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General Tso's Chicken

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  • Prep 15 min
  • Total 30 min
  • Servings 4
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There’s a reason this is one of the most popular takeout dishes of all time. With crispy-coated chicken and sticky hot sauce, now you can be your own Chinese restaurant. Just make sure the word doesn’t get out, or you’ll have the neighborhood at your door.
by: The Daring Gourmet
Updated Nov 27, 2019
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  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2 inch pieces (about 1 1/2 pounds)
  • 1 cup cornstarch mixed with 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 6 small dried red chilies, seeded and broken into pieces
  • 1 tablespoon peanut oil
  • Peanut oil for deep frying

For the marinade:

  • 2 large egg whites
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Chinese rice wine or dry sherry

For the sauce:

  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons Chinese rice wine or dry sherry
  • 3 tablespoons white granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch


  • 1
    Whisk the marinade ingredients together and pour over the cubed chicken. Stir to thoroughly coat the chicken and let it sit while preparing the rest of the ingredients.
  • 2
    Combine the sauce ingredients, stirring until the sugar and cornstarch are dissolved. Set aside.
  • 3
    Dredge the chicken pieces in the cornstarch and shake off the excess. Working in batches, deep fry the chicken in oil heated to 375°F until the chicken is golden brown, crispy and cooked through. Place the chicken on paper towels.
  • 4
    Heat the tablespoon of oil in a wok or large frying pan over medium-high heat. Fry the garlic and red chilies for about 30 seconds until fragrant. Add the sauce and simmer until thickened. Add the fried chicken, stir to thoroughly coat, and simmer for a couple of minutes until the chicken has absorbed the sauce. Serve immediately.

Expert Tips

  • tip 1
    To make this General Tso’s chicken recipe a complete meal, serve with cooked rice and steamed broccoli.
  • tip 2
    To make the chicken extra crispy, fry it twice before covering it in sauce.
  • tip 3
    You’ll never have to order in again with the help of these Chinese takeout taste-alike recipes.

Nutrition Information

No nutrition information available for this recipe

More About This Recipe

  • Don't get stuck waiting around for delivery—prepare your own spicy, tangy version of this classic dish yourself. One of (if not the most) popular Chinese takeout dishes in America, General Tso’s chicken has been a favorite for decades. So who is this General Tso, anyway? He was a statesman in the Qing dynasty whose actual name was Zuo Zongtang (Zuo is pronounced "Tso"). But while this wildly popular dish was named after him, he wouldn't have been familiar with it—and actually, nor are his descendants. When interviewed about the dish a few years ago they'd never heard of it. The dish bears his name but has no connection with him at all. In fact, it isn't even authentic Chinese! But that’s okay because it's thoroughly authentic Chinese-American, and that's what we're celebrating. Now you can make it whenever and wherever you want in just 30 minutes, and the results will rival your favorite takeout version. Chia?h khì!—that means "eat up!"
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