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Sweet And Sour Chicken Recipe

In Russ' words: "It is probably not surprising to read that while this dish is served in Chinese restaurants in many Western countries, it doesn’t really exist in China. There are several sauces served in China that incorporate both sweet and sour tastes, the most common being from the Hunan province, but they’re a far cry from what you can get at your local Chinese-American restaurant. The reality is that this is more of an American dish than a Chinese one. On the flip side, the Chinese have their own interpretation of Western tastes—like flying fish roe and salmon cream cheese stuffed-crust pizza (at the Hong Kong Pizza Hut). I think it’s a fair trade."
Course Main Course
Cuisine Chinese
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 454kcal
Author Russ Crandall (from the Paleo Takeout Cookbook)


Sauce Ingredients

Nugget Ingredients

Slurry Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp arrowroot starch
  • 1 tbsp cold water
  • ½ tsp sesame seeds (to garnish)
  • 2 green onions (sliced, to garnish)


  • In a saucepan, combine the sauce ingredients. Bring to a simmer over medium-low heat, then reduce the heat to low to gently simmer as you prepare the rest of the meal; stir occasionally.
  • Preheat your oven to 250°F. In a wok or skillet, warm the coconut oil over medium heat. Combine the tapioca starch, salt, and pepper, then toss the chicken pieces with the starch mixture. With your fingers, dip a starchy chicken piece in the beaten eggs, shake off the excess egg, and then add to the oil. Repeat until you have filled your skillet, being careful not to overcrowd the chicken pieces. Fry the chicken until cooked through, flipping every 2 minutes, about 6 to 8 minutes per batch. As you finish each batch, place the cooked pieces on a plate lined with paper towels; put them in the oven to stay warm. You should be able to cook the chicken pieces in 3 or 4 batches, depending on the size of your skillet.
  • Once the chicken is cooked through, finish the sauce. Taste the sauce and add more salt or pepper if needed. If the sauce is too dark and strong tasting, add a little chicken broth to thin it out. At this point, the sauce should be about as thick as tomato soup and should have a sharp but not overwhelming flavor.
  • In a small bowl, stir together the arrowroot starch and cold water to create a slurry. Raise the sauce temperature to medium; once bubbling, add half of the slurry and stir until thickened, adding more slurry if needed. Remove from the heat.
  • Toss the chicken pieces with the sauce, then garnish with sesame seeds and green onions. Serve over Basic Steamed Rice or Cauliflower Rice. (See below for recipes)


Calories: 454kcal | Carbohydrates: 25g | Protein: 52g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Cholesterol: 227mg | Sodium: 1699mg | Potassium: 1035mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 14g | Vitamin A: 369IU | Vitamin C: 10mg | Calcium: 38mg | Iron: 2mg