Chinese food is one thing that is hard for keto dieters (and low-carbers) to order. The sauces are made with both sugar and starch. The meals are paired with rice. The side items are wrapped and fried with flour.
So we tend to avoid Chinese food altogether because, well, why bother?
I set out about a year ago to create General Tso Chicken, which was one of my favorite dishes before I gave up sugar, grains, and starches. I couldn’t find a recipe that looked doable, so I set out for another popular and tasty dish: orange chicken.
Could I take a regular orange chicken recipe and make it low carb?
This Keto Orange Chicken recipe hits the spot. It’s tangy and sweet with that yummy orange flavor flooded throughout each bite. The best part? It’s 4.5g of net carbs per 150g serving (that’s about 1/3 lb of chicken!). You could easily scale it up for bigger crowds.
Two (or even 4 servings!) could fit into your carb allowance for the day.
I highly recommend using a healthy oil for frying in. Common oils are corrosive to your cells and DNA because of how oxidized they are from processing. These oils include
- Corn oil
- Canola oil
- Vegetable oil
- Cottonseed oil
- Rapeseed oil
- Grapeseed oil
- Safflower oil
- Sunflower oil
- Soybean oil
- Sesame oil
If that wasn’t enough, they contain insane levels of omega 6 polyunsaturated fats, which are pro-inflammatory. We should get at most a 2 to 1 ratio of omega 6 to omega 3 in our diets. Americans usually get a 20 to 1 ratio because seed oils are in EVERYTHING from mayo, sauces, and dressings to baked goods, desserts, packaged chips, crisps, cookies, and other snacks. If you care about omega 3s (and you should), eliminating these oils is important. Eating seafood and/or supplementing omega 3 is ineffective with such high levels of omega 6.
Good oils for high-temperature cooking include
- Avocado oil
- Coconut oil (that’s what I use for frying)
- Beef tallow
There are many sweetener options, so it’s up to what you have on hand or prefer. I used Lakanto Classic monk fruit/erythritol granulated sweetener. Swerve, xylitol, allulose are some other options.
I serve this Keto Chinese food along steamed cauliflower rice. You could also steam some broccoli. I don’t tolerate spiciness very well, so I don’t add chili pepper to my dish here, but you can add ½ TSP red chili pepper (or more! I’m not the spice police) to add some sizzle to your sweet.
Keto Orange Chicken Recipe
This Keto Orange Chicken recipe takes a little bit of prep work. It’s worth it, though. And your taste buds will thank you.
If you try it, let me know what you think in the comments!
Keto Orange Chicken
- 2 lbs boneless skinless chicken breast cut into 1" pieces
- 2 eggs
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 pinch black pepper
- 2 cups almond flour
- oil for frying
- 2 tbsp rice wine
- 1/4 cup water
- 1 tsp avocado oil
- 3 tbsp coconut aminos
- 1/2 cup granulated erythritol, xylitol, or sweetener of choice
- 1/3 cup white wine vinegar
- 1/8 tsp orange extract
- zest of 1 orange
- 1 tsp ground ginger
- 2 tsp minced garlic
- 1/2 tsp xantham gum
- Preheat oven to 375F.
- In a medium bowl, combine rice wine, water, avocado oil, coconut aminos, sweetener, white vinegar, orange extract, and orange zest. Put to the side.
- Whisk eggs in a medium bowl until smooth. Mix together salt, pepper, and almond flour in another medium bowl.
- Drench the chicken pieces in the eggs and then the almond flour mixture until coated. Prepare the oil for frying.
- Fry the chicken pieces in batches until the coating has browned to a golden color. Place the pieces in one layer on a baking sheet. (Alternatively, you can finish the chicken in the oil).
- Place the chicken pieces into the oven and bake for 5-10 minutes until the pieces are fully cooked.
- In a large pan, place a tbsp of frying oil and the minced garlic, cooking for 1 minute. Add in the orange sauce and bring to a low boil. Sprinkle the xantham gum over the top and mix well. Let the mixture boil for about 5 minutes or until thickened.
- Turn off the heat. Add the cooked chicken pieces and mix until coated.
*Note: None of this is medical advice.