Crispy Chinese Lemon Chicken is a classic Chinese takeout recipe that many people love. Chicken breast meat is deep fried and then coated with a tangy sweet and sour lemony glaze. It is one of my all time favorite Chinese style chicken dishes. If you like sweet & sour tasting dishes, this will surely satisfy your craving.
Deep frying the chicken twice will ensure the crispy texture of chicken and remain its crispiness for a long time even after they are coated with the lemon glaze.
Mimicking a Chinese takeout style dish at home is not that difficult, especially with this crispy lemon chicken. If you are craving for something sweet and tangy, try this out. You can find the tutorial video in my YouTube channel.
How to make the crispy lemon chicken
Chicken: I use chicken breast. Chicken thigh works fine too. Chicken is cut into bite size pieces, seasoned with soy sauce and sesame oil, then coated with cornstarch.
Lemon sauce: Chicken stock, lemon zest & lemon juice is seasoned with soy sauce, sweetened with mix of honey and sugar. A hint of ginger will elevate the overall taste.
Deep fry: I like to use peanut oil but any kind of high smoking point oil, such as grape seed oil, sunflower oil, or corn oil, will work as well. I highly recommend to deep fry twice to ensure the crispiness of the chicken. The texture will last longer
What to serve with lemon chicken
Crispy Chinese lemon chicken go well with either white rice or fried rice. Even cauliflower fried rice will be a good choice, too. A simple green vegetable side dish would accompany the lemon chicken very well.
More Chicken Recipes
Crispy Chinese Lemon Chicken
For the chicken
- 1 lb chicken breast diced
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tbsp rice wine
- 1 tsp sesame oil
- 1 egg beaten lightly
- 1/2 cup cornstarch
- oil for deep-frying
- 1 green onion sliced to garnish
- 2 tsp sesame seeds to garnish
For the Lemon glaze
- 1 tbsp oil
- 1/4 cup chicken stock
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- 2 tsp lemon zest
- 4 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 2 tbsp honey
- 1 tsp ginger puree
- pinch salt
- 1-1/2 tsp cornstarch
- Put chicken pieces in a bowl and add the soy sauce, sesame oil, rice wine, and egg; mix well.
- Put cornstarch in a plastic bag, add 1/2 of the chicken and shake to coat. Add another 1/3 of the chicken and shake. Repeat again to coat the chicken with cornstarch evenly.
- Heat oil in a wok or deep skillet. Drop the chicken pieces one at a time to hot oil. Do not crown the chicken (It is better to deep fry small batches at a time). Deep-fry until lightly golden, about 2 minutes. Shake off the access oil and transfer to a plate. Repeat the deep-frying to finish all the batches.
- Once all the batches are deep-fried, do the second frying until chicken is golden. Shake off excess oil and set aside.
- To make the lemon glaze; combine chicken stock, soy sauce, lemon zest, lemon juice, sugar, honey, salt, ginger, and cornstarch in a small bowl; mix well
- Heat 1 tbsp of oil in a skillet over high heat until very hot. Pour the lemon sauce and bring to boil. It will thicken very soon and turn into glaze. Add the chicken pieces and toss well to coat with the lemon glaze. Transfer to a serving plate and garnish with green onion and sesame seeds. Serve immediately