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Lightened Up General Tso’s Chicken

Take-Out, Fake-Out: Lightened Up General Tso Chicken from

It’s so hard sometimes to pick and choose what to post on certain days. Thankfully I have you all on Facebook to help me out :) You guys were clearly craving the take-out, fake-out over the cookies I had wanted to post! Ask and you shall receive! This lightened up version comes from the book I talked about last week, Comfort Food Makeovers by America’s Test Kitchen. The numbers on this dish before ATK’s makeover was crazy! 910 calories, 45 grams of fat, and 5 grams of saturated fat. After? 490 calories, 8 grams of fat, and 1.5 grams of saturated fat. What a difference, huh?!

So, speaking of my Facebook page..let’s just say, when it rains, it POURS. Did any of you follow along with what happened last night? I’m sure 95% of you received that Pinterest email about my Holy Yum Chicken. What a bunch of drama. I seriously have the best fans and readers. You all came up to bat for me with the negative comments and messages. I can’t thank you enough for understanding and realizing this was all beyond my control.

It really irks me that people jump to conclusions and have their own assumptions about everything without getting the facts first. Ever heard that quote, “be kind; for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.” ? Well, so many people don’t really know what’s going on in my PERSONAL life and to add what happened yesterday on top of it, just really put me to the tipping point. Seriously, newsflash: this isn’t the end of the world. There are countless of tragedies going on in the world right now (re: OK tornadoes, wars, etc.) and for people to freak out at me over a recipe?! Really people, perspective…

Anyway, I hope you enjoy the recipe below. It’s become one of Jason & I’s favorite! :)

Lightened Up General Tso's Chicken

Enjoy this lightened up version of General Tso's Chicken! You'll love this way more than the takeout version!
Prep Time: 20 mins
Cook Time: 15 mins
Total Time: 35 mins
Servings: 4
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  • Vegetable oil spray
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 large egg whites
  • 5 cups Kellogg's Corn Flakes cereal, finely crushed
  • 1 ½ pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, trimmed of all visible fat, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 ⅔ cups water
  • cup low sodium soy sauce
  • ¼ cup apricot jam
  • 3 tbsp hoisin sauce
  • 2 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tsp canola oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp grated fresh ginger
  • ¼ tsp red pepper flakes


  • Adjust oven rack to upper-middle position and heat oven to 475 degrees. Line rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil, top with wire rack, and spray rack with oil spray.
  • Spread flour into shallow dish. Whisk egg whites until foamy in second shallow dish. Spread corn flakes crumbs into third shallow dish. Pat chicken dry with paper towels. Working in batches, dredge chicken in flour, dip in egg whites, then coat with corn flakes, pressing gently to adhere. Lay on prepared wire rack.
  • Spray chicken with oil spray. Bake until chicken registers 160 degrees and coating is brown and crisp, about 12-15 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, whisk water, soy sauce, apricot jam, hoisin, cornstarch, and vinegar together in a bowl. Heat oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Add garlic, ginger, and pepper flakes and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Whisk in soy sauce mixture, bring to simmer, and cook until thickened, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat, cover, and keep warm.
  • When chicken is cooked, return sauce to simmer over medium-low heat. Add cooked chicken and toss to coat. Serve with steamed white or brown rice.


Source: Comfort Food Makeovers, America's Test Kitchen


Serving: 1 serving | Calories: 492 kcal | Carbohydrates: 63 g | Protein: 41 g | Fat: 7 g | Fiber: 2 g | Sugar: 19 g

This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition information can vary for a variety of reasons. For the most precise nutritional data use your preferred nutrition calculator based on the actual ingredients you used in the recipe.

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Chinese
Keyword: chicken recipe, take out, fake out
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