February 25, 2015

Orange chicken

Bowl of orange chicken with white rice.

Orange chicken has always been one of my favorite Chinese restaurant take-out dishes and I've been trying to recreate it at home so that it's still delicious, but also a bit healthier. 

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I know this dish is fried and full of sugar, so I've tried to cut down on both the sugar and the oil to make my version. The results? Still completely delicious and flavorful! It started with using this technique where you shallow fry the chicken and then bake it in the sauce. 

It still takes some time to make, but it was worth it to me. I'm going to try this method with other dishes in the future like Sweet and Sour Chicken and General Tso's Chicken.

This recipe will serve about four people with a side of rice. I also served this dish with these Chinese kabocha squash & sesame pancakes as an appetizer while the chicken baked. I think some stir-fried sesame green beans or carrots would also be a nice vegetable side dish to go with your Orange Chicken.

Serving orange chicken.

Orange chicken
1-1/4 to 1-1/2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into about 1-inch pieces
1/2 cup cornstarch
2 large eggs
1/4 cup refined coconut oil, or other cooking oil of your choice
2 scallions, sliced on the bias
1 cup white rice, cooked to package directions

for the sauce:
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/3 cup cold water
zest of 1 large orange
1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
1-1/2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger
4 cloves of garlic, finely minced
1/4 cup soy sauce
2-3 teaspoons Sriracha (more or less depending on how hot you want it)
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
1/3 cup sugar
2 tablespoons light brown sugar

Place the cornstarch in plastic bag (like a Ziploc) and add the chicken. Seal the bag and toss until the chicken is coated. Beat the eggs on a bowl. Heat the oil in a castiron skillet or a wok until it's hot. 

Lightly oil a 9x13-inch baking dish and set aside. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.

Make the sauce by whisking together the cornstarch and water in a large bowl and then whisk in the remaining ingredients. Set aside.

When the oil is hot, begin to coat the chicken pieces in the egg, one piece at a time, and then place in the pan. Do this in batches so that you don't overcrowd the chicken. Turn the chicken once it begins to turn golden. Once the second side is golden, transfer the chicken to a plate lined with paper towels and cook the next batch of chicken.

Place the chicken in a even layer in the baking dish. Pour oven the sauce to coat. Place in the oven and bake until the chicken is cooked through and the sauce is thickened, about 45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes.

Top with the scallions and serve with white rice.

Finished bowl of orange chicken.


  1. That shallow fry technique is nice.And the sauce looks terrific! Really nice recipe. This dish is a favorite of mine, and you did it right.

  2. Orange chicken is always my favorite as well, but I've never made it at home. Yours looks even better than what I can buy locally. Great looking recipe!

  3. Takeout at home is the best! I'm going to have to try that sauce on some tofu.

  4. I have yet to make my ideal orange chicken at home. I do have a great recipes for sweet and sour, sesame, and general tsos but orange is one I was still searching for. Maybe this is it!

  5. Chinese takeaway at home, with less fat and less sugar - what's not to love! This Orange Chicken looks sticky and delicious, Amy.

  6. I haven't had orange chicken in so long! This looks delicious and way better than what I can get from take-out :)

  7. Your orange chicken looks great. I make orange beef for my husband and the next time, I'll try your dish instead.

  8. They are my favourite too, Amy. Yours looks fantastic.

  9. Orange chicken has always been one of my favorite dishes for take-out. I know that this would be so much better! Home made is always best- this looks delicious! :)

  10. Yum! That looks much better than take out. The sauce looks like it has tons of flavor!

  11. This looks delicious. My hubby loves orange chicken, I will have to make this for him.

  12. I LOVE orange chicken but I've never tried making it at home. Until now. I'm definitely making this for dinner. I bought chicken and was trying to decide what to make for dinner. I know!

  13. Orange chicken is lush, never thought about making it myself, but I feel like that a lot when reading you blog. Cheers for inspiring me to be less lazy!

  14. Oh my gosh, this looks amazing. I must be going to the wrong Chinese restaurants because I'm not familiar with this dish. That's changing now.

  15. Oh my gosh, this looks amazing. I must be going to the wrong Chinese restaurants because I'm not familiar with this dish. That's changing now.

  16. This chicken looks so tasty, love the flavour :D

    Choc Chip Uru

  17. The chicken sounds amazing with those wonderful flavors. Love orange but never tried it in savory and this recipe is definitely on my radar.

  18. This looks better than takeout! Gorgeous color!

  19. Simply damn delicious!!!
    i growing up with this kind of dish
    Dedy@Dentist Chef

  20. This sounds great, would make a lovely mid-week meal.


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