Better Than Take Out: Homemade Orange Chicken (Gluten and Wheat Free)

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Homemade orange chicken recipe - tangy orange sauce with crispy fried chicken Follow Me on Pinterest

Homemade orange chicken. There’s no way it could ever be as good as takeout, right?


Orange chicken is one of those dishes that hubby and I get a craving for every now and then. But, rather than going down the street and eating at Panda Express and loading up on salt, MSG, soybean oil, canola oil, etc., why not make it at home? It is much easier than I once thought and I don’t know if I want to eat takeout orange chicken ever again! Served with steamed rice and veggies, you’ve got a meal that is sure to satisfy! Honestly though, the chicken is delicious on it’s own and I often just snack on it by itself!

A couple notes about this recipe. First, you can use whatever flour you have on hand, but I have found that brown rice flour and sprouted quinoa flour yield the crispiest chicken pieces (affiliate links). The palm shortening (affiliate link) is a great fat for frying because it is very stable at high heats and has a neutral flavor that is not transferred to the chicken. Also, if you don’t want to use corn starch, you can use arrowroot, tapioca, etc., but, please note that I have not tried those, so they are merely suggestions. My family tolerates non-GMO corn just fine, so that’s what I prefer to use, but I know some of my readers have to avoid corn.

The key to crispy fried chicken is the process of coating it. You want to do dry > wet > dry. In my recipe’s instructions, that would be corn starch > egg > flour. Also, some people have seemed concerned about the amount of sugar in this recipe. Let’s not forget that a dish like this should be considered a treat and is not one you want to consume regularly. If you want to reduce the sugar, you can reduce the amount of honey. Since we don’t consume high-sugar foods often, I don’t mind eating extra honey for this meal.

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About Jessica Espinoza

Jessica is a real food nut, coconut everything enthusiast, avid reader and researcher, blossoming yogi, and animal lover. She has had a life-long passion for food and being in the kitchen is where she is the happiest. Jessica started Delicious Obsessions in 2010 as a way to help share her love for food and cooking. Since then, it has grown into a trusted online resource with a vibrant community of people learning to live healthy, happy lives through real food and natural living.



  1. Sounds delicious!

    Did I miss something? Once the chicken is fried, do you put them in the sauce? Will the sauce make the coating squishy?

    Thx in advance


    Posted 06/15/12

    • Hi Manal – You did not miss anything. I simply forgot to address that. I have added that into the instructions. We like to just pour the sauce over our meal, rather than tossing the chicken in the sauce, because it’s soggy if you toss it. But, if you’re going to eat it all for that one meal, it would be fine. We always have leftovers, so that’s why we keep it separated.


      Posted 06/15/12

  2. Looks yummy! Do you save and re-use your palm oil? And do you know of any good deals on palm oil right now? I want to order some. Thanks!


    Posted 06/15/12

  3. I just tried this recipe, still in the process of finishing the sauce, its been on med-low for about 20-30 min, but adding the corn starch was a catastrophe. It was nearly a solid paste when added to the orange sauce, and now it is sitting in the pot not dissolving


    Posted 07/03/13

    • Hi Brian – Did you mix the cornstarch with some water prior to whisking it into the sauce. Cornstarch can be finicky and you must mix it with water first, then slowly add it to the sauce, while whisking vigorously or else it will get clumpy. If you do end up with clumps, you can always whisk the sauce through a strainer to get it smooth again. Hope that helps!


      Posted 07/05/13

  4. I’ve made this now twice, it’s great!! The sauce is fantastic.


    Posted 07/11/13

    • Thanks Lindsey! Glad you enjoyed! This is my go-to comfort food! :)


      Posted 07/12/13

  5. I could kiss you!

    I made this tonight – it took forever, but was so worth it. I had to change a couple things due to what I had on hand, but it’s an amazing recipe. Kudos!

    I’ll be singing your praises for some time to come!


    Posted 02/18/14

  6. I always hate it when people 2nd guess a recipe by asking if a certain ingredient is paleo, but it is an honest question, not meant to be critical. Is buttermilk paleo? I have been off the dairy since going paleo, but I wasn’t sure if buttermilk was an exception I hadn’t heard about. If not, is there something to use in its place?


    Posted 09/13/14

    • Hi Veronica – Dairy is not considered a “paleo” food. The primal diet allows for dairy if tolerated. Really, it all boils down to eating foods that you tolerate and that create wellness in your body. If you can tolerate dairy, then I don’t see anything wrong with incorporating it into your diet, provided that it’s from a clean, grass-fed/pastured source. I get tired of the “paleo police” who say that the diet has to be followed like a religion. I say experiment with foods, see what works for your body, and then go with that! Don’t worry about putting a label on your diet. :)


      Jessica Espinoza
      Posted 09/14/14

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