Not Really Panda Express’s Orange Chicken
We’ve simplified this popular dish by using chicken tenders, which cook more quickly in the flavorful sauce — made with lots of orange juice and a little orange zest for a brighter flavor. The dish is fairly sweet, so don’t stint on the garlic which will balance the flavors. You can even double the garlic, if you want! There’s no soy sauce or vinegar here, just as in the original recipe. That said, you could add up to 2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar with the other ingredients for a more sophisticated take.
Servings Prep Time
4-6 servings 10minutes
Cook Time
Servings Prep Time
4-6 servings 10minutes
Cook Time
  • 2lbs chicken tenderseach cut into 4 pieces
  • 3 medium carrotsthinly sliced (1 1/2 cups)
  • 3 medium garlic clovesminced (1 tbsp)
  • 1tbsp finely grated fresh orange zestfrom about 2 medium oranges
  • 1cup pulp-free orange juice
  • 1/3cup Hoisin Sauce (gluten-free if necessary )
  • 3tbsp granulated white sugar
  • 1/2tsp table salt
  • 1/2tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2tbsp dditional water
  • 1tbsp cornstarch
  1. Stir the chicken, carrots, garlic, zest, orange juice, hoisin sauce, sugar, salt, and pepper in the insert set in a 5-, 6-, or 8-quart Instant Pot until the sugar dissolves and the mixture is uniform. Lock the lid onto the cooker.
  2. For Pressure Cook: Set the Instant Pot for Pressure Cook or Manual and set the pressure level to LOW. The valve must be closed. Set the time for 6 minutes with the Keep Warm Setting off.
    –OR– For Slow Cook: Set the Instant Pot for Slow Cook and set the level to High. The valve must be open. Set the time for 2 hours with the Keep Warm setting off.
  3. When the pot has finished cooking under pressure, use the quick- release method to bring the pressure back to normal. Whichever cooking method you’ve used, unlatch the lid and open the cooker. Whisk the water and cornstarch in a small bowl until smooth.
  4. Press Sauté and set it for Medium, Normal or Custom 300°F. Set the time for 5 minutes.
  5. Stir quite often while the chicken mixture comes to a simmer. Stir in the cornstarch slurry and continue cooking, stirring almost constantly, until bubbling and thickened, less than 1 minute. Turn off the heat and use hot pads or silicone baking mitts to remove the (hot!) insert to a nearby wire rack. Cool for 2 to 3 minutes before serving warm.
Recipe Notes

Other Pots
• For a 3-quart Instant Pot, you must halve all of the ingredient amounts.
• For an 8-quart Instant Pot, you can increase all of the ingredient amounts by 50 percent.

• Sprinkle servings with sesame seeds and/or the minced scallions.
• The dish needs a good batch of rice as its base.