Homemade Orange Chicken Sauce (and How to Make 3 Different Meals with It) (2023)

Not only you can use this orange sauce to make orange chicken or a quick stir fry, you can even make roasted vegetables with it! {gluten-free, vegan}

Homemade Orange Chicken Sauce (and How to Make 3 Different Meals with It) (1)

Do you want to whip up a healthy dinner on the table on a busy weeknight? Thinking about changing up flavors so dinner won’t be boring again?

Making stir fry sauce in advance is the perfect solution.

Over the years, I found out that mastering the few key components of stir frying is much more useful than just learning a recipe. That is – to understand the process of stir frying, how to choose and prep ingredients, and how to make a great stir fry sauce.

If you get these few tools under your belt, not only can you make your favorite takeout dish in your own kitchen that tastes even better than those in Chinese restaurants, but the whole process will become less intimidating – and the results more delicious!

Moreover, understanding the key techniques will make your meal planning and prepping more flexible, because you can use whatever ingredients you have on hand, instead of hunting down an ingredient just to follow through the recipe.

Even better, I will share all the secrets of how to use stir fry sauce to create quick and healthy meals, without stir-frying!

You ready? Let’s dive in!

Homemade Orange Chicken Sauce (and How to Make 3 Different Meals with It) (2)

Today’s lesson is on how to prepare a stir fry sauce.

This is the easiest part, because all you need to do is add all the ingredients in a jar and shake to mix.

You can prepare stir fry sauce beforehand, like on the weekend, so there will be one less thing to do when you’re ready to cook in the week.

The benefit of preparing stir fry sauce in bulk is that you can use it to make several meals with totally different main ingredients. It saves you tons of time, but your everyday dinner will taste different.

Introducing homemade orange chicken sauce

Orange chicken, orange beef, orange cauliflowers… Orange is one of the most popular flavors on a Chinese restaurant menu. So, I chose to start my stir fry sauce series with it.


In China we do not have orange sauce – we call it tangerine sauce instead. Rather than using orange juice and orange zest, we use rehydrated dried aged tangerine peels to impart a distinctive zesty and citrus flavor to the dish.

If you can find dried tangerine peels in your neighborhood Asian market, definitely grab a package. They stay good forever. In fact, they get even better (and more expensive) over the years. Look for labels that have “tangerine peel”, “tangerine skin”, or “old tangerine” on the package. The color of the dried peels is not wonderful (it has a brownish color). But, it has a richer and subtle umami flavor that fresh orange zest cannot provide. It just makes the whole dish taste much better.

Homemade Orange Chicken Sauce (and How to Make 3 Different Meals with It) (3)

To use dried tangerine skins you need to rehydrate it first. Measure them by piling them loosely in a cup (they will expand quite a bit after soaking). Cover with hot water and let sit for 15 to 20 minutes. Once the peels turn soft, slice them into thin strips. Or, you can mince them if you like a more refined texture. Measure the sliced tangerine peel again. If you have extra rehydrated peels, store soaked peels in a fridge or let them air dry completely before storing them in a bag.

Don’t have an Asian market nearby? No problem. You can easily make themat home by air drying fresh tangerine peels. If you want to make this sauce today without it, you can use fresh orange zest instead. Your dish will still taste better than Panda Express.

How to usethe sauce

Simply reheat the sauce in microwave, you can add the sauce in stir fry or on roasted vegetables and protein!

(1) Recommended Protein and how to prep for stir frying

  • Beef (flank steak or short ribs) – thinly slice (1/8 to 1/4-inch thick), or cut to strips
  • Chicken (skinless boneless breast or thigh) – Diced to 1-inch pieces, or sliced to 1/4-inch thick
  • Shrimps – peeled and deveined
  • Tofu (firm or extra firm) – Diced to 1/2 to 2/3 inch pieces

For each pound of meat or seafood, mix with 1 tablespoon vegetable oil (or peanut oil), 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1 tablespoon cornstarch. Let marinate for 5 to 10 minutes.

To create a crispy crust, restaurant-style, learn this method so you can achieve the goal without deep-frying.

For tofu, marinate with 2 tablespoons soy sauce for 10 to 15 minutes. Drain and coat with a thin layer of cornstarch.

(2) Recommendedvegetablesand how to prep for stir frying

To make a quick dinner, my favorite way is to only use one type of vegetable. You can use two, but no more.

Recommended vegetables

  • Asparagus – Chopped to 1-inch pieces
  • Baby bok choy – Tear off large leaves and halve lengthwise, halve or quarter the rest
  • Bell peppers – Sliced or chopped
  • Broccoli (fresh) – Divide to small florets; steam or blanch (see this post to learn how to blanch the broccoli quickly in the same stir fry pan)
  • Broccoli (frozen) – Microwave for 2 to 4 minutes (depending on the quantity), so the broccoli is thawed and luke warm, but not heated up.
  • Brussels sprouts – Roasted (see this post for how to roast Brussels sprouts).
  • Cauliflower (fresh) – Divide to small florets; steam, blanch, or roast.
  • Cauliflowers (frozen) – Microwave for 2 to 4 minutes (for stir fry), or roast (see this post to learn how to crisp up frozen cauliflowers in the oven)
  • Carrot – Sliced into pieces or stripes (by using a julienne peeler); or cut to chunk and roast
  • Eggplant – sliced (see this post to learn how to prep eggplant so it crisps up during stir fry)
  • Green peas (fresh or frozen)
  • Onion – Sliced
  • Snow pea

[one_half padding=”0 0 0 4px”]


(Video) 3-Ingredient Orange Chicken Sauce

[one_half_last padding=”0 0 0 4px”]


(3)More delicious recipes by using homemade orange chickensauce

  • Chinese orange chicken recipe
  • Orange shrimp and asparagus recipe
  • Roasted orange cauliflower recipe
  • Read this post to learn the basic steps of making Chinese stir fry.

If you give this recipe a try, leave a comment below, take a picture, and tag it @omnivorescookbook on Instagram! I’d love to see what you come up with! 🙂

Homemade Orange Chicken Sauce (and How to Make 3 Different Meals with It) (7)

Homemade Orange Chicken Sauce

4.77 from 17 votes

Not only you can use this orange sauce to make orange chicken or a quick stir fry, you can even make roasted vegetables with it! {gluten-free, vegan}

Author: Maggie Zhu

Course: Sauce

Cuisine: Chinese

(Video) 3 Ingredient Orange Chicken Sauce Pantry Clean Out Recipe From Food Storage

Prep Time: 25 minutes

Cook Time: 5 minutes

Servings: 2 1/2 cup


  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil (or grapeseed oil)
  • 4 cloves garlic , minced
  • 2 tablespoons ginger , minced

Sauce mix

  • 1/2 cup loosely packed dried tangerine peel (or grated orange zest)
  • 1 cup orange juice
  • 3/4 cup rice vinegar (or distilled white vinegar)
  • 1/4 cup light soy sauce (or soy sauce, or tamari for gluten-free)
  • 1/4 cup Shaoxing wine (or Japanese sake, or dry sherry, or chicken stock)
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 and 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
(Video) Orange Chicken - Just Like Panda Express!


  • Add dried tangerine skin in a small bowl and add hot water to cover. Let soak for about 20 minutes, or until the tangerine skin softens. Drain and finely slice. Transfer 1/4 cup sliced tangerine skin into a bowl, and save the rest in a airtight container in the fridge for next time. If you do not use dried tangerine peel, grate about four fresh orange skins to make 1/2 cup orange zest.

  • Add the rest of the sauce ingredients and the rehydrated tangerine skin to a big bowl. Stir until the cornstarch is fully combined.

  • Heat oil in a saucepan until warm. Add garlic and minced ginger. Cook and stir until you smell a strong fragrance.

  • Stir to mix the sauce again to completely dissolve the cornstarch. Pour into the pan. Cook and stir until the sauce thickens, just enough to coat the back of a spoon.

  • Transfer the sauce into a bowl immediately, so it won’t continue to cook in residual heat.

  • Transfer the sauce in a airtight jar or container once cooled down. Store in the fridge for 1 to 2 weeks, or in the freezer for 2 to 3 month.


  • Microwave sauce (1/3 cup to 1/2 cup) by 30 seconds increments. Then stir it and continue to heat until the sauce just turns hot without bubbling.

  • If you heat the sauce on stovetop, always use low heat and stir the sauce frequently to prevent scorching.

  • If you freeze the sauce, some of the liquid might separate and the thawed sauce looks like jelly. Simply stir to mix the sauce together and reheat in microwave or on the stove. You can restore the sauce to the previous consistency.


Serving: 2tablespoons, Calories: 83kcal, Carbohydrates: 17.6g, Protein: 0.8g, Fat: 1.1g, Cholesterol: 0.7mg, Sodium: 70mg, Fiber: 1.1g, Sugar: 12.3g

Did You Make This Recipe?Don't forget the last step! Leave a comment below, and tag me @OmnivoresCookbook and #OmnivoresCookbook on Instagram!

(Video) Orange Chicken Recipe | How to make Orange Chicken | Orange Chicken Sauce | Best Orange Chicken


What is the orange chicken sauce made of? ›

What is orange chicken sauce made of? The orange chicken sauce recipe is made with orange juice, sugar, rice vinegar, soy sauce, fresh ginger, minced garlic, red chili flakes, water, cornstarch, and orange zest.

What vegetable goes with orange chicken? ›

One-Skillet Orange Chicken with Vegetables
  • I succeeded because this easy, one-skillet, 15-minute dish is bursting with orange flavor. ...
  • I used broccoli, sugar snap peas, and red peppers but you could work in carrots, peapods, or other favorites.
22 Jul 2015

How long does orange chicken sauce last? ›

Transfer the sauce in a airtight jar or container once cooled down. Store in the fridge for 1 to 2 weeks, or in the freezer for 2 to 3 month.

What does orange pair well with? ›

Orange Color

Orange's natural sweetness pairs perfectly with flavors like grapefruit, lemon, and lime.

What does orange mix well with? ›

Bright orange can be used with a number of different colors. It could form an autumnal palette alongside cream, olive green, reds and browns, or pop next to bold purples. If you want to temper orange's intensity, pair with white. It can also work well alongside blue, which is its complementary color on the color wheel.

What is La Vics orange sauce made of? ›

So Nick and Marcos rely on two 4.5 gallon blenders to combine a mixture of onions, tomatoes, garlic and a particular variety of dried red chile, among other family-kept ingredients, to create their signature sauce.

How long does orange sauce last in the fridge? ›

How to store it : Refrigerator: Once cooled down completely, you can store this in the fridge and use it within the next two to three weeks. Freezer: Kept frozen in a freezer bag, you can store this for up to 3 months.

What is orange sauce called? ›

Duck sauce (or orange sauce) is a condiment with a sweet and sour flavor and a translucent orange appearance similar to a thin jelly. Offered at American Chinese restaurants, it is used as a dip for deep-fried dishes such as wonton strips, spring rolls, egg rolls, duck, chicken, fish, or with rice or noodles.

Is orange chicken good for weight loss? ›

Orange Chicken is not the ideal food to eat when you are trying to lose weight because it is very high in fats and carbs. Due to the batter, frying oil, and sauce, Orange Chicken carries a very poor balance of macronutrients as there are excess sugars and saturated fats.

Is eating orange chicken healthy? ›

Is Orange Chicken Healthy? Traditional Chinese Orange Chicken is loaded with lots of excess fat, salt, carbs and sugar thanks to the batter, frying oil and sweet orange-flavored chili sauce, so it's not necessarily the healthiest option.

Is Orange Chicken healthy or unhealthy? ›

Typically orange chicken isn't the most nutritious option as it tends to contains high levels of sodium, sugar and other highly processed ingredients. This homemade option is a great healthier way to enjoy this popular Chinese option without the highly processed ingredients and lower levels of sodium and sugar.

Do you need to refrigerate orange sauce? ›

Tips When Storing Chinese Sauces and Seasonings

In fact, the sauce may keep its flavor longer, but refrigeration is not required.

How can you thicken a sauce? ›

The most readily available sauce-thickener is flour. For a too-thin sauce, try adding a slurry (equal parts flour and water, whisked together) or beurre manie (equal parts softened butter and flour, kneaded together to form a paste)—both are ideal thickeners for rich and creamy sauces, such as steak sauce recipes.

Is it OK to use expired sauce? ›

If the can is unopened, then you can probably use the sauce a few days after the expiration date. However, if the can is opened, then the sauce should be used within a day or two. Additionally, it is important to check the sauce for signs of spoilage, such as mold or an off odor, before using it.

Is orange and banana a good combo? ›

Do banana and orange go together? Yes, they definitely blend well together, especially in this smoothie recipe. The sweet of the banana perfectly offsets the tangy acid of the orange.

Is orange and lemon a good combination? ›

This Orange Lemon Drink will definitely have a role in boosting your immune system. It has a great quantity of vitamins and antioxidants. Once you try this simple and easy recipe, there is a great chance that you will include it in your daily diet. It is absolutely healthy and DELICIOUS!

Is orange and GREY a good combo? ›

Orange And Grey. While orange goes well both black or white, it looks especially nice when coupled with grey. This is because grey is a cool colour that's closer to purple and blue – orange's complementary colours – than it is to white or black.

What does orange and blue together make? ›

Blue and orange paint mix together to create brown. That's because all three primary colors in paint (red, yellow, and blue) make brown when combined together. Orange is made of yellow and red, so mixing it with blue is like mixing all three at once.

Is brown and orange a good combo? ›

Orange – Orange and brown are another natural color combination as, together, these are reminiscent of autumn. Many oranges work well with brown including copper and bright orange. Yellow – Yellow adds a splash of a vivacious color to the staid sophistication of brown.

What is Sunday sauce made of? ›

Not familiar with Sunday sauce? This dish goes by other names like gravy or sugo and is a rich marinara-like sauce that has been cooked with meat — usually beef, pork, or lamb — for several hours on the stovetop, creating both a pasta sauce with lots of depth and braised pieces of meat in tow.

Whats in the Megan sauce? ›

The chicken chain's limited edition Hottie Sauce is a sweet-and-sour combo with a base of tangy cayenne pepper sauce. It's sweetened with sugar, corn syrup, and honey and freckled with delicious Aleppo peppers.

What is Megan sauce? ›

Hottie, made with honey, cider vinegar, Aleppo pepper and Louisiana-made, cayenne-pepper-based Crystal hot sauce, “flaunts a sweet, yet bold flavor with a hint of spice, inspired by Megan's sassy personality,” according to the Popeyes marketing folks.

How do you tell if a sauce has gone bad? ›

Mold or visible signs of spoilage are the best way to tell if sauce has gone bad. Bad sauce can also have unpleasant odors or discoloration where it becomes a maroon color as opposed to its typical bright red color.

How can you tell when sauce is spoiled? ›

The smell and color will be major indicators of whether a milk-based sauce has gone rotten. Like milk, you may notice a sour smell once it has spoiled, or its color will darken. An important note; a quick way to spot spoiled food is mold. If your sauce has any mold at all, do not eat it.

How many days is homemade sauce good for in the fridge? ›

Storing Homemade Pasta Sauce

Generally, homemade tomato sauce will last for three to five days; however, as long as it doesn't contain cream or cheese, you can easily freeze it in airtight quart containers.

What are the 3 types of sauces? ›

And once you've made them a few times, you won't even need a recipe!
  • 1 - Béchamel or Basic White Sauce. A white sauce is made by adding milk, salt, and pepper to a roux. ...
  • 2 - Mornay or Cheese Sauce. Building off a white sauce is a Mornay or cheese sauce. ...
  • 3 - Gravy.
13 Nov 2017

What are the 5 types of sauces? ›

The five mother sauces include béchamel sauce, veloute sauce, brown or Espagnole sauce, Hollandaise sauce and tomato sauce.

Do oranges burn belly fat? ›

Including oranges in your diet can potentially help you lose weight, but it's incorrect to think that eating this citrus fruit automatically causes your fat to begin melting off your body. Eating oranges doesn't directly burn fat because oranges contain calories.

What is the best chicken to eat to lose weight? ›

If you're trying to lose weight, then chicken breast is the best cut for you. It is the leanest part of the chicken, which means it has the fewest calories but the most protein.

Does chicken reduce belly fat? ›

Chicken. “Chicken provides 25 grams of protein per three ounces, which helps you stay full,” Amidor says. “This is the reason why it has been touted as a fat-burning food. Chicken is absolutely a healthy food to choose, especially if you're trying to lose weight.

Is it OK to eat an orange every day? ›

Are there any risks? Oranges are great for you, but you should enjoy them in moderation, Thornton-Wood said. Eating in large quantities "could give you gastrointestinal symptoms if you are sensitive to the high fiber content, so [it's] best to have no more than one a day," she said.

Is orange healthier or Apple? ›

Apples vs oranges

A clear winner comes forth if you're trying to boost your immune system before the winter hits. While apples contain more fiber, an important nutrient that aids in healthy digestion and lowering cholesterol, oranges provide more vitamins and minerals including the ever-powerful vitamin C.

Is orange chicken real meat? ›

Beyond's trademarked The Original Orange Chicken is made from plant-based protein instead of traditional animal meat. The dish is wok-tossed in "Panda's signature sweet, spicy and tangy orange sauce" and reportedly has a crunchy texture, according to Panda Express.

What is the most unhealthy chicken? ›

For one, there's the fried chicken—one of the least healthy preparations of the otherwise lean and healthful protein. In fact, fried chicken is considered one of the unhealthiest foods on the planet.

Is orange chicken good for gaining weight? ›

While traditional orange chicken dishes taste great they are filled with gluten, sugar, soy and unhealthy fats that cause weight gain. Not a good thing when you are trying to get fit and healthy!

What Chinese food is healthy? ›

Healthier choices include steamed brown rice, sautéed or steamed vegetables, spring rolls, or soups like egg drop soup or hot and sour soup. Veggie-based items like edamame, lettuce wraps, braised bamboo shoots, or cucumber salad are a few other great options you can try.

What do you serve with sweet and sour chicken? ›

The best side dishes to serve with sweet and sour chicken are fried rice, scallion pancakes, prawn toast, potstickers, and egg rolls. Try serving stir fry, green beans, and napa slaw for healthy options. You can also serve lo mein, Chinese potato salad, seaweed crackers, and Thai noodle salad.

What does orange chicken do to your body? ›

Orange Chicken is not the ideal food to eat when you are trying to lose weight because it is very high in fats and carbs. Due to the batter, frying oil, and sauce, Orange Chicken carries a very poor balance of macronutrients as there are excess sugars and saturated fats.

What is Chinese sweet and sour sauce made of? ›

In China traditionally the sauces are made from mixing sugar or honey with a sour liquid such as rice vinegar, soy sauce, and spices such as ginger and cloves.

Is sweet and sour chicken better than orange? ›

Orange chicken and sweet and sour chicken are made with similar ingredients, but they have fairly different tastes. Orange chicken is sweet and tangy and often has a bit of spice to it. Sweet and sour chicken has a more balanced flavor and has notes of both sweet and sour ingredients.

What is orange chicken actually called? ›

This dish may have originally come from the "tangerine chicken" dish from Hunan province, China. In Chinese, this dish is known as "陳皮雞", literally "dried citrus peel chicken", referring to dried orange or tangerine peel. However, the taste and recipes of this dish differ due to cultural and geographical factors.

What flavor is orange chicken? ›

It is a sweet orange sauce made with orange juice, vinegar, garlic, sugar, soy sauce, ginger, red chili flakes, and orange zest. It is both sweet and spicy and full of flavor. What is this?

What is one serving orange chicken? ›

Serving Size: 3.6 oz. Preparation Instructions: Place a single layer of chicken on baking sheet. Heat at 400 F for 16-20 minutes or until golden brown, and internal temperature reaches 165 F.


1. BETTER THAN TAKEOUT – Orange Chicken Recipe
(Souped Up Recipes)
(Kusina ni Lola)
3. Let me show you the secret to homemade orange chicken in 3 simple steps
(My Family Dinner - Easy Recipes - Freezer Meals)
4. How To Make Orange Chicken | Orange Chicken Copycat Recipe #MrMakeItHappen #OrangeChicken
(Mr. Make It Happen)
5. Easy Orange Chicken
Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Kimberely Baumbach CPA

Last Updated: 10/24/2022

Views: 5605

Rating: 4 / 5 (61 voted)

Reviews: 92% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Kimberely Baumbach CPA

Birthday: 1996-01-14

Address: 8381 Boyce Course, Imeldachester, ND 74681

Phone: +3571286597580

Job: Product Banking Analyst

Hobby: Cosplaying, Inline skating, Amateur radio, Baton twirling, Mountaineering, Flying, Archery

Introduction: My name is Kimberely Baumbach CPA, I am a gorgeous, bright, charming, encouraging, zealous, lively, good person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.