Fakeout takeout at home, but make it in a slow cooker! That’s the beauty of this recipe for Healthy Slow Cooker General Tso’s Chicken. This recipe features chunks of chicken breast, lightly pan fried and then slow cooked in a sweet and savory sauce made with Hoisin sauce, brown sugar, soy sauce, ginger, and garlic. Perfect to feed a family or to prep for one for lunches for the week; serve with rice, cauliflower rice, and a vegetable for the ideal meal. Just like takeout, but healthier.
What you’ll need to make healthy slow cooker general Tso’s chicken
To make this recipe, you will need:
- chicken breast
- Full chicken breast, not thin sliced.
- corn starch
- This coats the chicken breast before cooking. It helps form a crust on the outside.
- low sodium soy sauce
- This is important (low sodium) in order to control the salt in this dish.
- Hoisin sauce
- Hoisin sauce is a flavorful, thick sauce. People use this sauce as a glaze, for a dipping sauce, or for stir fry dishes. It is both sweet and salty in taste. It is delicious and full of flavor!
- brown sugar
- To add a caramelized sweetness to the dish.
- rice wine vinegar
- This is a relatively flavorless vinegar that helps create the sauce here.
- sesame oil
- For a touch of heat; the recipe calls for 1 teaspoon, but you can add more if you like heat.
- unsweetened applesauce
- This is used to stretch the sweetness of the brown sugar, but for fewer calories and WW points.
- for garnish: sesame seeds and scallions
What makes this recipe healthy?
This recipe uses all real ingredients, but modified amounts of each ingredient in order to create a flavorful dish, but for fewer calories and WW points.
Here are the main ways this dish is lightened-up:
- the chicken is pan fried and then slow cooked, as opposed to deep fried
- all white meat chicken is used
- the sauce is sweetened with a touch of brown sugar, and then stretched out by the use of unsweetened applesauce for natural sweetness
- no oils are used here for cooking, aside from cooking spray
- low sodium soy sauce is used to control sodium content
- you can serve this with cauliflower rice and other veggies for a lower-carb alternative side dish
How to make healthy slow cooker general Tso’s chicken
To make this recipe, start out by chopping the chicken breast into bite-sized chunks. Season the corn starch with a pinch of kosher salt and pepper, and then toss the chicken breast chunks in the corn starch to coat.
Preheat the skillet over medium-high heat and spray olive oil or cooking spray. Sear the chicken in two batches; the chicken will not cook through, this is just to get color on the outside. Remove the chicken from the pan and set it aside on a plate.
Next, combine all of the other ingredients to form the sauce (the soy sauce, brown sugar, Hoisin sauce, sesame oil, sriracha, unsweetened applesauce, garlic and ginger). Whisk the ingredients thoroughly. Next, add the chicken to the slow cooker and then pour the sauce on top. Finally, toss the sauce and the chicken to coat the pieces thoroughly.
Cook the chicken on LOW for 3 hours.
How to serve this lightened-up general Tso’s chicken
The ideal way to serve this chicken is paired with either rice or cauliflower rice to soak up the juices, and a vegetable like green beans or broccoli. This recipe makes for a great meal prep for the week, since it’s packed with protein and healthy ingredients.
To reheat this recipe, simply pop it in the microwave to warm through, or put it into a skillet to heat through over medium heat.
If you are planning on making a take-out themed dinner, you can also make these recipes to pair with this dish:
This is the perfect healthy meal prep for the week; skip the takeout and pack this instead!
Healthy Slow Cooker General Tso's Chicken
- frying pan
- slow cooker
- 2 lbs chicken breast
- 2 tbsp corn starch
- 1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 2 tbsp Hoisin sauce
- 1/2 tsp sesame oil
- 1 tsp sriracha
- 2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
- 1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 tsp ginger peeled and minced, or use the squeeze tube
- sesame seeds for garnish
- scallions for garnish
- Cut the chicken breast into bite-sized cubes.
- Toss the chicken breast with the corn starch, and add a pinch of kosher salt and pepper.
- Add cooking spray or olive oil spray to the frying pan and preheat over medium-high heat.
- Sear the chicken on all sides (working in two batches) until golden on the outside (it will not be cooked through). Set aside on a plate.
- Combine the soy sauce, Hoisin sauce, brown sugar, unsweetened applesauce, sesame oil, rice wine vinegar, ginger, minced garlic, sriracha, and rice wine vinegar in a bowl.
- Add the chicken to the bottom of a slow cooker, and pour the sauce on top. Stir to combine thoroughly.
- Cook on LOW for 3 hours.
- 6 WW points (green plan)
- 5 WW points (blue and purple plans)
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