General Tso's Chicken - Crispy Fried Chicken tossed in a sweet and spicy General Tso sauce. This Favorite Asian recipe is super easy to make and tastes beyond delicious. It tastes almost like Sesame Chicken but the sauce is a little spicier and has a distinct flavor. Generally, it is served with White Rice and Steamed Broccoli.😍😍😍
I have had General Tso's on various occasions. But, I could never imagine that the recipe for General Tso's Chicken would be so easy.
Going by the name, I had thought that it would be some complicated recipe where I would need many fancy ingredients. Well, I was so wrong...!
It's one of my most loved Asian recipes. Also try these favorite Asian recipes
- Chicken Adobo Recipe (Authentic Filipino)
- Kung Pao Chicken
- Szechuan Chicken
- Easy Thai Green Curry Chicken Recipe
- Hunan Chicken
- Honey Bourbon Chicken in Crockpot
- Sweet and Sour Chicken Meatballs
- Crockpot Chicken Thigh Recipe with Asian Glaze
- Chinese Lemon Chicken
- Sticky Thai Meatballs with Peanut Sauce
- Thai Cashew Chicken
🥘 General Tso Chicken Recipe
Turns out, this recipe is simply nothing.
It's just frying Chicken in hot oil and tossing it in a sweet and slightly spicy General Tso's Sauce.
And, it tastes so good. 😍😍😍😋
When I served it to my husband he was like - "This is just like a restaurant, How did you do this? Please save some I want to have some tomorrow as well".
That was such a proud moment for me. After all, praises make us happy. Doesn't it?😍😍
🤔 What is General Tso?
So, I know you are curious about the term - "General Tso".
What is it? Is it a name of a person? Is it sauce? What is General Tso?
Well, you are close. General Tso's Chicken comes from Tso Tsung-t'ang who was a well-respected Chinese military leader and statesman.
But, he had nothing to do with chicken. It was a popular chef named Peng chang-keui who created this "general" chicken dish.
When he migrated to the US he had to make it a little sweeter to cater to the US palate.
Now coming back to the original question - Why the name General Tso?
So this Chef belonged to the same town as Tso Tsung-t'ang. And, that's the reason he decided to name this chicken dish - General Tso's Chicken.😍😍
🤔 What is exactly General Tso Chicken?
So, basically, General Tso's Chicken is nothing but just cornstarch coated fried chicken tossed in a sweet, sour, slightly spicy, and almost ginger-y General Tso's Sauce. That's it.
That is the closest definition of General Tso's Chicken that you can get anywhere. It is widely popular all over the world.😍
General Tso's Chicken is typically sweet when compared to Sesame Chicken or Asian Chili Chicken.
And, that's exactly what makes it so special.
🤔 What is General Tso Sauce?
Now that is an excellent question. General Tso's Chicken is nothing without the sweet, spicy, and soury General Tso Sauce.
So what is so special about this sauce?
Well, it tastes absolutely divine.
Basically, you need 6 items to make General Tso's Sauce.
Let's do the name-calling of ingredients. Shall we?
- Soy Sauce: Soy Sauce is important for that burst of umami flavors. It brings in a distinct saltiness to the recipe.
- Rice Wine Vinegar - Rice wine vinegar is used to bring that mild sweetness. Moreover, Chinese recipes use rice wine vinegar to accentuate the flavors of the recipe.
- Hoisin Sauce- Hoisin Sauce has a slightly salty and sweet taste. When you add Hoisin sauce, it basically adds a punch to the recipe. Especially in chicken recipes and pork recipes, Hoisin sauce brings a beautiful punch of sweet and salty.
- Cornstarch - Cornstarch is used to thicken the sauce.
- Water - Water is used to prevent the sauce from burning and also to minimize the strong flavors.
- Brown Sugar - You can use white sugar as well. But, I like Brown Sugar for that caramel texture and taste.
- Ginger - Chopped Ginger is an integral part of General Tso's Chicken. In fact, ginger is really important especially when you are making General Tso. It is this distinct taste of Ginger that separates the dish from its counterparts.
- Garlic - Minced Garlic is another important part of this recipe. Garlic adds that punch to the recipe making it taste so good.
🤔 What is the Difference Between General Tso's Chicken and other Chinese Dishes?
So, basically, General Tso has a sweet and slightly spicy sauce.
The taste of ginger is predominant in General Tso's Chicken.
Other Chinese Dishes such as Sesame Chicken or Asian Chicken have slightly spicy gravy as compared to General Tso's Chicken.
Moreover, dishes like Sesame Chicken uses Sesame Oil. And, Sesame Oil or Toasted Sesame Oil has a distinct taste.
Sesame Oil adds a nutty and slightly salty taste to Sesame Chicken.
🤔 How to Make General Tso's Chicken at home?
General Tso's Chicken is just a two-step recipe. And, believe it won't take you longer than 30-minutes even if you try hard.
- The first step of General Tso's Chicken is frying chicken. So, cut chicken thighs into small bite-sized chunks and coat them in cornstarch.
- Heat 3-inches of oil in a pan and deep-fry chicken until golden brown and crispy.
How to make Homemade General Tso's Chicken Sauce
- So, to make the sauce, just combine the ingredients for the sauce in a bowl. As I said, you'll need six basic ingredients to make the sauce.
- Soy Sauce, Rice Wine Vinegar, Hoisin Sauce, Brown Sugar, Cornstarch, Water. Stir them until smooth in a bowl and your sauce is ready.
Saute Ginger & Garlic
- Now in the same pan where you fried chicken, saute ginger and garlic. Add chicken pieces and pour the sauce into the skillet.
- Let it come to a quick boil. Stir for about 30-seconds.
- Garnish and serve with sesame seeds on top.
Other Recipes You can try:
Mongolian Chicken Recipe (EASY) - Sweet, Spicy and so tasty.
Grilled Teriyaki Chicken Recipe (Mandarin Teriyaki Chicken) - Just the best chicken recipe ever. Grilled Chicken with Teriyaki Sauce tastes so good.
Asian Cashew Chicken [Better Than Takeout] - This nutty, creamy, and delicious chicken dinner recipe is so good.
Coca Cola Chicken Recipe - The zing of coca-cola paired with chicken is absolutely amazing.
Ginger Sesame Chicken Meatballs - Easy and flavorful Meatballs tossed in a delicious sauce.
Bang Bang Chicken - The sauce is just too flavorful here made with Mayonnaise and sauces
Gochujang Chicken Meatballs - Meatballs tossed in a sweet and spicy Korean sauce made with Gochujang Paste.
Sweet and Sour Chicken - One of my favorites. The Pineapple makes all the difference here.
Firecracker Chicken - This is one of my most loved Asian Chicken recipes. Readers love the taste of this delicious and yummy sauce.
If you are making this recipe, then please leave a rating below. Also, take a snap and share it on Instagram with #recipemagik. Tag us @recipemagik so that I can see how it turned out.
General Tso's Chicken Recipe
- 1 Pound Chicken Thigh cut into 1-inch bite size pieces
- 4 Tablespoon Cornstarch
- Oil for deep frying Chicken
For General Tso's Sauce
- ½ Inch Ginger finely chopped
- 4-5 cloves Garlic minced
- 3 Tablespoon Rice Vinegar
- 3 Tablespoon Soy Sauce
- 3 Teaspoon Hoisin Sauce
- 4-5 Tablespoon Water
- 2 Tablespoon Brown Sugar can replace with white sugar
- 1 Tablespoon Cornstarch
- White Sesame Seeds for Garnish
- FRY CHICKEN: Coat chicken in cornstarch and fry it in a skillet with hot oil until golden brown and crispy on both sides. Once done, take them out on a plate and keep them aside.
Make General Tso's Sauce
- MAKE GENERAL TSO'S SAUCE: In a pyrex jar or a mixing bowl combine Soy Sauce, Rice Vinegar, Hoisin Sauce, Cornstarch, Water, and Brown Sugar.
- SAUTE GINGER GARLIC: In the same pan, saute Ginger and Garlic for 30-seconds until the garlic turns aromatic.Add Fried Chicken and pour the General Tso's Sauce. Stir lightly for about 30-seconds. Garnish and Serve with White Sesame Seeds and chopped Cilantro.