fries were an easy way to eat healthy on a tight budget.
Ask That Salad Lady and she’ll tell you that eating her first stir fry was literally the first time she’d ever eaten veggies and actually liked them. Her mom’s recipe was just a simple blend of broccoli, bell pepper and onion made with chicken and seasoned with a prepackaged mix.
After eating stir fries religiously and biking outdoors several days a week, in less than four months she went from 215 pounds to 150.
It’s been almost three decades since her remarkable weight loss and That Salad Lady has completely transformed her mom’s simple stir fry blend to a colorful vegetable medley with a flavor bomb of all-natural herbs and spices. She calls it her “cooked salad.”
In response to dozens and dozens of requests, she put together what’s now our “Teriyaki Chicken Stir Fry” recipe. We know you’ll love it as much as we do.
THE BALANCING ACT
If you’re watching your weight, stir fries are great to include in your weekly meal rotation. Indeed, That Salad Lady largely attributes her initial weight loss success to regularly eating stir fries. But why? Well, for one thing, the stir fry preparations her mom prepared were always chock-full of non-starchy vegetables.
Whether low-carb, vegan or all-inclusive diets, non-starchy veggies are always at the top of the list of “approved” foods. There’s good reason for this.
Besides being packed with fiber, micronutrients and disease-fighting antioxidants, of all plant-based foods, non-starchy veggies are the lowest in calories, carbohydrates and sugar so you can eat as much of them as you’d like. Even combining just a few of these veggies can add great flavor, texture and nutrition to practically any meal, this is especially true for those with the brightest colors (visit our Nutrition Glossary to learn why).
Our Teriyaki Chicken Stir Fry recipe is the perfect blend of non-starchy veggies across the color spectrum. We also include sizable amounts of quality protein and fat to give you the most nutritional bang for your buck. The recipe itself is naturally low in carbs and can easily be adapted to suit a vegan or vegetarian eating style.
Now, let’s talk more specifically about the ingredients we’ve chosen and why.
Some of the Brightest and Best
As we’ve already mentioned, non-starchy veggies come in a rainbow of colors. Each color comes with different phytonutrients that benefit various aspects of your health. Our stir fry recipe includes carrots, sugar snap peas and several different shades of bell peppers, all of which are crisp, fresh and deliciously sweet, and among the brightest and best of non-starchy veggies.
Carrots and peppers are especially rich in beta-carotene, a powerful carotenoid phytonutrient that the body converts to vitamin A. Vitamin A is a fat-soluble vitamin that plays a vital role in normal vision, immune health and even the health and appearance of your skin.
Similar to carrots and peppers, snap peas contain carotenoids that support healthy vision, but they also house large amounts of vitamin K, another fat-soluble vitamin known to support heart health and blood pressure control.
A Mighty Trio of Cruciferous Veggies
The strong, unique flavors of cruciferous vegetables can bring any stir fry recipe to life. You might not know them by their technical name, but “crucifers” include broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower, all of which we’ve included in our Teriyaki Chicken Stir Fry recipe.
Their main claim to fame is an extraordinarily high presence of cancer-fighting phytonutrients, which are released when they’re chewed. We purposely chose red cabbage over green due to its higher content of antioxidants. Along with superior nutrition and flavor, crucifers bring great texture to the bowl.
The Antioxidant Power of Alliums
A stir fry just isn’t a stir fry without loads of onions and garlic. That’s why we include plenty of them in our Teriyaki Chicken Stir Fry recipe. Technically classified as “allium vegetables,” onions and garlic come with sweet, savory and pungent flavors and also bring a whole lot of antioxidant power to the bowl.
As both an allium and an herb, garlic contains many unique phytonutrients that boast powerful antibacterial, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. Our recipe specifically calls for freshly minced garlic, as it is most effective when freshly crushed or cut. Though not as potent, you can also use jarred minced garlic if that’s all you have. However, jarred versions do tend to have “off” flavors, which might be detectable in your finished stir fry.
When it comes to onions, we suggest using both yellow and green onions, as they deliver different flavors and nutrition. Green onions bring a nice mild bite to the bowl and also deliver good doses of carotenoids and vitamin K. Along with red onions, yellow onions contain more antioxidants than other types. They also become increasingly sweeter when cooked, making them among the best all-around flavor enhancers.
Chicken to Punch Up the Protein
You’ve probably already guessed that our Teriyaki Chicken Stir Fry recipe includes “chicken.” As the only quality protein source in the recipe, it packs a powerful punch. We suggest using chopped boneless skinless chicken breast, as it’s the leanest cut. In addition to protein, you can also get an ample supply of B vitamins and antioxidants from chicken breast.
If chopping raw chicken isn’t in the cards, you can use pre-cut and pan-ready chicken, which is available in fresh and frozen varieties.
A Seasoning Mix of Champions
Finally, we spruce up our stir fry recipe with a flavorful mix of herbs and spices (see recipe card) in addition to That Salad Lady’s homemade teriyaki sauce, which is definitely the highlight of the recipe. The sauce is a super savory blend of soy sauce, honey, orange juice, herbs and spices. Add it to your stir fry and you’ll think you’re eating authentic Chinese food. You can use it as a marinade too!
GET YOUR CHOP ON
Just as we told you before, there’s a pretty hefty amount of non-starchy veggies in our Teriyaki Chicken Stir Fry. With so many veggies, our recipe calls for quite a bit of chopping. It’s good practice for building up your culinary skills! As always, using a high-quality chef’s knife will make the process a whole lot easier.
If chopping veggies isn’t convenient for you, feel free to use pre-cut fresh or frozen veggie mixes instead. What’s great is that these versions typically retain most of their nutritional value. There are tons of bright-colored blends on the market so build your bowl with whatever combination works best for you.
Once you’ve chopped up (or chosen) your veggies, combine them all in a large colander, shake up the mix well, and then transfer the whole mixture to a large bowl. You can set the bowl of veggies aside as you prepare the teriyaki sauce and cook the chicken.
Stir frying is a quick and easy Chinese cooking method in which a variety of ingredients are fried in small amounts of oil while being tossed or ‘stirred’ in a wok. As our Teriyaki Chicken Stir Fry stays true to this method, we carry out the recipe using a wok. If you don’t own a wok, don’t fret about it – you can use a large skillet instead. You’ll also need a small saucepan to prepare the teriyaki sauce.
We suggest preparing the teriyaki sauce first. You’ll simply mix the ingredients in your saucepan, heat the mixture over medium heat until it thickens, and then set it aside until you cook the chicken and vegetable ingredients. Refer to the recipe card below for step-by-step instructions on how to prepare the sauce and other ingredients.
All and all, making a stir fry is a straightforward process – just add oil, heat it and stir in ingredients. Our recipe calls for using avocado oil, a high-quality, neutral-flavored oil pressed from the pulp of the avocado fruit. Avocado oil is as nutritious as avocados themselves (visit our Nutrition Glossary to learn more). Other neutral-flavored oils like sesame, vegetable or pure olive oil also work.
After coating your skillet or wok with oil, you’ll first cook the chopped chicken until it browns (7-10 minutes), and then set it aside as you prepare the veggie ingredients.
From here on out, you’ll basically add more oil to your wok or skillet, stir in the veggies, and then top them off with dried seasonings. For the final ‘stir,’ you’ll just add back in the pre-cooked chicken, stir in the teriyaki sauce (to your desired level), and then continue to stir fry the blend for a few more minutes until all the veggies are crisp and tender. That’s it!
BUILD YOUR BOWL
All put together, our Teriyaki Chicken Stir Fry recipe is large enough for 4-6 generous-sized portions. This includes the teriyaki sauce fully prepared as per the recipe. If you’re planning for leftovers, this stir fry can last in your fridge for up to 3-4 days so long as it’s stored in an airtight container.
You have countless options when it comes to building your bowl. Enjoy it with grains like rice or quinoa. Perhaps even serve it on a bed of leafy greens like arugula (as we do) for a “cooked salad.” Visit our Nutrition Glossary so you can confidently choose the best greens for you.
Though our recipe calls for chopped chicken breast, you can easily replace the chicken with equal portions of another quality protein source like shrimp, beef or your favorite meatless substitute for a vegan-friendly blend. It’s all about building a bowl that works best for YOU.
SHOW US YOUR BOWL
That Salad Lady wants to see your bowl! If you like it, which we are sure you will, drop a comment below and tag pics on Instagram with @thatsaladlady, #thatsaladlady and #buildyourbowl. If you love it, pin it on Pinterest and share it on Facebook and Twitter using #thatsaladlady.
This information is provided as a courtesy and is only an estimate. Please review our full disclaimer to get a clear understanding of the nutrition and health information and resources presented and written on our website.