Sweet and Sour Chicken Recipe (with VIDEO!)


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Make copycat Sweet and Sour Chicken at home without all the fuss! This pared down recipe packs all the flavor and is ready in minimal time.

This post is sponsored by Klarbrunn.

Sweet and Sour Chicken

This naturally gluten free homemade takeout recipe will knock your socks off. Seriously.

The sauce is inspired by your favorite takeout, but it’s pared down and simplified so that the whole meal comes together quickly.

A clear bowl with sweet and sour sauce.

Same thing with the chicken. Rather than messing around with a true batter, we’re just tossing the chicken in egg, and then tossing it all in cornstarch. Easy peasy.

You don’t even have to thicken this sauce – the extra bits of cornstarch that inevitably get left in the pan do that for you. How easy is that?

A display of sweet and sour chicken on plates with a wood background.

I’ve partnered up with Klarbrunn to bring you this homemade takeout recipe that’s best served with an ice cold can of Pineapple Coconut Klarbrunn Sparkling Water. Truly a match made in heaven, the pineapple in the recipe pairs perfectly with the pineapple notes in this incredible sparkling water. You can find out where to buy Klarbrunn’s sparkling water here.

Sweet and sour chicken with a can of Klarbrunn sparkling water.

Hong Kong Style Sweet & Sour Chicken

What’s the difference between Sweet and Sour Chicken and Hong Kong Style Sweet and Style Chicken? It all comes down to the batter. While the former is a heavily breaded ball (made up of far more breading than meat), the latter is very lightly breaded. This recipe more closely resembles Hong Kong Style Sweet and Sour Chicken.

Sweet and sour chicken in three small bowls in bright sunlight on a green background.

Gluten Free Sweet n Sour Chicken

This recipe is naturally gluten free as it’s written because it uses Tamari and cornstarch. If you don’t need to eat gluten free, you can easily substitute the Tamari 1:1 with soy sauce.

A close up image of sweet and sour chicken with chopsticks in a bowl.

Chicken Nuggets

If you don’t have any chicken breast on hand (or you want to make this recipe even easier), you can definitely substitute the chicken with chicken nuggets. Just be sure to get the nuggets nice and crispy so they don’t get soggy in the sauce.

If you use chicken nuggets, you may also have to add a bit of cornstarch to the sauce to thicken it. To do this, mix 1 ½ teaspoons cornstarch with 1 Tablespoon water and add it to the sauce. Bring the sauce to a simmer to thicken.

Three plates of sweet and sour chicken on a green background.

What to Serve this With

I love having this with pineapple, onion, and bell pepper which is why I included them in the recipe. You can definitely omit any of those if you wish – as much as I love the addition of pineapple here, I know there are plenty of people that prefer it without pineapple.

I also really enjoy this recipe with:

  • Rice
  • Green Onions
  • Sesame Seeds
  • Broccoli
  • Noodles
  • Fried Rice
Sweet and sour chicken on a small white plate.

Are you looking for more copycat takeout recipes you can easily make at home? Try our super popular Copycat Taco Bell Quesadilla Sauce!

I’d love to hear what you thought of this recipe in the comments or on Instagram! @KeyToMyLime #KeyToMyLime

Click here to pin this recipe for later!

A Pinterest pin image with two images of sweet and sour chicken and title text separating them.
Yield: 6 servings

Sweet and Sour Chicken

Sweet and sour chicken on a plate next to a glass of water with light shining through it.

Make copycat Sweet and Sour Chicken at home without all the fuss! This pared down recipe packs all the flavor and is ready in minimal time.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Additional Time 20 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes



  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts (2 large chicken breasts, cut into 1” cubes)
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 eggs (whisked until creamy)
  • 1 cup cornstarch
  • ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • ¼ cup + 1 teaspoon coconut oil (or neutral oil of choice, divided)

Sweet and Sour Sauce:

  • ¼ cup white vinegar
  • ¼ cup ketchup
  • ¼ cup pineapple juice (reserved liquid from the canned pineapple below)
  • 2 Tablespoons Tamari (or soy sauce if not gluten free)
  • ¼ cup white sugar
  • 2 teaspoons sambal oelek (chili paste, or ½ teaspoon red chili flakes)


  • 2 - 4 medium cloves garlic (diced, depending on taste preference)
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
  • 1 red bell pepper (cut into 1” pieces)
  • 1 green bell pepper (cut into 1” pieces)
  • 1 medium yellow onion (cut into 1” pieces)
  • 1 10 ounce can pineapple chunks (liquid drained and reserved for sauce)


  1. Combine all of the sauce ingredients together and set to the side.
  2. Wash and dry the chicken, then cut into 1” cubes. In a medium bowl, toss the chicken cubes with the baking soda and allow to rest for 20 minutes to tenderize the chicken. After 20 minutes, rinse in a colander until the baking soda is rinsed off, then pat dry.
  3. Toss the chicken in a bowl with the beaten eggs. Add the cornstarch to a large ziploc, then add the egg coated chicken (shaking off any excess liquid before adding it to the bag). Close the bag and shake to coat the chicken in the starch.
  4. Heat a large nonstick skillet on medium high heat until hot. The pan should be hot enough that a drop of water sizzles when dropped onto it. Add the oil and swirl the skillet to coat the pan.  Place half of the coated chicken down in a single layer and saute for 1 minute, then flip and saute for an additional minute (you’ll need to cook the chicken in two rounds). Remove the chicken from the pan to a plate, doing your best to leave behind as much oil as possible.
  5. Add the garlic and ginger to the skillet and give it a stir to break up the clumps of ginger. Immediately add in the bell pepper and onion, stir, and saute for 2 minutes, or until fragrant and the pepper and onion are just starting to cook.
  6. Add the sauce and pineapple chunks to the skillet. Bring to a simmer. Once the sauce is simmering, add the chicken to the sauce and simmer for 2 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through. Taste and adjust salt and/or sugar to your liking.


This recipe is naturally gluten free because it uses Tamari and cornstarch. If you don’t need to eat gluten free, the Tamari can be substituted 1:1 with soy sauce.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 426Total Fat: 15.1gSaturated Fat: 9.7gTrans Fat: 0.1gCarbohydrates: 43.4gNet Carbohydrates: 41.6gFiber: 1.8gSugar: 20.6gProtein: 27.2g

Nutrition information isn’t always accurate.


Tag @KeyToMyLime on Instagram so we can see your delicious meal!

The next time you’re craving takeout, try making this easy homemade sweet and sour chicken!

Sweet and sour chicken on a plate next to a glass of water with light shining through it.

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