Low Carb Cashew Chicken

Low Carb Cashew Chicken

Stir-fry is so good, but between the flour coating, pan frying, and carb-filled rice, it can be so bad for you. We reverse engineered one of our favorite takeout dishes, cashew chicken, to see what would happen if we baked the chicken instead of dredging and stir-frying it. The results are in and it’s the juiciest chicken breast we’ve ever had in this dish. Our Low Carb Cashew Chicken is gluten-free and grain-free, has significantly less fat than the restaurant version, no refined sugar, and can be made paleo-compliant.

The trick is marinating the chicken overnight and the rest of the prep is done while the chicken is baking, making this recipe just as fast as stir-fry on the stove but with a fraction of the oil. In fact, chicken breasts can be frozen with the marinade, making this a great meal prep option. Omitting the dredging flour keeps it under 10 net carbs per serving, and that includes a full serving of cauliflower rice. Wowza!

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Low Carb Cashew Chicken

Low Carb Cashew Chicken

Low Carb Cashew Chicken with cauliflower rice.

  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 6



For the Chicken

  • 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts (~12 ounces), divided lobe and tip
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tbsp coconut aminos
  • 1 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp sesame seed oil
  • 1/8 tsp ground black pepper

For the Sauce

  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup coconut aminos
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced 
  • 1-inch piece of fresh ginger, grated
  • 1 1/2 tbsp Lakanto Golden Sweetener
  • 1 tbsp plus 1 tsp rice vinegar
  • 1 tbsp natural peanut butter (almond butter for paleo option)
  • 1 1/2 tsp sesame seed oil
  • 1 tsp chili garlic sauce (more if you like it hot)
  • 1/8 tsp Chinese five spice powder
  • Generous pinch ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp Anthony’s Arrowroot Flour, reserved
  • 1 tbsp cool water, reserved

For the Vegetables

  • 2 12-ounce bags frozen cauliflower rice
  • 1/3 cup (about 2 ounces, weighed) whole unsalted raw cashews
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 large zucchini (1112 ounces), quartered lengthwise and sliced 
  • 6 green onions thinly sliced and divided
  • 1 tsp extra-virgin olive oil


For the Chicken

  1. Place the divided chicken breasts and marinade ingredients in a zip top bag with air removed. Gently massage to coat and refrigerate at least four hours or up to overnight (for best flavor). 
  2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F and place the chicken breasts on a wire rack on top of a large, rimmed baking sheet and discard any marinade left in the bag. Bake 25-30 minutes, until fully cooked. 
  3. Once cooked, remove from oven and tent with foil. Let rest 5-10 minutes, then slice the pieces crosswise. Replace foil and set aside until ready to use.

For the Sauce

  1. While the chicken is cooking, combine all sauce ingredients, except for the reserved Anthony’s Arrowroot Flour and tablespoon of water, in a small saucepan. 
  2. Bring to a low boil while whisking constantly over medium heat, then remove from heat and set aside. 

For the Vegetables

  1. Optional: Place the cashews on a baking sheet in a single layer and add to the oven with the chicken on the top rack for 5 minutes to toast. Remove after 5 minutes and set aside to cool. 
  2. Seed and chop the bell pepper and set aside separate from the other vegetables. Prep the zucchini and green onions and set them aside together (reserve some of the green onions for garnish, if desired).
  3. Heat the cauliflower rice according to package instructions and set aside in a covered bowl to keep warm. 

Putting it Together

  1. By now, the chicken should be cooked, rested, and sliced.
  2. Heat a large nonstick pan over medium heat and add the teaspoon of olive oil. Swirl to coat the pan, then add the onions and zucchini. Cover and cook one minute, then flip, add chicken, and cover and cook one more minute. Add bell pepper then toss, cover, and remove from heat.  
  3. In a small mug, combine the reserved arrowroot and a tablespoon of water. Return the sauce to low heat and whisk constantly while adding a teaspoon of the arrowroot slurry to the pan at a time. Continue stirring until thickened. The sauce may look a bit too thick, but the zucchini will release water and thin the sauce, so be sure to use all the slurry. 
  4. Uncover the chicken and vegetable pan and use a silicone spatula to transfer the sauce to the pan. Add the toasted cashews and gently toss to coat evenly, then serve immediately with prepared cauliflower rice. Garnish as desired with green onions, sesame seeds, etc.


Best served freshly prepared but can be refrigerated up to 4 days in an airtight glass container. Store leftover cauliflower rice separately.

Nutrition Estimate Per Serving (1/6 RECIPE PLUS 3/4 CUP CAULIFLOWER RICE) – Calories: 213, Fat: 8.6g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1.7g, Monounsaturated Fat: 3.5g, Cholesterol: 33mg, Sodium: 340mg, Potassium: 694.2mg Carbohydrates: 14.5g total/9.9g net, Fiber: 4.6g, Sugar: 6.6g, Protein: 18, Vitamin A: 30.2%, Vitamin C: 74.7%, Calcium: 6.4%, Iron: 9% (based on 2,000 calorie diet). 

Nutrition Estimate Per Serving (1/6 RECIPE, NO RICE) – Calories: 186.4, Fat: 8.6g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1.7g, Monounsaturated Fat: 3.5g, Cholesterol: 33mg, Sodium: 246.8mg, Potassium: 534.2mg Carbohydrates: 10.5g total/8.6g net, Fiber: 1.9g, Sugar: 5.3g, Protein: 16.8 Vitamin A: 30.2%, Vitamin C: 74.7%, Calcium: 3.7%, Iron: 8.5% (based on 2,000 calorie diet).

  • Author: Fresh. Out.
  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 35
  • Category: Entrée, Main Course
  • Method: Baking and Stove Top
  • Cuisine: Chinese
  • Diet: Gluten Free



Like this recipe? Check out our Paleo Sesame Chicken!

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