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Overhead view of orange chicken and rice in a bowl with chop sticks.
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Air Fryer Orange Chicken

Air Fryer Orange Chicken is a healthier version of a take-out favorite. It's golden brown and crispy with a sweet and sticky orange sauce!
Course Dinner
Cuisine American
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 4 people
Calories 325kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 pound chicken thighs cut in 1-2" pieces
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Orange Chicken Sauce

Instructions

  • Mix the cornstarch and salt together and toss the chicken so it's coated evenly.
  • Spray the air fryer basket lightly with oil and place the chicken in a single layer inside (the chicken will be cooked in 3 batches).
  • Spray the chicken lightly with spray oil.
  • Use the air fryer function and cook at 400F degrees for 9 minutes, shaking 2-3 times while cooking. The chicken will be golden brown and crispy on the outside when done. (It's okay if some of the pieces are a touch white from the cornstarch. It'll fall off and mix into the sauce).
  • Place the cooked chicken in a bowl and repeat with the other 2 batches.
  • While the chicken is air frying, make the orange sauce.
  • Combine all the sauce ingredients except the cornstarch slurry in a saucepan. Bring to a simmer and cook for 3-5 minutes, until it starts to thicken.
  • Slowly pour in the cornstarch slurry, whisking while pouring and simmer until the sauce is thickened and coats the back of a spoon (about 3 minutes).
  • Toss the chicken with the orange sauce, sprinkle with sesame seeds and garnish with green onions. Serve with rice.

Notes

  1. Use a good quality spray oil (not PAM or equivalent) to avoid damaging the air fryer. I like to use this oil sprayer and fill with my favorite oil.
  2. If your air fryer model requires preheating, you should do so before adding the chicken.
  3. To ensure even cooking, cut your chicken into roughly even pieces (about 1-2 inches in size).
  4. Be sure to air fry the chicken in a single layer. If you overcrowd the air fryer, pieces of chicken may be undercooked.
  5. Depending on the size of your air fryer, you will need to air fry the chicken in at least 3 batches.
  6. Shake the basket a few times while the chicken cooks to make sure it browns evenly on all sides.
  7. Each air fryer cooks a little differently, so you may need to adjust the temperature and air frying time slightly.
  8. For extra flavor, add minced garlic and a pinch of red pepper flakes to the orange sauce.
  9. If your sauce is too thin, just add more cornstarch slurry. If it’s too thick, stir in a couple of teaspoons of water.

Nutrition

Serving: 4ounces | Calories: 325kcal | Carbohydrates: 18g | Protein: 20g | Fat: 19g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 8g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 111mg | Sodium: 1173mg | Potassium: 323mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 11g | Vitamin A: 153IU | Vitamin C: 16mg | Calcium: 17mg | Iron: 1mg