A unique mint chicken recipe with Thai basil and minced meat!
Indian spices, Thai Basil, and Burmese style minced meat makes this Asian fusion recipe a delicious combo! Love spicy food? Then add this to your menu ASAP! Spicy Thai chilies, mustard seeds, and fresh coriander leaves mixed together with a dark soy sauce base makes it come together tastefully.
One of my favorite things to order on a Thai menu is Thai Chili Basil Chicken or Basil Fried Rice. It comes as no surprise that I love spicy Thai Food with that combo, right? In this gluten free Thai inspired recipe I have combined Indian spices, with ginger root, fresh garlic cloves, and minced meat. A five star rated combo created with different cuisines in mind.
Mint Chicken with Thai Basil
It is a must have for this recipe! There are many variations of basil on the market and all serve a different purpose, but for this minced meat dish I recommend using Thai basil. It has a sweet fragrance and unique flavors that allows it to pair well with Vietnamese, Thai, and Burmese cooking. If you are looking to enhance the flavors of your homemade Thai Food, then be sure to grab Thai Basil on your next Asian Market run!
Where to buy Thai Basil
Check the produce section of your local Asian Market. It comes either pre-packaged or in a bundle similar to that of fresh mint. Having trouble finding Thai Basil? It is super easy to grow!
How to grow Thai Basil
During the pandemic, I had to find a way to grow Thai basil since we were sheltering in place. I ordered some seeds on Etsy and grew them according to the instructions. They take a while to grow, so be sure to plant as early as you can in the spring time.
Is it hard to grow Thai Basil?
Not necessarily hard, but it is time consuming to prune. Assuring the plant does not get to a flower mode is the key. If you decide to go on vacation for a few days, the plant might go to flowering, which can alter the flavor of the basil for cooking. However, the flowers taste great when making tea. Hence, you can infuse the flavors and turn it into a daily ritual similar to that of holy basil.
Holy Basil vs Thai Basil
These two basil types are most commonly found in Asia and are packed with healthy nutrition and benefits, aside from cooking. Holy Basil is also known as Tulsi. It is very common in Hindu-Indian households. It is a plant that is worshipped for purity and placed outside the front door to keep away the evil. The story dates back to a sisterhood of the three parvatis and is a great one to read up on.
Use holy basil as a daily tea. Infuse hot water with fresh tulsi leaves and enjoy on an empty stomach every morning for best ayurveda practices.
Recipes with Thai Basil
I can not express how much I love Thai basil. Some of my favorite recipes with this specific ingredient include...
- Pad See Ew (Drunken Noodles)
- Basil Fried Rice
- Vietnamese Pho
- Fresh Spring Rolls
- Chicken with Thai Basil
Need a quick, healthy, and tasty dish? Then this is your recipe! With a mix of Indian and Asian flavors, it's the best of both worlds. Also, don't let the healthy part scare you. Definitely not eating cardboard here if you know what I mean. This dish is packed with so much flavor-you will be fooled.
Ground Meat vs Minced Meat
Ground meat is placed in a meat processor to finely grind the meat and packaged or sold as is-raw. Minced meat on the other hand, is cut into small pieces after being cooked. Meaning it is pre-cooked meat that is chopped afterwards and then used in recipes.
The flavors and end result is different for both varieties and really makes a big difference. In this recipe, I specifically state minced meat and after one bite, even you will not want to make it any other way.
I recommend using pre-cooked chicken for this recipe! My all time favorite pre-cooked chicken comes from Trader Joes. It is high in sodium, but tastes great as is or cooked into meals like this. Check the refrigerator section to grab some on your next visit. Don't have a Trader Joe's near? No problem! Check your local grocers freezer section and grab pre-cooked chicken or a whole rotisserie chicken. Be sure to take the skin and bones off before cooking.
I highly recommend chopping the chicken into small pieces before cooking. Otherwise, take a pair of scissors to mince the chicken while it cooks in the pan.
Minced Mint Meat Recipe
Mint chicken is flavored with finely chopped mint and chicken in this case. Pre-cook the chicken and add the spices, then layer on minced mint to the meat. Mix it well and allow the flavors to infuse for a few minutes.
Can this Asian fusion recipe be made vegetarian?
Yes! Use extra firm tofu. Not to be biased, but my favorite tofu brand is from the East Bay. Hodo Tofu has been the best thing I have discovered in the years past. It is firm, tasty, and organic! Locally sourced and packed with flavors. You can buy it at your local grocery store or via goodeggs 🙂
Over the last 8 years, I have come to love Burmese Food thanks to amazing restaurants and my husband's date night restaurant picks! I never knew what Burmese Food was until I tried it for the first time in the Bay Area.
What is Burmese Food?
Recipes that originated in Myanmar/Burma that are out of this world with taste! They have a very delicious blend of Chinese, Thai, and Indian flavors. Hence the spices in this dish.
Why I love Burmese food
All thanks to my husband!
With my first visit, I was in love with my husband and the food-haha. So much so that my husband proposed with Burmese Food in the plan! The first time I had a similar dish to this Mint Chicken Recipe was in Alameda, California. It won me over and I knew I had to recreate it. Although it doesn't taste the exact same as my favorite Burma restaurant, it comes very close! I am thankful for the staff who helped me achieve a similar tasting dish at home. Especially during the pandemic.
Should you try Burmese Food?
If you love Thai food, then yes! The spice and unique flavors are going to be some of the best combos out there. Consider yourself lucky if you have access to Burmese food, otherwise give this recipe a try!
This dish uses a combination of whole garlic cloves, Thai basil, and mint leaves. These essential ingredients combined makes one of the tastiest things I've ever eaten. No joke. Also, don't fret this recipe if you don't like mint. It just might convert you.
Ingredients for Mint Chicken with Thai Basil and Minced Meat
- Chicken Breasts
- Thai Basil
- Mint Leaves
- Cumin Seeds (Jeera)
- Mustart Seeds (rye)
- Fish Sauce
- Garlic Cloves
- Minced Garlic
- Minced Ginger
- Thai Chili Peppers
How to make Mint Chicken with Thai Basil and Minced Meat
In a heated pan toast the mustard seeds and cumin together until fragrant. Transfer it to a mortar and pestle (or dry blender) and grind it together. Set it aside. Combine the fish sauce, soy sauce, sriracha, and sugar together in a bowl and set that aside. In a large wok or wide pan, add some oil and fry the whole garlic cloves until semi brown and then remove them. Set them aside. Add another portion of oil to the wok and fry the chili peppers for about 10 seconds. Then add the minced garlic and ginger. Cook for only a few seconds, then immediately add the chopped chicken. Cook until the chicken is no longer pink. Pour in the sauce mixture, dry spices and mix well. Now add the cilantro, mint, and thai basil leaves. Mix and cook until the leaves have wilted. Enjoy!
Enjoy it with
You can enjoy this recipe as an appetizer with lettuce as a wrap or a complete mean with your choice of jasmine white rice or brown rice. Here are some other options to help you prep a meal.
- cauliflower rice
- jasmine rice
- lettuce wraps
FAQ and TIPS
- Feel free to use a skinned and de-boned rotisserie chicken for an even quicker meal.
- Firm tofu works really well for a vegetarian alternative.
- Thai Basil is needed for optimal flavor in this recipe
Mint Chicken with Thai Basil and Minced Meat
- large wok
- flat spatula
- 2 raw chicken breasts, diced into really small pieces (can sub pre-cooked chicken)
- ½ teaspoon rye (mustard seeds)
- 1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon fish sauce
- ½ teaspoon jeera (cumin) seeds
- 2 tablespoon sriracha
- 8 cloves garlic
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon minced ginger
- 2 finely diced thai chilies (can substitute milder chilies)
- ¼ teaspoon sugar
- ¼ cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
- ¼ cup finely chopped fresh mint leaves
- ¼ cup finely chopped fresh thai basil
- Mix the sugar, sriracha sauce, fish sauce, and soy sauce together.
- Heat a large wok on medium-high and lightly toast the cumin and mustard seeds until fragrant but not over-cooked.
- Transfer the seeds into a grinder, blend well, and set it aside.
- Put a decent amount of oil in the wok and cook the whole garlic cloves until semi-translucent and brown. Then take them out of the wok.
- Add a little more oil to the still hot pan. Add thai chillies and cook for about 10 seconds. Then add the minced ginger and garlic to wok. Cook for a few seconds and nothing more, again.
- Immediately add the finely chopped raw chicken. TIP: Spread the chicken throughout the wok so steam does not form water. (You can use pre-cooked chicken instead as well)
- Let the chicken cook for about 2-3 minutes without mixing it, keeping the heat at medium high.
- Mix the chicken using the spatula to flatten the chicken as you go. Pressing down on the chicken so it minces even more during the cooking process will give it a nice moist texure. Similar to cooking ground chicken.
- Continue to stir until the chicken is fully cooked and any water that formed has evaporated.
- Take a pair of scissors and cut the chicken into even smaller pieces-straight in the pan (you see me do this often on Instagram, right?).
- Mix in the pre-mixed sauce, garlic cloves, and grinded seeds.
- Combine well.
- Add the mint, cilantro, and thai basil leaves.
- Mix until the leaves have wilted.
- Taste for salt and add accordingly.