Lightened Up General Tso’s Chicken

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    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 (adjustable, but please note that results, timing, and cookware may vary when adjusting servings): 4
    Calories: 492kcal
    Author: Julie Chiou
    5 Hassle-Free Ways to Simplify MealtimeSign up here for all the secrets!


    • Vegetable oil spray
    • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
    • 3 large egg whites
    • 5 cups Kellogg's Corn Flakes cereal, finely crushed
    • 1 1/2 pounds boneless skinless, chicken breasts, trimmed of all visible fat, cut into 1-inch pieces
    • 1 2/3 cups water
    • 1/3 cup low sodium soy sauce
    • 1/4 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
    • 1/4 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
    Nutrition Facts
    Lightened Up General Tso's Chicken
    Amount Per Serving (1 serving)
    Calories 492 Calories from Fat 63
    % Daily Value*
    Fat 7g11%
    Carbohydrates 63g21%
    Fiber 2g8%
    Sugar 19g21%
    Protein 41g82%
    * Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
    *Nutrition facts are an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate.
    Julie Wampler of Table for Two
    Meet The Author: Julie Chiou
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  • Marta @ What should I eat for breakfast today says:

    You have a beautiful passion and keep bloging, we all appreciate it. Yu’re right, family and friends are the most improtant ones. But blogging is such a great adventure.

  • Rebecca says:

    That was probably the most personal, emotional and honest story I have ever read on a blog. It takes a lot of courage to post that I think, but it is nothing but the truth and I can so totally understand you… I am just in the beginning of blogging but also feel like if I want to become a blog people love and go to I have to really push myself, otherwise I would drown immediately in the float of great blogs out there… but who am I kidding. I do this cause I love baking right? You set the perspectives right and I think that’s brave and you have my respect. Loved ones should always be first, thanks for reminding all of us!
    Take care,

  • Tracey says:

    This was one of the first recipes I flagged in Comfort Food Makeovers, yet I still haven’t tried it. Yours looks so good, I need to get on it!

    I completely understand how you feel – sometimes I get so wrapped up in the stress of blogging I forget it’s supposed to be fun! Hope you find the balance you seek :)

  • sara peulen says:

    Good for you! Make sure that you are doing this because you love it, not because you feel that you have to. That’s what it’s all about, right? Enjoy life, and enjoy cooking!

  • Tieghan says:

    So well said! I struggle with this way too much! You words really connected with me! Thank you!

    Oh and I love this chicken!! It is so genius! I love making take out at home. It is so much better!

  • Liz @ The Lemon Bowl says:

    This looks insanely delicious!!

  • Rachel @ Baked by Rachel says:

    You know you have an amazing support system and wonderful fans that will always be here for you no matter what. As for the food – uhm freaking yes please ;) You know I love chicken.

  • Bree {Skinny Mommy} says:

    I have been contemplating the same things with my own site so I can relate. Hang in there!

  • amanda @ fake ginger says:

    I totally missed whatever happened with Pinterest but I’m sorry you’re having to deal with it. I always love your take-out, fake-outs and this one is no exception!

  • Marian (Sweetopia) says:

    Julie, I hear you. I wish I could blog more on Sweetopia, but for the same reasons came to the realization that my balance means blogging once per week, and sometimes that doesn’t happen either. I do still often wish I could do more but with a full time job, family, friends, laundry, etc. etc., and exactly what you said, the most important – family, friends (and my bunny), come first, and although I do LOVE interacting with readers and enjoy online friends, I come home to my family and they’re the ones who give me hugs and snuggles. Hugs to you, I hope you feel better! xo

  • Erin | The Law Student's Wife says:

    Well, I missed the Pinterest drama (don’t think I’m sorry about this), but it sounds like you have a killer attitude about it, so good for you girl! In the meantime, comfort food makeovers are one of my forever favorites. Next time Ben tries to drag me to Panada express, I’m whipping this out!

  • Julie @ Julie's Eats & Treats says:

    Looks amazing Julie and love the fact that it’s lightened up! Sorry to hear about your fiasco on Pinterest last night and all the drama that happened with it. No one loves that, but seems like we all go through it :(

  • Heather says:

    Illegitimi non carborundum (translation: don’t let the bastards grind you down)
    Oh, and making this…this weekend!

  • Leah | So, How's It Taste? says:

    Wow, super impressed by the calorie slashing! Going to have to bookmark this one since I’m trying to be good again. Love it when you can still enjoy a meal and “be good!”

  • Aviva says:

    Thank You for everything you do and all your personal time spent on us :). I am curious since you have some of the nutritional info if by chance you would have a teeny bit more info like carb info more impt to me Thanx if you do would appreciate!! SMILE :) SMILE :) SMILE :) It’s a beautiful new day!

  • Kevin @ Closet Cooking says:

    That chicken looks so good and I like that is is baked and crispy! Pinned it successfully! :)

  • Jenny Flake says:

    Perfect-o!! Yum!!

  • Sommer @ ASpicyPerspective says:

    Delicious-looking meal!

  • Amy @ The Nifty Foodie says:

    Oh my…we’re big fans of General Tso’s in our house..I need to make this!

  • Megan {Country Cleaver} says:

    Some people seriously need to get their heads checked – tornadoes versus not being able to pin a recipe? Seriously people. That being said – I’m going to pin this recipe and Holy yum chicken from here ’til TUESDAY!! And I’m now hungry.

  • Meagan @ A Zesty Bite says:

    I hate that this happened to you Julie. I agree people can be so mean and they don’t know what we are dealing with in our personal lives. Yes, we sometimes share things on our blog but a lot is kept out of it.

  • Heather says:

    I love love love your blog. In fact, yours is the first I have ever “subscribed” to, and I get so excited when I see “Table for two” in my inbox. I think cooking sometimes saves my life because I am a pediatric oncology RN, and there are days (nights actually) that are a little more unfortunate than others. It is a privilege to care for the little ones, but there are aspects of it that never get any easier. I appreciate your work, passion, and creativity so much, and I am making this for the husband and me tomorrow. Thank you thank you thank you! Keep rockin’ the grub lady! :-)

  • Lauren @ Climbing Grier Mountain says:

    I am so sorry people are complete buttheads! You don’t deserve this at all. Shame on people. I guess they need a little reminder, if you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all!

    And I am so making this for dinner this weekend!!!

  • Monique says:

    Cheers to the positive perspective!
    I love this recipe. I am trying to make a lightened up menu more exciting for BF to enjoy eating healthy. with the abundance of take out available to us, its all to easy to just pick up and phone and order in because we are bored of kale and chicken (not really). But this fake out is impressive! I love it! I cant wait to try it out!

  • Marie @ Little Kitchie says:

    Now this I HAVE to make. Looks so good!!

  • Jessica says:

    The first thing I did yesterday when I got the email was come visit your blog for the facts…thanks for providing great recipes and just keep doing what your doing as long as it makes you happy! Can’t wait to try this one!

  • David Crichton says:

    How could anyone not want to eat that Julie. Absolutely gorgeous. Plus i’ll have an excuse to eat corn flakes for breakfast!

  • [email protected] Cooking with Curls says:

    Looks delicious!!! I never did figure out what was happening yesterday, but you are correct…..there are more important things in the world for people to worry about. We’re all here for you:)

  • marla says:

    Such a smart way to re-create this recipe!

  • K says:

    On behalf of all the facebook mess, I would like to apologize for all the rude, insensitive, immature people that posted on your site. Your site has always been delightful and you come up with great recipes. Very fun to read. ***PEOPLE!, if you don’t like what you are reading Go to another site. Just learn to be nice! (would your mama be ashamed of your actions? Grow up!!!)*** Thanks Julie :)

  • Carla @ Carlas Confections says:

    Gah it makes me so mad how much people target you! But you also have a huge support system, and it includes me (which is basically the best ever ;) ). People need to get a life, and get off the computer and go make this because it looks amazing! Matt asked me this morning when I am going to make it for him! I guess that means I need to!

  • Laura (Tutti Dolci) says:

    Love your take-out, fake-outs – so inspiring!

  • claire @ the realistic nutritionist says:

    I don’t understand why people were upset? It’s a fucking pin on pinterest. Shut your computer down and go outside, you psychopaths.

    :) That’s how I feel about people being mean to you.

  • Maria says:

    So much better than take-out!

  • Tanya says:

    I am so glad you posted this. Although, I could have sworn you posted it a few weeks ago. I even told my coworker about it and then I couldn’t find the recipe. :) Hopefully, I’m not crazy and you put a picture up on Instagram or something. Can’t wait to try this out since I absolutely adore General Tso’s Chicken.

  • Erin @ The Spiffy Cookie says:

    I’ve had a slow cooker general tsos on my list of things to make for awhile. But now I cannot decide between the two!

  • Marisa says:

    Please don’t spend one more ounce of energy on those negative people. They need to get a life.

    Keep doing what you’re doing girl! Thanks for sharing this recipe. Looks delish!

  • Meredith says:

    Can’t wait to make this ASAP!!!

  • LC says:

    When printing your recipes – place make sure a picture is also allowed so that we can refer to what it should look like when made… thanks.

    • Julie says:

      Hi LC, thanks for the feedback. I don’t include a picture in the printer friendly version because printer friendly is supposed to help out the printer by not using too much ink. I will definitely take your note into consideration though and incorporate that in a future design :)

  • Bobbie Robertson says:

    All your food looks so good, just not sure its weight watchers likeable. Need protein, carbs, fat and fiber to calculate.
    Thanks bobbie

    • Julie says:

      Hi Bobbie, sorry, I can’t help ya there with that as I’m not familiar with anything WW. I don’t have the time to calculate protein carbs, fat, and fiber, nor do I have the right tools or skills to, so therefore I’m unable to help :( the numbers I got were from the cookbook I used so they gave no further information.

  • Jess says:

    Bobbie Robertson- if you are using WW online, you can use the recipe builder and enter each ingredient. You’ll just have to know how many servings the recipe will yield. (or you can enter 1 serving and get the points for the whole dish)

  • ashley - baker by nature says:

    This looks SO yummy, Julie! I totally want a giant plate for my midnight snack ;)

  • Kelly Senyei | Just a Taste says:

    Oh heck yes! This looks AMAZING, Julie! Who needs takeout when you can whip this up? Yum!

  • Angie says:

    I haven’t made this in forever! I’ve got to try your version too, those cornflakes, great idea!

  • Heather Christo says:

    Julie you are lovely and generous and talented. you just keep doing what you do and we all have your back. I love this recipe and can’t wait to make it for my family!

  • Chris Satterlee says:

    Looks so good, going to have to try this.

  • Kim says:

    whew! I just got the email and was not sure what was going on. It may not be the publicity you wanted but it sure did remind me that I need to get on this and try it out!!!!! Keep in mind that there is always good to be found in everything, unfortunately, there are some people that would rather look for the worse.

  • dixya| food, pleasure, and health says:

    so sorry about the pinterest thing..we all love you dearly :) and I always happen to check blogs around lunch time and these super zoomed yummy food makes me super hungry and not like my lunch :(

  • Kiran @ says:

    I’m sorry about the Pinterest debacle and hope it resolves soon. I’d take this fakeout over a takeout any single day!!

  • Cassie | Bake Your Day says:

    General Tso’s is Paul’s favorite. I can’t wait to make this one!

  • 5 Hassle-Free Ways to Simplify Mealtime