General Tsao's Chicken Recipe - Authentic Chinese Dish

General Tsao's Chicken

General Tsao's Chicken Recipe - Authentic Chinese Dish
Region / culture: China | Preparation time: 20 minutes | Cooking time: 10 minutes | Servings: 4


General Tsao's Chicken
General Tsao's Chicken

General Tsao's Chicken is a popular Chinese dish that is known for its sweet and spicy flavors. This dish is a favorite in many Chinese restaurants and is often enjoyed with a side of white rice.


General Tsao's Chicken is believed to have been created in the 1950s by Chef Peng Chang-kuei, who was a chef in Taiwan. The dish was named after General Tso Tsung-tang, a Qing dynasty military leader. Over the years, the recipe has evolved and become a staple in Chinese cuisine.


How to prepare

  1. Cut the chicken into thin slices, approximately 2 inches long, cutting against the grain.
  2. Place the chicken slices in a bowl and add the soy sauce, rice wine, ginger, cornstarch, and 1 tsp of sesame oil.
  3. Mix the ingredients well, allowing the mixture to marinate for about 20 minutes.
  4. Heat the oil in a wok or large skillet until it reaches a high temperature.
  5. Using a slotted spoon, remove the chicken from the marinade and add it to the pan.
  6. Stir-fry the chicken for 2 minutes, or until it browns.
  7. Remove the chicken from the pan and let it drain in a colander or sieve.
  8. Pour off most of the oil, leaving approximately 2 tsp in the pan.
  9. Reheat the pan over high heat and add the dried chilies.
  10. Stir-fry the chilies for 10 seconds, then return the chicken to the pan.
  11. Add the remaining ingredients and stir-fry for 4 minutes, ensuring everything is mixed well.
  12. Serve the dish immediately over white rice.
  13. Enjoy!


  • For a healthier version, you can bake the chicken instead of frying it.
  • You can also add vegetables such as bell peppers, broccoli, or snap peas to the dish for added nutrition.

Cooking Tips & Tricks

Make sure to cut the chicken against the grain to ensure tender slices.

- Marinate the chicken for at least 20 minutes to allow the flavors to penetrate the meat.

- Use a high heat when stir-frying the chicken to achieve a crispy texture.

- Be careful when adding the dried chilies, as they can be very spicy. Adjust the amount to suit your taste preference.

Serving Suggestions

General Tsao's Chicken is best served over white rice with a side of steamed vegetables.

Cooking Techniques

Stir-frying is the main cooking technique used in this recipe.

Ingredient Substitutions

If you do not have sherry, you can substitute it with rice wine or white wine vinegar.

Make Ahead Tips

You can marinate the chicken ahead of time and store it in the refrigerator until ready to cook.

Presentation Ideas

Garnish the dish with sliced green onions or sesame seeds for a pop of color.

Pairing Recommendations

General Tsao's Chicken pairs well with a side of egg drop soup or hot and sour soup.

Storage and Reheating Instructions

Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat in a skillet or microwave until heated through.

Nutrition Information

Calories per serving

General Tsao's Chicken contains approximately 350 calories per serving.


General Tsao's Chicken contains approximately 15 grams of carbohydrates per serving.


General Tsao's Chicken contains approximately 20 grams of fats per serving.


General Tsao's Chicken contains approximately 25 grams of proteins per serving.

Vitamins and minerals

General Tsao's Chicken is a good source of vitamin C, iron, and calcium.


General Tsao's Chicken contains soy and peanuts.


General Tsao's Chicken is a flavorful dish that is high in proteins and fats. It is a good source of vitamin C and iron, but may not be suitable for those with soy or peanut allergies.


General Tsao's Chicken is a delicious and popular Chinese dish that is easy to make at home. With a perfect balance of sweet and spicy flavors, this dish is sure to be a hit with your family and friends. Enjoy!

How did I get this recipe?

I can still remember the exact moment I stumbled upon this recipe for General Tsao's Chicken. It was many years ago, back when I was just a young girl with a passion for cooking. I had always been fascinated by different cuisines from around the world, and Chinese food was no exception.

One day, while browsing through an old cookbook that belonged to my mother, I came across a recipe for General Tsao's Chicken. The ingredients were simple yet exotic, and the instructions seemed easy enough to follow. I decided then and there that I had to give it a try.

I gathered all the necessary ingredients - chicken, soy sauce, garlic, ginger, and a few others - and got to work in the kitchen. As I chopped, marinated, and fried, the delicious aroma of the dish filled the air. I could hardly contain my excitement as I plated the finished dish and took my first bite.

The flavors exploded in my mouth - sweet, savory, and just a hint of spice. It was unlike anything I had ever tasted before, and I knew I had stumbled upon something truly special.

From that day on, General Tsao's Chicken became a staple in my cooking repertoire. I would make it for my family and friends, who all raved about how delicious it was. I even entered it into a cooking competition once, and to my delight, it won first prize.

But the true magic of this recipe wasn't just in its taste - it was in the memories it brought back to me. Every time I made General Tsao's Chicken, I was transported back to that moment in my mother's kitchen, flipping through the pages of her cookbook and discovering something new and exciting.

Over the years, I have tweaked and perfected the recipe, adding my own little touches here and there. I have shared it with so many people, passing it down from generation to generation. And every time I make it, I feel a deep sense of pride and joy at how far I have come since that day.

General Tsao's Chicken will always hold a special place in my heart. It is more than just a recipe to me - it is a symbol of my love for cooking, my appreciation for different cultures, and the memories of a simpler time. I hope that whoever tries this dish will feel the same joy and satisfaction that I do every time I make it.

So if you ever find yourself in need of a delicious and exotic meal, look no further than General Tsao's Chicken. I promise you won't be disappointed. Just remember to savor every bite, and cherish the memories that come with it. Happy cooking!


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