Panda Express Orange Chicken Recipe (Copycat)

5 / 5 (3 reviews) 2 Comments

Copycat panda express orange chicken

Better than Panda Express Orange Chicken Copycat!

Since I was looking for a Panda Express Orange Chicken copycat recipe, I had to bring home some Panda Express to taste test side by side! The verdict? This orange chicken recipe is better than Panda Express. For reals.

The chicken is crispy and the sauce is similar, but this homemade Panda Express orange chicken sauce recipe is just all around more delicious, with more of an authentic orange flavor. And, the homemade orange chicken costs less than Panda too!

Chopped up chicken breast for orange chicken recipe

The Downside?

Of course, homemade orange chicken does take a little more time than just buying it from the restaurant, but maybe not that much more! And let me tell you, it is worth it to make your own every once in a while. ๐Ÿ™‚

Chicken pieces coated in cornstarch for orange chicken recipe

Chicken Coating Tip

I like to put all of the chopped chicken in a gallon size resealable bag with the cornstarch, then shake it all together to coat the chicken. Easy peasy.

Homemade panda express orange chicken sauce

Homemade Panda Express Orange Chicken Sauce

The sauce is simple, but oh so good. If you don’t want to use Sriracha, you can try using a little bit of crushed red pepper flakes or cayenne pepper. (I used Huy Fong Sriracha Chili Sauce this time around.) Add to taste, but I definitely recommend adding at least a little bit. A small amount won’t make it too spicy but will add a lot to the flavor.

Fried orange chicken recipe

Frying the Orange Chicken

It takes a few batches to fry all of the chicken, but I get the rest of it dredged in the egg while I am waiting. If you keep things moving along with the recipe and make the sauce while the chicken is cooking, you can have dinner ready in 30 minutes!

FYI – You probably won’t want to add the sauce to the chicken until right when you serve it because the chicken will lose some of the crispiness if it sits in the sauce for long.

Panda express orange chicken recipe homemade

Let us know what you think!

If you like Panda Express Orange Chicken, you won’t be disappointed with this homemade version. And if you don’t like Panda Express, you will probably like this recipe anyway since it is better. ๐Ÿ˜‰

I know this is a daring claim, but I believe this homemade Orange Chicken tastes just as good, if not better, than any Chinese take-out you will find (including the fancy ones, like P.F. Chang’s). To make this a full-blown meal, serve it simply with plain rice or this sweet lime rice recipe.

You might also like these Orange Chicken recipes we’ve shared:

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Panda express orange chicken recipe

This recipe is adapted from Damn Delicious and this Sweet & Sour Chicken recipe.

Panda Express Orange Chicken Recipe (Copycat)

5 / 5 (3 reviews)
Prep Time: 15-20 mins | Cook Time: 30-35 mins
Yield: 1.5 lbs | Serves: 4-6 servings

Ingredients

  • Chicken

  • 1 1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • salt and pepper
  • 3/4 cup cornstarch
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup vegetable oil (or other frying oil)
  • Sauce

  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest
  • 1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice (from 2 to 3 oranges)
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup distilled white vinegar
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Sriracha, more or less to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried ground ginger (or 1 tablespoon fresh minced ginger)
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch + 2 tablespoons cold water
  • Topping

  • 1 green onion, sliced thin
  • sesame seeds

Instructions

  1. Season cut chicken with salt and pepper.
  2. Add 3/4 cup cornstarch and chicken pieces to a gallon-size resealable bag.
  3. Shake to evenly coat the chicken.
  4. In a medium saucepan whisk together the broth, orange zest, orange juice, sugar, vinegar, soy sauce, garlic, Sriracha, ginger, and pepper.
  5. Bring to a boil over medium heat and stir in the cornstarch dissolved in water. Cook, stirring frequently, until thickened, about 1-2 minutes.
  6. Keep warm.
  7. Add beaten eggs to a shallow dish.
  8. Heat oil in a large skillet or saucepan on medium-high heat.
  9. (The oil needs to be hot, but reduce heat if it starts splattering too much.)
  10. Working in batches (about 3 total) dip each coated piece of chicken in the egg, then add it to the hot oil.
  11. Fry until golden brown and cooked through, about 3 minutes on each side.
  12. Transfer cooked chicken to a paper towel-lined plate.
  13. Serve chicken immediately, tossed or drizzled with the sauce and topped with green onion and sesame seeds.
Ingredients: Chicken, Chicken Broth, Cornstarch, Egg, Garlic, Ginger, Granulated Sugar, Green Onion, Orange Juice, Orange Zest, Pepper, Salt, Sesame Seeds, Soy Sauce, Sriracha, Vegetable Oil, White Vinegar
Meal Type: Main Dish, Dairy Free, Gluten Free
Categories: Copycat, Meat and Poultry, Stove Top

Comments & Reviews

  • Monica

    Absolutely FABULOUS!
    I had to make some slight changes as I used store bought Orange juice because thats what i had on hand.
    I also added fresh carrots onion and broccoli that I steamed in the microwave.
    I was beyond impressed with the end result and was a huge hit!!

    I

    • Melanie

      Awesome! So glad it worked well for you and you were able to adapt it for what you had. Thanks for your comment, Monica!

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