Better-Than-Takeout Sweet & Sour Chicken with Fried Rice

If I had to pick one cuisine to eat for the rest of my life, while it would be hard to pass up ever eating pizza again, I think I'd have to go with Chinese food.  Something about egg rolls and rice and that cookie at the end.  Take-out gets expensive, and you never know how much oil and fat is really going into things.  Making dishes at home is obviously a healthier route, and easier than you think!  You don't even need a hibachi grill and Benihana knife skills! (Though their knife holster is really awesome!)

What you're seeing is the first time I have ever made anything like sweet and sour chicken, or fried rice.  It was so delicious we barely had leftovers (which I ate at 10:30 the next day for "lunch.")  If I can do it, so can you.

For the chicken:

  • 1 lb chicken breast, cubed into 2-inch pieces, seasoned with salt and pepper
  • 1/4 c cornstarch
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1/4 c canola oil
The sweet and sour sauce takes:
  • 3/4 c granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp garlic salt
  • 1/2 c distilled white vinegar
  • 4 Tbsp ketchup
  • 1 Tbsp soy sauce
  1. Preheat over to 350 degrees.  Prep a 9 x 12 baking dish (or dish of your preference) with tin foil and non-stick cooking spray.  The foil is optional, but dishes are one of my least favorite duties, I prefer the disposable option over soaking and scrubbing.
  2. Using two shallow dishes (round cake pans work perfectly), put the cornstarch in one and scramble the two eggs into the other.  Working in batches of 4-5 pieces, toss the chicken in the corn starch and then into the egg mix.
  3. Heat the canola oil over medium-high heat in a large skillet or wok.  Cook the chicken until browned on all sides, only a few minutes.  They will continue to cook in the oven, so you don't want to dry out the chicken.
  4. While the chicken is browning, whisk together all the sauce ingredients.  Transfer the browned chicken into the baking dish and pour the sauce over evenly, giving a little toss.  The sauce is incredibly thin, but don't panic.  As it bakes, it will reduce and become the thick, delicious sauce that hugs every bite that you've come to know and love.
  5. Bake at 350 for 60 minutes, tossing chicken every 15 minutes.  Again, don't panic.  It wasn't until the last 15 minutes or so that the sauce really thickened into something I was expecting.  Let the oven do it's thing, everything will be fine.
  6. Serve with white or fried rice.
Vegetable fried rice is incredibly easy, and being that it is the benchmark I use to gauge whether or not a take-out place gets my business, I cannot believe I haven't made it before!

Gather up:

  • 2 cups of cooked white rice (easy to make ahead of time and keep in the fridge until you want to use it)
  • 1 Tbsp canola or olive oil
  • 1 c frozen peas and carrots, thawed (I could only find the medley variety, so I picked out the green beans, but was too lazy to dig out the corn as well.  You could leave it all in and let it ride - go nuts.)
  • 1 c onion, chopped (white or yellow)
  • 1-2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1/4-1/3 c soy sauce
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  1. Start by heating the oil over medium-high heat (I used the same chicken pan - to make sure you can toss and mix everything, use a big pan, the bigger the better).  Add the vegetables, onions and garlic and allow to soften, about 3 minutes.  Push to one side of pan.
  2. Lower the heat, and add the eggs.  Cook to scramble, seasoning with salt and pepper as you go.
  3. Add the rice and soy sauce and toss all together.  All the rice to heat through and start to caramelize over the heat.  This is where I have a range of soy sauce.  Depending on the color you're getting and your preference of salt, you can tweak how much you add in.  Start slow and work from there.
  4. Serve hot and sit back and wait for the compliments!

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PJ @ Planned in Pencil said...

I'm the same way, if your fried rice is crap... I don't order from you anymore!

Shawnna Silvius said...

Thanks for the recipe. I'll definitely give it a try.

Christi said...

This sounds amazing. I will have to put this on my list of things to try. Thanks for sharing.

Becca Diestelkamp-Woodham said...

Yum! This makes me ready for lunch! Stop by my Friday's Five Features this week and link up this post (and others)! diy-vintage-chic.blogspot.com

Sarah Vanderkooy said...

This sounds yummy! And fairly easy, thanks for sharing.

Jenifer Tong said...

Oooooh! I can't wait to try this...my kids love sweet and sour chicken!

robin lorraine williamson said...

I need to add this to my recipes and my youngest is going to say not another chinese food recipe can we try something else. Thanks for sharing I'm lorraine at http://lorrainesresources.blogspot.com. Found you through the frugal monday blog hop.

Carrie from Carrie This Home said...

This looks delicious! Chinese is my favorite kind of take out. Thanks for linking this up to Frugal Crafty Home Blog Hop. I hope to see you back next Sunday night!

Life With The Crust Cut Off said...

This looks awesome!!! We would love it if you would link up at our linky party:
Live every Wednesday to Sunday.
Hosted by:
http://www.lifewiththecrustcutoff.com/ Parrish @ Life with the Crust Cut Off
http://thissillygirlslife.com/ Dana @ This Silly Girl’s Life
We hope to see you there!

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