This homemade orange chicken is better than Panda Express!

It was one of those days. My photo shoot went wrong. When I fried an egg, I burnt myself. In my kitchen garbage, there was an ant swarm. On a Saturday afternoon, I was stuck in the worst traffic for a 3-mile drive. The list continues.

It was the highlight of my morning that I had a few¬†orange chicken left over. It’s my favorite Chinese dish, and it comes from Panda Express. Crispy, fried chicken pieces are smothered with a sweet, tangy orange sauce. This version is better than the one at Panda Express, and I’m sure you will agree!


  • Cut into 1-inch pieces, 1 1/2 pounds of skinless, boneless chicken breasts
  • 1 cup plus two tablespoons cornstarch, divided
  • Two large eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • Half a teaspoon of sesame seeds
  • One thinly sliced green onion


  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • Freshly squeezed Orange Juice, 1/2 cup
  • Half a cup of sugar
  • 1/4 cup white vinegar distilled
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • Two cloves garlic, minced
  • One tablespoon of orange zest
  • Taste one teaspoon of Sriracha or more
  • 1/4 teaspoon of ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon white pepper


  • To make the marinade, whisk together chicken broth with orange juice, sugar, and vinegar in a large mixing bowl. Add garlic, orange zest, Sriracha sauce, white pepper, ginger, and soy sauce.
  • Combine the chicken with 2/3 cup marinade in a gallon-size Ziploc bag or a large bowl. Marinate for 30 minutes at least, rotating the bag every so often. Drain the chicken and discard the marinade.
  • Heat the remaining marinade over medium heat in a medium-sized saucepan. Bring two tablespoons of cornstarch and two tablespoons of water to a rolling boil, then stir in the two tablespoons. Cook, stirring often, until thickened, about 1-2 minutes. Keep warm.
  • Then, dredge the remaining 1 cup of cornstarch over the chicken, coating it well.
  • Heat vegetable oil in a large saucepan. Add the chicken in batches and cook until golden brown. This should take about 1-2 mins. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels; discard any excess oil.
  • If desired, serve the chicken with the marinade immediately. You can drizzle or toss it with the marinade. Garnish with sesame seeds and green onion.

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