This is a take on healthy orange chicken. But let’s be honest for a hot minute. When I lived in Fargo, one of our favorite things was to hit up the Chinese buffet the day after a night of heavy drinking. We’d load our plates up with greasy deliciousness, stuff ourselves silly and go home and be lazy, nursing our hangovers.
Well, this will cure your hunger for any Chinese buffet without the greasy, heavy feeling you are left with when you leave the buffet. These aren’t deep fried and coated in thick batter with a little chicken in the middle with super sweet sticky sauce on the outside. No. This chicken is light, sweet with a bit of spice and very fresh tasting.
I served mine alongside some baked asparagus with garlic and leftover veggies for a healthy and filling meal.
Orange Chicken, adapted from Skinny Taste, makes 2 large servings
For the Orange Sauce:
- 1/3 cup freshly-squeezed orange juice (please don’t use OJ from a bottle)
- 1/4 cup water
- 2 Tbsp. reduced sodium soy sauce
- 1 Tbsp. brown sugar
- 1 Tbsp. sriracha, or more/less to taste
- 2 Tbsp. rice vinegar
- 1/4 teaspoon white pepper
- 2 teaspoons corn starch
For the chicken:
- 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into small cubes
- Salt, to taste
- 1 Tbsp. corn starch
- 1 Tbsp. sesame oil (separated)
- 4 cloves minced garlic
- 1/2 tsp. dried ginger
- 1 teaspoon grated orange zest
- 2 Tbsp. chopped scallions
- 1/2 tsp. sesame seeds, for garnish
Mix the orange sauce ingredients and set aside. Season the chicken lightly with salt and coat evenly with corn starch, set aside.
Heat a large skillet on high heat, add 1 teaspoon of sesame oil and add half of the chicken. Cook 2 to 3 minutes on each side until well browned, set aside. Add 1 teaspoon of oil and chicken and repeat cooking 2 to 3 minutes on each side. Set aside with the rest of the chicken.
Add remaining teaspoon of oil and quickly stir-fry the minced garlic and dried ginger until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the orange zest then return the chicken to the pan. Quickly stir the chicken then add the orange sauce and cook until the sauce thickens, about 1 to 2 minutes. Garnish with the scallion and sesame seeds.
To me, one of my favorite smells is garlic – cooking, raw, anything. I just love the smell! The more, the better for me.
I took this picture so you can see there is a lot of sauce, but it thickens very nicely as the cornstarch mixture comes to a boil. It is just lovely and light tasting. Sweet with a kick from the sriracha. If you can’t handle the heat, cut out or reduce the sriracha.
I typically don’t go for sweet and sour or any sweet dish but this will be on repeat. Mr. FeistyEats and I were big fans. I was wiping up that sauce with my finger. No shame here!
This is a healthy meal that comes together quickly, especially if you have your husband cut up your chicken for you in advance. Enjoy!