I can’t think of a better way to ring in 2019 than with a healthy sesame chicken recipe.
Partially because it’s just SO GOOD and also because it is my MOST favorite takeout of all time. More delicious than mango chicken with coconut cauliflower rice, paleo orange chicken and paleo cashew chicken. MAYBE even than paleo low-carb keto beef and broccoli or paleo gluten free healthy sweet and sour chicken too!
Fun fact about me: I was the girl who walked in front of Panda Express eleventy billion times, each time changing up my appearance a bit (sunglasses! Hair in a pony tail! Hair down!) in hopes that they would extend a toothpick of LOVE, in the form of a sesame chicken sample, to me each and every time I walked by.
Not TRYING to toot my own horn buuuuut I was a RLY RLY good stealthy sesame chicken sampler.
But, at some point in life, you realize that you can’t Ninja around the food court every time the sesame-tastic craving hits and it comes time to WOMAN UP and create your own sesame seed chicken recipe.
Internet friends. That time is NOW. And this easy sesame chicken?
You are going to RLY RLY like it.
The golden-brown chicken is ultra crispety and crunchety on the outside, and then EXPLODES in juicy chicken goodness all over your taste buds. Then there’s that sleek, sticky and perfectly salty-sweet sauce, with its POW of sesame oil and underlying notes of ginger and rice vinegar that meet in your mouth and OMG it is just SO GOOD.
Is sesame chicken healthy?
By the standard definition of “healthy,” sesame chicken would not be considered healthy as it’s deep-fried and tossed in a sugar-y, msg-y sauce. <– Remember, sometimes “unhealthy” food can be healthy for your soul though! So, eating it if you’re craving it is a-ok!
BUT, if you want to eat it every day like yours truly, then this gluten-, grain-, dairy- and SUGAR-FREE version is for YOU.
Don’t be alarmed by the apple juice situation we have going on here. This paleo easy gluten-free healthy sesame chicken does not taste a THING like apples.
How to make sesame chicken?
Despite what you may think, sesame chicken is SUPER easy to make! Let’s break it down:
1. You need to make the sauce by whisking apple juice (for the sweetness) along with rice vinegar, coconut aminos, ginger and sesame oil (key ingredient!) together and bringing to a boil.
2. Once boiling, whisk in the tapioca starch (to make it nice and thick!) and boil a few minutes until it gets that thick, glossy luster that all good Chinese food dishes have.
3. Toss your chicken with tapioca starch and fry in hot avocado oil until golden brown, about 2-3 minutes a side!
4. Toss your crispety chicken with your shiny sauce and serve that baby over cauliflower rice.
VOILA! No messing with a deep fryer and almost burning your eyebrows off.
That’s not a good look for anyone. I would know since I lost mine in an unfortunate makeup school accident.
Not a lie. But, that’s a story for a different time.
The moral of THIS story is that Y-O-U can eat sesame chicken from the comfort of your own home.
No quick-change-disguise-mastery required.
This family friendly Paleo Easy Gluten Free Healthy Sesame Chicken is a quick dinner that tastes like takeout but is better for you and whole30 compliant!
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 2 People
Calories: 401 kcal
For the sauce:
-- 3/4 Cup Apple juice
-- 2 1/2 tsp Sesame oil
-- 1/2 Tbsp White vinegar
-- 1/2 Tbsp Coconut aminos (or soy sauce)
-- 1/2 tsp Fresh ginger, minced
-- 1/2 tsp Fresh garlic, minced
-- 1/8 tsp Chile powder
-- 1 tsp Tapioca starch
For the chicken:
-- 3 Tbsp Tapioca starch
-- Sea salt
-- 8 Oz Pasture-raised chicken breast, cut into 1 inch cubes
-- 2 Tbsp Avocado oil
-- 1 tsp Sesame seeds
-- Hot cooked cauliflower rice, for serving
-- Sliced green onion, for garnish
1. Whisk all the sauce ingredients (except the tapioca starch) together in a large frying pan over medium/high heat and bring to a boil.
2. Once boiling, whisk the tapioca starch and 2 tsp of the hot sauce together in a separate small bowl until smooth. While constantly whisking, pour back into the frying pan until smooth. Boil, stirring constantly, until the sauce thickens and is glossy, about 2-3 minutes. Turn down the heat to medium low and cook and additional 30 seconds-1 minute. Transfer to a large bowl, season with a pinch of salt, and cover to keep warm.
3. Place the tapioca starch and a pinch of salt in a large ziploc bag. Add in the chicken and toss until coated.
4. Heat 1 Tbsp of the oil up in a large frying pan over medium high heat. add in half the chicken and cook until golden brown, about 2-3 minutes. Flip and repeat on the other side. Once cooked, transfer to a paper towel lined plate and blot off any excess oil. Repeat with remaining oil and chicken.
5. Transfer chicken to the bowl with the sauce, along with the sesame seeds. Stir until well coated.
6. Serve over cauliflower rice with green onion and DEVOUR!