Copycat Panda Express Orange Chicken Recipe - Cooking Frog (2024)

May 6, 2022

Copycat Panda Express Orange Chicken Recipe - Cooking Frog (1)

With succulent chicken thighs cooked crisp and coated in a miraculously perfect copycat sauce, Panda Express orange chicken is a must-try! It is the most famous item on the menu, and I’m sure you can see why. This dish will make you dance in your chair as you devour it since it is so amazing!

If you’re hungry forChinese food that’s both economical and easy to prepare, this is the meal for you. From start to end, it’s crunchy, savory, and ready in under 30 minutes.

If you like this recipe, be sure to check this Panda Express Beijing Beef Recipe!

Recipe for Panda Express Orange Chicken (Copycat)

The flavor of this Orange Chicken dish is identical to that of the famous Panda Express restaurant meal. The only exception is that it’s simple to create at home for a lower price. This recipe produces extremely soft chicken meat that has been marinated in a zesty orange sauce. I believe it easily outperforms the take-out equivalent!

Another advantage of creating it at home is that you can completely control and change the ingredients as needed. For example, suppose you have a more prominent family or are having a party. In that case, you may double or quadruple the recipe.

There may be many ingredients involved and many plates to clean, but this really does go together easily. Once you have a platter of delicious chicken, you’ll forget about the mountain of pans you left behind!

Copycat Panda Express Orange Chicken Recipe - Cooking Frog (2)

How to Prepare Panda Express Orange Chicken:

  • Begin by making the sauce: Mix cornstarch, rice wine, water, orange juice, sesame oil, white sugar, brown sugar, white vinegar, orange zest, ginger, garlic, and red pepper flakes to produce the renowned sauce. You stir it first, then leave it untillater.
  • Getting the chicken ready: To cook the chicken thighs, get two shallow dishes, add a whisked and salted egg to one, and put the flour and cornstarch combination in the other. The chicken chunks should then be dipped in the egg mix before being dredged in the flour dish.
  • Fry: In a large skillet or frying wok, heat the oil to 375 degrees F and fry the chicken chunksin groups until brown and cooked completely. When you’re finished, set it to the side.
  • Bring the sauce to a boil: Remove all but one tablespoon of the oil from the pan and add the sauce. Then, while stirring constantly, heat it untilboiling.
  • Return theChicken to the Sauce: Return the fried chicken to the sauce and toss until fully mixed. Once the sauce has thickened, the meal is ready. Serve with a side of rice.

Copycat Panda Express Orange Chicken Recipe - Cooking Frog (3)

Variations on the Panda Express Orange Chicken Recipe:

  • Vegetables: To make it healthy, stir-fry some vegetables in the pan before pouring the sauce back in. Chopped bell peppers, chopped red onion, broccoli, bok choy, and sugar snap peas would be some wonderful additions.
  • Make it Hotter: If you want your Chinese food fiery, add extra red pepper flakes, as well as some hot sauce or cayenne pepper, to the sauce.
  • Make it better for you: Replace sweets with honey or maple syrup for a healthier alternative. Alternatively, the chicken can be gently fried or baked and then chopped into bits.
  • Alternative Meats: This dish can also be made using pig or beef.
  • Vegetarian: Use tofu to make it vegetarian. You may fry or bake firm tofu until golden and then use it in this dish.
  • Add crushed peanuts, red pepper flakes, sliced scallions, and sesame seeds to customize your dish.

How do you keep orange chicken fresh?

  • Store them in the fridge for up to 3 days in an airtight container. Keep in mind that the meat may get somewhat wet and less crunchy in the fridge.
  • You can alternatively prepare the chicken and sauce separately and freeze them for up to 3 months. When ready to serve, thaw and mix.

Tips for making a panda orange chicken:

  • Use chicken thighs for the most remarkable results since they are more tender.
  • For a healthy alternative, you could even use chickenbreast.
  • Don’t leave off the orange zest; it gives the meal a lovely scent.
  • You can also use the sauce to bake the chicken in for a more beneficial choice.
  • If you don’t have brown sugar on hand, add white sugar.
  • If you’re going to cook the chicken, make sure it’s on a wire rack beforehand. Then, if desired, use a paper towel.

Share the image below to your Pinterest board if you like this Panda Express Orange Chicken Recipe!

Copycat Panda Express Orange Chicken Recipe - Cooking Frog (4)

List of Ingredients

  • pinch of black pepper
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp canola oil
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup cornstarch
  • 1 egg
  • 2 lb boneless skinless chicken thighs

The Sauce:

  • 1/4 tsp hot pepper flakes (add more for extra heat!)
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 tbsp ginger root (minced)
  • 2 tbsp rice wine
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 4 tbsp white sugar
  • 4 tbsp brown sugar
  • 8 tbsp white vinegar
  • zest of 1 orange
  • 3 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1/4 cup orange juice
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce


  1. In a mixing dish, whisk together all of the sauce ingredients and put them aside.
  2. In a small dish, mix together the egg, salt, pepper, and 1 tablespoon of oil.
  3. Put1/2 cup ofcornstarch and flour into a shallow dish and whisk well to combine.
  4. Add enough oil to a big frying pan over medium-high heat to deep fry the chicken pieces—Preheat the oil to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
  5. When the oil is heated, dunk the chicken chunks in the beaten eggs first, then in the flour mix before placing them in the pan.
  6. Do not overfill the pan with chicken pieces; if necessary, cook in groups.
  7. Fry the chunks for 3 to 4 minutes on each side or until golden and crunchy. Place on a cooling rack once fried.
  8. Remove most of the oil from the pan, reserving about 1 tablespoon. Pour in the orange sauce and bring it to a boil.
  9. Take the pan off the heat and mix in the cooked chicken until thoroughly covered.
  10. Serve with rice with a garnish of orange zest, sesame seeds, and green onions, if preferred.

Panda Express Orange Chicken Video Recipe


I hope you’ve liked this Panda Express Orange Chicken as much as I did preparing the recipe! If you have any questions or suggestions for this Copycat recipe, please share your thoughts in the comments section. Share this Panda Express Recipe on your social media. Thanks!

4/5 (91 Reviews)

Author: Sarah Berthold

Filed Under: Main Dish

Tags: Homemade Panda Express Orange Chicken, How to make Panda Express Orange Chicken, Orange Chicken Recipe, Orange Chicken Sauce Recipe, Panda Express Orange Chicken Copycat, Panda Express Orange Chicken ingredients, Panda Express Orange Chicken Recipe

Copycat Panda Express Orange Chicken Recipe - Cooking Frog (2024)
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