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This easy-to-make Paleo Orange Chicken is simple, flavorful and perfect for a weeknight dinner. It’ll be loved by both kids and adults alike and it just so happens to be gluten-free, dairy-free and paleo!

Healthy orange chicken in a bowl with garnishHealthy Orange Chicken Recipe

It’s almost hard to believe that this healthy and flavorful orange chicken recipe only takes about 20 minutes to get on the table, but it’s true! The paleo orange chicken has simple ingredients and simple instructions and your whole family will love it! Serve it with your favorite side, but we suggest cauliflower rice and if you’re feeling like you need some extra veggies in your life some green beans or broccoli would fit right in here.

We love this orange chicken because it’s one of those magical recipes that is so easily made paleo and with other dietary restrictions in mind by simply using real whole ingredients. Fresh orange juice as the main player in this dish, giving it a bright, bold flavor. The chicken is coated in arrowroot starch which helps make it crispy after it’s quickly pan seared and it also helps thicken the sauce to keep it gluten-free.

Here is what’s in it:

  • chicken breast (or thighs)
  • arrowroot starch
  • Salt and pepper
  • oil
  • fresh orange juice
  • orange zest
  • rice wine vinegar (or apple cider vinegar)
  • fish sauce
  • honey
  • garlic
  • ginger
  • sesame oil
  • Pinch red pepper flakes

Paleo orange chicken with cauliflower rice on a plate

What can you serve with this Paleo Orange Chicken?

We served ours with cauliflower rice, but it would also go well with:

  • white rice
  • brown rice
  • quinoa
  • steamed broccoli
  • cooked green beans
  • steamed cauliflower
  • roasted spaghetti squash

Bowl of quick orange chicken

If you like this quick weeknight chicken dinner, check out these others:

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Paleo Orange Chicken

5 from 8 votes
This easy-to-make Paleo Orange Chicken is simple, flavorful and perfect for a weeknight dinner. It'll be loved by both kids and adults alike and it just so happens to be gluten-free, dairy-free and paleo!
Servings 4
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes


  • 1-1/2 lb. boneless skinless chicken breast see note
  • ¼ cup arrowroot starch
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 tablespoon avocado oil
  • ¾ cup orange juice
  • 2 tablespoon orange zest
  • 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar see note
  • 1/2 teaspoon fish sauce optional, see note
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 garlic clove minced
  • 1 ” piece ginger peeled, and grated or minced
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • Pinch red pepper flakes
  • Sesame seeds for garnish
  • Scallions sliced, for garnish
  • Cauliflower rice for serving


  • Cut chicken into 1" pieces and place inside of a large bowl with arrowroot and a big pinch of salt and pepper. Toss to coat the chicken fully.
  • Heat oil in a large, heavy skillet. Once hot, brown chicken on both sides, in batches if necessary, for 3-4 minutes per side.
  • Remove chicken and set aside. To the pan add the remainder of the ingredients (except sesame seeds and cauliflower rice). Increase heat and bring the mixture to a boil, scraping up any browned bits on the bottom of the skillet. Once the sauce has boiled and thickened up, add back the chicken and cook through until hot, about 1 more minute.
  • Serve chicken immediately with sauce from the skillet over cauliflower rice.


  1. You can also use boneless, skinless chicken thighs here!
  2. If you don't have rice wine vinegar on hand, you can substitute apple cider vinegar.
  3. So many of you are already making this, but have been asking: What can you substitute for fish sauce? It is optional. Fish sauce is just an extra flavor booster that enhances the overall depth of the dish. But if you don't have it and don't want to buy it, skip it! The dish will still be lovely!
  4. For Whole30 you can omit the honey!


Calories: 283kcalCarbohydrates: 12.2gProtein: 34gFat: 10gSaturated Fat: 2.6gCholesterol: 101mgSodium: 156mgFiber: 0.7gSugar: 8.3g
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: Dairy-free, Gluten-free, Paleo
Author: Lexi

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Recipe Rating


  1. This seemed like it was going to be amazing. I love the method of crisping the chicken in the arrow root (I never would have used that much but it turns out perfect). However the 2 tablespoons of orange zest kind of ruined the sauce for us. It was very bitter and maybe it was just my oranges, but I had to add a ton of honey to counteract the bitterness. I would try this again and cut the zest back by a lot. Other than that I think it’s a keeper. Served with half rice and half cauli rice.

    1. I have the exact same feeling. I spent so much time on this recipe today and it was not so edible. I had to add a TON more honey and salt to be able to stomach the bitter orange peel sauce flavor.

  2. Hi! I was wondering the serving size for the nutritional facts. Would it be about 1 cup? Thank you btw for a great recipe!

  3. I plan on trying this tonight!! We are huge LCK fans here so I am super excited to try this! Can I sub tapioca for arrowroot? I don’t have/can’t get arrowroot where I live and prefer not to use cornstarch. Thanks!

  4. I have made this before as the recipe says, but I plan on making this next week. Going to try doing them in the air fryer instead of frying.

  5. 5 stars
    We are big fans of orange chicken but the takeout versions are so full of bad stuff. This recipe is fantastic, healthy, tasty, and so easy! Thank you for another terrific addition to our family menu.

  6. 5 stars
    This was so good, thank you for the great recipe! Also, thank you for providing the recipe to print so that there isn’t a picture and ads and things that take up a bunch of ink on the printer. When I click the print button on your recipes I always appreciate having just the recipe so perfectly laid out so I can print and go cook!!

  7. 5 stars
    Quick to make? Yep!
    Easy to make? Yep!
    Delicious? Definitely yes!
    My toddler and I loved this. It was so nice to eat a favorite yet not feel horrible after eating it! Love the clean versions you provide.

  8. 5 stars
    This is like MAGIC. I can’t believe how much this tastes like restaurant quality orange chicken. I’m in love!

    The ginger was a little strong for me in this, so I’m probably going to back it down and just use ground ginger instead of fresh, but have mercy – so good!

  9. 5 stars
    I made this recipe last week and we loved it! I will keep a closer eye on the sauce when it’s thickening next time but otherwise it was so easy to make and full of citrusy deliciousness. The first night I made basmati rice as a side but then my husband made Jasmine rice with the leftovers. I preferred the mix of a more sticky rice like the Jasmine with this dish. So good! I love your recipes, Lexi!

    1. SO GLAD you loved it! Definitely as direction says, sauce comes together quick so stay close 🙂

  10. 5 stars
    This recipe is absolutely delicious! I love Asian food and this chicken was amazing. The flavors are so fresh and light. I’ll be adding this in my favorite dinner rotation ASAP!

  11. Made this tonight. It had such a bright and citrusy taste. It was easy to prep all the sauce ingredients ahead of time. I do recommend that you keep your eye on the sauce while it is thickening. It boils down very quickly. I added some coconut aminos and all was good. Thanks for this recipe!

    1. So glad you enjoyed it Randy! For sure don’t walk away from the sauce, as you pointed out. The instructions say it only needs about 1 minute to thicken it, as it happens quickly.