Step-by-Step Guide to a Mouth-Watering Bourbon Chicken Recipe

If you’re looking for a tantalizing and mouthwatering dish that combines the rich flavors of tender chicken with a sweetness and a hint of bourbon, you’ve come to the right place. In this Bourbon Chicken Recipe, we’ll walk you through the steps to create a sensational dish that will have your taste buds dancing with delight. So grab your apron and get ready to indulge in the irresistible combination of flavors our recipe offers.

Introduction to Bourbon Chicken Recipe

Overview of Bourbon Chicken as a Popular dish

Bourbon Chicken is a well-loved dish that has gained popularity for its bold flavors and tender, juicy meat. It is a classic American-Chinese fusion recipe that combines the richness of bourbon whiskey with savory ingredients like soy sauce, garlic, and ginger. The dish is known for its sticky glaze that coats the chicken, giving it a slightly caramelized and sweet finish. Bourbon Chicken has become a favorite among many food enthusiasts thanks to its irresistible taste and versatility.

introduction to bourbon chicken recipe

Cultural History and Origin of Bourbon Chicken

Contrary to the name suggests, Bourbon Chicken does not contain any bourbon alcohol in its traditional recipe. The dish is said to have originated in the 1980s within the Chinese-American community in the southern United States, specifically in the bustling streets of New Orleans.

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The name “bourbon” is believed to have been given to the dish due to its deep, rich flavors reminiscent of southern cuisine and the association with the famous bourbon whiskey produced in the region. Over time, Bourbon Chicken has made its way into various Chinese-American restaurant menus across the country, captivating diners with its unique blend of flavors and cultural fusion.

Cooking Methods for Bourbon Chicken

cooking methods for bourbon chicken

Different Approaches to Cooking Bourbon Chicken

When cooking Bourbon Chicken, you can take a few different approaches. The key is to find a method that suits your preferences and cooking style.

  1. Pan-frying the chicken: This method involves marinating the chicken in a flavorful sauce and then cooking it in a skillet until it is tender and juicy.
  2. Baking the chicken: This method involves placing the marinated chicken in a baking dish and cooking it in the oven until it is fully cooked.
  3. Finally, grill the chicken for a smoky and charred flavor. This method involves grilling the marinated chicken on a hot grill until cooked.

Pros and Cons of Various Cooking Methods

Each Bourbon Chicken cooking method has its pros and cons.

  1. Pan-frying the chicken allows for a crispy and flavorful exterior while keeping the inside tender and juicy. However, this method requires constant attention and can result in greasier chicken.
  2. Baking the chicken is a more hands-off approach, perfect for those who prefer a set-it-and-forget-it method. It also allows for even cooking and a more consistent result. However, the chicken may not get as crispy as when pan-frying.
  3. Grilling the chicken imparts a delicious smoky flavor and can be a healthier option as excess fat drips away. On the downside, it requires outdoor cooking equipment and may not be suitable for all seasons or living situations.
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Ultimately, the choice of cooking method comes down to personal preference and the equipment available.

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Serving Suggestions

Ideal Accompaniments And Sides

ideal accompaniments and sides bourbon chicken

When serving Bourbon Chicken, several ideal accompaniments and sides can elevate the dish and enhance its flavors. Some popular options include:

  1. Stir-fried vegetables: The crunchiness and vibrant colors of stir-fried vegetables perfectly complement the tender and saucy Bourbon Chicken. You can mix bell peppers, broccoli, carrots, and snap peas for a nutritious and visually appealing side.
  2. Steamed rice: The simplicity of steamed rice provides a neutral base for the bold flavors of Bourbon Chicken to shine. The fluffy texture of the rice also helps to balance out the richness of the dish.
  3. Roasted potatoes: The potatoes’ crisp exterior and creamy interior add a delightful contrast to the tender chicken.
  4. Fried rice: The savory flavors of the fried rice complement the sweet and tangy notes of the Bourbon Chicken.
  5. Salad: A fresh and crisp salad can be a refreshing accompaniment to the rich flavors of the chicken. Consider using a mix of greens, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, and a tangy vinaigrette dressing.

Pairing With Different Starches (rice, noodles, etc.)

Bourbon Chicken can be paired with various starches to create a satisfying and balanced meal. Some popular choices include:

  1. Steamed rice: Steamed rice is a classic and versatile option that pairs well with the flavors of Bourbon Chicken. The fluffy rice absorbs the sauce, making each bite incredibly flavorful.
  2. Noodles: Whether lo mein noodles or rice noodles, the noodles soak up the delicious sauce, creating a tasty combination.
  3. Lettuce wrap: The crispness of the lettuce adds a satisfying crunch, while the chicken provides a burst of flavor.
  4. Quinoa: Its nutty flavor and fluffy texture complement the savory and sweet elements of Bourbon Chicken.
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Bourbon Chicken Recipe

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes


  • 4-8 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • Cornstarch, for dusting
  • 1/3 cup bourbon
  • 1/3 cup soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes (adjust to taste)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Green onions, thinly sliced (for garnish)


    1. Begin by mincing the garlic cloves. Give them a smash to release the skin and oils inside.
    2. Cut the chicken breasts into bite-sized pieces. Cooking it in smaller pieces will result in quicker and more even cooking.
    3. Dust the chicken pieces with cornstarch, ensuring they are lightly coated.
    4. Mix the bourbon, soy sauce, chicken stock, brown sugar, onion powder, ground ginger, and red pepper flakes in a bowl. Stir until the sugar is dissolved.
    5. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over high heat until it begins to dance on the surface.
    6. Cook the chicken pieces in batches until they are cooked through and golden brown on both sides. This should take a few minutes per side.
    7. Transfer the cooked chicken to a bowl and set it aside.
    8. Reduce the heat slightly and add the minced garlic to the skillet. Cook for about 30-60 seconds, until fragrant, being careful not to burn it.
    9. Pour the sauce mixture into the skillet, deglazing the pan and scraping up any brown bits.
    10. Let the sauce simmer until the alcohol from the bourbon has cooked off.
    11. Return the chicken to the skillet and simmer on low heat until the sauce thickens slightly and coats the chicken.
    12. While the chicken simmers, chop the green onions into thin pieces.
    13. Add most of the green onions to the skillet, allowing them to cook slightly and infuse their flavor.
    14. Turn off the heat and plate the Bourbon Chicken. Garnish with the remaining green onions.
    15. Serve hot with rice or your preferred side dish.

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