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Baked Sweet and Sour Chicken
with pineapple / broccoli / rice

Active: 30 min Total: 40 min
This is a healthier version of the take-out favorite that usually features deep-fried chicken. To lighten things up without sacrificing flavor, pan sear the chicken, add a classic sweet and sour sauce on top and bake the entire dish with some vegetables added in for good measure. Check out this video to see the entire process!
Smarts: The sauce usually served with Sweet and Sour Chicken is super sweet. Since you're making this from scratch, be sure to taste and adjust to your preferences - add more sugar for sweetness or vinegar for sour. You can even add a pinch of chili flakes if you'd like some spice.


Rice (enough for two meals):
  • Rice, brown or white (uncooked - enough for 2 meals) - 1 2/3 cups
Baked Sweet and Sour Chicken:
  • Broccoli - 12 oz , florets
  • Cilantro - 1/4 cup , chopped
  • Pineapple chunks, canned in juice (20oz / 567g) - 1 can , drained, juice reserved
  • Chicken breasts, boneless and skinless - 1 lb , sliced into strips (sub chicken breast tenders)
  • Cornstarch - 1 1/2 Tbsp
  • Oil, cooking - 2 Tbsp
  • Sweet and sour sauce (ingredients listed separately) - ~1 cup
Sweet and Sour Sauce:
  • Pineapple juice - 3/4 cup (reserved from canned pineapple)
  • Brown sugar - 3 Tbsp
  • Ketchup - 3 Tbsp
  • Soy sauce, low-sodium - 2 Tbsp
  • Vinegar, rice - 1 Tbsp
  • Water - 2 Tbsp
  • Cornstarch - 1 1/2 Tbsp


  1. Rice - This makes enough for two nights. For white rice, rinse until clear. Fill a saucepan or Dutch oven (or rice cooker) with rice, water (use 2:1 ratio for water to rice), and some salt. Cover with lid and bring to a boil. Once water boils, stir, lower heat to a low-medium, and cover. Check white rice after ~20 min; brown at ~45 min. Rice is done when it's absorbed all the water. If it's not done, leave the cover on until all water has been absorbed. Take cover off to release steam and fluff with a wooden spoon after 5 minutes. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead).
  2. Broccoli - Chop broccoli into florets. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
  3. Cilantro - Chop cilantro. (Can be done up to 3 days ahead)
  4. Pineapple - Place a strainer over a bowl. Pour pineapple into the strainer. Reserve pineapple juice for the sauce and store pineapple pieces separately. (Can be done up to 3 days ahead)
  5. Chicken - Slice chicken into strips. Season with some salt and black pepper and tenderize with a fork. (Can be done 1 day ahead)

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  1. Heat oven to 400F / 204C.
  2. While oven heats, place a small saucepan over medium heat with reserved pineapple juice (only the amount listed for sauce; discard any extra), brown sugar, ketchup, soy sauce and vinegar. Whisk together water and cornstarch (the portion for the sauce) and add to sauce while stirring. Simmer sauce until thick, 2 to 3 minutes. Set aside.
  3. Toss chicken strips in cornstarch (the portion for the chicken).
  4. Heat a Dutch oven with oil over medium-high heat. Add chicken and sear on both sides (chicken does not need to be cooked through), ~2 minutes per side.
  5. Top chicken with broccoli, pineapple pieces and sauce. Cover with a lid (or tightly with foil) and transfer to the oven. Bake, covered, until sauce is bubbling and chicken is cooked through, 12 to 15 minutes.
  6. Reheat rice if made ahead (remember to reserve half for Thursday).
  7. Divide rice between serving bowls and top with broccoli, pineapple and chicken strips. Top with cilantro and enjoy!



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