Panda Express Orange Chicken is a sight to behold, the ultimate comfort food for Chinese takeout. But what happens at 3 am when you’re craving these tangy chicken chunks? Knocking down the door of your nearest store isn’t an attractive color on anyone.
Nevertheless, we can always o-rrange something. You can make the signature orange sauce with a few staples you likely have on hand, and it’s easy to find tender chicken anywhere.
With this Panda Express Orange Chicken recipe, we can all load up on the irresistible dish. Those who enjoy a good spicy kick can even adjust the taste by adding extra red pepper flakes or Sriracha. Whatever ruffles your truffles!
Panda Express Orange Chicken – Copycat Recipe
Do note that the widely loved Orange Chicken is ‘Americanized’ and by no means resemble a similar dish from China, which uses orange rinds instead. Still, this recipe is made with accessible ingredients and is just as mouthwatering.
|Prep Time: 15 mins||Cook Time: 20 mins||Total Time: 35 mins||Serving: 6|
- 2 lb boneless & skinless chicken thighs
- 1 cup cornstarch
- 3 cups flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon white pepper
- Oil for frying
- 1 egg, beaten
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup water
- 1/4 cup fresh orange juice
- 1/3 cup distilled vinegar
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce (use a gluten-free brand if you wish)
- 1 tablespoon orange zest, grated
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon ginger, minced
- 1 teaspoon garlic, minced
- Red pepper flakes to taste
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons water
- Cut chicken into 1×1-inch cubes, then set aside.
- In a mixing bowl, combine cornstarch, salt, and white pepper. Whisk to combine well.
- Dip chicken cubes in beaten eggs and shake in cornstarch batter to coat.
- Heat oil in a wok or deep fryer to 350 ˚F. Add the chicken and cook for 5 minutes until golden brown.
- In a large saucepan, combine 1 cup water, orange juice, vinegar, and soy sauce. Simmer over medium heat for several minutes.
- Add in brown sugar, ginger, garlic, and orange zest. Stir occasionally while boiling.
- Combine 2 tablespoons of cornstarch with 2 tablespoons of water and whisk thoroughly.
- Stir the cornstarch mixture into the sauce and continue cooking until it thickens into a maple syrup consistency.
- Add the breaded chicken and coat in the sauce.
- Sprinkle red pepper flakes according to desired spice level. (Optional) Top with sesame oil.
Get Ready to Feast
Now, it’s time to devour your homemade Panda Express Orange Chicken! The dish is satiating enough on its own, but you can always pair it with a bowl of steamed rice. It goes deliciously well atop some fried noodles, too.
Either way, make sure to box up the leftovers and store them in the fridge. It should have your cravings covered for the next four days. Freezing will allow storage for up to a few months, wherein you can quickly thaw by microwaving.
Happy cooking and eating!
For more recipes like this, feel free to head over to LokaEats.