General Tsao's Chicken

General Tsao's Chicken

454 Reviews 40 Pics
  • Prep

    30 m
  • Cook

    20 m
  • Ready In

    50 m
Shaun Wackerly
Recipe by  Shaun Wackerly

“An Asian chicken recipe without the typical oriental taste. This recipe was voted one of the top 10 dishes in Columbus by Columbus Monthly Magazine, as prepared by Chef Paul Kaewprasart of the Siam Oriental Restaurant. I modified it slightly, and it goes great over white rice as a main dish for any number of people.”

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Adjust Servings

Original recipe yields 6 servings



  1. To Make Sauce: In a large bowl combine 1/2 cup cornstarch and 1/4 cup water. Mix together. Add garlic, ginger, sugar, 1/4 cup soy sauce and white wine vinegar. Then add chicken broth and monosodium glutamate and stir all together until sugar dissolves. Refrigerate until needed.
  2. To Prepare Chicken: In a separate bowl, combine chicken, 1/2 cup soy sauce and white pepper. Stir in egg. Add 1 cup cornstarch and stir until chicken is evenly coated. Add oil to help separate chicken pieces. Divide chicken into small quantities and deep fry at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) until crispy. Drain on paper towels.
  3. To Make Mixture: Place a small amount of oil in wok and heat until wok is hot. Add scallions and dried chile peppers and stir-fry briefly. Remove sauce from refrigerator and stir. Add sauce to wok. Then add fried chicken and cook until sauce thickens (add cornstarch or water as needed until sauce is as thick as you like it).

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Reviews (454)

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My husband gives this a 10!! I took the advice of several other reviewers and decreased the amount of cornstarch (3 Tbls),sugar (1/2 C), and vinegar (1/8 C) in the sauce, but added 1 tsp of chili flakes instead of the peppers at the end. Also, I cut out the deep frying, as we are trying to cut out the fat in our diets. I just simply stir fried the chicken in a bit of vegetable oil and added the sauce and green onions. We didn't even miss the heavy breading! We served it over steamed rice and had some steamed snow peas to round out the meal. I'll definitely be adding this figure friendly version of our favorite take-out to our regular menu!



I *JUST* finished eating dinner where i made this recipe, and i had to run upstairs to give my rave reviews. It was the best General Tsao's I've ever had; better than any restaurant - and this is my normal entree when i eat Chinese. I would have to add,though, that I modified the recipe slightly. I cut up the chicken and marinated it in 1/2 cup each of soy sauce and hot sauce (Texas Pete) for 4-5 hours. I drained off the liquid before performing the chicken preparation portion of the recipe. I substitued 3-4 Tbsp crushed red pepper for the peppers in the recipe, as the dried peppers are not available in my small town. In the future, I would also probably increase the sauce by another half, just because I'd like the chicken a tiny bit saucier, and this sauce quantity was just enough to glaze the chicken. Otherwise, I have to add this this recipe will now become part of my family's repertoire.



This is a great recipe, but if you want a couple of tweaks that make it much more "restaurant like" as well as little healthier , cut the corn starch in half for the sauce. And drop the MSG. You will create a clearer sauce that won't leave a powdery feel on the upper pallet. The MSG is simply over kill. There is plenty of flavor enhancing going on with the sodium in the soy sauce. Also for a nice decorative touch add a cup of shaved or thin diagonally sliced carrots. Over all this a goooood eats!

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Amount Per Serving (6 total)

  • Calories
  • 842 cal
  • 42%
  • Fat
  • 40.5 g
  • 62%
  • Carbs
  • 60.7 g
  • 20%
  • Protein
  • 56.5 g
  • 113%
  • Cholesterol
  • 167 mg
  • 56%
  • Sodium
  • 2057 mg
  • 82%

Based on a 2,000 calorie diet



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General Tsao's Chicken II


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Chinese Restaurant-Style Sesame Chicken