Honey Sesame Chicken
I love chinese food, but it is a rare occasion that I typically eat it. Why? Because my favorite dishes are ones that include deep fried chicken, a sticky sweet sauce, and no vegetables. (sesame or general tso’s Chicken please!)
As a dietitian in a cardiac rehab setting, this order is not exactly a “practice what you preach” moment. BUT, I knew I could probably make a lightened up version at home that tasted just as good, AND I could add my favorite veggies to it.
As an added bonus, I know all of the ingredients that go into the sauce! I didn’t want to add any refined sugars into my recipe, so I used honey as my only sweetener. That honey gets balanced out by a good punch of spice from the chili paste. Feel free to add more or less of the chili paste if you wish.
I served my sesame honey chicken with white sticky rice and roasted green beans + asparagus. This meal satisfied my chinese food craving, while still being in line with my personal health goals.
Do you have a favorite go-to Chinese food order?
Sesame Honey Chicken
For the chicken:
2 lbs. chicken breast
⅓ cup cornstarch
For the sauce:
1 inch piece ginger, peeled and minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tablespoon sesame oil
2 Tablespoons Sambal Oelek (fresh chili paste)
¾ cup honey
½ cup soy sauce
2 teaspoons fish sauce
½ cup ponzu sauce
Chopped Green Onions
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Prepare a cookie sheet with parchment paper and spray with cooking spray of choice. Set aside.
Take chicken breast and pat dry with paper towels. Cut chicken into 1 inch pieces. Place chicken pieces into a gallon ziplock bag and add the cornstarch. Secure ziplock bag and toss chicken and cornstarch together until all chicken pieces are evenly coated.
Place cornstarch coated chicken pieces on prepared cookie sheet. Spray tops of chicken with cooking spray and bake chicken for about 15 minutes, rotating the pan 180 degrees after 8-10 minutes of cooking.
In the meantime make the sauce. Combine all sauce ingredients together into a 2 cup measuring cup or small bowl. Total yield should be ~2 cups.
Pour 1 cup of the sauce into a medium non-stick skillet. Simmer on low to medium low heat just until sauce simmers and starts to thicken. Add about half of the cooked chicken to the pan and coat chicken with sauce. Allow to simmer for another 5-7 minutes or until sauce thickens even more and reduces. Set aside for serving.
Repeat steps for remaining sauce and chicken. Sprinkle sesame seeds and green onions on top and serve with choice of rice and vegetables.