Lighter Orange Chicken Bowl Recipe

Despite the fact that orange chicken is a popular Chinese takeaway food, many of these dishes, like the well-known orange chicken from Panda Express, feature deep-fried meat and sweet sauces, as the developer Deniz Vergara points out. Her orange chicken bowl, on the other hand, is something that she claims has ‘all the flavours of Chinese takeaway without the extra sodium and calories’. This is due to the fact that she sautés the chicken in a sauce that is heavy on fresh orange juice and light on sugar.

Although Vergara describes this recipe as “easy and straightforward,” she does advise that you keep a close eye on the sauce while it is being reduced in temperature. She warns that if you reduce it too much, it will become impossible to use in this recipe since it will be too thick and sticky. As Vergara constructs her orange chicken bowl with white rice and broccoli, she says that you could substitute fried rice or ramen noodles for the starch. She also suggests that you could use a combination of the two. Other veggies, such as onions, mushrooms, bell peppers, or bok choy, could be substituted for broccoli if you are not a fan of the vegetable.

Lighter Orange Chicken Bowl Recipe
Lighter Orange Chicken Bowl Recipe

Collect the ingredients for this lighter orange chicken bowl

For the purpose of cooking, you will want baking soda, salt, orange juice, soy sauce, garlic, and ginger in addition to the boneless, skinless chicken that is utilised in this recipe. In order to make the sauce, you will need orange zest and juice, soy sauce, rice vinegar, sweet chilli sauce, corn starch, ginger, garlic, crushed red pepper, and brown sugar. Additionally, you will need avocado oil, broccoli, cooked rice, scallions, and sesame seeds in order to construct the bowl.

Vergara tells us that it took her two oranges to get enough juice for this dish, in case you are curious about the number of oranges that are necessary to obtain enough juice for it. If you want, you can also use navel oranges, cara cara oranges, or blood oranges in place of Valencia oranges. Valencia oranges are among the most juicy oranges.

Lighter Orange Chicken Bowl Recipe
Lighter Orange Chicken Bowl Recipe

What does baking soda bring to this orange chicken bowl?

The use of baking powder as a (no longer) hidden ingredient that will make your chicken extra-crispy skin may be something you are familiar with; but, what is the effect that baking soda has on a bird? We are not attempting to give the skin an extra crunch because Vergara uses breasts that are boneless and skinless. As an alternative, the baking soda that she incorporates into the marinade prior to the chicken being cooked has the opposite results.

According to Vergara, “the baking soda is something that is used to tenderise the chicken.” She refers to the method as “velveting” and states that it is a technique that is frequently utilised in Chinese cuisine because of its versatility. When baking soda is combined with fat, it safeguards the meat and prevents it from absorbing moisture while it is being fried in the pan. This is the reason why it turns out to be effective. On the other hand, given that Vergara only utilises a very small quantity of this component, it should not have any impact whatsoever on the flavour, so you do not need to be concerned about that aspect.

Lighter Orange Chicken Bowl Recipe
Lighter Orange Chicken Bowl Recipe

What type of oil is best for stir-frying chicken and broccoli?

Due to the fact that avocado oil is beneficial to one’s health, Vergara chooses to sauté the chicken in this dish before cooking it. In point of fact, avocado oil is comprised of both antioxidants and unsaturated fatty acids, making it a very nutrient-efficient substance. Additionally, it can make it simpler for your body to absorb the nutrients that are contained in the broccoli.

Although avocado oil has a greater smoke point than olive oil, all things considered, it offers nutritional benefits that are comparable to those of olive oil. This will be less of a problem because the recipe calls for sautéing rather than deep frying, and Vergara does mention that there are different oils that you might use if you so desire. She recommends using vegetable oil, but other possibilities that would be suitable include sunflower, soybean, rice bran, peanut, grapeseed, corn, canola or olive oil (normal or light, not extra virgin). The flavour of nut oils, flaxseed oil, toasted sesame oil, and extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) tends to be diminished when they are heated, thus these oils are not necessarily the best options.


For the chicken
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into bite-sized pieces
¼ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon sea salt
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
2 tablespoons soy sauce
3 cloves garlic, minced
½ tsp minced fresh ginger
For the orange sauce
1 orange, zested
⅓ cup freshly squeezed orange juice
1 tablespoon soy sauce
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
1 tablespoon sweet chili sauce
1 ½ teaspoons corn starch
3 garlic cloves, minced
½ tsp minced fresh ginger
¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper
2 tablespoons light brown sugar
¼ teaspoon sea salt
For cooking
1 tablespoon avocado oil
½ cup bite-sized broccoli florets
1 tablespoon sesame seeds
1 scallion, sliced
For serving
2 cups cooked white rice


What is the orange sauce made of in orange chicken?

Tutorial on how to create the orange sauce for chicken. Orange juice and zest, sugar, soy sauce, garlic, ginger, and rice vinegar are the ingredients that go into the preparation of the orange sauce. In the wok, this is let to bubble up until it becomes slightly thicker. This is followed by the chicken being reintroduced and tossed in the sauce until it is completely covered.

Is orange chicken light or dark meat?

What portion of chicken should be used? The chicken breast and the chicken thighs, provided that they are boneless and skinless, are both excellent choices for this meal for the chicken. It has nothing to do with whether you prefer white or dark meat more than the other. The breasts and thighs of chicken are both excellent, but the thighs tend to be more juicy than the breasts.

Why is my orange chicken soggy?

After being combined, Orange Chicken might become soggy if it is allowed to sit for an excessive amount of time or if it is baked or fried. Either serve the chicken immediately or store it separately from the sauce, and then combine it when you reheat it. This will avoid the chicken from becoming soggy.

Is orange chicken Chinese or Japanese?

Despite the fact that the orange chicken is one of the most well-known Chinese dishes in the United States, it is a dish that originated in the United States. There are no genuine Chinese restaurants or restaurants in China that serve this speciality.

How to thicken orange chicken sauce?

Pour the sauce into a small saucepan and place it on the stove over medium-high heat. This will cause the sauce to thicken. A cornflour slurry can be made by combining two tablespoons of cornflour with two tablespoons of water in a small bowl. The cornflour slurry should be added to the pan on the heat once the sauce begins to bubble. The mixture should then be stirred to combine.

Also Read: Tamari-Ginger Meatball & Eggplant Casserole

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