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Air fryer orange chicken on a bed of rice in a black bowl topped with scallions.
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Air Fryer Orange Chicken

Make Air Fryer Orange Chicken as a healthier weeknight dinner option! No artificial flavors, excess oil, or expensive takeout bill. Plus, you can have it ready in just 35 minutes!
Course Main Course
Cuisine American, Asian, Chinese
Diet Kosher
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Calories 307kcal
Cost $15

Ingredients

For the Air Fryer Chicken

  • 3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 2 pounds)
  • ½ cup cornstarch
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • nonstick spray

For the Orange Sauce

  • 1 ½ teaspoons orange zest (from 1 medium-sized navel orange)
  • 1 cup freshly squeezed orange juice (from about 3 to 4 medium-sized navel oranges)
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic (about 2 garlic cloves)
  • ¼ teaspoon minced fresh ginger (about a ½-inch piece)
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes optional, if you don't like spice

Instructions

  • Cube the chicken into 2-inch cubes. Don't cut them too small, as this will cause them to dry out in the air fryer.
  • Add cubed chicken to a large mixing bowl. Top with cornstarch, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and pepper. Mix together to fully coat all sides of the chicken.
  • Spray the air fryer basket or tray with nonstick spray. Add chicken in a single layer. Spray the tops of the chicken with more nonstick spray.
  • Air fry at 400 degrees F for 12 to 15 minutes, or until the outside of the chicken is golden brown and the inside reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees F. Repeat until all of the chicken is cooked.
  • Meanwhile, in a medium-sized mixing bowl, combine all the sauce ingredients, besides the olive oil, garlic, ginger, and red pepper flakes. Whisk thoroughly until it is smooth and there are no clumps of cornstarch remaining. Set aside.
  • Heat olive oil in a large skillet over low heat. Add the garlic, ginger, and red pepper flakes. Cook for 30 seconds, stirring constantly so the garlic and ginger do not burn.
  • Pour in the sauce, increase the heat to medium, and simmer for about 8 to 10 minutes, or until the sauce thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon.
  • Add the chicken to the skillet and fully coat it in the thickened sauce.
  • Garnish with sesame seeds and sliced green onions. Serve with a side of white or brown rice.

Notes

  1. Make sure you finely chop both the garlic and ginger. Grating them instead will cause them to stick and burn to the bottom of the skillet.
  2. Make sure to zest the orange before cutting it and juicing it. This makes it much easier to zest!
  3. If you’d prefer to make lemon chicken instead, just substitute the orange juice and orange zest for lemon juice and zest.
  4. To make orange chicken in the oven, follow the same instructions, making sure to spray the tops of the chicken with the nonstick spray. Then, bake the chicken on a sheet pan at 400 degrees F for 20 to 25 minutes. While the chicken is in the oven, prepare the sauce. Once the chicken is done, either pour the sauce on top or place it in a bowl to coat.

Nutrition

Calories: 307kcal | Carbohydrates: 33g | Protein: 25g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 72mg | Sodium: 507mg | Potassium: 525mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 20g | Vitamin A: 144IU | Vitamin C: 23mg | Calcium: 17mg | Iron: 1mg