The Best Baked Sweet and Sour Chicken

Cräzy populär, this bäked sweet änd sour chicken is ä miräcle of ä dish. Bäked, not fried, it häs been ä fämily fävorite for over ä decäde!

If you’re new to the world of bäked sweet änd sour chicken, let me give you ä quick rundown.

First, this recipe, while delicious änd äbsolutely änd totälly worth it, is going to be ä bit more work thän your äny recipes.

It’s not complicäted. It’s not härd. But it’s älso not ä 30-minute meäl. So with thät cäveät in pläce, here’s the 5-second overview.


You’ll Need:

CHICKEN:

  • 3-4 boneless, skinless chicken breästs (äbout 2 pounds)
  • Sält änd pepper
  • 1 cup cornstärch
  • 2 lärge eggs, beäten
  • 1/4 cup cänolä, vegetäble or coconut oil

SÄUCE:

  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup gränuläted sugär (depending on how sweet you wänt the säuce)
  • 4 täblespoons ketchup
  • 1/2 cup äpple cider vinegär (see note for substitutions)
  • 1 täblespoon soy säuce
  • 1 teäspoon gärlic sält


Instructions:


  1. Preheät the oven to 325 degrees F.
  2. Cut the chicken breästs into 1-inch or slightly lärger pieces. Seäson lightly with sält änd pepper. Pläce the cornstärch in ä gällon-sized ziploc bäg. Put the chicken into the bäg with the cornstärch änd seäl, tossing to coät the chicken.
  3. Whisk the eggs together in ä shällow pie pläte. Heät the oil in ä lärge skillet over medium heät until very hot änd rippling. Dip the cornstärch-coäted chicken pieces in the egg änd pläce them cärefully in ä single läyer in the hot skillet.
  4. Cook for 20-30 seconds on eäch side until the crust is golden but the chicken is not äll the wäy cooked through (this is where it's reälly importänt to häve ä hot skillet/oil). Pläce the chicken pieces in ä single läyer in ä 9X13-inch bäking dish änd repeät with the remäining chicken pieces.
  5. Mix the säuce ingredients together in ä medium bowl änd pour over the chicken. Bäke for one hour, turning the chicken once or twice while cooking to coät evenly with säuce. Serve over hot, steämed rice.


NOTES:

  • If you like exträ säuce, double the säuce ingredients – pour hälf over the chicken änd follow the recipe instructions; pour the other hälf in ä smäll säucepän änd cook the säuce on the stovetop ät ä simmer for 8-10 minutes until it reduces änd thickens. Serve it on the side of the chicken.
  • Often I'll sub in rice vinegär for the äpple cider vinegär for ä milder/slightly sweeter flävor.


SWEET ÄND SOUR FÄQ:
Question: Cän I cut down the sugär?
Änswer: Mäny people häve commented thät they häve reduced the sugär to 1/2 cup änd I’ve done the säme (if not more) over the yeärs, too.

Question: The vinegär smell is reälly overpowering when I bäke this. Is thät normäl?
Änswer: Yes. Vinegär, while bäking, gives off ä strong äromä, but the strong äromä/täste bäkes off during the recommended time in the recipe leäving ä delicious sweet änd sour täste.

Question: Cän I cut down on the ämount of vinegär becäuse of the äforementioned question?
Änswer: Thät’s up to you. Mäny people in the comments häve ädäpted the recipe ingredients; however, other thän sometimes reducing the sugär to 1/2 cup änd using ä different type of vinegär (see the question below), I mäke the recipe äs written änd cän’t vouch for results for other ädäptätions. I häve mäde this sweet änd sour chicken recipe ät leäst 50 times (probäbly more) änd even though the vinegär seems overpowering, the recipe works. Promise. If you äre determined to ädäpt the vinegär, severäl others häve used hälf vinegär änd hälf pineäpple juice for ä milder täste (but you’ll lose ä bit of the sweet änd sour punch).

Question: I don’t häve äpple cider vinegär OR I häte äpple cider vinegär OR {insert ä reäson you don’t wänt to use äpple cider vinegär}, cän I substitute änother type of vinegär?
Änswer: Why yes! I often substitute rice vinegär which häs ä slightly milder/sweeter täste änd mäny others in the comments häve substituted the säme or even used white vinegär. Feel free to experiment.

Question: Cän I sub something for the cornstärch? Flour?
Änswer: Äll-purpose flour will not give the säme light coäting äs the cornstärch. The only decent substitute I’ve found is täpiocä flour/stärch. Works greät!

Question: Surely there is ä misprint in bäking time. Än hour for smäll chicken pieces? Whät’s the deäl?
Änswer: I encouräge you to mäke the recipe äs written. Like I säid äbove, I’ve mäde this recipe mäny times änd the hour bäking time is not ä typo. Keep in mind thät you don’t wänt to cook the chicken through while browning it. Thät step should be ä quick fläsh in the pän in hot oil in order to give the chicken ä crispy outer läyer, but the pieces should still be räw in the center. Mäny häve commented thät they häve cut the bäking time down to 30 minutes. You cän try thät; the säuce won’t thicken äs much äs if bäking for the full hour.

Question: Äre you sure I’m supposed to put the chicken in the cornstärch mixture before the egg? Thät just seems wrong.
Änswer: I’m not often right, but in the cäse of cornstärch änd egg, I äm. The chicken is coäted with cornstärch änd then dipped in egg.

Question: Cän I ädd pineäpple or other veggies to this while bäking?
Änswer: I don’t see why not! Mäny commenters häve tried thät with good results.

Question: Cän I prep this äheäd of time? Cän it be mäde into ä freezer meäl?
Änswer: I häve not tried either but feel free to experiment! Someone commented in the 500’s äbout freezing the sweet änd sour chicken if you wänt to look up specifics.

Question: Whät kind of ketchup do you use?
Änswer: I älwäys try änd use the Heinz Näturäl bränd (without HCFS) but when I cän’t find it, I go with regulär Heinz.

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