Healthy Paleo Orange Chicken with crispy baked chicken coated in a Chinese orange sauce with a perfect sweet-and-tart balance. Pair the baked Chinese orange chicken with baby Bok Choy for a healthy and well balanced dinner!

Healthy Paleo Orange Chicken recipe with crispy baked chicken coated in a Chinese orange sauce with a perfect sweet-and-tart balance.

Oven baked Paleo Orange Chicken

Orange chicken is a Chinese American dish. The reason it became so popular in the West is because it ticks all the marks that people love – crispy golden chicken that are almost like nuggets in a sweet and slightly tart orange-flavored sauce. I figured why not share my take on this popular orange chicken dish and make it healthier, easier, and use all real natural ingredients with no added sugar.

Healthy Paleo Orange Chicken recipe with crispy baked chicken coated in a Chinese orange sauce with a perfect sweet-and-tart balance.

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How to make baked crispy chicken

If you recall the Oven Baked Crispy Potato Recipe, I use similar techniques here to make the chicken golden crispy without deep-frying. This method is different from most of my Paleo chicken stir-fry recipes.

Preheating the sheet pan in a cold oven until the oven reaches the desired temperature will make the sheet pan extra hot – almost like a hot plate. The chicken pieces will crisp up quickly once they hit the hot surface thus sear the juice immediately.

Healthy Paleo Orange Chicken recipe with crispy baked chicken coated in a Chinese orange sauce with a perfect sweet-and-tart balance.

Healthy Paleo Orange Chicken recipe with crispy baked chicken coated in a Chinese orange sauce with a perfect sweet-and-tart balance.

How To Make Healthy Orange Chicken Sauce Paleo Whole30 friendly

To make healthy orange chicken sauce, we’ll need fresh squeezed orange juice, orange zest, and grated ginger to highlight the orange sauce flavor. In my healthy Paleo orange chicken recipe I use apple cider vinegar instead of rice vinegar. It gives the orange sauce a nice balance between sweet and tart flavor.

Healthy Paleo Orange Chicken recipe with crispy baked chicken coated in a Chinese orange sauce with a perfect sweet-and-tart balance.

Unlike most Chinese American dishes that taste pretty much the same, check out my sesame chicken, sweet and sour chicken, chicken Napa cabbage stir-fry, and Kung Pao chicken. I guarantee each of them tastes different from one another and will wow your taste buds!

Healthy Paleo Orange Chicken recipe with crispy baked chicken coated in a Chinese orange sauce with a perfect sweet-and-tart balance.

Make ahead tips

Dice and season the chicken and prepare the orange sauce in advance. Store the sauce in the fridge and store the chicken flat in a ziplock bag in the freezer if you will not cook the chicken the next day. If you have time, I recommend you chop the aromatics and blanch the baby bok choy on the serving day. If you can’t, I recommend preparing them 1 day in advance and use them the next day for best flavor and freshness.

So my friends, this Paleo Orange Chicken is healthy, oven baked, with no added sugar, and uses all real ingredients. If you give this Paleo Orange Chicken a try, please rate the recipe and leave a comment below. It’ll help me and my blog tremendously. Thanks so much in advance!

Healthy Paleo Orange Chicken recipe with crispy baked chicken coated in a Chinese orange sauce with a perfect sweet-and-tart balance.

Want to make 10 Paleo meals ready in under 10 minutes each? Subscriber to my blog I Heart Umami and receive my 3-part video tutorial guide. You’ll also learn how to organize your shopping lists, how to get in-and-out the store fast, and my must-have items in my pantry to make healthy delicious food easily!

Paleo Orange Chicken (Whole30, Oven Baked, Healthy)
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
20 mins
Total Time
30 mins
 

Healthy Paleo Orange Chicken recipe with crispy baked chicken coated in a Chinese orange sauce with a perfect sweet-and-tart balance. 

Course: Main Dish
Cuisine: Asian American, Asian-inspired Paleo
Keyword: Baked Orange Chicken, Chinese Orange Chicken, Healthy Orange Chicken, Paleo Orange Chicken, Whole30 Orange Chicken
Servings: 4 people
Calories: 305 kcal
Author: ChihYu
Ingredients
Chicken:
  • 1.5 lbs. chicken breasts , cut to bite size cubes
  • ¼ tsp coarse salt
  • tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp arrowroot flour or sweet potato starch/flour
Aromatics:
  • 3-4 cloves large garlic , finely chopped
  • 2 thin slices ginger , finely chopped
  • ½ tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
Whole30 Paleo Orange Chicken sauce:
Other/Garnish:
  • Avocado or olive oil
  • Half one whole Orange , sliced into bite sized pieces
  • 1-2 bulbs scallions , finely chopped
  • Baby bok choy , quartered and blanched, as much as you like
Instructions
  1. Place a large rimmed sheet pan, unlined, in the bottom rack of the oven. Preheat the oven with the sheet pan inside to 425F (400F convection oven). In the meantime, dice and lightly coat the chicken with salt, pepper, baking soda, and arrowroot flour. Set the chicken aside in the fridge.

  2. Once the oven reaches the temperature. Carefully remove sheet from oven and grease with 2 tbsp avocado or olive oil. Place chicken pieces one-by-one over the sheet pan. Try not to overlap each other much. Bake at lower rack for 10 minutes. Use this time to prepare aromatics and make the orange sauce. Set them aside ready to use.

  3. Remove sheet from oven, using a metal spatula and tongs, loosen chickens from sheet and carefully flip each piece. Continue to bake until second side is golden and crispy, about 8-10 minutes longer.

  4. Right before chicken is done baking (about 5 minutes prior). Preheat a large skillet with 1 tbsp oil. When hot, lower the heat to medium, add garlic, ginger, and red pepper flakes. Season with a pinch of salt and saute until fragrant (about 10-15 seconds).
  5. Stir the orange sauce one more time then add it to the skillet. The sauce should become thicker pretty quickly, stir-often.  Add baked chicken.  Toss and coat the sauce over for about 30 seconds. Off heat, garnish with extra orange slices, scallions, and blanched bok choy.

Recipe Video

Recipe Notes

Make-ahead tips: Dice and season the chicken and prepare the orange sauce in advance. Store the sauce in the fridge and store the chicken flat in a ziplock bag in the freezer if you will not cook the chicken the following day. If you have time, I recommend chopping the aromatics and blanching the baby bok choy on the serving day. If you can’t, I recommend preparing them 1 day in advance and use them the next day for best flavor and freshness.

 

*Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated without the baby bok choy.

Nutrition Facts
Paleo Orange Chicken (Whole30, Oven Baked, Healthy)
Amount Per Serving (1 serving)
Calories 305 Calories from Fat 99
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 11g 17%
Saturated Fat 1g 5%
Cholesterol 108mg 36%
Sodium 798mg 33%
Potassium 707mg 20%
Total Carbohydrates 11g 4%
Sugars 3g
Protein 36g 72%
Vitamin A 4.2%
Vitamin C 35.3%
Calcium 1.8%
Iron 3.6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Healthy Paleo Orange Chicken recipe with crispy baked chicken coated in a Chinese orange sauce with a perfect sweet-and-tart balance.

Make these for dinner !