a peek inside the fishbowl

15 Oct, 2010

Will they eat it: peanut butter and chicken

Posted by andrea tomkins in: Recipes and Food

The kids like peanut butter. And they like chicken. So what could they possibly not like about chicken in an Asian-inspired peanutty sauce?

Plenty, it seems.


Here’s what my dinner looked like before it was devoured (by me):

Peanut chicken

It may not look like much, but it was deeelicious.

I don’t care what my kids say. This recipe is a keeper. I don’t care if my kids pushed the chicken around their plates and ate a 1.5 cm piece (total) of chicken. I would gladly make this again. I’m sure it will grow on them. Also, it made great leftovers for lunch the next day.

This recipe is adapted from the Joy of Cooking.

You will need:

  • 3 bone-in chicken breasts
  • 1/4 cup natural (a.k.a. sugar-free) peanut butter
  • 2-3 tablespoons of sesame oil
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar
  • 3 teaspoons peeled and finely chopped fresh ginger
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 scallion, finely chopped
  • hot pepper flakes/sauce (optional)

Bring a large pot of water to boil and drop in the chicken. Boil about 10 minutes until the chicken is no longer pink inside. Remove and let cool.

Grab a medium-sized bowl and combine the peanut butter and enough of the sesame oil to make it smooth and liquidy. Add the soy sauce, vinegar, sugar, ginger, and scallion (don’t forget to leave a bit of it to sprinkle on top at the afterwards).

Remove the bones from the cooled chicken. Using your fingers – or two forks would work too – tear the chicken along the grain into bite-sized chunks. Place in a bowl and mix thoroughly with the peanut sauce. (This part can be made the day before it’s served!)

I served it (warmish – not hot) with vermicelli noodles and sliced cucumbers (as per photo). Oh, it was so good. Let me know if you try it, and what your kids think.

Next recipe is for a fish we’ve never eaten before: tilapia.

15 Responses to "Will they eat it: peanut butter and chicken"

1 | Sara

October 15th, 2010 at 6:53 am


It looks delicious! I am a huge fan of anything peanut butter :)

2 | meanie

October 15th, 2010 at 7:34 am


guess what I’m making for dinner tonight! I’ll have some kraft dinner on hand as back up :)
we have been right into tilapia lately, i should dig up a recipe i use that the kids actually enjoy.

3 | Sherry

October 15th, 2010 at 7:41 am


It sounds good but I’m even more eager to hear about your next recipe since I’ve never made (or eaten, actually) tilapia before. My husband isn’t a huge fish fan, really only enjoying mackerel because he doesn’t like a strong fishy taste. I’ve heard tilapia is quite mild, so I’ll be interested in how yours comes out.

4 | Stephanie

October 15th, 2010 at 7:49 am


This is very similar to my favourite recipe ever for peanut butter chicken, except mine marinates overnight for super tender, flavourful chicken. I highly recommend it if you have the time to prep the night before.

½ cup of peanut butter (full-fat, regular old PB works best – it seems to stick to the chicken better)
¼ cup soy sauce
¼ cup hot water
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 tablespoon lime juice
2 teaspoons sugar
¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper or a few drops of Tabasco sauce
1 clove garlic, crushed
3 chicken breasts, chopped into cubes

1. Whisk together all ingredients, except the chicken, until it makes a smooth paste. Add chopped chicken and coat well. For best results, marinate overnight.

2. Soak bamboo skewers for 15 minutes. Thread chicken onto skewers, discarding remaining marinade.

3. Grill chicken until no longer pink in the centre.

5 | Melanie B

October 15th, 2010 at 8:58 am


That looks amazing! Can’t wait to try it. I love tilapia too, I usually make it with a lemon-parm-breadcrumb-ish topping. Looking forward to the recipe!

Stephanie, your recipe looks great too – i think i’ll try adding peppers to the skewers…mmm…

6 | Kellie

October 15th, 2010 at 10:58 am


Martha Stewart has the best Fish Taco recipe in her Everyday Cooking cook book – made with Tilapia. I could literally eat it every day. Sour cream, lime, red cabbage, cilantro … yum, yum. My kids like it, but they aren’t picky eaters. Fish is very, very mild tasing.
But THIS , THIS peanut butter chicken thing-y is next on my list. Trying it next week, thanks for the recipe, Andrea. Keep ’em coming.

7 | Carrie C

October 15th, 2010 at 11:35 am


That recipe looks great! I would add some carrots, maybe a carrot slaw with a rice wine vinaigrette – kind of like the pickled carrots that you sometimes get in a Vietnamese vermicelli bowl. Tasty!

8 | Javamom

October 15th, 2010 at 3:06 pm


I think I can make this for my two munchins. They eat peanut pad thai from the local thai shoppe up the road…sounds delish!

9 | Miss Vicky

October 15th, 2010 at 8:49 pm


hm, wonder how it would work with soynut butter…

10 | Carly

October 15th, 2010 at 9:21 pm


Alas for peanut allergies and the lack of peanut butter in the house. (Miss. Vicky, I have made it with soynut butter – it works, but it’s not the same.)

Talapia is my favourite fish, bar none. Can’t wait to see what you do with it!

11 | andrea

October 15th, 2010 at 9:31 pm


You can also trying making it with sesame paste – unless that wouldn’t work re: allergies?

12 | Finola

October 15th, 2010 at 11:12 pm


But there is no way my kids would eat this, even if we didn’t have a peanut allergy in the house.
But tilapia is yum….I’m sure that will be a hit if they like fish!

13 | andrea

October 16th, 2010 at 7:37 am


Finola – you’ve brought up an interesting issue that I find myself struggling with: should parents only cook with their kids in mind? If not, what percentage of meals being chosen and served should be ones that kids love? 50/50? More? Less? How do we balance feeding our kids with trying new things?

14 | Ravi Shanghavi

October 17th, 2010 at 4:32 pm


Yum, I’m thinking to try this later on in the week. Thanks much! Cheers, Ravi Shanghavi Ottawa

15 | Mindful Merchant

October 19th, 2010 at 7:33 am


I already know my family would LOVE this recipe. Thank you! We use pea butter in place of the peanut butter and it is a good substitute.

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My name is Andrea and I live in the Westboro area of Ottawa with my husband Mark and our dog Piper who is kind of a big deal on Instagram. We also have two human daughters: Emma (20) and Sarah (18). During the day I work as a writer at The Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre. I am a longtime Ottawa blogger and I've occupied this little corner of the WWW since 1999. The Fishbowl is my whiteboard, water cooler, and journal, all rolled into one. I'm passionate about healthy living, arts and culture, family travel, great gear, good food, and sharing the best of Ottawa for families. I also love vegetables, photography, gadgets, and great design.

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