February 8, 2024

Tangy Temptation: Sweet and Sour Baked Chicken Recipe

sweet and sour chicken

One of our family favorites is Sweet and Sour Baked Chicken!

This recipe is a great lower sodium chinese food option. According to the American Heart Association, chinese food is one of America's most popular ethnic cuisines. When it comes to Chinese dishes, it's important to watch the amount of sodium. Making chinese dishes at home allows you to control the amount of sodium added, making it a more nutritious option. 

How to Make Sweet and Sour Baked Chicken

Start by gathering your ingredients:

  • 3-4 boneless chicken breasts, chopped
  • 3/4 cup corn starch
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 2 Tbsp.  canola oil
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 4 Tbsp.  ketchup
  • 1 Tbsp. low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup distilled white vinegar
  • 1 tsp. garlic salt

sweet and sour chicken ingredients

Preheat your oven to 325 degrees.  While your oven is heating up, place the cornstarch and chicken in a medium bowl.  Stir them together until the chicken is coated in cornstarch.

Next add in the eggs and stir to coat.

Heat some oil in a large skillet and pan-fry the chicken pieces until just slightly browned, but not cooked through.

browning the chicken

While the chicken is browning, mix together your sauce using the remaining ingredients.

When the chicken is ready, spray a 9x13 casserole dish with non-stick cooking spray and place the chicken in the dish.  Pour the sauce on top, covering the chicken.

The chicken is now ready to bake!  Stick in in the oven for 60 minutes.  You'll want to stir every 15 minutes to keep the chicken well coated in sauce.

sweet and sour baked chicken recipe

Fried Rice Recipe 

While the chicken is cooking, you might as well make up some fried rice to serve on the side.  You'll need:

  • 3 cups cooked brown rice
  • 1 1/2 cups broccoli, chopped
  • 1 cup carrots, chopped
  • 1 cup peas, fresh or frozen
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • 2 eggs, scrambled
  • 2 Tbsp. low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp. canola oil
fried rice ingredients

Start by heating the canola oil in a large skillet.  Add in the broccoli and carrots and stir fry for 2-3 minutes.

Add in the rice and stir fry 2-3 minutes until the rice is warmed through.  Add in the eggs, onions, peas, and soy sauce.   Cook an additional 2-3 minutes.

Keep the rice warming while you wait for the chicken to finish.

fried rice

sweet and sour chicken with fried rice

Reheating Sweet and Sour Chicken

Here are some ideas on how to reheat sweet and sour chicken:

1. Oven:

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C).
  • Place the chicken in an oven-safe dish, cover with foil.
  • Heat for 15-20 minutes, until it's warmed through.

2. Microwave:

  • Place the chicken on a microwave-safe plate.
  • Cover with a microwave-safe lid or damp paper towel.
  • Heat in 30-second intervals on medium power, stirring in between.

3. Stovetop:

  • Heat a skillet with a bit of oil over medium heat.
  • Cook chicken, turning until heated and crispy.

4. Air Fryer:

  • Preheat the air fryer to 350°F (175°C).
  • Place chicken in a single layer, cook until heated and crispy.

Ensure the chicken reaches 165°F (74°C) internally, and consider adding fresh sauce or water to maintain moisture. Enjoy!

What to Serve with Sweet and Sour Chicken

What to Serve with Sweet and Sour Chicken? Sweet and sour chicken is a versatile dish that pairs well with a variety of side dishes to create a balanced and satisfying meal. Here are some great options to serve alongside sweet and sour chicken:

  1. Steamed Vegetables: Lightly steamed or stir-fried vegetables such as broccoli, carrots, bell peppers, snap peas, or green beans are a classic and healthy choice. They provide a nice contrast in texture and add freshness to the meal.
  2. Fried Rice: As shared in this post, brown fried rice is an excellent accompaniment. It's flavorful, filling, and complements the sweet and sour flavors of the chicken.
  3. Noodles: Serve sweet and sour chicken with steamed or stir-fried noodles, such as chow mein, lo mein, or rice noodles. These can soak up the delicious sauce and provide a satisfying carb element.
  4. Mixed Greens Salad: A simple salad with mixed greens, cucumber, cherry tomatoes, and a light vinaigrette dressing can add a refreshing and crunchy element to balance the meal.
  5. Fresh Fruit: A fruit salad or a platter of sliced fresh fruit like pineapple, mango, or oranges can provide a sweet and juicy contrast to the savory chicken.
  6. Egg Rolls or Spring Rolls: If you're looking for an appetizer or side dish with a similar Asian-inspired theme, consider serving egg rolls or spring rolls. They can add a crispy texture and extra flavor.
  7. Coconut Rice: For a tropical twist, try serving sweet and sour chicken with coconut rice. The creamy, slightly sweet rice complements the tangy chicken sauce.
  8. Quinoa: If you're looking for a healthier grain option, quinoa is a protein-rich choice that works well with sweet and sour chicken.
  9. Pickled Vegetables: Pickled cucumbers, radishes, or kimchi can provide a tangy and slightly spicy contrast to the sweetness of the chicken.
  10. Sliced Scallions or Cilantro: A garnish of fresh scallions or cilantro can add a burst of flavor and color to your dish.

Is Sweet and Sour Chicken Healthy?

Is sweet and sour chicken healthy? Well that depends on the recipe you use. But there are several benefits to be found in our recipe including protein lower fat, low sodium, whole grains and vegetables.

Get more of the details on these nutritional benefits below.

Sweet and Sour Baked Chicken: A Protein-Packed Powerhouse

At the heart of this dish is tender, boneless chicken breast, providing a substantial dose of high-quality protein. Protein is essential for maintaining and repairing tissues in our bodies, and it plays a key role in keeping us feeling full and satisfied. With roughly 32 grams of protein per serving, this dish can help support your muscle health and keep hunger at bay.

A Lighter Approach to Cooking

One of the secrets to making this sweet and sour chicken healthier is in how it's prepared. Instead of deep-frying, which can add excess calories and unhealthy fats, this recipe opts for baking. Baking the chicken with a light coating of cornstarch and eggs creates a crispy texture without the need for excessive oil. This cooking method not only saves on calories but also allows the natural flavors of the chicken to shine through.

The Perfect Balance of Sweet and Tangy

The sweet and sour sauce is where this dish truly shines. With a balance of sugar, ketchup, low-sodium soy sauce, white vinegar, and garlic salt, it delivers that signature sweet and tangy flavor that we all love. The use of low-sodium soy sauce helps keep sodium levels in check, making it a heart-friendlier choice.

Pairing Perfection: Brown Fried Rice

To complete the meal, serve your sweet and sour chicken with a side of brown fried rice. Brown rice is a nutritious alternative to white rice, offering more fiber, vitamins, and minerals. The addition of colorful vegetables like broccoli, carrots, and peas not only enhances the visual appeal of the dish but also boosts its nutritional content. Eggs provide additional protein, while low-sodium soy sauce adds a savory depth of flavor without excessive sodium.

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