What’s special about today’s light version of this well-known sesame chicken recipe? Bite-size battered chicken chunks with tangy, savory sauce may not sound anything like gluten-free compliant, but lucky us, now it is! Not only that, even keto dieters are safe with this recipe.
A yummy meal, ready in a flash, is waiting you— doubling the flavor without doubling the work. This time, you get 100% control on what’s going into the dish.
What Is Sesame Chicken Made Of?
Sesame chicken is simply a combination of two things: the fried chicken and the sauce mixture. There’s a definitive taste and texture you’re going for. You don’t want the chicken to be overly browned, greasy or tough. The coating also needs to be as sleek and silky as possible.
Is Sesame Chicken Healthy?
At HealthyKitchen101, we’re all striving for healthier versions of every single recipe we take in hand. Sesame chicken is no exception. We decided to come up with several tweaks for it— most significantly, we left all starches and flour out from the coating.
The color and flavor are amped up using natural, low-salt ingredients only. The dish has sesame oil, honey, ginger, vinegar, garlic, black pepper, soy sauce, lime zest, and lime juice in its spicy-sweet thick glaze — all guarantee to deliver flavor with no extra saturated fat or sugar.
There’s nothing exotic about the ingredients here, and you only have to spare a couple of minutes to pull things together. A delish sticky glazed chicken dish is what you’re going to get, after all.
How Does Sesame Chicken Taste?
While the tender and juicy chicken chunks take the main stage, working in the background is the combination of the umami flavor from the Coconut Aminos soy sauce and a dash of sweetness from the honey. Finally, the mild heat from ginger, garlic, and black pepper will wrap up a flavor party in your mouth.
The art of salty-sweet Asian dishes has just been taken to the next level!
How Can You Thicken The Sauce?
That gorgeous flavor is carried in a sumptuous sauce, but sometimes it can be hard to get the right consistency. The most natural and down-to-earth solution to thicken any sauce is to add a mixture of cornstarch whisked with cold water. Please note that you should take this thickening step while the sauce is still on the heat, and just go with one teaspoon at a time to avoid over-thickening.
For this sesame chicken recipe, we carefully tested and observed the ingredient ratios, to help ensure appropriate amounts of everything so that the sauce consistency would be just thick enough.
Chicken breasts and chicken thighs can be used interchangeably in this recipe, no harm no foul. The same goes for oil, you can swap avocado oil with olive oil or coconut oil.
Coconut Aminos soy sauce really helps to reduce the sodium content of this dish, but if you wish to pursue a strict Paleo plan, feel free to replace it with tamari.
What Can You Serve With Sesame Chicken?
To help create a balanced meal with such a protein-rich dish, we came up with the idea of preparing a bed of steamed broccoli to serve as a fiber-rich side.
Typically, sesame chicken is served with steamed rice or chow mein noodles, but broccoli is our solution to keep the carbs down and give the dish some nice extra crunch.
Broccoli will get soggy quickly when it sits in the sauce and absorbs all the liquid. That’s the main reason why when served as a side, broccoli should not be overcooked. Better safe than sorry— leave the broccoli a bit firm, rather than steamed to soft and mushy.
Is Sesame Chicken The Same as General Tso Chicken?
No, sesame chicken and General Tso chicken are not the same; though the difference is not so significant either.
Sesame chicken is sweet, savory and less spicy than General Tso chicken. While sesame seeds are a must for sesame chicken, things are not quite the same with General Tso chicken— sesame seeds are only one of the topping options.
Nevertheless, the most significant distinction between these two, we must say, is the sauce. But you’re only a few ingredient replacements away to turn sesame chicken into General Tso chicken. So they are similar, but still different.
Sesame Chicken Recipe
- 12 oz skinless boneless chicken thigh chopped in chunks
- 1 medium egg beaten
- 3 tbsp cornstarch divided
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
- 3 tbsp olive oil divided
- 2 tbsp less sodium soy sauce
- 1 tsp sesame oil
- 1/2 tsp red pepper minced
- 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 tsp garlic minced
- 1 tsp ginger grated
- 1/2 cup unsalted chicken broth
- 1 tbsp honey
- 1/2 oz sesame seeds roasted
- 1 oz scallion chopped
- 10 oz broccoli steamed
- 3 cup cooked medium-grain rice 1 cup uncooked
- Cook the rice.
- Steam the broccoli until tender.
- Marinate chicken with salt, ground black pepper, beaten egg, and 2 tablespoons of cornstarch. Let it sit for 5 minutes.
- Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat to sauté the marinated chicken. Stir frequently for 10 minutes until they’re browned on all sides.
- After the chicken is cooked, transfer them to a large bowl and set aside.
- In the same skillet, make the sauce mixture: Turn on medium heat, add garlic, ginger, and 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Stir.
- Continue to add the following ingredients to the skillet successively: 1 tablespoon of cornstarch, soy sauce, honey, and chicken broth (please remember not to mess up this order, otherwise the sauce will be muddy). Let it simmer and stir frequently until it starts to bubble and thicken.
- Add apple cider vinegar and transfer the cooked chicken back into the sauce mixture. Stir around to coat the chicken chunks evenly.
- Sprinkle red pepper flake, chopped scallion, and roasted sesame seeds. At last, add sesame oil and give it one last stir.
- Remove the skillet from heat.
- Serve sesame chicken over a bed of hot cooked rice and steamed broccoli, sprinkle a few pinches of roasted sesame seeds and chopped scallion on top. Enjoy!