General Tso’s Chicken

This is hands down Hubs’ favorite Chinese take-out dish. Whenever we order from the place down the street, this is what he gets. Having had so much success with the orange chicken recipe, I thought it would be easy to find a recipe for General Tso’s.

Luckily, Joelen had a fantastic looking recipe on her blog. It was another Cook’s Illustrated recipe, so I basically made the orange chicken recipe, but with a different sauce. The chicken cooked a lot faster than I thought it would, and had a wonderful crispy texture. One thing about deep frying – if you cook food in oil at the right temperature for the right amount of time, it absorbs very little of the cooking oil. This is why I love deep frying at home. I can control both these factors to get perfectly crunchy food without too much fat.

adapted from What’s Cooking Chicago
originally from Cook’s Illustrated

General Tso’s Chicken

General Tso’s Chicken


½ c hoisin sauce
¼ c white vinegar
3 Tbs soy sauce
3 Tbs cornstarch
1 ½ c water
1 Tbs vegetable oil
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 Tbs fresh ginger, minced
½ tsp crushed red pepper flakes
1 ½ lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts
3 large egg whites
1 ½ c cornstarch
½ c all purpose flour
½ tsp baking soda
Vegetable oil for frying
2 green onions, green parts thinly sliced
Sesame seeds


  1. To make the sauce, whisk together the hoisin sauce, white vinegar, soy sauce, cornstarch, and water in a bowl. Set aside. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Saute the garlic, ginger, and red pepper flakes until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the hoisin mixture. Stir until the sauce is dark brown and has thickened. Remove from heat and cover.
  2. Cut chicken into 1-inch chunks. Whisk the egg whites in a shallow dish until foamy. Combine cornstarch, flour, and baking soda in a separate shallow dish. Toss half the chicken into the foamy egg whites until well coated, and then dredge the chicken in the cornstarch mixture, making all sides are coated. Transfer chicken to a plate and repeat with remaining chicken.
  3. Heat oil in a fryer (or Dutch oven, or a large wok) until it registers 325ºF. Fry the chicken in batches until golden brown, about 3 minutes, turning pieces over halfway through cooking. Transfer cooked chicken to a paper towel-lined baking sheet to drain.
  4. Re-warm the sauce over medium heat until bubbling. Add the chicken pieces and toss to coat. Garnish with sliced green onions and sesame seeds.


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Sweet Comments:

  1. This is my favorite chinese recipe. I used to eat it a lot. Thanks for sharinh the recipe!

  2. This looks great, I am gonna try it!

  3. I made this tonight – Great Recipe!! I posted about it (& credited you for the recipe). It was so easy and amazingly delicious. I’ll be making this again. Thanks for sharing the recipe and your wonderful photos!!

  4. I’ve made the orange chicken before, but this looks even better!

  5. This looks delicious and easy! Thanks for sharing!

  6. So glad you liked it! It’s definitely a fave of ours 🙂

  7. I just came across your blog and I love it!! I’ve been searching for a General Tso’s Chicken recipe. This one looks fabulous. BTW, I love your food styling.

  8. Tried this tonight. It was very good. I added about a 1/4 of orange juice to the sauce and it was yummy.

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