5 from 1 votes

Panda Express Orange Chicken

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With food costs skyrocketing, it’s a must to eat from home while still enjoying your favorite restaurants and fast food menu items.

This copycat Panda Express orange chicken recipe (and soon-to-come our copycat Panda Express fried rice recipe) is a great way to park it in front of the TV with a plate full of homemade deliciousness without sacrificing flavor—or money.

close up of orange chicken pieces.

Orange Chicken Recipe Ingredients

Sauce Ingredients:

  • Brown Sugar
  • Orange Juice
  • Soy Sauce
  • Zest of one Orange

Chicken Coating Ingredients:

  • Cornstarch
  • All-Purpose Flour
  • Egg
  • Salt
  • Ground Pepper
  • Vegetable Oil (for mixing)
  • Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breast cut into pieces
  • Vegetable Oil (for frying)

Stir-Fry Ingredients:

  • Vegetable Oil
  • Ground Ginger
  • Minced Garlic
  • Red Pepper Flakes
  • Green Onions, sliced
  • Rice Wine
  • Cold Water mixed with Cornstarch
  • Sesame Oil

Preparation

How to make the Orange Sauce:

In a small bowl, whisk together 1/2 cup brown sugar, 3/4 cup orange juice, three tablespoons soy sauce, and the zest of one orange until fully combined. Set mixture aside.

4 collage with ingredients mixing up chicken orange sauce.

How to make the chicken batter:

In a separate bowl, thoroughly mix 1/2 cup cornstarch with 1/4 cup all-purpose flour for the chicken coating.

In another bowl, beat one egg with 1-1/2 teaspoons salt and 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper until well mixed.

Making chicken batter with eggs, flour, and cornstarch.

How to make Orange Chicken

Heat enough vegetable oil (enough to cover at least 1″ depth) in a deep pan over high heat until it’s hot and ready for frying.

Working in batches, first dip chicken pieces into the egg mixture, ensuring each piece is well coated. Then, dredge each piece in the cornstarch and flour mixture for a complete coating.

Carefully add the coated chicken to the hot oil, frying for 6-8 minutes until the pieces are golden brown and cooked.

Once fried, remove the chicken from the oil and let it drain on a plate lined with paper towels.

frying chicken with batter in oil.

In a separate skillet, heat one tablespoon of vegetable oil over high heat. Add one teaspoon of ground ginger, two teaspoons of minced garlic, one teaspoon of red pepper flakes, and the sliced green onions, stirring constantly for about 1 minute.

Lower the heat and add the previously prepared sauce mixture to the skillet, letting it simmer until it bubbles.

Creating orange chicken sauce copycat Panda Express.

Mix 1/2 cup of cold water with two tablespoons of cornstarch and stir slurry into the skillet to thicken the sauce.

Return the fried chicken to the skillet, stirring until each piece is evenly coated with the sauce. Continue heating for 2-3 minutes until everything is hot.

Drizzle one teaspoon of sesame oil over the dish before serving, and garnish with additional sliced green onions.

stirring sauce and chicken.

What to serve with Orange Chicken

piece of chicken being held by a chopstick.
5 from 1 votes

Panda Express Orange Chicken


Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Easy orange chicken with a delicious homemade orange sauce has just the right amount of flavor and spice to enjoy this popular fast food joint menu right at home.

Equipment

  • 4 Mixing Bowls
  • 2 skillets

Ingredients
 

Orange Marinade Mixture

  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup orange juice
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • zest of one orange

Chicken Coating

  • 1/2 cup cornstarch
  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 egg
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breast cut into 1" pieces
  • vegetable oil for frying

Flavor Base for Stir Fry

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 3 green onions sliced (and extra for additional topping)

Sauce Thickening and Final Touches

  • 2 tablespoons rice wine
  • 1/2 cup cold water mixed with 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil

Instructions

Ingredients Preparation:

  • In a small bowl, whisk together 1/2 cup brown sugar, 3/4 cup orange juice, 3 tablespoons soy sauce, and the zest of one orange. Put this aside for later use.
  • Mix 1/2 cup cornstarch with 1/4 cup all-purpose flour in a different bowl.
  • In a third bowl, combine one egg, 1.5 teaspoons salt, and 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper. Whisk together well.

Frying the Chicken

  • Heat a depth of 1 inch of vegetable oil in a pan over high heat until hot.
  • Take the chicken pieces, add them to the egg bowl, and mix until they are well coated, then remove and dredge the chicken pieces in the cornstarch and flour. Shake off excess flour from the chicken.
  • Fry the flour-covered chicken pieces in batches in the hot oil for 6-8 minutes each, or until they turn golden brown and the chicken is cooked through. Once cooked, transfer to a plate lined with paper towels to drain the excess oil. Do not leave chicken on paper towel too long or they can stick.

How to make Orange Chicken

  • In a separate skillet, heat one tablespoon of vegetable oil over high heat. Add 1 teaspoon ground ginger, 2 teaspoons minced garlic, 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes, and sliced green onions. Stir constantly for about a minute.
  • Lower the heat, then pour in two tablespoons of rice wine and previously prepared orange juice mixture. Wait until the mixture starts bubbling.
  • In a small bowl, combine 1/2 cup cold water with two tablespoons of cornstarch to create a slurry. Add this to the sauce to thicken. Once thickened, about 1 minute, move to the next step.
  • Carefully add the cooked fried chicken to the sauce skillet and toss gently to coat each piece with the sauce. Continue heating for another 2-3 minutes until everything is combined and hot.
  • Garnish with additional sliced green onions on top and serve.

Notes

Please see full article for side dish and serving suggestions for this dish.

Nutrition

Serving: 1.5cups | Calories: 449kcal

Nutritional Disclaimer: The nutritional data provided here is auto-calculated and intended for your convenience only. As it’s generated via automation, its accuracy may be compromised. For precise nutritional insight, please compute the values utilizing the actual ingredients in your recipe through your chosen nutrition calculator or application.

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5 from 1 votes

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