Healthy Orange Chicken Recipe

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Healthy Orange Chicken Recipe

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Healthy Orange Chicken Recipe

Healthy Orange Chicken Recipe

Orange chicken is a popular dish known for its sweet and tangy sauce. This healthier version uses fresh ingredients and avoids deep frying, making it a delicious and nutritious option for a balanced meal.


For the Chicken:

  • 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts (cut into bite-sized pieces)
  • 2 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 tbsp olive oil

For the Sauce:

  • 1/2 cup fresh orange juice (about 2 oranges)
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce (low-sodium)
  • 1 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 2 tbsp honey or maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 garlic clove (minced)
  • 1 tsp fresh ginger (grated)
  • 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch (mixed with 2 tbsp water to form a slurry)

For Garnish:

  • 1 green onion (sliced)
  • Sesame seeds
  • Orange zest (optional)


  1. Prepare the Chicken:
    • In a bowl, toss the chicken pieces with 2 tbsp cornstarch until evenly coated.
  2. Cook the Chicken:
    • Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and cook until browned and cooked through, about 5-7 minutes. Remove the chicken from the skillet and set aside.
  3. Make the Sauce:
    • In the same skillet, add the minced garlic and grated ginger. Sauté for about 30 seconds until fragrant.
    • Add the orange juice, soy sauce, rice vinegar, honey (or maple syrup), tomato paste, and crushed red pepper flakes (if using). Stir to combine and bring to a simmer.
  4. Thicken the Sauce:
    • Add the cornstarch slurry to the sauce, stirring constantly until the sauce thickens, about 1-2 minutes.
  5. Combine Chicken and Sauce:
    • Return the cooked chicken to the skillet. Toss to coat the chicken evenly with the sauce. Cook for another 2-3 minutes until the chicken is heated through and well-glazed.
  6. Serve:
    • Transfer the orange chicken to a serving dish. Garnish with sliced green onions, sesame seeds, and orange zest (if desired).

Tips for a Healthier Dish

  • Use Fresh Ingredients: Fresh orange juice and ginger add vibrant flavors and nutritional benefits.
  • Reduce Sugar: Using honey or maple syrup instead of refined sugar makes the sauce healthier.
  • Lower Sodium: Opt for low-sodium soy sauce to control the salt content.
  • Avoid Deep Frying: Sautéing the chicken instead of deep frying reduces the fat content.

Nutritional Benefits

  • Lean Protein: Chicken breast is an excellent source of lean protein, promoting muscle growth and repair.
  • Vitamins and Antioxidants: Oranges provide vitamin C and antioxidants, supporting immune health.
  • Healthy Fats: Olive oil adds heart-healthy monounsaturated fats.

Serving Suggestions

  • With Brown Rice: Serve the orange chicken over brown rice for a complete meal.
  • In Lettuce Wraps: Use large lettuce leaves to create healthy orange chicken wraps.
  • With Vegetables: Pair with steamed or stir-fried vegetables like broccoli, snap peas, or bell peppers for added nutrition.


This healthy orange chicken recipe is a delicious and nutritious alternative to the traditional version. By using fresh ingredients and healthier cooking methods, you can enjoy a flavorful dish that supports your health goals. Whether served over rice, in wraps, or with vegetables, this orange chicken is sure to become a favorite.