Sweet & Sour Chicken

This sweet & sour chicken can be made with vegan “chicken” pieces or regular chicken breast…either way, it’s perfect for an easy weeknight meal!

Howdy, friends… I realise it’s been forever since I’ve passed along a main meal recipe to you.  I blame this on the hungry people in my house (myself included!)- just when I think I’ve made enough to have for dinner, leftovers for lunches the next day, AND still have some in reserve for the “blog photo shoot,” it turns out I’ve underestimated my household appetite once again.  So very often, we don’t have leftovers.  That’s ok with me, because the kitchen is my happy place and I enjoy the ritual of getting in there every evening to prepare the family dinner.

But I was grateful for this one little serving of sweet & sour “chicken” left from last night, since it did really turn out well, and it’s quick enough to whip up on any weeknight.  I made it using a vegan meat substitute called “Quorn” (the protein is a mycoprotein grown from a food-grade fungus… I know, fungus sounds terrible, but really, it’s not) but you can easily substitute regular chicken breast, or baked tofu.  Completely up to you.  I use Quorn products on occasion to bridge the gap between Sara’s vegetarian diet and Tommy’s appetite for meat.  Quorn is low in fat & high in fiber and has been shown in some studies to lower cholesterol.  My only complaint about it is that it’s high in sodium, and some of the varieties such as their “nuggets” are also high in fat.  So it’s definitely not our main source of vegetarian protein, but it’s nice in this recipe.

“Sweet & sour” sauces are usually filled with sugar… I got around this by just blending some ripe pineapple to a puree in my Vitamix, then adding it to the rest of the sauce ingredients.  We never missed the sugar at all, plus we got all the Vitamin C and potassium of the added pineapple.

This recipe came together very quickly and I had dinner on the table in a flash, just in time for my children to walk through the door at 6pm, starving after track practice, choir rehearsal, & the long ride home.  No wonder we never have any leftovers.

Cheers, friends!

Sweet & Sour Chicken

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes

Yield: 5-6 servings

Sweet & Sour Chicken

An easy & healthy weeknight meal that your whole family will love!

Ingredients

  • 1 onion, sliced thinly
  • 1 large red bell pepper, cut in bite-sized pieces
  • 1 cup pineapple, cut in bite-sized pieces
  • 1 tsp peanut or other vegetable oil
  • 1 bag “Quorn” chicken pieces (or 1 lb chicken breast, cut into bite-sized pieces)
  • For the sauce:
  • 1 cup pineapple, roughly chopped
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 T. reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 T. apple cider vinegar
  • 2 T. cornstarch
  • 2 T. lime or calamansi juice
  • hot steamed rice to serve

Method

  • To make the sauce, place the 1 cup roughly chopped pineapple in a blender and blend until pureed. Add the other sauce ingredients (except lime or calamansi juice) and pulse again to combine.
  • Transfer to a saucepan and cook over medium heat until mixture comes to a boil. Boil, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes, then remove from heat. Set aside to cool slightly.
  • Meanwhile, in a large non-stick skillet, heat the 1 t. oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion, bell pepper, and Quorn or chicken pieces and saute for 7-8 minutes or until vegetables are beginning to brown and Quorn/chicken is almost cooked through.
  • Add the sauce and the remaining 1 cup chopped pineapple to the skillet and stir to combine. Cook 3-5 more minutes or until chicken is thoroughly cooked and sauce is thick. Add lime or calamansi juice to taste.
  • Makes 5-6 servings.

Notes

If using Quorn, keep frozen until ready to use

http://www.thexpatdietitian.com/sweet-sour-chicken/

 

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