Sticky Asian Chicken Spaghetti

 Noble Pig Sticky Asian Chicken Spaghetti
Does your family prefer spaghetti noodles over all other kinds? I mean, there are so many cute and functional pasta shapes out there, but I find myself serving the same, plain and classic noodles the most.

My family doesn’t care about how well some noodles hold the sauce better or have a slipperier mouthfeel required for some sauces. And god forbid they certainly don’t care about the aesthetics of serving a certain dish with the “right” pasta because it’s prettier. They are hungry and just want to eat it and prefer thin, long strand noodles. For myself, I might have chosen soba noodles for this dish but, that’s just me being fancy.

For the record, this dish was fabulous with plain ole’ spaghetti…a family win.

Noble Pig Sticky Asian Chicken Spaghetti marinade
Did I mention the chicken only needs to sit in the marinade for 30 minutes, making it a quick weeknight dinner. 

I used chicken tenderloins for this meal and cut them into smaller, more bite-sized pieces. An easy way to cut up chicken tenderloin is with your kitchen scissors, so much easier than a knife.

Noble Pig Sticky Asian Chicken Spaghetti frying
There are some options when it comes to cooking the meat. Because I wanted a browned, caramelized look, I used my large stainless steel skillet to brown the chicken. This does lead to some extra clean up work as the bottom of the pan does get pretty sticky and thick. Other options might be to grill the chicken or make it in a nonstick skillet. With the nonstick option you will not get the pretty browning you see going on here..

Maybe I’m being dramatic about the cleanup, but for some people I know washing dishes can be a nightmare. Since I’m always doing dishes it really doesn’t bother me. When I have to clean up a sticky mess on the skillet, I leave the flame going once I’ve removed my meat and immediately add hot water to the pan (stand back). I let it boil while using a wooden spoon to scrape/remove most/part of the crud. I then let it soak with some dish soap and use an SOS pad to help me remove any residual burnt pieces. 

Noble Pig Sticky Asian Chicken Spaghetti perfect quick and easy dinner
My son loved this dish. It really is kid-friendly if your little ones have a taste for Asian flavors. Give it a try soon!

Print Recipe

Sticky Asian Chicken Spaghetti

Recipe from: Created by Cathy Pollak for | Serves: 3-4


  • 1 lb chicken tenderloins, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1/2 cup hoisin sauce
  • 2 Tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon vodka*
  • 1 Tablespoon Mirin (Aji-Mirin, Sweet Cooking Rice Seasoning, available everywhere)
  • 1 Tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1 Tablespoon freshly grated ginger (not chopped)
  • 1 clove garlic (not minced)
  • 2 cups broccoli, blanched or steamed (small florets)
  • 12 oz spaghetti (uncooked)
  • green onion for garnish, sliced


  • In a large bowl, combine chicken, hoisin, soy sauce, vodka, Mirin, toasted sesame oil, ginger and garlic. Let sit for 30 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, prepare broccoli (you don't want this mushy so be mindful not to overcook) and spaghetti. Keep warm.
  • In a large skillet, over medium-low heat, add chicken to the pan using a slotted spoon. Allow the marinade to drip through the slotted spoon back into bowl, reserving it for later use. I cooked the chicken in two batches, carefully turning each piece and evenly spacing them out to get the desired brownness; about 3-4 minutes.
  • While the last of the chicken is cooking pour the reserved marinade into a small saucepan (you will not have a lot, but it will be enough). Bring to a boil and simmer over heat for 5 minutes.
  • Stir cooked, reserved marinade into spaghetti noodles and top each serving with chicken, broccoli and green onion.
  • Serve immediately.
  • *Why add vodka to a marinade (I almost always do)? Just like salt, alcohol brings out the flavor in food. Alcohol does this by evaporation and molecular bonding. Food is also the beneficiary of alcohol's ability to bond with both fat and water molecules. In this way, alcohol bridges the gap between our aroma receptors (which respond only to molecules that can be dissolved in fat) and food (which consists primarily of water). This is very important because most of the great "flavor" in food comes from aromas in the nose rather than tastes in the mouth. In terms of a marinade or a brine with both water and fat soluble ingredients, by taking the flavor compounds in certain aromatics such as garlic, herbs or other fat soluble ingredients, alcohol helps carry those compounds into the meat that's soaking in the marinade or brine. But alcohol also helps carry water soluble flavor compounds into the meat as well. Water soluble flavors would include sour, sweet, salty and bitterness. With alcohol's effort, the result is more flavor and aroma into the marinated food. Even one tablespoon of a neutral-tasting vodka considerably improves the flavor penetration of any given marinade. (Trust me on this one, it's my profession.)

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54 Comments and 21 Replies

  1. Food Lover 1

    Serves: 2 ? Really ? That makes the nutrition facts a whopping 1,142 calories, over 21 grams of fat – 2,336mgs of sodium.

    • Cathy 2

      Sorry about that, should be 3-4. It’s really going to depend on your portion size. Pasta calories really add up in dishes like these. (Please note, I have not verified your nutrition information to be correct.) However, please be aware this was not created as a healthy or diet-friendly dish.

    • Darby K 3

      Food Lover…sticky Asian dishes are not going to be low-cal, especially with pasta. I mean, that’s a given. Some of us eat for the decadence!!

      • Food Lover 4

        Hi again…..recalculated at 4 servings – drops to 572 calories per serving and 10 grams of fat – 1169 grams of sodium. I definitely could live with that, and will try it too !!! :)

        BTW, the site I use to calculate the calorie and nutritional count is: link to

  2. That looks amazing! It reminded me of a dish I had at the Polynesian resort at Disney! Love the tip about cleaning the skillet too!

  3. This sounds like a perfect dinner for my family. I like how the noodles aren’t swimming in sauce like they are when you pick up take-out.

  4. Jenna 7

    This looks fabulous, and yes, my go to pasta is thin spaghetti. I don’t like heavy tubular pastas. Thanks for the cleaning tip too!

  5. You had me at sticky! Love this dish – pinning!

  6. Vicky 9

    I’m not a fan of hoisin sauce. Is there something I can substitute?

  7. Love this Cathy! I’m definitely making this in the next week :0)

  8. I haven’t tried this recipe. I’m sure the kids will love this.

  9. Aggie 14

    Ok this is mouthwatering and so worth the extra bit of cleanup. I clean my pans the same way, it works so well! (But yes, stand back lol)

  10. That sticky hoison sauce sounds seriously delicious!

  11. Nancy Jay 16

    This one is going to be a must try. My husband is not found of broccoli but loves chicken and pasta. Sooo I will have more broccoli and he more chicken. I also use scotch when making a cream sauce it just adds that little something no one knows what it is but its so good.

  12. What a great, quick, easy meal. I like to clean up my pans right away too.

  13. Karly 18

    Oh, I think I want this for dinner tonight! Looks amazing, even with spaghetti noodles! Haha!

  14. I feel the same way as you. I always end up with a box of spaghetti! This looks delicious!

  15. I am smitten with this recipe. What a great way to eat broccoli! I always have Hoison sauce, and usually add dry sherry to my Asian marinades/sauces. Vodka? Well, heck, I’m in! My first thought was “I’d use Soba noodles”, and then I read your comments. LOL. Already pinned and shared. I’m always scouting for quick and flavorful work night dinners. Love this one.

  16. Jo Wake 21

    Looks delicious. Might give this one a try in the near future.

  17. Chantel 22

    I recently tried adding some baking soda (tbsp or so) and a glug of vinegar to the simmering water of the sticky pan mess. Works wonders! Looking forward to trying this recipe soon!

  18. BethieofVA 23

    Going on this week’s menu! YUM!!!!



  20. Jennifer Dunlop 25

    Try this trick for hard to clean pans…add water and a laundry dryer sheet (like Bounce). It loosens the food like magic!
    Check out my fb page for more tips. Dine at Ease

  21. Paula Halket 26

    Don’t think we can get Morin in the UK do you know what the British substitute would be. Thank you

    • Cathy 27

      Mirin, a sweet rice wine used in Japanese cooking. It doesn’t just flavor food. The sweetness also gives luster to sauces and glazes and can help them cling to food.

      If you don’t have mirin, there are many common suggestions for substitutions. You can just use dry sherry or sweet marsala, for instance. Or you can dissolve a small amount of sugar in a little white wine or sherry, perhaps a 1/4 teaspoon of sugar to 1/4 cup wine wine

      • Paula Halket 28

        Thanks so much for your help im going to go to the Chinese supermarket to see if they can help me too, it just looks too Delicious not to try it.

  22. Ann 29

    This looks delish and I want to try but I’m a little concerned about re-using the marinade after raw chicken soaked in it…normally I would pour out used marinade. Is it safe to eat because of boiling and simmering after chicken is removed?

    • Cathy 30

      As long as you bring it to a complete boil it will be fine. Remember, food borne bacteria dies at 165 degrees F.

  23. Melissa 31

    Ok so i just got back from getting all of the ingredients but I couldnt find the hoisin sauce, or the Mirin. How horrible is this gonna go wrong if I go forward without it?

  24. Melissa 32

    I just read this for a sub for Hoisin Sauce: If you do not have Hoisin Sauce, which is an Asian Barbecue sauce, it’s a simple fix. Just mix about 1 teaspoon of soy sauce with some barbecue sauce, a touch of ground ginger, and a teaspoon of Worcestershire sauce. That will get you as close as possible without having actual Hoisin Sauce.

    But ground ginger is already in the recipe. Imma try this anyway.

  25. Colette 33

    Paula Halkin, mirin is available in most larger UK supermarkets. I get mine in Sainsburys in the ‘specialist’ section

  26. Tom 34

    I made this tonight, fabulous!

  27. Paula Halket 35

    Thanks to everyone for your help ibam off to Saibsburys now to get all of my ingredients. Again thanks.

  28. Paula Halket 36

    Hy sorry I just noticed that the garlic clove says not minced so do you put the garlic whole into the marinade if so then what do you do with the whole clove once the marinade has been used thanks

  29. three feathers 38

    Long time reader, 1st time commenter here. My fam prefers either thin spaghetti as well….or the small shells. This was the bomb around here, and I didn’t even use vodka, lol. Used a locally produced wine b/c it’s what I had….must’ve worked, as there was nary a speck of leftovers.

    Thank you for making me look good LOL

  30. Lisa 39

    Will definitely try this but since we are all dieting will substitute regular spaghetti with white yam noodles (Zero calories per serving compared to 220 for spaghetti!)

  31. Mit 40

    This looks really nice .. but I’d just as soon leave out the spaghetti .. the chicken and broccoli by themselves would be perfect !! <3

  32. CAROLE Siskind 41

    Delicious recipe. Also good with rice

  33. Pingback: Easy Weeknight Pasta Dinners | Spoonful of FlavorSpoonful of Flavor

  34. This looks SO GOOD, Cathy. Can’t wait to try it on my family!

  35. Dianne 44

    My first thought (for Christmas and if you like color) add some red pepper!!

  36. Stratford Miller 45

    Do you chop the garlic?

    • Cathy 46

      You just don’t want it finely minced so that it ends up being cooked with the chicken and burns. Should only be cooked in the marinade later.

  37. Claudia Ellis 47

    made this today for lunch, absolutely delicious! The whole family loved it. Beautiful combination of flavors!

  38. Janelle G 48

    Do you think I could substitute spaghetti squash for the noodles? I am trying to cut carbs.

  39. Bobbie W. 50

    I’m allergic to broccoli. What can I substitute for it ?

  40. Shayla D 52

    How funny! I just made this independently the other day. I had meant to grab a bottle of teriyaki sauce at the grocery store and got sweet and sour instead. So i tossed together some hoisin, a few packets of soy sauce, fresh garlic, and fresh ginger, but instead of mirin, i used five spice powder which gave it a really nice flavor. Also some red pepper flakes. While stir-frying the chicken and some fresh vegetables, I also tossed in a teaspoon or two of Better Than Bouillon Chicken Base. I was really pleased with the results and next time plan to pick up some mirin and give this a go. I’m a sucker for anything based on hoisin sauce. =)

  41. JenD 53

    This looks really good. But, what should I use instead of the vodka? Something NON alcohol.

  42. Sarah Christensen 55

    Help a non-drinker out: any particular brand(s) of vodka that is more -or less- “neutral-tasting” that I should be looking for?

  43. In recovery, so little leary about buying a bottle of vodka, so I’ll just try one of the little airline bottles you can buy, the alcohol burns off right?????

    • JenD 58

      If you are in recovery (as with people in my household) I would not recommend it at all even if the alcohol cooks off. I just used a lil extra mirin n it came out just fine :)

  44. Roberta 59

    Do you think you could cook ckicken in the crackpot?

  45. Kathe 61

    I am going to make this and was wondering what you think it would taste like with chunks of pineapple added to it? I kind of like that in other dishes like this that we ate in Hawaii.

  46. Cheryl Noxel 63

    I think this recipe is a keeper. Everyone is mentioning the pasta and a thinner noodle. spaghettini would be a great substitute. How about a Vermicelli noodles?

    • Cathy 64

      You can absolutely try it. I am fine with the spaghetti so try it any way you like and enjoy!

  47. Erin Belzile 65

    Made this yesterday, used skinless/boneless chicken thighs. My only complaint was it was a bit too dry for our tastes. I doubled the marinade sauce and saved half for pouring over the noodles before serving. I also added some chillies and next time think I’ll try adding sweet chilli sauce and maybe some crunchy peanut butter too! It was even better the next day after the flavors had a chance to soak into the noodles. Thanks for a great recipe!!

  48. CookinMama 66

    I’m making this tonight!! I’ve had it in my bookmarks for months now. Only my marinade is a lot darker than your. Could it be the type of hoisin sauce? I folowedthe directions exactly only I added more garlic because I love garlic!!!! This look so delicious My daughter loved all of this stuff to <3

  49. Tempe 70

    Made this tonight. We are loving it! I had to sub a tablespoon of dry sherry with a half tsp. of sugar for the Mirin because I didn’t have any (it’s on my list!). Just so you know, that works! :)

  50. Debbie 71

    You can use soba noodles and make it a true Asian dish.

  51. Pat 72

    Once your chicken is done, try putting water in the hot pan and bring to a boil should help loosen the sticky from skillet.

  52. Karen Miller 73

    Do I leave the clove of garlic whole? “Not minced” I’m curious. Thanks…

  53. Yaron 74

    the Pasta looks amazing, never tried these flavors before with pasta, i’m making it tonight, thanks!

  54. Stephen 75

    Made this last night and it is definetly good, I thought it might be weird with the noodles but I was wrong, I’m glad I didn’t use rice like I was thinking. Stop being p***ys, clean up is easy!

  55. Patricia Getch 76

    If you use ‘SKINNY PASTA” brand name, made from Konjac root your calories are 10 per serving and 5 carbs. I only use the Fettuccine and Spaghetti shapes for ALL my Italian and Asian dishes.


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