A Healthier Sesame Chicken With Easy Cleanup
Even the pickiest eaters like sweet and tangy sesame chicken. Instead of stopping for takeout or making a mess in your kitchen, use your Crock-Pot to make this yummy dish. Making it in your Crock-Pot not only saves you cooking and cleanup time – always a plus for working moms – but results in a healthier version of this kid-friendly meal.
Traditional sesame chicken is breaded and fried. While this Crock-Pot sesame chicken recipe omits the breading and the frying, it's still filled with a lot of flavor.
Total Time: 4 to 5 hours | Prep Time: 10 minutes | Serves: 4
- 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1/4 cup rice vinegar
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- 2 teaspoons minced garlic
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1/4 cup diced red peppers
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons cold water
- 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
- Season chicken with salt and pepper.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together broth, honey, rice vinegar, soy sauce, minced garlic and red pepper flakes.
- In a 6-quart Crock-Pot, pour in half of the sauce, then add the chicken and peppers, covering the chicken with the remaining sauce.
- Cover the Crock-Pot and cook on low-heat for 4 hours.
- After the chicken has cooked, remove from the Crock-Pot.
- In a small bowl, dissolve cornstarch in water and add to the Crock-Pot to thicken sauce.
- Cut the chicken into cubes, return to the Crock-Pot, add sesame seeds and cook on high for 10 minutes.
- Serve hot.
Sesame chicken goes well with rice, but try mixing the chicken and sauce with cooked buckwheat noodles or spaghetti for a lo mein-style dish.
Kids enjoy the sweetness of this sauce, so don't miss out on the opportunity to add veggies. While not traditionally part of sesame chicken, broccoli or cauliflower florets go well with this recipe. Add the veggies after you've added the cornstarch and returned the chicken to the Crock-Pot. Increase the final cooking time to 20 minutes, or until vegetables are tender.
If you prefer a less sweet sauce, cut the honey in half and increase soy sauce to 1/2 cup. To reduce sodium, use low-sodium broth and soy sauce.
Cut cooking time in half by placing your Crock-Pot on high heat.
Before taking your chicken out of the Crock-Pot, test the temperature with a meat thermometer to make sure it's cooked. The ideal temperature for well-cooked chicken is 165 F. If the chicken falls below this temperature, cook for another 30 minutes.
Jill Corleone is a registered dietitian and health coach who has been writing and lecturing on diet and health for more than 15 years. Her work has been featured on the Huffington Post, Diabetes Self-Management and in the book "Noninvasive Mechanical Ventilation," edited by John R. Bach, M.D. Corleone holds a Bachelor of Science in nutrition.