Healthier Honey Garlic Chicken

5 from 6 votes
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My Healthier Honey Garlic Chicken recipe just became a new family favourite. Golden, tender bites of chicken sticky, glossy with honey-garlic sauce. So good. No deep fry. I have never seen the kids inhale their dinners so fast.

Healthier Honey Garlic Chicken recipe

Healthy Honey Garlic Chicken Ingredients:

Classic Honey Garlic Chicken is a mall Food Court favourite for me but I wanted to make a lighter, quicker version that was more weekday friendly. I can’t believe how yummy it turned out with such a simple line-up of ingredients:

  • Chicken thighs: thighs are more forgiving than chicken breasts and stay juicy and delicious without obsessing over perfect timing.
  • Cornstarch: coating the chicken pieces with cornstarch helps them to retain their moisture as well as providing a dry surface to allow them to brown and crisp beautifully without deep frying.
  • Quick, 4-ingredient healthy honey garlic sauce for chicken. All pantry staples — soy sauce, chicken broth, honey and garlic. For the soy sauce and broth, be sure to use regular and not low-sodium versions or the final dish will lack seasoning. (If low salt is what you have on hand, mix 3/4 tsp of kosher salt with the cornstarch before tossing the chicken).

How to Make Honey Garlic Sauce Chicken

My version of Honey Garlic Chicken lightens up not only the final dish, but also the workload. In this recipe, I skipped the deep fry and did everything in one pan, cutting back on effort majorly. The flavour, however, remains amazing.

  • Toss chicken with cornstarch and cook in a single layer and cook, undisturbed, until deeply golden on the bottom. Flip and cook until golden on the other side (don’t worry about cooking it through yet).
  • Cook the garlic on one side of the pan. If you just stir it in with the chicken, it will have less contact with the heat and some raw garlic flavour will remain.
  • Pour in the sauce ingredients. It has a brief awkward stage where the sauce is super thin and you’ll be like — is this soup??! But be patient. The cornstarch on the chicken will thicken the sauce as it reduces, and in a few minutes of simmering you’ll have a glossy, shiny, sticky sauce.

If you have a few extra minutes, you can transfer the browned chicken to a plate before you add the garlic to the pan. Let the sauce reduce and thicken before you add the chicken and toss to coat. This will preserve the chicken’s crispy crust (but dirties another plate). Choose your own adventure.

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5 from 6 votes

Healthier Honey Garlic Chicken

This healthier Honey Garlic Chicken is a no deep-fry recipe. Tender bites of juicy, golden chicken with a sticky, savoury sauce. SO GOOD!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients  

  • 1 lb chicken thighs cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 4 tbsp cornstarch
  • tsp kosher salt
  • 3 tbsp avocado oil or other high smoke point oil
  • 4 tbsp honey
  • cup chicken broth
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic
  • 2 green onions sliced
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Instructions 

  • Toss chicken pieces with cornstarch and salt to evenly coat. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat until shimmering hot. Add chicken in a single layer and cook, undisturbed, until deeply golden on the bottom. Flip and cook another 2 minutes ((don't worry about cooking it through yet).
  • Meanwhile, whisk together honey, chicken broth and soy sauce and set aside.
  • Push chicken to one side of the skillet. Cook garlic in the empty part of the skillet until soft, about 2 minutes. Add honey mixture and stir through chicken to coat. Let it come to a simmer and thicken, 2-3 minutes more. Chicken should reach 165ºF inside. Top with green onions.

Notes

  • For the soy sauce and broth, be sure to use regular and not low-sodium versions or the final dish will be a bit bland. (If it’s what you have on hand, mix 3/4 tsp of kosher salt with the cornstarch before tossing the chicken).
  • If you have a few extra minutes, you can transfer the browned chicken to a plate before you add the garlic to the pan. Finish the sauce like this on its own (letting it reduce and thicken) before you add the chicken and toss to coat. This will preserve the chicken’s crispy crust (but dirties another plate). Choose your own adventure.

Nutrition

Calories: 447kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 20g | Fat: 29g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 15g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 112mg | Sodium: 860mg | Potassium: 291mg | Fiber: 0.4g | Sugar: 18g | Vitamin A: 149IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 21mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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9 Comments

  1. Sophie says:

    What would 447kcal be in calories? Also is it 447kcal for all 4 servings combine or just 1 serving?

    1. Jennifer Pallian BSc, RD says:

      kcal is short for calories 🙂 That’s per one serving.

  2. Aparna says:

    5 stars
    I think this recipe would also be great with shrimp or tofu

  3. Ari says:

    5 stars
    I’m not usually a fan of sweet sauces on my chicken, but this honey garlic sauce was a game-changer!

  4. Rebecca says:

    5 stars
    My whole family loved it! Gonna make it again next week when friends come over

  5. Zoe says:

    5 stars
    I’ve been trying to eat healthier but I don’t want to sacrifice flavor. This recipe was just what I needed! I used chicken thighs and they came out so juicy and delicious. Plus, the sauce was super easy to make.

  6. Lily says:

    5 stars
    I made this Honey Garlic Chicken last night and it was a hit! The sauce was just the right amount of sweet and savory, and the chicken was so tender. I added some red pepper flakes for a little kick and it was perfect!

  7. kayla says:

    5 stars
    Holy heck this was delicious! Made it as soon as I saw your Instagram post and I’m going to make it again this week.

  8. Wendell Estate says:

    Wow! Thank you for sharing these healthy recipes with honey.