This easy Chinese Chow Mein recipe is made with noodles, vegetables, chicken, and a simple chow mein sauce.  It’s better than Panda Express, and healthy too!

Chinese food is good but homemade Chinese food is just next level!  Real ingredients prepared fresh in your kitchen is the healthiest and most delicious way to eat!  I love to serve chow mein with Mongolian Beef, Sweet and Sour Chicken, or a host of other easy Chinese food recipes!

Overhead photo of chicken chow mein served in a wooden bowl with chopsticks.

Chinese Chow Mein

I am absolutely obsessed with this chow mein recipe because of how easy it is to make, how fresh it tastes, and how much my family enjoys it. I can have dinner on the table in less than 20 minutes, and it includes vegetables and protein.

If you’re looking to mix-things-up at dinner time, this recipe is a real winner! The flavors are amazing and it’s easy to adapt to add the type of vegetables and noodles that you have on hand.

What is Chow Mein?

Chow mein is a stir-fry noodle dish that is made in many different variations.  Traditional chow mein is made with fried noodles but often chow mein is prepared with boiled lo mine, chow mein, or yaki-soba noodles.  Then it is added to a vegetable stir fry with chicken or beef and a chow mein sauce.

If you would like to make this chow mein recipe even more authentic, try frying the noodles in a little bit of oil before adding them to the pan.

What is Chow Mein made of?

There are many variations of chow mein but this chow mein is made with noodles, cabbage, celery, green onions, and garlic.

Chow Mein sauce is made with sesame oil, soy sauce, oyster sauce, ginger, brown sugar, and cornstarch.

I like to use refrigerated yakisoba noodles to make chow mein, but you can use dried chow mein noodles, lo mein, or spaghetti noodles. Yakisoba noodles can be found at most grocery stores near the tofu and wonton wrappers, in the refrigerated section.

The ingredients needed to make chow mein including celery, cabbage, carrot, green onion, chicken, garlic and sauce next to another photo of a package of yakisoba noodles.

What other vegetables can I add to Chow Mein?

Feel free to add more vegetables to your chow mein! Bok choy, bell peppers, mushrooms, snap peas, broccoli, and water chestnuts would all work well.

How to make chow mein:
  • Prepare noodles according to package directions.
  • In a small bowl, whisk the sauce ingredients together: sesame oil, soy sauce, oyster sauce, ginger, brown sugar, and cornstarch
  • Heat a large pan or wok on high heat. Add oil. Add chicken, season with salt and pepper and stir fry just until cooked through.
  • Add cabbage, carrots and the whites of the chopped green onion and stir fry for just for 1-2 minutes or until cabbage has wilted.
  • Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds.
  • Add the pasta and sauce and cook for 1-2 minutes until the sauce has thickened. Add remaining green onion and fresh bean sprouts, if desired. Serve immediately.

Three process photos for making chow mein including sautéing the chicken in a wok, adding the vegetables, and pouring in the sauce.

What’s the difference between lo mein and chow mein?

Lo Mein and Chow Mein are two popular Chinese-American dishes that are very similar and often even used interchangeably.  The main difference between these two Chinese dishes is in the noodles.  Lo Mein is typically made with thicker noodles (think spaghetti) where Chow Mein is made with thinner noodles that are traditionally fried and crispy.

A wok with Chinese chow mein in it and a wooden spoon for serving.

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Recipe

Overhead photo of chicken chow mein served in a wooden bowl with chopsticks.
Prep 15 mins
Cook 25 mins
Total 40 mins
Add to Meal Plan

Video

Ingredients
  

  • 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts , cut into bite-size pieces
  • 1 Tablespoon oil (canola or vegetable)
  • 1 1/2 cups Shredded cabbages (*see note)
  • 2 cups carrots , shredded or julienne sliced (*see note)
  • 2 ribs celery , chopped
  • 4 green onions , sliced with whites and green separated
  • 2 cloves garlic , minced
  • 1 pound refrigerated Yaki-Soba noodles discard seasoning packet**
  • 1 cup fresh bean sprouts (optional)

Chow Mein Sauce

  • 1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 1 Tablespoon oyster sauce (***see note)
  • 2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger
  • 1 Tablespoon light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch

Instructions
 

  • Prepare noodles according to package instructions.
  • In a small bowl whisk the sauce ingredients together: soy sauce, sesame oil, oyster sauce, ginger, sugar, and cornstarch
  • Heat a large pan or wok on high heat. Add oil. Add chicken, season with salt and pepper and stir fry just until cooked through.
  • Add cabbage, carrots, celery, and the whites of the chopped green onion and stir fry for just for 1-2 minutes or until cabbage has wilted.
  • Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds.
  • Add the pasta and sauce and cook for 1-2 minutes until the sauce has thickened. Add remaining green onion and fresh bean sprouts, if desired. Serve immediately.

Notes

*If you’re in a hurry, you could use bagged coleslaw mix that has shredded cabbage and carrots
** I love the ease of using yakisoba noodles, but you can substitute dried chow mein noodles, lo mein, or thick spaghetti noodles.
***You could substitute hoisin sauce
 
Adapted from Cooking Classy.

Nutrition

Calories: 454kcalCarbohydrates: 78gProtein: 20gFat: 7gSaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 29mgSodium: 907mgPotassium: 489mgFiber: 5gSugar: 7gVitamin A: 8755IUVitamin C: 17mgCalcium: 48mgIron: 1mg

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About The Author

Lauren Allen

Welcome! I’m Lauren, a mom of four and lover of good food. Here you’ll find easy recipes and weeknight meal ideas made with real ingredients, with step-by-step photos and videos.

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  1. 5 stars
    oh. my. gosh. Is this recipe authentic? Absolutely not. Is this recipe delicious and wonderful and super easy to prep so you can make most of it ahead of time and just assemble in 15-20 minutes? yaaaasssssssss!!!!

    I didn’t use udon noodles – I used Pasta Zero (shiratake noodles) and added them right at the end and it was wonderful.

    In the future I will pre-chop eeeeverything so all I have to do is saute everything together and add the sauce and BAM, dinner is done. <3

  2. 4 stars
    Pretty Good! Our first time trying this recipe: we felt the veggies needed much more cooking than 2 minutes, even on high (about 10 minutes to get the celery cooked through before we added the pasta. We used pre-cooked chunks of chicken so we added that when we added the pasta. We used spaghetti noodles, BTW. The sauce was tasty. We didn’t add the oyster sauce to the pan, instead letting family members add oyster sauce to taste. Some love it, others not so much. Will make again!

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