Bourbon Chicken

This Bourbon Chicken recipe is healthier than the kind you find at mall food courts but just as flavorful. Bite sized pieces of chicken breast simmered in a flavorful sauce, served over rice. Ditch the take-out and make this instead!

bourbon chicken Chinese

I won these adorable bowls, place mats, and chop sticks from a giveaway on Jenny’s blog Picky Palate! This is my first time winning a giveaway, so I was so excited. These are so adorable that I just had to make a dinner to go with them.

I’ve made this recipe for Bourbon Chicken a few times, and we really like it! It has a wonderful flavor, and it’s not fried like a lot of similar recipes. There’s no bourbon in this recipe. It’s actually named after Bourbon Street in New Orleans. Bourbon Chicken is a popular dish at food court Chinese restaurants. This version is a healthier take on the food court classic.

I served this over brown rice, but it would be fantastic with jasmine rice or any other kind you prefer. The original recipe serves 4. I cut down the amount to serve 2 but keep the amount of sauce the same – we really like sauce! If you don’t require much sauce, you may want to scale back (or scale up the chicken). I add a slurry of cornstarch and water to thicken the sauce up a bit, since we prefer it that way.

Gluten Free Bourbon Chicken

Use gluten free soy sauce to make this a completely gluten free dish.

Looking for Additional Healthier Take Out Recipes?

Check out these recipes:
Red Curry Rice Noodles with Chicken
Simplified Pad Thai
Garlic Chicken with Rice or Rice Noodles
Honey Chicken Kabobs
Coconut Curry Chicken
P.F. Chang’s Copycat Chicken Lettuce Wraps
Chicken Fried Rice (Soy Free)
Skinny Orange Chicken
Chili Coconut Chicken Soup

bourbon chicken Chinese

Bourbon Chicken

This Bourbon Chicken recipe is a healthier version of the mall food court dish. Served over rice, it is the perfect stay-in dinner.
5 from 10 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Chinese
Servings 2


  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts (cut into bite-sized pieces)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

For the sauce

  • 1 garlic clove (crushed)
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried ground ginger
  • 1/4-3/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (to taste)
  • 1/4 cup apple juice
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1/3 cup reduced sodium soy sauce (if using regular soy sauce, use less or add more brown sugar or some honey to balance out the salt)

For the slurry (optional)

  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon water


  • Heat oil in a large skillet. Add chicken and cook until lightly browned, then remove the chicken from the skillet and set aside.
  • Add sauce ingredients to a small bowl or glass measuring cup and whisk together. Add sauce to the skillet, heating over medium heat until well mixed and sugar is dissolved.
  • Add the chicken back to skillet and bring to a hard boil.
  • Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through.
  • If you prefer a thicker sauce, add a slurry of cornstarch and water (premixed in a separate bowl) to reach desired consistency.
  • Serve over hot rice, if desired.


Source: Adapted from
You’re Gonna Bake It After All
Keyword chicken, Chinese, gluten free, main dish

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