Healthier Orange Chicken and Vegetables – Skip the takeout and make this healthy chicken recipe tonight! Orange chicken sauce, chicken, and lots of veggies!
This orange chicken recipe is one of those rare recipes. It’s a unicorn if you will. When I serve this to my family for dinner, EVERYONE EATS IT. Not only eats it – but also LIKES IT.
As much as I love takeout, I don’t like how takeout makes me feel after eating it. It can be greasy, heavy, and while taste great going down, not so good later.
I recreated one of my son’s takeout favorites – Orange Chicken – and made a healthier orange chicken and vegetable version that we can eat more often and without the guilt (or bloat).
Another plus of this recipe is that you need to have everything prepped and ready before cooking. You can prep this in the morning or even a day ahead of time. It’s great for a busy weeknight. When you are ready for dinner, fire up your pan, and dinner is on the table in less than 30 minutes.
This easy orange chicken is not breaded or fried or full of empty calories. It is browned with a little oil, and gets flavor from green onions, ginger, garlic, and The orange chicken sauce is made with fresh orange juice, honey, hoisin, sriracha, and chicken broth.
Hoisin Sauce. You can find hoisin in the Asian foods aisle of your grocery store. It is often described as a Chinese barbecue sauce. It helps thicken the sauce and adds tons of flavor.
Orange juice. You need orange juice for orange chicken. Squeeze fresh orange juice whenever possible. It adds so much brightness to the dish.
Chicken breast. I use organic chicken breast whenever I can. We don’t eat a lot of meat, so when we do, I buy the best quality that is available at the store.
How to Make // The Steps
This healthy orange chicken recipe starts with some whisking and chopping and comes together in no time. The most important part of this recipe is that you need to have everything chopped and ready before you start cooking.
Once it goes into the pan, it goes fast! So have make sure you have everything ready to go before you turn on the heat.
TIP – If not using a wok, make sure that you are using a pan that is large enough to hold everything. I am using an All-Clad 12″ fry pan.
- Whisk chicken broth, orange juice, honey, hoisin, and sriracha in a large measuring cup. Set aside.
- Season chicken with salt and pepper.
- Heat large saute pan or wok over medium-high heat. Add half of chicken and sear until chicken is brown. Remove from pan and repeat with remaining chicken.
- Add vegetables and cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Remove from pan. Set aside.
- Add more oil to the pan if needed. Add garlic, ginger, and green onions. Cook for one minute, stirring constantly.
- Add chicken and vegetables back to the pan.
- Pour in orange juice mixture. Simmer for 10 minutes until the chicken is cooked through and the sauce begins to thicken.
- Serve over rice. Garnish with green onions and sesame seeds.
What sets this Healthy Orange Chicken and Vegetable Recipe Apart?
- It’s lighter and less heavy than the takeout version. The chicken is not breaded or fried and the sauce is not overly sweet.
- It can be prepped ahead of time and is on the table in less than 30 minutes.
- The fresh orange flavor is bright and refreshing. It beats bottled sauces any day of the week.
This takeout chicken recipe is very easy to customize to make paleo, low-carb, gluten-free, or to meet your dietary restrictions.
- Instead of serving with white rice, serve with riced cauliflower or chickpea rice.
- If you prefer your orange chicken made with crispy chicken, prepare the orange chicken sauce and saute vegetables, and toss with air-fried chicken pieces.
- You can use any vegetables you like in your stir-fry. It’s a great recipe to use to clean out your fridge.
More Weeknight Chicken Recipes //
- Cheddar Bacon Chicken Sandwiches
- Grilled Caprese Chicken
- Kelly’s Overnight Chicken
- Sour Cream Chicken
- Easy Weeknight Chicken Curry
- Baked Balsamic Chicken
Originally published in May 2016, updated in July 2020 with updated images and recipe card. Still delicious and still a unicorn.