Want to try to cook the best chicken in sweet and sour sauce but you’re not a Chinese chef? Without exaggerating this recipe was always a winner both with guests and my loved ones. In fact, it is one of the very few recipes that I haven’t changed in 20 years.
Yields: 4 portions
Prep Time: 10 mins Cook Time: 15 mins Total: 25 mins
Apart from being very tasty, this homemade version of the recipe is also very light to eat at night. I love eating Chinese dishes without having to wake up at night drinking gallons of water because of all the salt and sugar!
What makes the Chicken in Sweet and Sour Sauce so scrumptious?
As a good start when cooking at home you should invest in the finest ingredients. Whether it’s the meat, the oil, or the spices I always keep in mind that every ingredient can make a difference. Looking for a high-end grocery store may help you find organic ingredients which add both taste and nutrition to your meals. The key is to avoid adding too much sugar, spice, or vinegar as most low-end restaurants do to hide the horrible taste of cheaper overused oils or cheap spices.
Here we aim to make a light sweet and sour sauce. Occasionally, I use cornstarch to help the sauce thicken up while simmering. However, a fail-safe way is to leave the pan uncovered while simmering the sauce to evaporate excess liquid. The secret lies in quickly pouring the thickened sauce onto the hot, crispy, and flavorful chicken pieces. Finally, the most important point is to serve immediately to maintain the crispiness.
What makes this recipe healthy?
A sweet and sour chicken portion without rice from a restaurant can easily add up to 1700 calories and over 130% of the daily recommended fat.
This healthy chicken in sweet and sour sauce recipe is a lighter version of the authentic one and it was adapted so that people following a low fat, low calorie, low gi, gluten-free, dairy-free, and nut-free can enjoy it.
Here’s what makes this chicken in a sweet and sour sauce much healthier than other recipes:
➡️ low sugar. There is 6g of sugar per serving and it’s important to choose homemade or organic pineapple juice with possibly no added sugars.
➡️ high protein. The recipe gives 30g of protein per serving.
➡️ healthy cleaner ingredients. Use natural sugars preferring homemade or organic ready-made products
➡️ pan cooked or air fried. We have tried this recipe both pan cooked and also air fried.
You only need these 11 ingredients to do this recipe!
Don’t have wine vinegar? No problem, apple cider or white vinegar are great substitutes. If you don’t have pineapple juice you can use orange juice or 3 tablespoons of sugar. Also, the rice vinegar can be changed for dry sherry or vermouth!
How to make Chicken in Sweet and Sour Sauce
Making this sweet and sour chicken from scratch is easy! Mix the chicken with the batter, fry in a pan, and mix with the sauce.
STEP 1 – COOK THE CRISPY CHICKEN IN THE BATTER
- Mix the chicken cut into pieces with the rice wine or sherry, half the olive oil, curry powder, egg, and a pinch of salt.
- Mix in the cornflour until the chicken is covered with the batter.
- In a pan, cook the chicken breasts in the remaining olive oil until browned on all edges.
- Optionally you can saute some red or green peppers and some pineapple chunks to add to the sauce before serving.
STEP 2– PREPARE THE SAUCE
- Heat the minced garlic, pineapple juice or sugar, tomato ketchup, and wine vinegar, stirring until the sauce becomes dense or the sugar dissolves. Bring to the boil.
STEP 3– MIX THE CRISPY CHICKEN IN SWEET AND SOUR SAUCE
- After bringing to boil the sweet and sour sauce you can add the chicken pieces and stir well
- Optionally add the peppers and pineapple chunks previously sauteed in the pan and serve with rice, noodles, or on their own.
A fine balance of flavors in the authentic dish is achieved with the sweetness of fresh pineapple and capsicum along with the chilies under lingering heat.
⭐Sweet and sour pork is a classic Cantonese dish called “gu lou yok”.
⭐Chinese writers linked the sweet and sour pork to the famous sweet and sour spare ribs “tang cu pai gu” originating in the Jiangsu province and well known for their distinctive vinegary, sweet flavor.
⭐In China, the sweet and sour sauce is mostly eaten with fish dishes or is served on a separate dish for dipping.
Want more Asian Food Recipes?
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- Easy Vegetarian Jalfrezi Recipe
- Red Salmon Curry with Goji Berries
- Pad Thai Sauce with Chicken & Shrimps and Rice Noodles
- Turmeric Latte: Know The Truth And Magic Of ‘Golden Milk’
Chicken in Sweet and Sour Sauce
- 1 lb (450g) Chicken breast, pieces
- 1 tbsp Rice wine or dry sherry
- 2 tbsp Olive oil 1/2 for the batter, 1/2 for frying
- 1 tsp Curry powder mild
- 1 Egg, beaten
- 1 pinch Salt
- 4 oz (100g) Cornflour or cornstarch
Sweet and Sour Sauce
- 1 clove Garlic, crushed
- 1/2 cup Pineapple juice or 3 tbsp sugar
- 2 oz (50g) Tomato ketchup
- 1 tsp Wine vinegar
- 1 lb cooked rice
- 1 red / green pepper
- 1 cup pineapple chunks
- In a bowl, mix the chicken cut into pieces with the rice wine or sherry, half the olive oil, curry powder, egg and a pinch of salt. Add in the cornflour until the chicken is covered with the batter.
- In a pan, cook the chicken breasts in the remaining olive oil until browned on all edges. Optionally you can saute some red or green peppers and some pineapple chunks to add to the sauce before serving.
- In a saucepan, heat the minced garlic, pineapple juice or sugar, tomato ketchup and wine vinegar, stirring until the simmered sauce becomes dense or the sugar dissolves. Finally bring to boil.
- After cooking the sweet and sour sauce, pour it over the chicken pieces and stir well.
- Optionally add the peppers and pineapple chunks previously sauteed in the pan and serve with rice, noodles or on its own.