Orange chicken recipe from Panda Express

Orange chicken recipe from Panda Express

One of the most popular Chinese dishes is definitely orange chicken. Thanks to the famous Panda Express restaurants, orange chicken has become the number one dish when you search for the best Chinese food to make or famous chicken dishes. No matter how good this orange chicken is when you buy it at a fast-food restaurant, it is always healthier to make it at home. If you follow this orange chicken recipe you will get a crispy chicken bites that are so soft and tender at the same time. The orange sauce comes out perfect and better than any orange marmalade.

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How to make orange chicken

You cannot make orange chicken quickly, but even though you need to spend some extra time in the kitchen, I promise it will pay off. That taste of orange chicken makes the effort totally worth it. If you wonder how to make orange chicken so it tastes like the one from Panda express, crispy outside and soft inside, here’s what you need to do.

Cut the chicken thighs into small pieces. If you don’t like chicken thighs you can use chicken breast. Cut the chicken into pieces that are approximately 1×1 inches.

Make the batter for the chicken. In a deep bowl, mix flour, cornstarch, salt, pepper with water, oil, and egg. Use the mixer so the batter doesn’t have any lumps.

Rest time. Put the chicken into the batter, stir well and leave it in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. You can also leave it overnight and then prepare it the next day.

Deep fry the chicken. This is the most time-consuming part. You need to fry all that chicken in deep oil. Read the tips below on frying the chicken.

Make the orange sauce. For this step, it is better you prepare all the ingredients even before you start the frying chicken. When you are frying the last batch of chicken, you can start preparing the orange sauce. Stir fry the chilli flakes, chopped ginger, and garlic. Add white and brown sugar and stir all the time. When the sugar is melted, add fresh orange juice, soya sos, and vinegar. In a cup, whisk together cornstarch with water until there are no lumps and then add it to the sauce. Finally, when you see the orange sauce is thick enough, like pomegranate molasses or maple syrup, move on to the next step.

Stir the chicken into the orange sauce. The final part takes only a minute or so.

Serve orange chicken with noodles, plain rice or fried rice

Orange chicken recipe – What is an orange chicken sauce made of?

The main ingredient of the orange sauce is fresh orange juice. Don’t use store-bought orange juice, it can never have the same taste. In addition, you can add a bit of orange pulp to increase the orange flavor. Water and cornstarch make the sauce thick, garlic and ginger give that good flavor. As this is a Chinese dish, soy sauce is inevitable, but it doesn’t prevail. Sugar and vinegar increase that sweet and sour orange taste. If you don’t like spicy food, you can omit chilli flakes.

INGREDIENTS FOR THE ORANGE SAUCE

  •     1 tablespoon oil
  •     1 teaspoon chili flake
  •     1 tablespoon garlic, minced
  •     1 teaspoon ginger, minced
  •     30 g white sugar
  •     50 g brown sugar
  •     100 ml fresh orange juice
  •      1 full tablespoon of orange pulp
  •     ¼ cup white vinegar
  •     2 tablespoons soy sauce
  •     2 tablespoons water
  •     2 tablespoons cornstarch

INGREDIENTS FOR THE CHICKEN

  •     500 to 600 g skinless chicken thighs
  •     ½  tablespoon salt
  •     1 teaspoon black pepper
  •     60 g cornstarch
  •     150 g flour
  •     1 egg
  •     175 ml water
  •     1 tablespoon oil
  •     500 ml oil for frying

Homemade orange sauce vs orange marmalade

This recipe for the orange sauce is very easy to make and it doesn’t require some ingredients that are hard to find. When making roast meat, orange marmalade is maybe a better option but if you want to make a real Chinese dish, you need to add soy sauce, vinegar, sugar, garlic and ginger. Preparing this sauce doesn’t take more than 15 minutes including chopping the garlic and ginger and squeezing oranges, but it makes a difference.

How to fry the chicken for this orange chicken recipe?

Here are some tips on frying the chicken for this recipe, but you can use these tips for other recipes as well.

  • Fry the chicken in deep and heated oil
  • Don’t put the chicken until the oil is not hot enough
  • The more oil you put, the less oil chicken will absorb
  • Don’t put too many chicken pieces in a pot, you need to fry it in batches
  • Reduce the heat from maximum to medium-to-high
  • Put the chicken slowly into the oil, so you don’t get burnt
  • Use paper towels all the time, they will absorb the oil if you put the chicken on them
  • Don’t put chicken pieces very close to each other, otherwise, they will get sticky and you will need to separate them with a fork

Panda Express Orange Chicken Recipe

Crispy and tender chicken covered in authentic orange sauce.

Prep Time20 mins

Cook Time25 mins

Resting Time30 mins

Course: dinner, lunch, Main Course

Cuisine: American, Chinese

Keyword: chicken, orange chicken, orange sauce

Servings: 4 people

Calories: 445kcal

FOR THE CHICKEN

  • 500 to 600 g skinless chicken thighs
  • ½ tbsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 60 g cornstarch
  • 150 g flour
  • 1 egg
  • 175 ml of water
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 500 ml oil for frying

FOR THE SAUCE:

  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 1 tsp chilli flakes
  • 1 tbsp chopped garlic
  • 1 tsp fresh ginger
  • 30 g white sugar
  • 50 g brown sugar
  • 100 ml fresh orange juice
  • 1 tbsp orange pulp
  • ¼ cup white vinegar
  • 2 tbsps soy sauce
  • 2 tbsps water
  • 2 tbsps cornstarch
  • Cut the chicken thighs into small pieces that are approximately 1×1 inches.
  • In a deep bowl, mix flour, cornstarch, salt, pepper with water, oil, and egg. Use the mixer so the batter doesn’t have any lumps.
  • Put the chicken into the batter, stir well and leave it in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. You can also leave it overnight and then prepare it the next day.
  • Fry the chicken pieces in batches, in deep and heated oil until golden, for about 3 minutes. Put the fried chicken on a paper towel and repeat for all the chicken.
  • Stir fry the chilli flakes, chopped ginger, and garlic. Add white and brown sugar and stir all the time. When the sugar is melted, add fresh orange juice, soya sos, and vinegar. In a cup, whisk together cornstarch with water until there are no lumps and then add it to the sauce.
  • When the sauce is thick, add fried chicken and stir for one more minute.

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