Skinny Orange Chicken

Skinny Orange Chicken Recipe | #newyears #chicken #recipe

Happy New Year’s, everyone!

I hope that your 2014 is off to a terrific start.  And hopefully, a delicious and healthy start!

So for all of you new years resolution folks who are out there scanning the world wide webosphere looking for lighter recipes after a holiday season full of sweets, you’ve come to the right place.  Because I am dedicating the entire month of January this year to sharing healthy recipes with you.  And I am stoked to kick things off with a lightened-up Chinese food classic — Skinny Orange Chicken.

This version packs all of the amazing sweet and savory orange flavor of the restaurant-style version, but with only a fraction of the calories and fat.  And it is naturally sweetened with honey.  And it can be served over rice or (my favorite) quinoa.  And it can be made in just 20 minutes from start to finish.

Interested?  You should be.  :)

Skinny Orange Chicken Recipe | #newyears #chicken #recipe

The main key to lightening up this restaurant classic is that we simply saute the chicken instead of fry it.  The chicken is sauteed until golden and drenched in an orange chicken sauce anyway, so I guarantee you won’t even miss the frying!  Plus, it saves us lots of unnecessary fat and calories in an already delicious dish.

And as I said, this skinny orange chicken recipe can literally be made in about 20 minutes.  So here’s what you need to make it happen.

Skinny Orange Chicken Recipe | #newyears #chicken #recipe

First, begin by cutting your chicken breasts into bite-sized pieces.  Mine were roughly 1-inch cubed.  Then season them with lots of salt and pepper for extra flavor.

Next, we make the rockstar of this recipe — the orange chicken sauce.  This sauce really could not be simpler.  Simply whisk all of the ingredients together along with some cornstarch (for thickening), and you’re ready to go.

Chicken + Sauce.  Done.

Skinny Orange Chicken Recipe | #newyears #chicken #recipe

Next, saute the chicken in some olive oil until it is nearly cooked through.  Be sure to let it rest in the pan a bit while cooking so that the sides can get nice and browned.

Then pour in the sauce, which should come to a boil within a minute or so.  Let it boil for about 1-2 minutes, or until it’s nice and thickened.

Skinny Orange Chicken Recipe | #newyears #chicken #recipe

Then top the chicken with some extra orange zest, green onions and toasted sesame seeds, and you’re good to go!

If you want to go the traditional route, you can serve this orange chicken recipe over rice.  But I’m a big fan of eating stir-fry recipes with quinoa.  So I whipped up a quick batch for this recipe, made (as always) with chicken broth for extra flavor.

Skinny Orange Chicken Recipe | #newyears #chicken #recipe

I mean, really, just look at that gorgeous dish!

So much great flavor, and so little unnecessary fat and calories from frying the chicken.  I’m pretty positive that even your friends or family members who usually prefer the fried version will go “poco loco” over this dish.  :)

Stay tuned for more healthy recipes to come this month on Gimme Some Oven.  And cheers to a great 2014 ahead!

Skinny Orange Chicken Recipe | #newyears #chicken #recipeSkinny Orange Chicken Recipe | #newyears #chicken #recipe

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Skinny Orange Chicken

This homemade orange chicken recipe comes together in just 20 minutes, and is a crazy delicious! (And healthier than the restaurant version!)


Orange Chicken Ingredients:

  • 2 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • orange chicken sauce (ingredients below)
  • toppings: thinly-sliced green onions, toasted sesame seeds, orange zest

Orange Chicken Sauce Ingredients:

  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/3 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
  • 3 Tbsp. cornstarch
  • 1/2 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp. white pepper
  • zest of one orange
  • pinch of crushed red pepper flakes

(Optional: Quinoa Ingredients)

  • 1 cup dry quinoa
  • 2 cups chicken broth


To Make The Orange Chicken:

Season chicken generously with salt and pepper.

Heat oil in a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Add chicken and saute for about 4-6 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the chicken is browned and nearly cooked through.

Pour in the orange chicken sauce, and stir to combine. Let the sauce come to a boil, then boil for an additional minute or two until thickened. Remove from heat and serve immediately over quinoa or rice. Garnish with green onions, sesame seeds and additional orange zest.

To Make The Orange Chicken Sauce:

Whisk all ingredients together until combined. If you would like the sauce to be even sweeter, add an extra 2-4 tablespoons of honey.

To Make The Quinoa:

You can see my step-by-step photo tutorial for how to cook quinoa here

All images and text ©

If you make this recipe, be sure to snap a photo and hashtag it #gimmesomeoven. I'd love to see what you cook!

Be sure to also check out these related recipes:

How To Cook Quinoa |

How To Cook Quinoa (A Step-By-Step Tutorial)

Healthier Sesame Chicken Recipe |

Sesame Chicken with Quinoa

Lighter Chinese Chicken Salad |

Lighter Chinese Chicken Salad

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313 comments on “Skinny Orange Chicken”

  1. Pingback: Skinny Chicken… sounds good to me! | foodies and other things

  2. Made it and it was great.  Instead of honey used agave nectar (not as sweet) and instead of soy sauce used coconut aminos (not as much sodium)  Turned out delish!!!

  3. I made this last night and it was a hit! I might cut back on the honey next time, maybe 1/3 cup. Other than that, perfect!

  4. This was the worst recipe I have ever made.  I was ashamed that I actually served it to my family.  Once we tried it and realized how bad it was, I put the chicken in a strainer to wash off the sauce and my kids still would not eat it.  Too much orange and too sweet.  It was like chicken floating in orange marmalade.  And bad orange marmalade at that.  I followed the recipe exactly.  I’m sorry for the bad review but good lord this was barely edible.

  5. This recipe is SO GOOD! Couple of changes I made:

    -Low Sodium soy sauce
    -No salt added to the chicken, just pepper
    -Slightly less than 1/2 cup of raw honey

    This worked out really well and I didn’t feel like it was too sweet, maybe because I didn’t use a full 1/2 cup of honey? I also served it over buckwheat soba noodles tossed in the orange sauce from the pan. Yummy!

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  8. So yummy!! We made it tonight and it was quick and delicious!! We added lots of veggies and used brown rice instead of quinoa. Thanks a for sharing!!

  9. For an enhanced flavor experience, try black pepper instead of white, orange marmalade instead of honey, and add fresh broccoli when you add the sauce. That broccoli steamed in that sauce, it’s great!

  10. I added the juice of half an orange upped some of
    the spices, it was pretty fantastic. Served it over brown rice.

  11. I made this last night and it turned out great!

  12. Pingback: Orange Chicken & Quinoa  | The "Foody" Blues

  13. I loved this made it for me and a friend. Going to make it again tonight for me and my partner. Can any one tell me how many calories is in this though please. 

    • Hey Danielle! So happy you liked this recipe — thanks for checking it out! Unfortunately though, we aren’t currently publishing nutrition facts on the site. The nutrition calculators available are not 100% accurate, and we never want to publish anything that might be misleading. But many of our readers love the My Fitness Pal nutrition calculator, so feel free to try that for an estimate. I hope that helps!

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  15. Do you know the calories to this dish ?

    • Hey Jaime, I’m sorry but we currently are not publishing nutrition facts on the site. The nutrition calculators available are not 100% accurate, and we never want to publish anything that might be misleading. However, several of our readers love the My Fitness Pal nutrition calculator, so feel free to try that for an estimate. I hope that helps!

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  17. Pingback: Skinny Orange Chicken Recipe | Chicken Recipes & Ideas

  18. Second time making this.  It is my yummy.  I shared it with my diet group.  The three who made it loved it as welll.  It’s hard to quit eating it, even after a serving, because it is so delicious.  I love the orange flavor so I use orange concentrate.  Thank you for creating this delightful dish.  

  19. this was really yummy! Definitely going to make again. I’m curious what the nutritional info is so I can add it to my points tracker. 

    • Thanks Marianne, I’m glad you liked it! I’m sorry but we actually are not publishing nutrition facts on the site at this time. The nutrition calculators available are not 100% accurate, and we never want to publish anything that might be misleading. However, many of our readers love the My Fitness Pal nutrition calculator, so feel free to try that for an estimate. I hope that is helpful! : )

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  21. hello i love your recipes many thanks i am looking for a recipe that i buy from my local takeaway it has
    broccoli, cauliflower, zucchini, red capsicum, chicken and a white/slightly see through sauce on it, its just called chicken vegetables, i am looking for the sauce recipe that goes with it as the restaurants wont tell me whats in the sauce, even for allergy reasons, i cant even find a photo that closely resembles the meal i might have to snap a pic myself

  22. Pingback: Skinny Orange Chicken Recipe | Healthy Classic Blog

  23. Pingback: SKINNY Orange Chicken Recipe - All of the flavor you love, without all of the calories. - Hup Cooks

  24. Finally got to try this last night… my daughter was craving a certain fast food chinese meal and I was hoping this would satisfy her craving in a healthier way and it did the trick! This was delicious and easy. It’s definitely going in her binder to take back to schooling the Fall! Thanks again Ali!! PS I did have some Blueberry Crisp topping left, so I bake up another single serve for dessert! ; ) 

    • That’s great to hear, Ellen, thank you for sharing! And so glad you liked the blueberry crisp too! : )

  25. this is one of the best pinterest recipes I have  found! thick delicious sauce, sweet but not overly so. this is definitely something I plan to make again and again 

    things I did differently:
    black peper (did not have white)
    Apple cider vinegar (what I had on hand)
    no orange zest (I dont own a zester)

  26. I used two tablespoons honey 2 cups orange juice. Soooo yummy!! Ty!!

  27. I made this for supper tonight. We really liked it. I am not sure about the Quinoa. I left it in the rinse water so it was a little wet. Not your fault. Next time I will just rinse it. It will certainly be made again.
    Thanks for sharing !!!

  28. I made this recipe tonight for supper and it was AMAZING!! Full of flavour, healthy and my hubby and I had the feeling we were eating real chinese from a restaurant :-D thank you so much for the recipe! I will keep it on my favourites!

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  30. I love all your recipes!  If I wanted to throw in some veggies like broccoli or peppers/mushrooms/onions, where in the cooking process should I add them?  Thanks!

    • Thanks, Allison! We’d say it’s probably best to steam or sauté them (separately), then you can toss them with the chicken and sauce, when they’re finished cooking. Depending on how many vegetables you add, you also might want to make a little extra sauce (1 1/2 – double the amount.) We hope that helps – enjoy!

  31. Love this recipe!! Have made it three time and it amazing!  I serve with brown rice and broccoli and it is WAY better than take out! 
    Thank you so much for sharing! 

  32. I have to give honor to whom honor is due.

    I made this for dinner. My husband ate my plate and the restof mine. I took it to work and was asked to make this for lunch for the staff.

    Thank you for posting.

    • That makes us so happy Becca, thanks for sharing! We’re so glad it was a hit with your husband and your co-workers!

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  35. This recipe is delicious, but isn’t it pretty high in sodium?

    • Thanks, we’re glad you like it! We actually aren’t sure of the nutrition content, but if you’re concerned about the sodium, you could always use less sodium soy sauce, and less sodium chicken broth. We hope that helps!

  36. Tasted delicious, the entire family ate it. Not orangey enough, definitely not the orange chicken i thought of and my sauce did not look anything like the photo but yummmmy will cook again, sharing in my mommy groups

    • Thanks Shannon, we’re glad you and your family enjoyed this! To get more of an orange kick, you can try adding more orange juice and zest, (if you add a significant amount of juice, we’d suggest upping the cornstarch amount as well.) We hope that helps!

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  38. Pingback: Skinny orange chicken | The Best Sock You'll Ever Wear-Guaranteed.

  39. This is the first recipe of yours I tried and it will NOT be the last! My only complaint–my boyfriend wouldn’t stop eating it and now I don’t have enough for dinner tomorrow. :-P I thought the level of sweetness was spot-on, though I did add a tiny bit of onion powder to the sauce and little extra OJ. Thanks!!

    • Thanks Meredith, that’s such a nice compliment! We’re so happy you and your boyfriend loved it! :)

  40. Pingback: 110 Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast Recipes - Rachel Cooks


  42. My boyfriend and I love this recipe! 

  43. This dish was amazing! Absolutely delicious!!

  44. Pingback: Healthy And Tasty Sunday Recipes | wivesknives

  45. This was excellent! I’m making it for the second time tonight. The first time I was out of honey so I just used a bit of orange marmalade instead. Super delicious. Thank you!

    • Thanks Emily, we’re so happy you liked it! Also, great call on the orange marmalade, we bet that was serendipitous! :)

  46. Pingback: links to good recipes | Anna's Recipes

  47. I made this tonight for my family. It was a hit! I loved it! Even my picky 2-year old ate it. This recipe is great and I’m looking forward to trying more of your recipes!

  48. Made this today for lunch, and had extra for other meals. I love this recipe! My friend made it at her house one night and I had to make it myself. did not have rice wine vinegar so I used apple cider but I didnt notice a taste difference. Also added some red pepper and cayenne for a little kick.

    Has anyone tried making a large batch of this in a crock pot???

    • Thanks Kristy-Lee, we’re so happy you and your friend enjoyed it! That’s also good to know apple cider vinegar works well in this! :)

  49. i can’t have soy sauce.  what is the subsitute for soy sauce?

  50. What can be replaced for the honey? I am a diabetic and have really adverse effects to honey. 

    • Hi Megan! We would suggest agave, because it’s lower in carbs and lower on the glycemic index than honey, and you don’t have to use as much of it since it’s sweeter/more concentrated (but you really should check with your dr. first). We hope this helps!