Sweet and Sour Chicken

Do you crave the tangy and sweet flavors of sweet and sour chicken, but don’t want to make a lengthy trip to the nearest Chinese restaurant? What if I told you there was an easy recipe that could satisfy your craving in just 15 minutes? That’s right, you can whip up a homemade version of this classic dish that tastes even better than takeout! Not only is it healthier, but it’s also less expensive and faster than calling for delivery. Are you ready to discover the secrets to making the best sweet and sour chicken at home?

Sweet and Sour Chicken

Key Takeaways:

  • This easy sweet and sour chicken recipe takes just 15 minutes to make.
  • It’s a homemade version that’s healthier, less expensive, and faster than takeout.
  • The sweet and sour sauce is the star of the dish, with the perfect balance of flavors.
  • Tossing the chicken in cornstarch before cooking helps keep it moist and tender.
  • Serve this delicious sweet and sour chicken over rice or with veggies for a complete meal.

Ingredients for Sweet and Sour Chicken

Creating a delicious sweet and sour chicken dish requires a combination of carefully selected ingredients. Let’s take a closer look at what you’ll need:

Granulated sugar
Brown sugar
Apple cider vinegar
Low-sodium soy sauce
Sesame oil
Chicken breasts
Olive oil
Green onions (optional, for serving)
Sesame seeds (optional, for serving)

These ingredients are vital for preparing both the lip-smacking sweet and sour sauce and cooking the tender chicken to perfection. The combination of tangy sweetness from the sugars, the tanginess from apple cider vinegar, and the depth of flavor added by ketchup, soy sauce, sesame oil, and garlic come together harmoniously in this dish.

By using cornstarch to coat the chicken before cooking, you’ll achieve a crisp exterior while keeping the meat moist and tender on the inside. The addition of optional green onions and sesame seeds for serving adds a delightful touch.

Now that we know what ingredients to gather, let’s dive into the process of making homemade sweet and sour chicken in the next section.

How to Make Sweet and Sour Chicken

To make sweet and sour chicken, you’ll need to start by preparing the delicious sweet and sour sauce. Follow these simple steps:

  1. Combine the following ingredients in a saucepan:
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1/4 cup water
  • Bring the sauce to a boil: Place the saucepan over medium heat and bring the mixture to a boil, stirring constantly.
  • Thicken the sauce: In a small bowl, combine 1 tablespoon of cornstarch with 2 tablespoons of water to create a cornstarch-water mixture. Slowly pour this mixture into the boiling sauce while stirring constantly. Continue to cook and stir for 1-2 minutes until the sauce thickens. Remove the sauce from heat.
  • Prepare the chicken: Cut 2-3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts into bite-sized pieces. In a separate bowl, mix 1/2 cup of cornstarch with 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper. Coat each piece of chicken in the cornstarch mixture, shaking off any excess.
  • Cook the chicken: Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the coated chicken pieces to the skillet and cook until golden brown and cooked through, about 5-6 minutes per side.
  • Coat the chicken with sauce: Pour the sweet and sour sauce over the cooked chicken in the skillet. Stir to coat the chicken pieces evenly with the sauce.
  • Serve and enjoy! Transfer the sweet and sour chicken to a serving dish and garnish with sliced green onions and sesame seeds, if desired. This dish pairs perfectly with steamed rice.

Ingredients for Sweet and Sour Chicken Quantities
Granulated sugar 1/4 cup
Apple cider vinegar 1/4 cup
Ketchup 2 tablespoons
Low-sodium soy sauce 2 tablespoons
Sesame oil 1 teaspoon
Minced garlic 1 teaspoon
Cornstarch 1 tablespoon
Water 1/4 cup
Chicken breasts 2-3
Olive oil 2 tablespoons
Salt 1/2 teaspoon
Pepper 1/4 teaspoon
Green onions (optional, for serving) Sliced, for garnish
Sesame seeds (optional, for serving) For garnish

What to Serve with Sweet and Sour Chicken

Sweet and sour chicken is a delicious dish that combines the flavors of tangy sweetness and savory chicken. To create a well-balanced meal, it’s important to choose the right side dishes that complement and enhance the flavors of the main dish. Here are a few options to consider when deciding what to serve with sweet and sour chicken:


Rice is a classic and popular choice to serve with sweet and sour chicken. The soft and fluffy texture of rice pairs perfectly with the flavorful sauce, allowing you to soak up every bit of goodness. Whether you prefer jasmine rice, white rice, or brown rice, it will provide a neutral base that allows the sweet and sour flavors to shine.

Steamed Vegetables:

To add some freshness and nutritional value to your meal, consider serving sweet and sour chicken with steamed vegetables. Broccoli, carrots, bell peppers, and sugar snap peas are all excellent choices. The crisp-tender texture and vibrant colors of these vegetables create a visually appealing contrast to the rich sweet and sour sauce.

Stir-fried Veggies:

If you prefer a more robust and flavorful side dish, stir-fried vegetables are a great option. Sautéed broccoli, bok choy, and mushrooms tossed in a light garlic sauce can add depth and variety to your meal. The stir-frying process helps to retain the crunchiness of the vegetables while infusing them with a delicious aroma.

Pineapple Chunks:

If you want to add a tropical twist to your sweet and sour chicken, consider including pineapple chunks as a side or incorporated into the dish. The natural sweetness and tanginess of pineapple complement the flavors of the chicken and the sauce, creating a delightful combination.

Experiment with these side dish options and find the combination that suits your taste. Whether you choose rice, steamed vegetables, stir-fried veggies, or pineapple chunks, these accompaniments will complete your meal and take your sweet and sour chicken experience to the next level.

What to Serve with Sweet and Sour Chicken