Easy Sesame Chicken

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Crispy Sesame Chicken is easy to make with super crispy batter and delicious sesame sauce you’ll skip the takeout and done in just 30 minutes!

One of our favorite take out options when we aren’t looking for a recipe that is sweeter like Panda Express Orange Chicken (Copycat) or Sweet and Sour Chicken and something not quite as spicy as General Tso’s Chicken.

 Chinese Sesame Chicken
Sesame Chicken Recipe

There’s a number of recipes you’ll come across. Some are healthier versions without breading while some are stir fries. This is the classic mall food Chinese takeout version. Because there’s so many different versions lets go over some of the other options. This version is the best one though, especially if you’re reliving your mall food court childhood.

EASY SESAME CHICKEN RECIPES:

Baked Sesame Chicken: You can dredge the chicken in flour, egg and finally in panko. Spray the pieces of chicken with some canola oil spray and bake at 375 degrees for 25 minutes. Toss with sesame sauce then continue baking for an additional ten minutes.

Honey Sesame Chicken: Replace the brown sugar in the recipe with honey for a more pronounced honey sesame chicken recipe. I also love making Chinese Honey Chicken too without any of the sesame flavors.

Sesame Chicken Stir Fry: Don’t bread the chicken – just cook it in the skillet with  a bit of sesame oil and canola oil. Add fresh garlic and vegetables (bell pepper, onion and zucchini)  to the skillet and cook for 1-2 minutes. Then pout the sauce in and cook until reduced (you may need to add a bit of cornstarch and water).

What to serve with Sesame Chicken?

We love to serve Chinese Steamed Rice, Lo Mein, steamed broccoli and easy recipes like Crab Rangoon and Egg Rolls for appetizers dipped in Sweet and Sour Sauce.

Crispy Sesame Chicken

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HOW DO YOU MAKE SESAME CHICKEN SAUCE?

There are a couple of ways to make sesame sauce. This recipe includes soy sauce, brown sugar, garlic, sesame oil, rice vinegar and cornstarch where more in depth recipes include dark soy sauce and shaoxing rice wine.

How do you make sesame chicken? A quick and easy tempura fried chicken in bite size pieces is tossed with an easy sauce made with rice wine and soy sauce sweet and spicy mixture. Garnish with sesame seeds or even green onions.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS:

  • Is Sesame Chicken Fried? Yes, in it’s traditional form it is dredged in batter and deep fried.
  • Is Sesame Chicken Sweet? Yes, with the addition of brown sugar it is slightly less sweet than orange chicken.
  • Can you reheat Sesame Chicken? Once you serve the chicken the sauce starts soaking up in to the crispy chicken. Because of this reheating won’t result in crispy chicken, but it will still be tasty.
  • White Meat Sesame Chicken: Use skinless chicken breasts in this Sesame Chicken in place of chicken thighs. There’s no other recipe adjustment, you will fry for one less minute.

Tools used in the making of this Sesame Chicken:
Wok: The best way to cook quickly and over high heat for Asian dishes, this wok is the perfect stir fry pan.
Rice Vinegar: Readily available in almost all grocers these days, this is a great vinegar to keep on hand. It does have a hint of sweetness to it, so don’t replace with any other vinegar except perhaps a red wine vinegar if you absolutely need to.
Sesame Oil: The flavor of sesame oil in this dish is unmistakeable and not really able to be substituted. Some Asian grocery stores will try and sell less expensive options that aren’t actually sesame oil, so just be sure the one you’re buying is authentic sesame oil.

Easy Sesame Chicken

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Crispy Sesame Chicken

4.85 from 33 votes
  • Yield: 6 servings
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Course: Main Course
  • Cuisine: Chinese
  • Author: Sabrina Snyder
Crispy Sesame Chicken is easy to make with super crispy batter and delicious sesame sauce you’ll skip the takeout!

Ingredients

Sesame Chicken Sauce Ingredients:

Tempura Batter:

  • 1/2 cup cornstarch
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1/2 cup cold seltzer water

Chicken:

  • 1 lb chicken thighs boneless and skinless cut into 1? chunks
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • vegetable oil for deep frying

Instructions

Note: click on times in the instructions to start a kitchen timer while cooking.

  1. To make the sauce mix all the ingredients together and to prepare the batter, add the ingredients together until just combined.

  2. Add the chicken pieces to the batter and coat while heating 3 inches of oil to 350 degrees and add the chicken to the oil in batches frying until golden brown.

  3. In a large wok or skillet add the sesame oil to the frying pan and add the garlic and red pepper flakes and cook for 30 seconds.

  4. Add in the sauce and the chicken and coat quickly and serve immediately, garnished with sesame seeds.

Nutrition Information

Yield: 6 servings, Amount per serving: 361 calories, Calories: 361g, Carbohydrates: 38g, Protein: 15g, Fat: 15g, Saturated Fat: 3g, Cholesterol: 74mg, Sodium: 623mg, Potassium: 227mg, Sugar: 18g, Vitamin A: 85g, Vitamin C: 0.4g, Calcium: 32g, Iron: 1.5g

All images and text © for Dinner, then Dessert.

Keywords: Crispiest Chinese Sesame Chicken, Sesame Chicken
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Crispy Chinese Sesame Chicken

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Comments

    1. I would use apple cider vinegar if you have it. If you only have white vinegar, add 1/4 teaspoon of sugar to it before adding. Good luck!

  1. Great meal! Only recommendations I’d give are to go a little lighter on the rice vinegar – stroooooooong flavor- and to, as other comments have said, really thicken the sauce. Not necessarily your traditional sesame chicken, but still really yummy!

  2. So I made this for the family today, I added honey to it so my kids might like it a bit more. Wasn’t too hard for a guy who has never even separated eggs from their whites so I’d recommend it for anyone to try. I’ll certainly do it again

  3. Thanks so much for this recipe!! Only change I would suggest is letting that sauce thicken up a bit. I am no chef by any means. When I cook anything other than basics like spaghetti (using Ragu lol) I use a recipe and have to follow it to a tee. A recipe could take a step off a cliff, and in the next second, I’d be airborne too. So if a recipe is “off”, I never have any clue how to make it better. I just have to find another recipe. With this, I made 1 batch following your exact instructions. Sauce was extremely thin & I tasted too much of the soy sauce. The sauce’s ingredients didn’t seem as if they’d come together right & the sauce just immediately soaked right into the chicken. And while it was good, it did not taste like sesame chicken. While studying the recipe to see if I’d missed something, I noticed a suggestion in comments to let the sauce simmer. I decided to take another go at it. Using the same thin sauce, I turned the heat back on & let it simmer for a long while, while I got more chicken dipped and fried. Like I said, Idk much about cooking but I know flour’s a thickening agent so I even sprinkled a little of that in there. Necessary? Who knows. But I’m impatient haha. It thickened up nicely & finally turned familiar in color. I tossed in my chicken, plated it, sprinkled sesame seeds and BAM! It looked JUST like the kind I get at my favorite Chinese restaurant. And the taste knocked me off my feet, it was so similar. Biiiiiig difference from the first batch! I wish I could post my before and after pics. It was all YOU on the recipe. Never would have been able to compile all of that on my own, so thank you. But to make that sauce come together like it should, people, Let. It. Simmer.

  4. Just made this dinner tonight for my husband and I tonight. We must have said “this is SO good” 100 times while eating it. One of the best meals I have ever made.

  5. Just lovely! I cut the sesame oil in half and added ginger after tasting the sauce base (which does need to be simmered until uniform and thick, as others have noted). I overcooked my chicken a bit due to adding it in too large batches— it took too long to brown. But this is a real keeper! Pretty easy too. I threw it in after frying some spring rolls and had some very happy kids.

  6. I’m not sure what I missing, but the sauce was very thin. The recipe just says to mix ingredients. Should they be simmered? Boiled? Reduced? For how long?

    Also 2 tsp of sesame oil were included in the sauce and in the chicken list of ingredients. Was that right? That was very overwhelming.

  7. Another win! This is my go-to website for dinner ideas, everyone always loves them! I added broccoli and red pepper just to get some extra veggies and the sauce over them was fantastic!

  8. Sounds like it will be great! My question is about the Tempura batter. Do we mix all the ingredients together and then dip the chicken pieces in? Or do we do the traditional step by step dipping process? if so, can you describe the steps? And why seltzer water? Can that be substituted?

    Thank you!!

    1. For the tempura batter, mix all the ingredients together and then the chicken will be dipped into that and then fried. The seltzer water adds a crispness to the batter. You can substitute with club soda in a pinch. Hope this helps!

  9. So tasty and easy! I made my first batch. My only question would be: how do I endure crudpiness when deep frying? I was hesitant to put 3inches of oil (I use olive oil which is pricey). Also, does overstuffing if the tempura batter affect the texture when frying? Definitely going to make again!