Sesame Chicken

Total Time:
1 hr
25 min
35 min

4 to 6 servings

  • 3 boneless chicken breasts (about 1 1/2 pounds total)
  • For the marinade/batter:
  • 6 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 4 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 4 tablespoons water
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • For the sauce:
  • 3 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon ginger, minced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon chili paste (recommended: Sambal Oelek)
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • Peanut oil, for deep-frying
  • Salt
  • 3 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds, for garnish
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons finely chopped scallions, for garnish
  • 5 to 6 cilantro sprigs, for garnish
Watch how to make this recipe.

Wash the chicken under cold running water, pat dry and trim off any excess fat. Cut the chicken into 1-inch cubes and put into a large mixing bowl. Add the marinade ingredients to the bowl and stir to combine. Set aside to marinate while you prepare the sauce.

To make the sauce: In a saucepan, add the sesame oil and set over low heat. Add the ginger and garlic and fry gently until fragrant, about 2 to 3 minutes. Meanwhile, combine the remaining sauce ingredients in a mixing bowl and stir well to dissolve the cornstarch. Gently pour into the saucepan with the fried ginger and garlic. Stir as you pour because the cornstarch will thicken up pretty quickly. Keep warm over low heat.

In a heavy-bottomed pot or deep-fryer heat enough oil to come halfway up the sides of the pot, to 375 degrees F.

Fry the chicken, in small batches, until golden and crispy, about 5 to 6 minutes. Remove the chicken using a wire mesh strainer and drain on paper towels. Season with a little salt, to taste. To serve, arrange the fried chicken on a platter and pour drizzle with the sauce. Sprinkle with a generous amount of toasted sesame seeds and garnish with scallions and cilantro sprigs.

View All

Cooking Tips
More Recipes and Ideas
4.3 75
<span>Bravo Mr. Florence! This recipe was awesome! I've finally mastered great tasting Chinese food at home and we will never get take out again! I followed the recipe exactly except I omitted the salt because I'm on a low sodium diet and it turned out great!</span><br /><br /><span>I've also found that with a little modification, you can use the sauce recipe as a base for other chinese dishes like Orange Chicken, General Tso's Chicken, Mongolian Beef and Thai Peanut Chicken just to name a few. :)</span><br /><br /> item not reviewed by moderator and published
Excellent. Followed recipe as written. Chicken crispy and golden. Sauce wonderful. Placed chicken over steamed broccoli, then poured sauce over. AWESOME!! item not reviewed by moderator and published
This was very good and easy to make. Much better than the corner store takeout! I've made this now a few times for the family and its a thumbs up all around. If your going to rate the man's recipe at least follow the directions correctly! The sauce calls for 1/4 cup cornstarch not 1/3. I do agree with a few other raters when they say the marinade is a little salty and turns out a little runny. Just leave the kosher salt out of the marinade and make sure you use "heaping" tablespoons of flower. Or, just add an extra tablespoon of flower if your like me and measure everything to the letter. :) And, if you like things to have a little kick add a little more Sambal Oelek Chili Paste to the sauce. Umm, Good! Semper Fi item not reviewed by moderator and published
Why on Earth would you tell me to put 1/3 cup of cornstarch??? It turned my sauce into JELLO from the thickness! It wasted my chicken broth, and I had to toss it out, making it a total waste of time and a trip to the super market. Too salty even when i ran out of soy sauce midway through the recipe, and it was still too salty. Also, why does he call for cornstarch in the marinade? it made the chicken also have little jello-like consistancy in it. I personally didnt like this recipe. Maybe with some modifications, it would turn out good. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Love the recipe as is (though I do make it with broccoli instead of green beans), and I've made it a number of times. Last night I wanted to make some stir-fry vegetables to put over leftover rice, so I used this sauce recipe rather than my usual, and WOW! Tyler's sauce is a fabulous way to dress up a few stir-fried veggies! item not reviewed by moderator and published
You know dinner was good when your whole family, who never agrees on anything, asks for you to make it again tomorrow. For those of you who say it is so salty you couldn't eat it - use KOSHER salt as the recipe calls for not table salt. Huge difference in saltiness between the two, and a common newbie cook mistake thinking you can use table salt it the same quantity. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Is it just me? I don't think the sauce tastes very good at all... I have always loved the sesame chicken served in the food court at the mall. This doesn't taste like the sesame chicken that I love. It is not sweet enough and its taste doesn't have enough depth to it. Maybe add some honey or ketchup? I don't know what it is that it's missing, but I'm giving it a two star. It tastes more like home-cooked food than restaurant food. item not reviewed by moderator and published
WE LOVED IT!!I had no trouble with this browning to fast. I cooked it on my stove with no thermometer, just got the fat hot, and turned it to med. heat. It took 5 min. just like the recipe said. The sauce was delishish! I didn't have the vinegar listed in the recipe so I used cidar vinegar, and put a tablespoon of cocktail sherry in the sauce. Wouldn't change a thing! item not reviewed by moderator and published
My whole family enjoyed this very much. I'm glad I watched the video, because the marinade was much thinner than the video showed. I just added more flour until it seemed to match what I had seen. I do think the sauce could use some salt and a bit more chili sauce. I found it to be a little flat unless I was eating a piece of the chicken. The coating on the chicken had plenty of salt. I did add broccoli and the sauce needed something more with the broccoli. However, my family loved it and I will continue to make it. item not reviewed by moderator and published
My chicken was super crispy but be sure to cut the chicken into small chunks as they brown very quickly..i cooked in fryer until brown and then put into oven at 300* between batches..this helped finish cooking. the sauce is very sweet but is definitely missing something??? don't know what..but that being said, the family devoured the entire portion. paired it with rachel ray's no pain lo mein. a nice mix..added broccoli to the lo mein so we had the meat, veggie and carbs covered. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Very tasty. To get the chicken extra crispy, I use the same technique that I use for homemade french fries or crispy asian chicken wings ... I double fry, with only a few minutes between the first and second fry. In addition, I hold off on adding the sauce until just before I serve it. Cutting the chicken into slightly larger chunks also helps to retain moistness through the second fry. item not reviewed by moderator and published
my husband and i really liked this recipe...i found the chili sauce at kroger and the sherry vinegar at a gourmet grocery store not far from my house...i followed the recipe to a T, it tasted just as i thought it would but the chicken was not crispy, great flavor...but not crispy. item not reviewed by moderator and published
This was delicious. It was so good I am making it again for tonight. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Delicious! My husband and daughter loved it! item not reviewed by moderator and published
This was very, very good! The only thing we thought was missing was some spice. I will make this again (family loved it, but next time I will add some chili peppers. item not reviewed by moderator and published
I watched this dish on his show, and it is absolutely delicious! My husband loved and and keeps asking that I make this dish again. It is just like eating in the restaurant, maybe better. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Incredible! Tastes like eating out at a restaurant. The hard to find ingredients, I substituted other things. Still turned out fantastic! item not reviewed by moderator and published
Awesome! Better than takeout. I went with my instincts, though, and only used 1/3 cup sugar and did not salt the chicken after frying - it was plenty salty. like other reviewers, I also had a lot of left over sauce and will cut the recipe in half next time. Served with white rice and stir-fried peppers, onions, and eggplant. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Well, I love Sesame chicken but this one was way too sweet. I thought 1/2 cup of sugar sounded like too much so I reduced it to 1/3 cup. Still too sweet. Added hot chili sauce to cut the sweet. Also thought the salt was too much as well. I will try it again with my changes. item not reviewed by moderator and published
This recipe works beautifully with firm tofu, too. We didn't deep fry, we panned fried. I used rice flour instead of wheat flour. We served this recipe as a side with a bowl of miso broth with veggies and soba noodles (100% buckwheat. Excellent. I also had a ton of the sauce left over. Great idea about substituting orange peel - I forgot to do the sesame thing at the end... item not reviewed by moderator and published
This was amazingly like my Mother-In-Law's fried chicken (she's Japanese, my husband loves hers). The list of ingredients is pretty long, but its really not that bad to make. I only used about half of the sauce so the rest is in the fridge for another application. This is definitely going into the standard recipe box for my hours. The base recipe is pretty adaptable - add some orange peel instead of the sesame seeds for Orange Chicken, some chili flakes or more spicy sauce for a General Chicken, etcetera. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Love everything about this recipe! But I used fish instead of chiken... delicious! item not reviewed by moderator and published
What a pain. But I have to say well worth it. I used regular sesame oil and wine vinegar.I was surprised it was edible with the salt content,but tried to follow the recipe.Thanks. item not reviewed by moderator and published
My daughter made this for a family supper at her house. She was hoping to have leftovers for her lunch the next day but nothing was left. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Delicious. The marinade/batter on the chicken was terrific -- it came out very tender -- and the sauce is not overwhelming. I served it with a napa cabbage salad and our family felt like we were in one of the better Chinese restaurants around. I love Tyler. item not reviewed by moderator and published
This is great! If you have any trouble finding asian ingredients, go to asianfoodgrocer (you have to add the "dot com" at the end, but food network doesn't allow such additions in their reviews. They have everything you need, and even stuff you never knew you needed! I love Tyler and all of his recipes and cook chinese food on a regular basis and this is a great one. An aside note: salt levels are always to taste and it is very important to salt as you go along, all of the salt in the world added at the end of a recipe will not make up for missed additions along the way! The more you cook any type of cuisine, the more you realize your family's tastes. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Okay, I read most of the reviews before making this dish last night 3/8/11. Most of them were good but some were not so great. I have to say, this is a wonderful recipe for sesame chicken. To those that wrote bad reviews, I challenge you to taste your food while you cook. Recipes are a guide. However, do to using different brands and different ingredients, taste can vary slightly. Some of you asked about finding chili paste. I live in NC and you can find chili paste at Whole Foods or The Fresh Market. I was not close to either one so I just used chili sauce and red pepper flakes. Thank you Tyler for this recipe. My daughter loves sesame chicken and I can finally make it at home!!!! item not reviewed by moderator and published
@ flywileyp_1386065 now i'm afraid to make this lol what do i need to be careful on exactly? item not reviewed by moderator and published
This was delicious! I'll never order take-out Chinese food again! Thanks to the previous post which pointed out that the sauce needed to be boiled in order to thicken. That should be added in the directions! item not reviewed by moderator and published
This is absolutely amazing! Next time I will use 2 pounds of chicken because my husband and two teenage sons licked the bowls clean. This will be in our regular dinner rotation. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Very good batter, very good sauce. For us "kitchen mechanics", it might be nice to point out something about making the sauce, though: Once you saute the garlic and ginger, take the pan off the heat and let it cool a little before even "gently" adding the rest of the ingredients. If the vinegar and soy sauce hits the 300°+ oil in the pan, both the liquid and the oil is going to depart the pan very noisily and much akin to Old Faithful's hourly show. At the very least, you'll be cleaning everything within 6 feet (vertically and horizontally) of the pan. At worst, well, make sure your health and home insurance is paid up! We did enjoy the final results, though. It's worth the effort of making it. item not reviewed by moderator and published
amazing! item not reviewed by moderator and published
I made this recipe two times and it's amazing. My family loves it. I could cut back on salt by using low sodium soy sauce. It came out perfect, I will be making this for a long time. Thank you Tyler, you never fail me. item not reviewed by moderator and published
i dont like how over powering the chicken taste under the batter. other than that i love the sauce and so did everyone else item not reviewed by moderator and published
Okay My rents annaversity is next year and its there 20th one! i was planning since is the china year for annaversities i would make sesame chicken and duck..hint that I learned from a great cook (my next door neighbor) over night or even for 2 hours take the meat and keep it in salt water which makes it tender than like pat it or not but its good either way...than keep the chicken in buttermilk for 2- a whole night it give a great taste and it will give it the juiceness! Thats all i had to say! item not reviewed by moderator and published
I have made it twice my best friend has made it twice and I'm going to make it tonight for dinner. Suggest adding more chili paste to it the sauce, it adds that depth. Light on the scallions and cilantro. Otherwise absolutely wonderful and hey People- its chinese food its going to be salty no matter what which way you serve it at least we can cut out as much as we would like to by making it at home versus take out. Thanks so much Tyler Huge hit with my family and friends! item not reviewed by moderator and published
this was ok. i did not care for the soy/sesame flavor in the chicken batter itself. next time i might use just flour baking powder and cornstarch and salt. the sauce was weak. definitely didn't have the right flavor i've been looking for. i did however find the flavor i'd been missing in some of the other recipies i've tried. maybe i just need to try to combine the 2. probably won't make this again. item not reviewed by moderator and published
made this last night in an attempt to quell a chinese food craving but cut back on store-bought calories. was very easy to make (couldn't find chili paste so i just substituted with chili powder and a little maple syrup for body) but i couldn't figure out why my sauce was so thin until my mother-in-law pointed out that you need to boil a cornstarch-thickened sauce for it to actually thicken. maybe this was apparent in the episode, but the written recipe only says low heat for the entire time- bizarre. anyway, it was delicious and because it was so salty (but really, i feel like all chinese takeout is pretty salty if there's a sauce) we have plenty of leftovers. i will definitely make this again. item not reviewed by moderator and published
To make the sauce a little more exciting I added orange zest and squezzed 1/2 the orange's juice into the sauce. It was the best orange chicken I have ever eaten. item not reviewed by moderator and published
OK, I didn't read the reviews before making this. I followed the recipe but made changes to the sauce. I didn't have sherry vinegar so I used rice vinegar. I added a tsp. of chinese hot sauce instead of the chili sauce. I felt it wasn't sweet enough so I added honey an a tsp. of hoisin. This made it fantastic. item not reviewed by moderator and published
I read the reviews before making this and noticed that several people said it was too salty. I simply omitted the tsp. of salt from the marinade. I made the entire meal and everything was delicous, the whole family loved it. Husband said it was better than anything he had at Pei Wei. This did take a lot of time to prepare, 2 hours from start to table. The three dishes together were perfect and I would definately make this again. For those who can't find the chili sauce, I subbed chili-garlic sauce which is always in my fridge, it gave the sauce great flavor. item not reviewed by moderator and published
I made the marinade yesterday. I used regular soy sauce and omitted the kosher salt. I added the chicken and let it marinate all night. While my husband fried the chicken, I was making the sauce. I, too, couldn't find the chili sauce and that was fine with us. It turned out that the chicken was so moist and tender from letting it go over night it was wonderful but the sauce just didn't do it for us. We even omitted the "salt to taste". All we could taste was the sesame oil and ginger. We will do the chicken again but we will do it with an almond gravy or sweet and sour sauce. The hubby thought that doing the chicken breast in tenders or strips with the marinade would make great sandwiches. We also thought that the marinade would be good with beef or fish. These are our next mission. item not reviewed by moderator and published
help i cant find chili paste anywhere and i've been dying to make this sesame chicken.where can i find it or what can i substatute for it? item not reviewed by moderator and published
I too found this recipe a big diappointment. I was ecstatic when the recipe was finally posted. I followed it to the letter. I had my oil exactly at 375 degrees. The chicken was very dark on the outside and some pieces were not cooked on the inside. I had to put it in the oven to finish cooking. It was also too salty for me. The sauce was very ordinary. On the other hand, the rice and green beans were delicious. The next evening I made the "Flawless Sesame Chicken" recipe someone suggested. It was fabulous. I highly recommend it. It's not salty and the sauce has so much more taste. Give it a try. item not reviewed by moderator and published
I am a senior this year in high school graduating in may and going to culinary school. I don't usually watch tyler.. but i saw this recipe at the end of his show when i was waiting for cooking for real to come on. It looked DELICIOUS so i urged my mom to let me cook it. I was drooling when I saw it on tv and I was drooling when it was on my plate. I took one bite and got sick imediately. It was the saltiest thing i've ever eaten. The meat was cooked completely. And i followed the recipe 100% every last bit of it. The sauce on the other hand was delicious!! And I was amazed when I made it because I watched it get to the sticky yummy sauce that sesame chicken has. I was sooo amazed because it started off this nasty pale sauce and i had no idea how on earth i was going to look like sesame chicken in the end. but it did and it was pretty cool. Soy sauce is a pretty salty sauce so I was confused when he said to add more salt to the batter.. maybe he is reallyt into salt idk but if i do make this again.. which i probably wont.. i definetally WILL NOT add the tsp of salt that he says to add. because even with the low sodium soy sauce it was disgustingly salty. Obviously my stomach doesn't handle salt well. but even my parents said it was too salty. And we were thinking of ways that we could cut out salt.. so lets hope that if i make this again cutting out the tsp of salt works cuz its not really doing anything for the recipe to make it thick or anything its just.. there. CUT IT OUT. I was very disappointed that this was coming from a chef.. its just not up to par with the standards of a chef. item not reviewed by moderator and published
I love, love, love Tyler, and every other recipe of his that I have made turned out quite well....not the case with this one, I'm sorry to say. It looked so great on the show, and I rushed out to get the ingredients to make it, but was not pleased with the results. Just didn't have the taste I was expecting. I added some Thai chili sauce to add a little kick, but not sure I will bother making it again. Sorry Tyler, I so wanted to love this recipe like I do your others :) item not reviewed by moderator and published
I made this chicken and the gingered rice and the green beans last night. I didn't put the chili paste in the chicken nor the jalapenos in the beans. It was all so darned good. I will make it all again, for sure!!! item not reviewed by moderator and published
Will be making this soon! item not reviewed by moderator and published
The flavors of both the chicken and the ginger rice (from the same episode) were great, however the crisp-fry on the chicken didn't stay crispy for more than a minute after removing from the oil. Now, I don't fry very often at all, but I had a well calibrated candy/oil thermometer so I know I had the right heat and I am really perplexed as to why the batter became soggy so quickly. Additionally I have to admit the chicken was a little salty for my taste - and I used the low sodium soy sauce. Next time I try this recipe, I will not bother frying the chicken at all, but saute the chicken and make the sauce to pour on top. item not reviewed by moderator and published
This recipe is the BOMB!!! Sooo good. I love sesame chicken and this recipe is better than anything I have had in a Chinese restaurant. Made the chicken and the green beans and both were wonderful. I did add just a couple of drops of pineapple juice to the sauce to make it a little more sweeter. I like the idea of not combining the chicken and the sauce until it is on your plate. That way, leftovers stay fresh. You can warm up the leftover chicken in the oven to get it crispy again and warm the sauce by itself. Great job Tyler, you have done it again. It is the ULTIMATE!!!! item not reviewed by moderator and published
go to monday,click on day time,tyler is the last one for day time.see it?good/ now cook the sesame chicken and invite us to eat.just kidding// the rice is excellent and so is the veggies. GOOD JOB TYLER item not reviewed by moderator and published
I plan on making this next week for my family. I may add xtra heat as I really love spicy food. item not reviewed by moderator and published
I made Tyler's Sesame Chicken the same day it was posted and was a liittle disappointed in how spicy it was. I had followed his recommended measurement of chili paste and it was actually too hot for my husband's and my taste. I will reduce the amount the next time though because we both loved the flavor and the chicken came out so perfect...plump and juicy! I am going to try the recipe for the other Sesame Chicken from one of the other viewer's recommendation and see which one we like better. Tyler's recipe is good anyway! item not reviewed by moderator and published
Made this last night, and we really enjoyed it. I did make a few adjustments. After so many reviewers saying their chicken turned black, I left the soy out of the batter. It fried up beautifully. I wonder if some of the reviewers were expecting more of a tempura effect. Don't think this was supposed to be "fluffy." I also reduced the soy sauce in the sauce, replaced the sugar with honey and added some orange zest. The only other change I will make next time is to reduce the amount of sesame oil in the sauce. It was a little overpowering and gave the sauce a slightly bitter taste. The last change I made was to serve the chicken and sauce separately. I drizzled the chicken with some more honey before applying the sesame seeds. My son ended up eating the nuggets, dipping them in the sauce. He was a happy camper. Thank you. item not reviewed by moderator and published
im gonna try making today item not reviewed by moderator and published
It's about time!!! Thanks for posting...we are making it this week! item not reviewed by moderator and published
The recipe was great! Unfortunately, we had to write the recipe from the recorded show since we had so much trouble with the website. Since not all the measurements were verbalized during the show, I made a few guesses. Depending on the size of the chicken pieces, I agree it cooked pretty fast. With all of that said, it was a great meal! item not reviewed by moderator and published
Made this last night it was easy enough. The chicken fried up great. The batter smelled wonderful. I was surprised that the chicken did not taste like the batter smelled, the only thing i really tasted was salt. - I DID NOT have low sodium soy so i used regular. Other then that, I followed the recipe exactly. But that must have been the problem. The sauce was ok. The rice was great. Loved that. I usually love Tyler's dishes. I was surprised with this one. I will try it again. item not reviewed by moderator and published
made this recipe last night and it was good i substituted red wine vinegar for the cherry and forgot the baking powder but it still tasted good. the batter did come out dark for me and did get kind of black but when u tasted it it was good so i wouldn't sweat the extra dark chicken just add less soy sauce. the sauce for the chicken was good too with a nice little kick from the chilli paste i think I would have liked mine a little sweater though so might add in a little more sugar that might have something to do with me using red wine vinegar though. i would def make again item not reviewed by moderator and published
So after cooking this recipe im regreting having spent the time and money on it... the batter turned out burned, while the chicken was undercooked, and the flavor was Extremly salty. I fallowed the recipe to a T... Wouln't recomend it and wont be making it again! item not reviewed by moderator and published
I thought this was very easy to follow and the chicken came out great. I was disappointed in the sauce but maybe I was looking for more flavor like an orange sauce.The sauce was very easy to assemble as well.I may add a little orange zest next time. I used broccoli instead of green beans because that is what I had on hand. I will be making this for company soon. Linda item not reviewed by moderator and published
Thank you Soooooooooooo Much!! XOXO item not reviewed by moderator and published
Followed directions, but when the chicken cooks, 2min it is black, no fluffy looking batter on the chicken. I double checked. item not reviewed by moderator and published
I know we're supposed to comment on the recipe, Tyler's recipes are always awesome. However I cannot sit through one whole show of Tyler's Ultimate because of the camera guy. The constant zooming in and out makes me sick. Does anyone else notice this??? What the hell is wrong with the producers? item not reviewed by moderator and published
If you want chinese fried chicken like from most restaurants, this works perfectly. However, I did not love the sauce. item not reviewed by moderator and published
I have cooked a lot of Tyler's recipes and this one is in my top five favorites! I watched the show on Saturday and had purchased everything yesterday, so I was extremely disappointed, to say the least, when I couldn't find the recipe on-line. I was very, very happy to see it posted this evening right before I made it. Thanks Tyler! item not reviewed by moderator and published
THANK YOU ! THANK YOU! I cant wait to try this recipe. Im going to the store to get the ingredients RIGHT NOW!! THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!!!!! item not reviewed by moderator and published
Thank you, thank you! I was glad to this recipe finally post! I am going to cook this tonite also! item not reviewed by moderator and published
Thanks Food Network for giving all us foodies the recipie(s).! I am very happy &amp; in process of cooking this NOW!!! item not reviewed by moderator and published
It looked so good when Tyler made it. Will be a welcome add'n to my growing Asian recipe collection. item not reviewed by moderator and published
thank you very much i love this recipe now i can make it myself you are a life savior item not reviewed by moderator and published
A Big THANK YOU for finally giving us the recipe!!!!! Making it for dinner tonight and need to run out for ingredients. GOTTA GO........... item not reviewed by moderator and published
I am so excited to try this. It looked succulent when Tyler made it. I can't wait. I hope it was worth the wait. Usually, Tyler does not disappoint. I will lwave another comment once I've made it. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Am very excited to make this and glad it finally got posted. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Thank you for putting these on line! Cooking it tonight. item not reviewed by moderator and published
ma' says 1/4 cup cornstarch... item not reviewed by moderator and published

Not what you're looking for? Try:

Sesame Chicken

Recipe courtesy of Melissa d'Arabian