Crispy Sesame Lemon Chicken Recipe

Yields: 4 servings
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 25-30 minutes


For the chicken:

  • 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil

For the sauce:

  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
  • 3 tbsp lemon juice (from about 1 large lemon)
  • 1 tbsp rice vinegar (or apple cider vinegar)
  • 1 tbsp grated ginger
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp cornstarch (mixed with 1 tbsp water to form a slurry)


  • 2 tbsp sesame seeds
  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced


  • Prep the sauce: In a medium saucepan, whisk together honey, soy sauce, lemon juice, rice vinegar, ginger, garlic, and sesame oil. Bring to a simmer over medium heat.
  • Mix cornstarch slurry: In a small bowl, whisk the 1 tsp of cornstarch with 1 tbsp water until smooth. Stir into the simmering sauce, and cook until thickened, about 1 minute. Remove from heat and set aside.
  • Coat the chicken: In a shallow bowl or dish, combine cornstarch, flour, salt, and pepper. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg. Dip chicken pieces in the egg, then dredge in the cornstarch mixture, shaking off excess.
  • Cook the chicken: Heat the vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken in batches, making sure not to overcrowd the pan. Cook for 3-4 minutes per side, or until golden brown and cooked through. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate to drain.
  • Finish and serve: Add the cooked chicken to the sauce and toss to coat. Garnish with sesame seeds and scallions. Serve immediately with rice or noodles, and your favorite vegetables.


  • Don’t overcrowd the pan: This prevents the chicken from getting properly crispy.
  • Use fresh ingredients: Fresh ginger and garlic make a big difference in the flavor of the sauce.
  • Adjust sweetness and spiciness: Add more honey for a sweeter sauce, or a pinch of red pepper flakes for a little heat.
  • Other Garnishes: Chopped cilantro or peanuts would also be great additions.


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