30 Minute Sweet and Sour Chicken. This version of the classic Chinese takeout recipe is one of my favorite weeknight dinner-fixes when I’m in a hurry. Pan-fried, tender, and juicy chicken is completely smothered in a homemade sweet and sour sauce. This Sweet and Sour Chicken is quick, super easy, and so much better than takeout!
Sweet and Sour Chicken
We’ve all ordered Sweet and Sour Chicken as a take out dish (it’s my favorite!) but the best way to enjoy these incredible flavors is to make it from scratch at home. It’s super easy to throw together and it tastes so much better than the restaurant version!
I love this Sweet and Sour Chicken recipe because:
- It’s healthier than takeout: This is one of the main reasons I like cooking at home. I know what I’m putting in my food and can skip excess oils and flavor enhancers. You can also add extra veggies to make this an even more nutritious meal.
- It tastes amazing: it’s a little tangy, salty and sweet – just like eating at the restaurant!
- It’s kid-friendly: there’s no spicy heat and it even calls for a little ketchup! This is a great dish to start getting your kids to try other cuisines from around the world.
- It’s super easy: All you have to do is:
1. coat & cook the chicken
2. stir fry the veggies and make the sweet and sour sauce
3. toss everything together and you have a full meal! SO EASY!
- It’s quick: Just 15 minutes of prep and 15 minutes of cooking! Dinner is on the table in 30 minutes – AMAZING!
- It’s great for meal prep: Double the recipe and save half for meals throughout the week, or you could freeze it for later!
How do I make this Sweet and Sour Chicken?
It couldn’t be more simple – just 3 easy steps:
- Dice your chicken into bite-sized pieces and then coat the chicken pieces in cornstarch. This gives the outside of the chicken a nice crisp but keep the inside super tender and juicy when they’re cooking. Pan-fry the coated chicken pieces until they are cooked through. This will take about 4-5 minutes.
- Slice and sauté the red and green bell peppers until they soften and brown slightly. This will take about 3-4 minutes.
- Whisk together the sauce ingredients and add it into the pan, along with the chicken. When the sauce had thickened, it’s ready to serve!
What to serve with Sweet and Sour Chicken
- Authentic Chicken Lo Mein
- Chicken Chow Mein
- The BEST Fried Rice
- Cauliflower Fried Rice
- White or brown rice. For a low carb option try cauliflower rice.
- Steamed vegetables
- Crunchy Asian Broccoli Slaw
Can I add other vegetables to this easy chicken recipe?
Sure! Here are some vegetables and fruit that would be perfect in this dish:
- Baby corn
- Bell peppers (yellow, orange, red, green)
- Sugar snap peas
- Yellow squash
- Water chestnuts
Can I make it spicy?
That’s a great idea! Add 1/2 tsp of chili powder (or more/less to your taste), crushed red pepper flakes or dice up a small chili pepper and add it when you sauté the bell peppers.
How do I store this sweet & sour chicken?
Fridge: Store this dish in an airtight container for up to 3-4 days.
Freezer: Store in an airtight container or freezer bag for up to 3 months. Thaw completely before reheating in a pot on the stove.
Here are more Chinese Takeout Recipes you can make at home!
- 20 Minute Beef and Broccoli
- Easy Kung Pao Shrimp
- Slow Cooker Mongolian Chicken
- Easy Pepper Steak
- Slow Cooker General Tso’s Chicken
- 20 Minute Cashew Chicken
Sweet and Sour Chicken
- 1 pound chicken breasts cubed into bite sized pieces
- 1/3 cup cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons oil divided
- 1 red bell pepper diced
- 1 green bell pepper diced
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1/4 cup ketchup
- 2 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons water
- green onions for garnish if desired
- sesame seeds for garnish if desired
- Add chicken and cornstarch to a large ziplock bag. Shake to coat the chicken with the cornstarch.
- Meanwhile heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large skillet.
- Working in two batches add the chicken and cook over medium high heat until browned, 4-5 minutes.
- Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside.
- Add the remaining tablespoon of oil to the same pan.
- Add the peppers and saute until browned and slightly tender, 3-4 minutes.
- Meanwhile prepare the sauce by whisking together sugar, vinegar, ketchup, soy sauce, onion and garlic powder in a small bowl.
- Add the sauce and the chicken back to the pan.
- In a small bowl whisk together 1 tablespoon of cornstarch with 2 tablespoons of water.
- Slowly pour the cornstarch mixture into the sauce. Bring to a simmer and cook until thickened, 2-3 minutes.
- Serve immediately with green onions and sesame seeds for garnish, if desired.
Adapted from Le Creme de la Crumb