Slow Cooker General Tso’s Chicken

Super Easy Slow Cooker General Tso’s Chicken. Way better (and healthier) than takeout!

Slow Cooker General Tso's Chicken1

General Tso’s Chicken is my all time favorite take out dish. It’s my go to whenever I order Chinese takeout. I like my General Tso’s Chicken extra saucy so I made sure to add lots of sauce to the chicken. A lot of the sauce does dissolve as it’s cooked and gets super thick thanks to the cornstarch coated chicken.

This recipe is also a lot healthier than takeout General Tso’s Chicken. There is no deep frying in this recipe just a little oil to sauté the chicken.



To make this Slow Cooker General Tso’s Chicken start by tossing cubed chicken pieces with cornstarch in a large ziplock bag. Pan fry until golden brown on both sides and add to the slow cooker. Whip up the sauce ingredients together and toss with the chicken. Cook on low for 2-3 hours.

Serve over rice or noodles and enjoy!


For an extra kick serve with some Sriracha sauce or crushed red pepper flakes.

Give my other takeout dishes like my Beef and BroccoliKung Pao Shrimp and Mongolian Beef a try!

Slow Cooker General Tso's Chicken

Slow Cooker General Tso's Chicken

  • 4.2
  • 33 reviews
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 4
Super Easy Slow Cooker General Tso’s Chicken. Way better (and healthier) than takeout!


  • 3 chicken breasts, cut into bite sized pieces
  • ¼ cup cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 cup hoisin sauce
  • 4 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • 4 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • green onions for serving, if desired
  • sesame seeds for serving, if desired


  1. Add chicken and cornstarch to a large ziplock bag. Toss to coat the chicken with the cornstarch.
  2. Heat oil in a large skillet or wok.
  3. Saute chicken until golden brown on both sides about 2 minutes on each side. (Note the chicken will not be fully cooked and that is ok)
  4. Add the chicken to the slow cooker.
  5. Add hoisin sauce, vinegar, sugar and sesame oil to a medium bowl and whisk until combined.
  6. Pour the sauce onto the chicken and stir to coat the chicken.
  7. Cook on low for 2-3 hours.
  8. Serve with green onions and sesame seeds for serving, if desired.
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  • Lesley

    I do a lot of cookin and have read countless recipes online and this is the first time I have truly been moved to comment. I made this and it was DELICIOUS and so easy I can’t wait to make it again!! The only thing is it took me about 1.5 hours in the slow cooker- which was perfect because I was soooo ready to eat it rather than wait another hour based on its smell 🙂

  • Kathie Siemer

    What are nutritional facts per serving for this dish?

  • val cole

    HUH!!? Kelly says cook low 4 hrs. Lesley says cook 1.5hrs. How so?

    • Hi Val,

      I cooked my chicken for 3-4 hours but you can check it after 1-1/2 like Lesley. (It depends on how small you cut your chicken and if you cook it longer when you sauté it in the cornstarch.)

      Thank you and I hope you enjoy!


  • Mary

    I’d love to make the General Tso’s Chicken & Mongolian Beef recipes, but I’ve been living overseas and cannot use my slowcooker. Do you think I cook make the recipes on my stove top in a dutch oven (one of those very heavy Creuset pans)?

    • Hi Mary!

      You can definitely make the Mongolian beef recipe in a dutch oven. As for the general tso’s you can make that in a dutch oven as well. Most recipes coat the chicken in cornstarch and deep fry the chicken. Here is a good recipe for that:

      Thanks and Enjoy!


    • Carol

      Made this in my dutch oven today. I put on low on the stove covered was outstanding

      • Libby

        Hey Carol! How long did you cook it for may I inquire? (:
        I’m excited to try this but I don’t use a Crock-Pot. C:

  • Ann Stradley

    I love the flavor of this dish but my chicken was really tough. Can you think of why that would be?

    • Hi Ann,

      I am very sorry that the chicken was tough for you. I have found that the chicken can be take out sooner. I will change the recipe cooking time to 2-3 hours. I appreciate your feedback!

      Thank you,


    • C.giles

      Probably need to check chicken at the 1&1/2 hour mark. Most likely it was over cooked.

  • Jean-Sebastien


    What size slow cooker this recipe is for? I have quite a big one so I must adjust quantity for it. I have one about 5 pints if I’m not mistaken (quite big, I bought a big one on purpose to make extra for lunch and freezer).

    • Hi!

      I used a 6 quart slow cooker for this recipe. It came about halfway up the slow cooker.

      Hope this helps! Thanks!


  • Josianne


    Your recipe looks awesome!

    What I like to do is prepare meals ahead of time and freeze them. Afterwards, I put them in the slow cooker when I want to use them.

    Is it possible to do so with this recipe?

    Thanks a lot 🙂

    • Hi Josianne,

      I wouldn’t cook the chicken for as long the first time. My worry would be it would be over cooked if you cook it and then reheat it again in the slow cooker. I would maybe cook just until it reaches 165 so maybe 1-1/2 hours. Then cool it and freeze it and reheat in the slow cooker.

      I hope this helps and you enjoy!!


      • Josianne


        Thanks for your qyick answer.

        However, I think I may have expressed myself in the wrong way 🙂

        What I am wondering is if I can NOT cook all the ingredients, put them all in a freezer bag and them cook them in the slow cooker when I want to?

        Hope I am clearer 🙂

        Thanks again!


        • Hi Josianne,

          I have never tried doing that before so it is hard for me to say yes or no that will work. Sorry I couldn’t help more!



  • Chris

    Going to give this a go tonight, just one question though, how much is a cup?

    • Bret

      Hi Chris,

      I’m guessing by your question that you might be needing to Metricize (convert to Metric)

      If that’s the case, 1 cup is 250 ml

    • Hi Tammy,

      No this dish is not spicy. You can add sriracha or red pepper flakes to this dish to add some spice.



  • I am making this today for the second time in a week! We liked it. I am adding red pepper flakes to give it more spice. Thank you very much!🌶

  • MarySC

    I really hoped this would work but It was not to be. I followed the recipe exactly. The chicken was way overcooked even at the 2 hour mark and was soggy and tough. The sauce was so-so, I would describe it as flat. Some things are just not meant to be slow cooked!! (I have since found a tasty recipe that can be done mostly in advance and uses sautéed instead of deep fried chicken– not as crispy as takeout but much healthier.)

  • Gayle

    I am planning an Asian themed event. I would like to know if the recipe is doubled, should the cooking time change?

  • This looks delicious! I like the idea of coating the chicken with corn starch and sauteing it for a short while before adding it to the crockpot. I have tried a few crockpot sesame chicken recipes and my chicken has come out very dry and nothing like a usual sesame chicken. I will have to go this a try….my husband loves General Tsos. Thank you for sharing!!

  • Marquett

    I thought this was delicious! I cut my cooking time down, but the sauce was flavorful and it tasted fantastic. Thanks for sharing the recipe for one of my husband’s FAVORITE take out dishes!

  • Thank you for sharing this yummy recipe. The instructions were very clear and easy to follow. My family loved it!

  • Karen

    We couldn’t find rice wine vinegar. Just red wine vinegar one rice vinegar. Would one of these work?

    • Hi Karen,

      You can find rice wine vinegar in the asian section of the grocery store. I would suggest using this over red wine vinegar.

      Thank you!


  • amarillo, tx

    My husband and I love this recipe. Was really tough cleaning the pot afterward though. Will spray with cooking spray next time and hopefully it will not take as long to clean.

    Thank you

  • Stephanie

    Oh my this recipe is AWESOME!!!!!🖒🖒🖒. Will definitely make again, especially since it’s so easy!!!!

  • Shirley Fenstermaker

    I’m interested in making this however I have never heard of hoisin sauce. What is it and where can it be found

    • Hi Shirley,

      Hoisin sauce is a thick dark sauce that is full of flavor and is commonly used in Chinese cuisine. You can find this in the grocery store in the international foods isle by the soy sauce.

      Thank you!


      • Jerry Robertson

        You can also order Hoisin sauce from I haven’t tried this recipe (YET) but I plan on it within the next few days.

  • Kirsten

    This was delicious! It was done after 2 hours. My only issue was that it was starting to dry out and the sauce was starting to stick, so I just put some chicken broth in. It produced plenty of sauce that way but still stayed thick b/c of the cornstarch. Awesome recipe!

  • April

    This was beautiful, I would say better than takeout too because I knew what was in it AND it was delicious. Cooked the chicken in grapeseed oil before putting in crock pot because I didn’t have veg, but otherwise followed the recipe exact. It took about an 1:40 for mine because I had small cuts, thanks so much for sharing! This is a keeper for sure.

  • April

    This was delicious, have made it twice this month. I use small pieces of chicken so it only takes an hour and a half in my cooker. This is brilliant, thanks so much for sharing!!

  • Rachel

    We made this tonight and after we tweaked the recipe quite a bit it turned out awesome. All due respect to Kelley and her version. Other seemed to have a lot of luck with it but we just found it needed a little something more.

    For starters- we cooked it for 2 1/2. For the last 1/2 hour we added sliced bell pepper and white onion. Delish 🙂

    After following the recipe exactly we found that it lacked a big punch of flavor and the sauce was still sort of thin. And the color was also a really weird brown- sort of like gravy. Not sure why that happened…

    We added crushed red chili pepper flakes to bring some heat because traditional General Tso is usually spicy. Then we added about 3/4 tsp salt because it was greatly needed! After that we put some sesame oil in our wok and got it nice and hot and threw everything right in, then added an extra tablespoon of brown sugar. We let it bubble a little, stirring occasionally for about 5 minutes. This got it to that nice thicker, sticky, sweet yet spicy General Tso sauce that we had originally expected. The result was great!! Honestly super comparable to the local places we’ve ordered from. Served it over jasmine rice with a sprinkle of toasted sesame seeds.

  • Anthony

    I made this and it got destroyed at the table! Excellent recipe! Served over white rice. A buddy and I are kinda hot heads…no not that way lol we like spicy…really spicy so we have our own blends of home made hot sauces and dried ground peppers and we decided a little of the dried ground habaneros shaken over the dish on the plate were the ticket to spice this dish up! The rest of my family, being normal people loved it holey as posted. Great work! Thanks for the post

  • Melissa

    I have never posted a review on anything in my life until now. This meal was phenomenal. I find that so many slow cooker recipes taste the same and I don’t always love the texture. I fogot to buy sesame oil but I never even missed it! Thanks so much for sharing!

  • Katie

    >:( what a failure! I followed this exactly and the cook time was way off and the sauce doesn’t thicken like in the picture. Not using this blog again.

  • Jane

    Made this tonight in the Instant Pot – it was a huge hit. I used the sauté function to brown the chicken and then cooked with the sauce for 12 minutes on manual. Thanks for the great recipe!

  • Nikzilla37

    Great recipe! I had a bottle of hoisin and didn’t know what to do with it but voila! This easy recipe is not only quick but delicious.

    I didn’t have vegetable oil so I subbed grape seed oil.

    Came out so good!

  • Megan

    Making for the first time and the sauce wreaks! Is that normal or did I do something wrong.

  • Tatyana Solonskyi

    Do you think boneless chicken thigh will work okay instead of breast?

  • Gaby

    Hi! I am allergic to hoisin. Is there something else you would recommend?


    • Hi Gaby,

      Is it a particular ingredient in hoisin you are allergic to? You can always make the sauce at home and omit the ingredient you are allergic too. You could also try brown bean sauce or chee hau sauce.



  • Carlien

    Made it today for my friends and we all loved it, this one is a keeper 🙂
    Thanks for the recipe, it goes in printed form in my personal cookbook…

  • Amy

    THANKS for this, we all love General Tso’s chicken & I’m not well enough for a 4th stab at making it the arduous way. THIS, I can handle! I’ll let you know how it went over pnce I feel up to making it, but I doubt there’ll be any complaints ;D
    Bless you for this!

  • Irene

    If you soak your chicken in kosher salt water before cooking it will always be moist if you don’t overcook it.
    I soak mine for at least 30 minutes and then rinse before using in a recipe .
    So I’m going to try this recipe for I love General Tso Chicken.

  • Katherine

    I read “healthier” and thought “yay”! And then I started looking at ingredients. 1 cup of hoisin sauce contains 560 calories and over 4,000 mg of sodium? No thanks.

    • marie

      It’s not like you eat the whole cup of sauce in your portion… it’s for the whole recipe! 😉

  • John Godino

    Wowzer, I really wanted to like this recipe, but I’m afraid I have to get it just 1 star.
    Reason – disgustingly sweet. The main ingredient in hoisin sauce is already sugar, and then you add two more tablespoons of brown sugar on top of that?! That’s approximately 1 tablespoon sugar for each serving of this dish!
    This unfortunately is what a lot of Americans think Chinese food should taste like, sticky and sweet.
    Sorry, but this recipe is a loser.

  • F. Swenson

    I’d like to add some veggies to this recipe. I’d probably pick red, green, & yellow sweet Bell Peppers & some onion,

    Which other ones would you recommend

    • Hi!

      I think snap peas, broccoli, or cauliflower would all be good options too!

      Thanks & Enjoy!


  • Lisa

    This is an easy and delicious recipe. It passed the test of 3 teenage fast food queens who loved the fact that they knew it was chicken and not take out mystery meat. Will definitely be making this again!

  • Elizabeth

    Question: Can anyone recommend a good Hoisin sauce? I’ve never found one that I like in the grocery store.

    • Hi Elizabeth!

      I really like the Kikkoman Hoisin Sauce. Have you tried this one yet?



  • I love Chinese food and general tso is my favorite plus i love extra sauce in mine to

  • Ann

    Made it for my family. It was delicious. I will use a little less brown sugar next time and a little more rice vinegar.

  • Clare

    I’ve prepared this twice, and it is perfect! My whole family loves it!! 👍👍⚘

  • Danielle

    It’s not called rice wine vinegar. It’s just rice vinegar.. had me going crazy looking for rice wine vinegar in the store..

  • Sharon

    Love this chicken,but i can’t find rice wine vinegar van i use just rice vinegar.Thank you please help

  • Martin

    I was a bit salty. I only used 3/4 of the Houston sauce and it was as said. May try it again

  • Carol

    This is also one od my favorite to order at chinese restaurants, thanks for the healthier way to cook and i know what chicken i put into dish. Will beaking and fdeezing some for quick lunches etc. As no one else eats this in my home.

  • Emily

    I was really looking forward to trying this! Sadly the sauce didn’t thicken for me at all. My husband still loved it and ate my serving of it too, but sadly I don’t think this will be a repeat recipe for us

    • Hi Emily,

      I am so sorry to hear this! You can always try adding a bit more cornstarch slurry or cooking for a bit longer to thicken it up.



  • Ruth

    Yuck . Didn’t like the sesame oil flavor in it. Sorry. Won’t make it again😝

  • Sharon Physick

    Just tried this. The best sweet and sour chicken we have ever had!!!! Gorgeous recipe. Will be making again and again.

  • Sherry Jones

    I really want to try this recipe but I don’t have a slow cooker. Can this be cooked slowly in the oven? If so, what temp for the oven? Thanks very much.

    • Hi Sherry,

      I haven’t made this in the oven before so it is hard to say. I would suggest maybe doing 400 degrees for 20 minutes.



    • Hi Summer,

      Thanks for pointing that out to me. It is supposed to be cornstarch. I will update it.



  • Gloria

    Do I use cornstarch or flour to coat the chicken pieces in the bag? Video says flour, recipe says cornstarch?

    • Hi Gloria,

      You want to use cornstarch to coat the chicken pieces. The video is wrong and I am in the process of correcting.



  • Heide

    Super good, but it’s not General’s Chicken without a little heat! I added about 2 healthy teaspoons of red chili flakes to a double batch and it was ahhhh-mazing! Thanks for the great recipe. I’ve been on the hunt for a good one that didn’t take 250 exotic ingredients and this was the one! Dipping the chicken pieces in cornstarch and browning them lightly made the absolute best texture on this. It wasn’t overly coated like the cheap Chinese takeout places, but it definitely had that coating that you’re looking for in a good General’s Chicken recipe. Awesome job – can’t wait to try more of your recipes!

  • Jamie

    I just made this for dinner and it was ah-some! My husband loved it and he’s a picky eater. I added pepper flakes and garlic powder. Thank you for the wonderful recipe. I can’t wait to try more of your other recipes.

  • Emily

    Made this for dinner last night and it was delicious! I skipped the brown sugar, but doubled the sauce ingredients and used fire-roasted pepper sesame oil for a little bit of heat. I added garlic powder to the cornstarch. I served over rice with sautéed broccoli, red and yellow peppers, and carrots (trying to eat the rainbow!). Does this replace chinese take out? No. Is it yummy? ABSOLUTELY. Will I make it again? Yes!!!

  • Dana

    Winner, winner! Chicken dinner!! My fiancé has got to be the pickiest eater!! He’s not a fan of Chinese takeout… but this… this he LOVES and even request it! It’s a home run in my house!!! I add 2 squirts of sriracha sauce and a 1/2 tsp of red pepper flakes and at the last 1/2 hour of cooking, a pound of frozen broccoli florets.. Thanks for sharing your recipe with us!

  • jack weisz

    I am sorry but slow cooker to me means put in the crockpot in the morning and done when u get home from work, this doesn’t fit the bill

  • maryh222

    I cooked on low in crockpot for 4 hours. Then on warm for one hour until I got the rest of dinner together Chicken was totally overcooked, black and hard. Should have gone with another reviewer for 1.5 hours in crockpot or finish cooking this on the stove over a low heat for 30-45 minutes. Crockpot not needed for this. Flavors great, but meat not edible. Bummer.

  • Way overcooked. Not edible. Bummer, flavors tasted great. Instead of crockpot, cook on top of stove for 30 minutes covered on low. That’s all it should need.

  • An

    Thank you so much for sharing your recipes, I made this one and the Fried Rice and they were the best ever, no more flavor packets for me. I am far from being even a home chef or a “foodie”, for me cooking is just necessary not a passion and I found both recipe easy to follow and to make. I’m making the Mongolian beef recipe in a few days, can’t wait!

  • Karen

    I have made this recipe a few times and it is so good. My family loved it. I added steamed broccoli and carrots. You must be sure not to overcook the chicken before you put it in your crockpot.

  • Cynthia Johnson

    I am so glad I made this. I did add Sriracha for bite. They were delicious and easy.

  • Kenneth and Lynn Reif

    I am making this for dinner tonight. I couldn’t find hoisin sauce so bought General Tso Sauce. Will that work?

  • Rick Anger

    Great recipe! But General Tao chicken is supposed to be sweet and spicy, so i’m going to add a tsp of red pepper flakes! Thanks for recipe!