This award-winning Orange Ginger Chicken recipe is a healthier homemade alternative to takeout or Trader Joe’s. The whole family will love this stir fried chicken breast glazed in orange ginger sauce.
If you’ve ever been to a Trader Joe’s, you understand it’s allure. I can’t walk out of that place without a basket full of provisions, most that I don’t really need. Spinach-Artichoke Dip? Frozen pizzas? Spring rolls? Chocolate-covered espresso beans? Chocolate-covered almonds? Chocolate-covered ANYTHING?
The star of the show at TJ’s: Mandarin Orange Chicken. This stuff is wonderful. Chunks of tender breaded chicken that only take like 25 minutes to heat in the oven until they’re nice and crispy? A sweet orange sauce/glaze that covers the chicken and flavors your rice, too? Outstanding. However, this dish is not outstanding in the health department. Shocker, I know.
The good news about this Orange Ginger Chicken Recipe:
It’s very easy to make a much healthier orange chicken dish at home! The TJ’s version takes about 30 minutes to prepare, and this version shouldn’t take you much longer than that, if you exclude the hour it’s sitting in the fridge to marinate.
So, what I generally do is come home from work, prep the marinade (or even prep it the night before!), toss the chicken in, then spend an hour catching up on household chores or just relaxing with Netflix or a book.
What are the ingredients in Orange Ginger Sauce?
- orange juice
- low-sodium soy sauce
- fresh ginger
- vegetable oil
- sriracha (optional)
- rice vinegar
- light brown sugar
- orange zest
- ground white pepper
How to make Orange Ginger Chicken:
- First, make a marinade with orange juice, soy sauce, ginger, garlic, vegetable oil, sriracha, rice vinegar, brown sugar, orange zest and white pepper.
- Put chicken breast strips in a zip-top bag and pour most of the marinade over (reserve some extra marinade for sauce). Then, refrigerate for 1 hour so the chicken can marinate and have lots of flavor when you cook it.
- Take the chicken out of the marinade and stir fry it in batches in a wok or large skillet.
- Next, bring the extra marinade to a boil, add a cornstarch slurry and cook until the orange ginger sauce becomes a glaze consistency. Toss chicken in orange ginger sauce.
- Serve Orange Ginger Chicken over rice. Sprinkle with green onions.
This Orange Ginger Chicken Recipe is award winning!
On 10/15/13, this recipe was chosen as the winner of Whole Foods Market Cooking’s “Your Best Stovetop Chicken” contest and professionally photographed by Mark Weinstein (below):
Other tips and ideas for this Orange Ginger Chicken:
- Spoon over steamed white rice, brown rice or quinoa
- Serve over cauliflower rice for a lower carb meal
- Pair with steamed or stir fried broccoli or snow peas to get your veggies in!
- Sprinkle with sesame seeds for added flavor
- Make the sauce using blood oranges or cara cara oranges for a seasonal twist
- 1-1/4 cups orange juice (preferably fresh squeezed) (make sure you zest 1 of the oranges first!)
- 1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
- 3 tablespoons grated fresh ginger
- 3 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
- 2 tablespoons minced fresh garlic
- 1-1/2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 2 teaspoons grated orange zest
- 2 teaspoons light brown sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper
- 0 - 2 tablespoons sriracha*
- 1-1/4 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into thin strips
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 3 tablespoons thinly sliced green onions
- In small bowl, whisk together orange juice, soy sauce, ginger, 1 tablespoon oil, garlic, vinegar, orange zest, brown sugar, pepper and sriracha (if using). Place chicken in large zip-top bag; pour 1/3 cup marinade over chicken. Seal bag and refrigerate 1 hour.
- Remove chicken from marinade; discard marinade. Heat large skillet or wok over medium-high heat. Add 1 tablespoon oil and half of chicken and cook 5 to 6 minutes or until chicken is golden brown and internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F, stirring frequently. Transfer chicken to medium bowl. Repeat process with remaining 1 tablespoon oil and chicken. Transfer chicken to bowl.
- Add remaining marinade to skillet; heat to boiling. In small bowl, whisk together cornstarch and 1 tablespoon water. Whisk cornstarch mixture into marinade; boil 1 minute. Return chicken to skillet; cook 1 minute or until heated through. Serve chicken sprinkled with green onions.
*Sriracha is optional. 1 tablespoon of sriracha will balance out the sweetness of the oranges without making the sauce too spicy for most eaters. 2 tablespoons of sriracha will make a noticeably spicier sauce. Use even more sriracha if you REALLY like spice!
Other great chicken recipes for busy weeknights:
- Sheet Pan Chicken & Apple Curry – big flavors on one sheet pan
- Cashew Chicken with Couscous & Grapefruit – a restaurant-quality dish made at home
- Grilled Chicken with Apples & Couscous – perfect for late summer or early fall
- Greek Chicken Fried Rice – a Mediterranean spin on fried rice
- Slow Cooker Chicken Burrito Bowls – a reader favorite!
- Butter Chicken from Wine and Glue
- Creamy Garlic Herb Chicken from Diethood