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Homemade Easy Orange Chicken

Orange chicken, a beloved staple in Asian cuisine, often finds its way into our takeout orders. But what if you could recreate this classic dish in the comfort of your own kitchen, and in less than 30 minutes?

This homemade Easy Orange Chicken recipe, complete with a delectable sauce, is not just simple to make but also a healthier alternative to your usual takeout. Let’s embark on a culinary journey to bring this mouth-watering dish to your dinner table.

Cooking Asian dishes at home has its unique charm. It gives you the freedom to select fresh and quality ingredients, ensuring a healthier meal for your family. Moreover, the process of cooking at home allows you to tweak the flavors to suit your palate, making each dish uniquely yours.

The cultural richness of Asian cuisine, especially a popular dish like orange chicken, is something worth exploring in your kitchen. The satisfaction of creating a dish that’s both visually appealing and deliciously satisfying is unparalleled.


To begin, let’s gather all the ingredients needed for this scrumptious dish. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Chicken: 6 whole boneless chicken thighs or 2 lbs. of chicken tenderloins. Chicken thighs are juicier, but tenderloins are leaner – choose based on your preference.
  • Flour & Corn Starch: ¼ cup all-purpose flour and 1 tbsp. corn starch. These will help in giving the chicken that perfect crispy coating.
  • Seasonings: For flavor, we’ll need 1 tsp. black pepper (adjust to taste), 1 tsp. onion powder, ½ tsp. ginger powder, ½ tsp. salt, and 1 tsp. paprika. Paprika not only adds flavor but also a lovely color to the chicken.
  • Vegetable Oil: Enough for frying, to get that golden, crispy exterior.

For the star of the show, the Orange Chicken Sauce:

  • Fresh Orange Juice: ¾ cup, for that tangy, citrusy base.
  • Corn Starch: 1½ tbsp., to thicken the sauce to the right consistency.
  • More Flavorings: 2 tbsps. vegetable oil, 3 tbsps. low sodium soy sauce for umami, 1½ tbsp. rice vinegar or white vinegar for a touch of acidity, and 2 tbsps. brown sugar for sweetness.
  • Aromatics: ½ tbsp. grated ginger and 2 cloves of fresh garlic, minced, to add depth.
  • Final Touches: ½ tsp. black pepper, 1 tsp. orange zest for an extra zing, and chili flakes (optional) if you like it spicy.

Stay tuned as we’ll dive into the step-by-step cooking guide and learn how to perfect that luscious orange chicken sauce!

A Step-by-Step Cooking Guide:

  1. Preparation of Chicken: Start by dicing your chicken into ½ inch cube pieces. This size is ideal for ensuring each piece cooks evenly and absorbs the sauce well. Place the diced chicken in a large bowl.
  2. Coating the Chicken: To the chicken, add ¼ cup of all-purpose flour, 1 tablespoon of corn starch, 1 teaspoon each of black pepper and onion powder, ½ teaspoon each of ginger powder and salt, and 1 teaspoon of paprika. Toss the chicken pieces until they are evenly coated with this mixture. The blend of spices and flour will give your chicken a flavorful crust.
  3. Frying the Chicken: Heat vegetable oil in a deep frying pan over medium-high heat. Once the oil is hot, carefully add the coated chicken pieces. Fry them until they turn golden brown, which should take about 2-3 minutes. Be careful not to overcook the chicken, as it can become chewy. Once done, remove the chicken and set it aside on a paper towel to drain excess oil.

Perfecting the Orange Chicken Sauce:

  1. Sauce Preparation: In a separate bowl, whisk together ¾ cup of fresh orange juice, 1½ tablespoons of corn starch, 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil, 3 tablespoons of low sodium soy sauce, 1½ tablespoons of rice vinegar, 2 tablespoons of brown sugar, ½ tablespoon of grated ginger, 2 minced cloves of garlic, ½ teaspoon of black pepper, and 1 teaspoon of orange zest. If you enjoy a bit of heat, add chili flakes to your liking.
  2. Cooking the Sauce: Transfer this mixture to a hot non-stick skillet or frying pan. Cook it over low heat, allowing the sauce to simmer gently. Stir continuously until the sauce begins to thicken. This step is crucial as it develops the flavors and achieves the perfect consistency for coating the chicken.
  3. Combining Chicken and Sauce: Add the fried chicken pieces to the skillet with the sauce. Gently mix until each piece of chicken is well coated with the sauce. Let the combination simmer together for 1-2 minutes. This step allows the chicken to soak up all the delicious flavors of the sauce.
  4. Final Touches: Remove the skillet from heat. Your Easy Orange Chicken is now ready to be served. This dish pairs wonderfully with homemade Lo Mein Noodles or fluffy white rice. For an added touch of flavor and texture, consider garnishing with toasted sesame seeds and chopped green onions.


Plating Your Dish: Serve the orange chicken hot. If you’re going for an authentic Asian dining experience, present it alongside homemade Lo Mein Noodles or a bed of steamed white rice.

These sides not only complement the flavors but also make for a filling meal.

Garnishing for Extra Flair: For an added burst of color and texture, sprinkle toasted sesame seeds over the chicken.

Chopped green onions also make a great garnish, adding a fresh, crisp element to the dish. These garnishes are not just about aesthetics; they enhance the overall flavor profile.

Customization and Variations:

Tailoring to Your Taste: This recipe is wonderfully versatile. For those who prefer a vegetarian option, consider substituting chicken with tofu.

Remember to press the tofu well to remove excess moisture before coating and frying.

Adjusting Spice Levels: If your palate leans towards milder flavors, reduce the amount of black pepper and chili flakes. Conversely, for an extra kick, feel free to increase these spices.

Healthier Alternatives: To make a healthier version, you can reduce the amount of brown sugar or use a sugar substitute.

Opting for low-sodium soy sauce is another way to make this dish more health-conscious.

Storing and Reheating:

Storing Leftovers: If you have leftovers, store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator. They should be good for up to 3 days.

This makes for an easy and delicious meal prep option for the following days.

Reheating: When reheating, do so gently over the stove or in a microwave. If the sauce has thickened too much in the fridge, add a little water to thin it out while reheating.

This will help maintain the texture and flavor of the dish.


Understanding the Nutritional Content: This Easy Orange Chicken is not just tasty but also packs a good balance of protein, carbohydrates, and fats.

Each serving contains approximately 567 calories, with a good amount of protein (30g) and essential vitamins from the orange juice and spices.

This Easy Orange Chicken recipe offers a delightful balance of flavors and nutrients in each serving. Here’s a quick look at the nutritional value per serving:

  • Calories: 567 kcal
  • Carbohydrates: 31g
  • Protein: 30g
  • Fat: 36g
  • Fiber: 1g
  • Sugar: 12g
  • Vitamin A: 832IU
  • Vitamin C: 24mg
  • Calcium: 38mg
  • Iron: 2mg

This dish is a great source of protein and provides essential vitamins and minerals, making it a nutritious choice for a satisfying meal.

Making It Healthier: For those watching their calorie intake, consider using skinless chicken breast, reducing the amount of oil for frying, or even baking the chicken instead of frying.

Creating this Easy Orange Chicken at home is not just a culinary adventure but also a healthier and customizable alternative to takeout.

With its rich flavors, simple steps, and versatility, it’s a recipe that can easily become a regular in your meal rotation. Whether you’re cooking for a family dinner or prepping for your weekly meals, this dish is sure to impress.

We hope you enjoy making and savoring this delightful dish as much as we enjoyed guiding you through it. Bon appétit!