Easy Orange Chicken

This post was last updated on February 14, 2015 to include new images.

Easy Orange Chicken

I don’t think I’ve shared this with you yet, but I enjoy Asian food.  I know…groundbreaking as that may be.  “Wow, did you hear that? Lacey likes another type of food. Shocking.”

I’ve talked a lot about how much I love certain types of food on this blog, but not so much with Asian food.  Well, that is going to change…somewhat.

You see, though I love to eat Chinese, Japanese, Thai food and the like, I’m not as comfortable with the actual cooking part. With the exception of Asian Lettuce Wraps (post coming soon!), egg rolls, fried rice and the occasional stir-fry, I rarely make anything “Asian” at home.

I’m much more comfortable cooking Italian food (for more on that, see my Chicken Parmesan, Simple Tomato Sauce and Italian Sausage and Mushroom Stuffed Manicotti posts). I guess I scare easily with stuff I’m not used to (for more on that, see my Chicken Cordon Bleu post). Plus, I don’t usually get that Aha! moment when I realize I can probably make that at home, like I do with other cuisines.

Easy Orange Chicken

That’s what makes this Easy Orange Chicken so fantastic. Not only is it quite a simple meal to make but you probably have most, if not all, the ingredients in your pantry or refrigerator. Plus, it’s a healthy Chinese recipe that is very fresh, light and vibrant. The chicken is not deep fried, which — sadly — is always a good start towards making a dish more healthy.


The orange zest, grated ginger and red pepper flakes create a wonderful depth of flavor.  You may even be surprised you actually made it (well, I was, at least). Orange Chicken is probably my favorite Chinese entree, so it’s great to have this go-to recipe at home.

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If you give this recipe a try, let me know what you think by leaving a comment and rating it. And don’t forget to take a picture and tag it #asweetpeachef on Instagram! I LOVE seeing what you come up with. Enjoy!

Easy Orange Chicken
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
This Easy Orange Chicken recipe is fantastic because it's a healthy Chinese recipe that is simple to make.
Recipe type: Easy
Serves: 4
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 chicken breasts, boneless and skinless
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt, to coat chicken
  • ½ tsp. ground black pepper, to coat chicken
  • 1 broccoli crown, cut into florets
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced
  • For the Sauce:
  • 1½ cups plus 2 tbsp water, divided
  • 2 tbsp. orange juice
  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice
  • ⅓ cup rice vinegar
  • 2½ tbsp. soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp. grated orange zest
  • ¾ cup brown sugar, packed
  • ½ tsp. grated fresh ginger
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • ¼ tsp. red pepper flakes
  • ½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tbsp. cornstarch
  1. In a saucepan over medium-high heat, combine all the ingredients for the sauce except for the cornstarch and 2 tbsp. water. Bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Once the sauce has started boiling, reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally, while chicken and broccoli are being prepared.
  2. Steam (or boil, if you prefer) broccoli florets until almost no longer crisp, approximately 5-8 minutes. Test with a fork: if the fork easily pierces the florets, they are done. Careful not to overcook, as the broccoli will fall apart when mixed with the sauce and chicken.
  3. Heat olive oil in a large skillet on medium-high heat. Generously sprinkle kosher salt and pepper over both sides of the chicken breasts. Lay chicken in pan and cook until browned on each side and cooked through, approximately 8-12 minutes. Once cooked through, allow to cool enough to handle, approximately 5 minutes. Slice into bite-size pieces and set aside.
  4. Turn the heat on the sauce to medium. In a small mixing bowl, mix the cornstarch with 2 tbsp. water in order to combine and avoid lumps. Add the cornstarch mixture to the rest of the sauce and stir to combine. You will notice the sauce begin to thicken quickly. Stir for a minute or two until well thickened. Remove from heat.
  5. In a large bowl, gently toss together the broccoli, chicken and sauce. Garnish with thinly sliced green onions, if desired. Serve with (or over) white rice (I use -- and love -- jasmine rice).


  1. Lyn says

    Thank you for posting this great dish, one in a series of delights you’ve shared with me–teriyaki sauce, hollandaise sauce, ice cream. You’re my first “go to”. Simple and great without a lot of standing on my head. Many blessings, Lyn

  2. says

    Its such as you read my mind! You seem to grasp a lot approximately this, such as you wrote the e-book in it or something. I feel that you just could do with some p.c. to force the message house a little bit, however instead of that, this is excellent blog. A fantastic read. I’ll definitely be back.

  3. Dianne H. says

    This was delicious! My family loved it! I have never used ginger root in cooking before, so that was fun. I used 3 chicken breasts, and brown rice, and it was so good. The orange sauce was awesome! Love your blog, and will be trying another one of your chicken recipes soon!

  4. Isaac Jimenez says

    The orange sauce was a perfect and fresh taste of citrus orange, tangy , not overly sweet, hint of ginger, & the right amount of chili flakes for some zing! This is definitely a keeper! 😛

  5. Caro says

    My cousin shared this website with me and I made the orange chicken…hello..can you say slammin good dinner? I added some bok choy and frozen asian medley veggies and brown rice, and we were happy and stuffed. Thanks!

  6. Melissa says

    This dish looks awesome. Quick question though – i live overseas and don’t have access to rice vinegar. What would you suggest as a substitution? Would red wine vinegar work?

    • says

      Hmmm…I would probably try white wine vinegar, apple cider vinegar and then red wine vinegar (in that order) depending on what’s available to you. I’d love to know what you try and how it turns out. Good luck!

  7. Kathy Baier says

    Lacey: I think I want to be your new BFF!! Rob and I seriously MOANED while we eat this delicious, easy to prepare meal. It was just wonderful! Keep up the great work. XOXOXOX

  8. says

    My husband is addicted to chicken. It’s weird. So the “chicken” part of my collected recipe folder is HUGE. This one is going in there. Looks really tasty and pretty healthy which is a bonus!

    • says

      Haha! My dad was the same way with chicken. Felt like we had chicken for dinner almost every night. Maybe there should be a support group :) I’m glad this recipe gets included in your folder. Thanks for stopping by!

  9. says

    I adore asian food as well but don’t make it as often as I’d like. I think it’s just that, with other ethnic foods, like Italian, I always have an idea of what ingredients I should use to get the taste I want. With Asian foods there is just so much that I don’t know, so I feel like i have no idea where to begin!

    This dish looks delicious though. Orange chicken is a favorite of mine!

    • says

      Joanne, I totally agree with you. I’ve been using hoisin sauce, oyster sauce, sesame oil and other similar ingredients for a while, but it’s hard to think how to use them without following someone else’s recipe. Thanks for sharing :)

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