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No-Fuss Chinese Sesame Chicken Recipes: Perfect for Busy Weeknights

If you enjoy Chinese food, you may be familiar with sesame chicken. This popular dish combines sweet and savoury flavours that many people love. Its crunchy coating, tender chicken, and delicious sesame sauce make sesame chicken a tasty and fulfilling meal suitable for any gathering.

A wok sizzles with tender chicken, coated in a glossy, golden sesame sauce. Green onions and sesame seeds sprinkle over the dish

Fortunately, you don't have to be a professional chef to make sesame chicken at home. In fact, there are many easy Chinese sesame chicken recipes that you can try out right now. Whether you're a beginner or an experienced cook, you can easily whip up a delicious batch of sesame chicken in no time.

In this article, we'll take a closer look at some of the best easy Chinese sesame chicken recipes out there. We'll cover everything from the basics of sesame chicken to preparing your chicken, crafting the perfect sesame sauce, and serving and garnishing your dish. So, if you're ready to take your Chinese cooking skills to the next level, let's get started!

Key Takeaways

  • Sesame chicken is a popular Chinese dish that's easy to make at home.
  • There are many easy Chinese sesame chicken recipes that you can try out.
  • To make the perfect sesame chicken, you'll need to master the basics of the dish, prepare your chicken, craft a delicious sesame sauce, and serve and garnish your dish.

The Basics of Sesame Chicken

A sizzling wok with golden brown chicken pieces coated in a glossy sesame sauce, surrounded by vibrant green broccoli florets and white sesame seeds

If you're looking for a quick and easy Chinese dish to make, sesame chicken is a great option. It's a classic dish that's packed with flavour and can be made with just a few simple ingredients that are easy to find at your local supermarket. Here are some basics that you need to know before you start cooking:

Choosing the Right Chicken

When it comes to making sesame chicken, it's important to choose the right type of chicken. You can use either boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs. Chicken thighs tend to be juicier and more flavourful than chicken breasts, but both work well for this dish. If you want to make this dish even more special, you could also try using seafood such as shrimp or prawns.

Essential Ingredients for Sesame Chicken

The essential ingredients for sesame chicken include sesame seeds, soy sauce, cornstarch, sesame oil, egg, and flour. Sesame seeds are used to add a nutty flavour and a bit of crunch to the dish. Soy sauce is used to add saltiness and umami flavour. Cornstarch is used to create a crispy coating on the chicken. Sesame oil is used to add a nutty flavour and aroma. Egg is used to help the coating stick to the chicken. Flour is used to create a base for the coating.

If you're looking to add some seafood to the dish, you could try using prawns or shrimp. Prawns or shrimp work well with the sesame flavour and add a nice texture to the dish. If you do decide to use seafood, make sure to adjust the cooking time accordingly as seafood cooks faster than chicken.

Overall, sesame chicken is a simple yet delicious dish that you can easily make at home. With just a few ingredients, you can create a dish that's packed with flavour and perfect for any occasion.

Preparing Your Chicken

A wok sizzles as chicken pieces are stir-fried with sesame oil, soy sauce, and ginger. A sprinkle of sesame seeds adds a finishing touch

When it comes to making Chinese sesame chicken, it's important to start with the right cut of chicken. Boneless, skinless chicken thighs are the best choice for this recipe because they are more flavorful and tender than chicken breasts. However, if you prefer white meat, you can use chicken breast instead.

Marinating for Flavour

To infuse your chicken with maximum flavor, marinating is a crucial step. In a bowl, whisk together egg white, soy sauce, and Shaoxing wine (or rice vinegar if you don't have Shaoxing wine), and add a pinch of salt and pepper. Cut the chicken into bite-size pieces and add them to the marinade, making sure they are well coated. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, or up to 2 hours.

If you want to add a seafood twist to your sesame chicken, you can substitute the chicken with prawns or scallops. Marinate the seafood in the same mixture as the chicken for 15-20 minutes before cooking.

Breading Techniques

To achieve a crispy exterior, the chicken needs to be coated in a mixture of cornstarch and flour. In a separate bowl, mix together the cornstarch, flour, baking powder, salt, and pepper. Dredge each piece of chicken in the mixture and shake off any excess.

For a healthier option, you can skip the flour and use only cornstarch for the breading. This will result in a lighter, crispier texture.

Now that your chicken is marinated and breaded, it's ready to be cooked. In the next section, we'll explore different cooking methods for Chinese sesame chicken.

Cooking Methods

Sizzling sesame chicken stir-frying in a wok, surrounded by colorful vegetables and aromatic spices

When it comes to cooking Chinese sesame chicken, there are two main methods you can use: stir-frying in a wok or baking for a healthier option. Both methods have their pros and cons, so it's up to you to decide which one you prefer.

Stir-Frying in a Wok

Stir-frying in a wok is the traditional method of cooking Chinese sesame chicken. It involves cooking the chicken in bite-size pieces in a wok with vegetable oil until it is golden brown. This method is great for achieving a crispy texture and a delicious flavour.

To stir-fry your Chinese sesame chicken, heat up some vegetable oil in a wok until it's hot. Add your chicken and stir-fry it until it's golden brown. Then, add your sauce and stir-fry for a few more minutes until the sauce has thickened. Serve your Chinese sesame chicken with some rice or noodles.

If you're feeling adventurous, you can also add some seafood to your Chinese sesame chicken. Shrimp or squid are great options that will add a unique flavour to your dish.

Baking for a Healthier Option

If you're looking for a healthier option, you can bake your Chinese sesame chicken in the oven. This method involves coating the chicken in flour and baking it until it's golden brown. It's a great option if you want to cut down on the amount of oil you use.

To bake your Chinese sesame chicken, preheat your oven to 200°C. Coat your chicken in flour and place it on a baking tray. Bake for 12 minutes or until the chicken is golden brown. Then, brush some sauce on top of the chicken and bake for a few more minutes until the sauce has thickened.

Seafood can also be a great addition to your baked Chinese sesame chicken. You can use shrimp or scallops to add a delicious flavour to your dish.

Overall, both methods are great options for cooking Chinese sesame chicken. Stir-frying is great for achieving a crispy texture and a delicious flavour, while baking is a healthier option that is still just as tasty. Choose the method that works best for you and enjoy your delicious Chinese sesame chicken!

Crafting the Perfect Sesame Sauce

A bowl of sesame seeds, soy sauce, vinegar, sugar, and garlic are being mixed together to create the perfect sesame sauce for Chinese chicken

When it comes to making delicious sesame chicken, the sauce is key. A good sesame sauce should be sweet, savoury and have the perfect consistency. Here are some tips to help you craft the perfect sesame sauce for your chicken.

Balancing Sweet and Savoury

To achieve the perfect balance of sweet and savoury in your sesame sauce, you'll need to use a combination of soy sauce, rice vinegar, sugar, and honey. Soy sauce is the perfect base for the sauce, providing a savoury umami flavour. Rice vinegar adds a tangy sweetness that helps to balance out the saltiness of the soy sauce. Sugar and honey are used to add sweetness to the sauce, but be careful not to add too much as it can overpower the other flavours.

If you're feeling adventurous, you could even try adding some seafood to your sesame sauce. Prawns or scallops work particularly well and add an extra depth of flavour to the sauce.

Achieving the Ideal Consistency

The ideal consistency for sesame sauce is thick enough to coat the chicken, but not so thick that it becomes gloopy and difficult to work with. To achieve this, you'll need to use a combination of cornstarch and water. Cornstarch is a great thickening agent and will help to give your sauce a silky texture. Make sure to mix the cornstarch with water before adding it to the sauce, as this will prevent it from clumping.

To give your sesame sauce an extra kick of flavour, you can also add some minced garlic and ginger. These ingredients will add a subtle heat to the sauce and help to bring out the other flavours.

By following these tips, you'll be able to craft the perfect sesame sauce for your chicken. Experiment with different ingredients and flavours until you find the perfect balance for your taste.

Serving and Garnishing

A plate of sesame chicken with green onions and sesame seeds, surrounded by colorful vegetables and garnishes

After preparing your easy Chinese sesame chicken recipe, it's time to serve and garnish it. Here are some tips to help you pair your sesame chicken with the right sides and add the final touches.

Pairing with Sides

When it comes to pairing your sesame chicken with sides, there are several options to choose from. Steamed rice is a classic choice that pairs well with the sesame chicken's sweet and savory flavors. You can also try serving your sesame chicken with steamed broccoli, which adds a healthy and nutritious touch to your meal. If you're feeling adventurous, you can even try pairing your sesame chicken with seafood, such as shrimp or scallops.

Adding the Final Touches

To add the final touches to your sesame chicken, you can garnish it with various ingredients. Green onions are a great option that adds a pop of color and freshness to your dish. Toasted sesame seeds are another great option that adds a nutty flavor and crunch to your sesame chicken. You can sprinkle them on top of your chicken before serving.

Overall, serving and garnishing your easy Chinese sesame chicken recipe is a simple process that can elevate your dish to the next level. Whether you choose to pair your chicken with steamed rice, broccoli, or seafood, or garnish it with green onions or toasted sesame seeds, your sesame chicken is sure to be a hit at the dinner table.

Frequently Asked Questions

A wok sizzles with sesame chicken stir-fry. Ingredients like soy sauce, ginger, and honey sit nearby. Text reads "Frequently Asked Questions easy Chinese sesame chicken recipes."

What ingredients go into the sauce for sesame chicken?

The sauce for sesame chicken typically consists of soy sauce, rice vinegar, honey, sesame oil, garlic, ginger, and cornstarch. Some recipes may call for additional ingredients like hoisin sauce, oyster sauce, or chili flakes for added flavour.

How can you keep the chicken crispy when making Chinese dishes?

To keep the chicken crispy, it's important to coat the chicken in cornstarch or flour before frying. It's also important to fry the chicken in hot oil and not overcrowd the pan. After frying, place the chicken on a wire rack to allow excess oil to drip off.

Which cut of chicken is typically used in sesame chicken from restaurants?

Boneless, skinless chicken breasts are commonly used in sesame chicken from restaurants. However, you can also use boneless, skinless chicken thighs for a more flavourful and moist chicken.

Could you list some of the top Chinese chicken dishes favoured in the UK?

Some of the top Chinese chicken dishes favoured in the UK include sweet and sour chicken, kung pao chicken, and lemon chicken.

What's the simplest way to make sesame oil chicken at home?

To make sesame oil chicken at home, marinate chicken thighs in soy sauce, sesame oil, ginger, garlic, and sugar for at least 30 minutes. Then, bake the chicken in the oven until cooked through. Serve with steamed rice and vegetables for a complete meal.

Are there any quick Chinese chicken dinner recipes that use minimal ingredients?

Yes, you can make a simple Chinese chicken stir-fry with just chicken, broccoli, garlic, soy sauce, and oyster sauce. Heat some oil in a wok or frying pan, add the chicken and broccoli, and stir-fry until cooked through. Then, add the garlic, soy sauce, and oyster sauce and stir-fry for another minute or two. Serve with rice for a quick and easy meal.

If you're looking to switch things up, you could also try adding some seafood to your sesame chicken recipe. Shrimp or scallops would be great additions and would pair well with the sesame and soy sauce flavours.