Chicken With Orange Peel


Chicken with orange peel is one of those homely dishes that can help you de-stress and get through a rough day. My mum used to make this for us when we were growing up and it was not unusual to hear us shout “mummy, I’m HOME.” running up the steps to greet her at the door as soon as we came home from school.

Orange Peel Chicken

In this recipe, there is some extra busywork to make these crisped orange peels. If you want to save time, simply add some orange sections and zest at the last minute instead. Want to make it spicy, add red pepper flakes to the stir-fry. Serve my version of this Chinese-American dish over a bowl of steamed jasmine rice…Save Recipe

  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 10 hr 15 min (includes dehydrating time)
  • Active: 1 hr 15 min
  • Yield: 4 servings


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Candied Orange Peels:

2 large navel oranges, scrubbed clean, quartered, skin removed from flesh, about half of the pith removed (save the flesh for another use)

1 1/4 cups sugar

12 black peppercorns

4 whole cloves

1 large cinnamon stick


1/2 cup low-sodium soy sauce

2 tablespoons honey

2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

4 large cloves garlic, minced


6 tablespoons canola oil

8 ounces shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and sliced

Kosher salt

1 pound skinless chicken breast, cut into bite-size (about 1/2-inch) strips

3/4 cup snow peas, ends trimmed, then sliced

2 large cloves garlic, minced

4 scallions, chopped

4 to 5 dried chiles de arbol, stemmed, seeded, and chopped, optional

2 tablespoons freshly grated ginger with skin

Steamed white jasmine rice, for servingAdd to Shopping List


  1. For the candied orange peels: Bring 3 small pots of water to a boil. Divide the skins in the water and cook for 4 minutes in each pot before draining. This process removes bitterness from the skin.
  2. Combine the sugar, peppercorns, cloves, cinnamon and 2 1/2 cups water in one of the pots from boiling the oranges and submerge the blanched orange skins. Bring to a simmer and cook over medium-low heat for 45 minutes. (Do not allow the syrup to brown or discolor.)
  3. Drain the skins of any excess syrup (reserve the syrup for another use, such as for cocktails) and place them in a single layer on a baking sheet fitted with a wire rack. Cover and allow them to sit overnight. Cut them into strips.
  4. Make the sauce: In a small saucepan over medium heat, stir together the soy sauce, honey, lime juice, garlic and 1/2 cup water and bring to a boil over medium heat until the sauce reduces slightly, about 10 minutes.
  5. For the stir-fry: In a large heavy-bottomed skillet or wok, heat 1 tablespoon canola oil over medium heat. When the oil begins to smoke, add the mushrooms with a pinch of salt and cook until they soften, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from the skillet. Add 3 tablespoons oil to the skillet and heat until it smokes lightly. Spread the chicken out in a single layer on a sheet tray and sprinkle with salt. Add the chicken to the skillet in a single layer. Allow the chicken to cook, mostly untouched, stirring once, until it browns around the edges and is cooked through, 3 to 4 minutes.
  6. Meanwhile, in a separate medium skillet, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons oil over medium heat and add the orange peel strips. Cook until slightly crispy, 3 to 4 minutes.
  7. To the skillet with the chicken, add the snow peas, garlic, scallions and mushrooms. Taste for seasoning. Add the chiles de arbol, if using, and the grated ginger. Add half of the fried orange peel slices and the sauce, then transfer to a serving platter. Garnish with the remaining fried orange peels. Serve with the rice.


Chinese Orange Peel Chicken is so much more flavorful then what most restaurants serve you might not go out for Chinese food again.

Chinese Orange Peel Chicken. So good and way better then most Chinese Restaurants.

It’s no secret that Orange Peel Chicken is one of my all time favorite things but it’s horribly hard to find a well made Orange Peel Chicken that’s crunchy and full of flavor.

Our favorite Chinese food restaurant changed owners awhile back and I haven’t been able to find an Orange Peel Chicken that compares. Panda Express was the closest but still wasn’t as good. After trying out all the local Chinese food restaurants we decided to perfect it at home. It was very similar to what our favorite restaurant had made but even better! 

The only bad thing was we had no leftovers to devour the next day. Next time I’ll have to add an extra chicken breast and hide the leftovers from Colt.

Peeled Orange Zest for Chinese Orange Peel Chicken

Peel off the zest of 2 oranges using a vegetable peeler being careful not to remove the white pith.

Orange zest should be about the size of 1″ squares.

Orange Peel Chicken Sauce

In a medium sized bowl combine juice from orange and chicken broth.

Orange Peel Chicken Sauce Recipe add brown sugar, rice vinegar.

Add brown sugar and rice vinegar.

Orange Peel Chicken Sauce add soy sauce.

Stir in soy sauce.

Chili Garlic Paste for Orange Peel Chicken Sauce

Add Chili Garlic Paste and stir until well combined.

Marinade Orange Peel Chicken Marinade

Take 2/3 of your orange juice marinade mixture and add it to your cubed chicken breast. Cover and refrigerate for 20 minutes or until ready to use. Set remaining orange juice mixture aside.

Coat Chicken in egg.

Beat 2 eggs until well blended. When you’re ready to fry the chicken add as many pieces of chicken that you can fry in a single layer to pan. 

Coat Chicken in cornstarch.

Coat chicken in corn starch.

Fry chicken for Orange Peel Chicken

Heat cooking oil (I like coconut oil) over medium to medium-high heat until hot, adjust heat so oil isn’t smoking.

Fry chicken in small batches until brown and then flip chicken over. Brown both sides and cook until chicken is no longer pink in the center.

Drain grease from chicken and store in 180 degree oven on a cookie sheet. Repeat with remaining chicken until all chicken is cooked through.

Fry orange zest for orange peel chicken sauce.

Drain oil from pan and add 1 tablespoon oil and zest from orange, cook until orange zest becomes light brown and crispy. 

Add fresh garlic and ginger and cook until garlic is softened. I find frying the orange zest and garlic gives a different flavor to the sauce then cooking everything together. 

Add remaining orange mixture, bring to a simmer. Stir together 2 tablespoons cornstarch and water, slowly stir into simmering orange mixture. Stir until thickened.

Stir fried chicken in Chinese Orange Peel Sauce from Serena Bakes simply From Scratch.

Add fried chicken and stir until coated and heated through.

Orange Peel Chicken is a family favorite recipe that's deliciously easy to make and can be made easily gluten free. A great dinner recipe from Serena Bakes Simply From Scratch.

Once done serve with rice, fried rice or chow mein noodles and a steamed veggie. 

Orange Peel Chicken is a family favorite recipe that's deliciously easy to make and can be made easily gluten free. A great dinner recipe from Serena Bakes Simply From Scratch.

I’m totally smitten and content other then the urge to make this again tonight for dinner! If your lucky enough to have leftovers make sure to hide them well or someone else will devour them! Enjoy! 

Yield: 5

Author: Serena Bakes Simply From ScratchPrint


Easy to make Chinese Orange Peel Chicken recipe is naturally gluten free and full of flavor! The secret to this dish is in the peel.



Orange Peel Sauce

  • 2 whole Oranges Zest Removed Using A Vegetable Peeler In 1″ Pieces
  • 1 cup Juice From Oranges
  • 3/4 cup Chicken Broth (Gluten Free)
  • 2/3 cup Brown Sugar
  • 1/3 cup Rice Vinegar
  • 1/4 cup Tamari Soy Sauce (Gluten Free)
  • 1 tablespoon Chili Garlic Paste (Gluten Free)

Fried Chicken

  • 4 whole Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast, Cut Into 1 1/4″ Cubes
  • 2 whole Eggs, Beaten Well
  • 1 1/2 cups Cornstarch (Gluten Free)
  • 2 teaspoons Fresh Ginger, Grated
  • 4 cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 2 tablespoons Cornstarch (Gluten Free)
  • 3 tablespoons Water
  • Cooking Oil For Frying (I like coconut oil.)


Orange Peel Sauce

  1. In a medium sized bowl combine orange juice, chicken broth, brown sugar, rice vinegar, soy sauce and chili garlic paste. Mix until sugar is dissolved and well combined.

Fried Chicken

  1. In a small bowl or ziploc bag add chicken and pour 2/3 cup orange sauce over the top. Cover, refrigerate and marinate 20 minutes or until ready to use.
  2. In a large heavy duty pan heat about 1 1/2″ of oil until hot but not smoking.
  3. Dip marinated chicken into beaten eggs and then cornstarch.
  4. Fry chicken in a single layer in pan, working in about 3 batches. Cook until chicken is brown, flip chicken over and brown other side. Cook until chicken is no longer pink in the center.
  5. Keep chicken warm in 180 degree oven on a cookie sheet while frying the remaining chicken.
  6. Repeat with remaining chicken.
  7. Drain oil from pan and add an additional 1 tablespoon oil. Heat oil over medium-high heat and add orange zest. Saute orange zest until it starts to brown and is fragrant. Add ginger and garlic, cook until garlic is softened and fragrant.
  8. Add remaining orange sauce to pan and bring to a simmer.
  9. In a small bowl whisk together the remaining 2 tablespoons cornstarch and 3 tablespoons water until smooth and lump free.
  10. Stir cornstarch mixture into simmering orange sauce. Cook until thickened.
  11. Add chicken and stir until coated and heated through.


Fat (grams)

Calories are estimated.

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