This Honey Garlic Chicken recipe is easy to make and ready in 15 minutes! Made with chicken breasts and a 4 ingredient honey garlic sauce.
Weeknight dinner doesn’t get much easier than this honey garlic chicken! It’s even faster than takeout if you consider the time it takes to drive to the restaurant, wait for the food, and then drive home again. You can add cut-up broccoli, cauliflower, peppers, carrots, or peas for honey garlic chicken stir fry.
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Why We Love Honey Garlic Chicken
This is our favorite chicken recipe! My son has already asked me to make this chicken with honey and garlic twice in the past week. I love that it is so easy to prepare, ready in 15 minutes, and it is very versatile. Sometimes we serve it on a bed of rice, and other times with a side of fried rice. Cooked veggies can easily be added, and it goes well with cauliflower rice. My whole family loved this recipe the first time I made it years ago, and we continue to make it regularly!
Honey Garlic Sauce Ingredients
- Honey: The main ingredient in the sauce is honey, which is where this chicken gets its name. The honey sweetens the sauce, creating a glossy, sticky coating on the chicken, which carmelizes while cooking.
- Soy Sauce: We used light or low-sodium soy sauce to get the flavor of soy sauce without the extra sodium.
- Olive Oil: The oil helps prevent the sauce from sticking to the pan while adding flavor and a smooth texture.
- Hoisin Sauce: For additional flavor, we added some hoisin sauce which is a thick, sweet, and salty sauce. If you cannot find it, try using sweet barbecue sauce instead.
Honey Garlic Chicken Ingredients
- Chicken: We chose boneless skinless chicken breasts because they can be cut into cubes, have less fat, and cook quickly and evenly.
- Seasoning: The chicken cubes are lightly seasoned with salt, coarse ground black pepper, and garlic powder before coating them in flour. Seasoning them ahead of time gives the chicken extra flavor.
- Flour: All-purpose flour helps seal in the moisture and helps give the chicken pieces a golden brown, crispy coating.
- Oil: We use olive oil to fry the chicken, but you can also use vegetable or canola oil.
- Garlic: The minced garlic adds lots of flavor to the chicken and helps balance out the sweetness of the honey.
- Garnish: Top the chicken with sliced green onions and toasted sesame seeds.
How To Make Honey Garlic Chicken
Step One: Honey Garlic Sauce
Start by making the honey garlic sauce for chicken by whisking together the honey, soy sauce, olive oil, and hoisin sauce. Set the sauce mixture aside until later.
Step Two: Chicken
For this recipe, I used boneless skinless chicken breasts. You could also make honey garlic chicken thighs if you like your meat to have more fat.
Try to cut the chicken into evenly cut bite-sized pieces so they will finish cooking at the same time. After cubing the chicken, season it with salt, black pepper, and garlic powder.
Step Three: Flour
To get a nice, crispy coating on the chicken, coat it with flour before frying it. I’ve found that the easiest way to do so is to put the chicken pieces in a gallon-sized plastic bag.
Add the flour, close the top of the bag, and shake the chicken to coat it evenly with flour.
Step Four: Frying
Next, it’s time to cook the chicken. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet. Add the seasoned and coated chicken.
Cook for about three minutes before flipping them over to cook on the other side.
Add the minced garlic, stir, and cook for two minutes.
Step Five: Sauce
Finally, it’s time to add the sauce mixture. Turn the heat down to medium and pour in the honey garlic sauce. Stir and cook in the skillet over medium heat for 3-4 minutes, stirring often.
Garnish with toasted sesame seeds and sliced green onions. Serve the honey garlic chicken bites over rice, noodles, or cauliflower rice.
Other Ways To Prepare
Air Fryer Honey Garlic Chicken
To make air fryer honey garlic chicken, you’ll cook the chicken and the sauce separately. Then, combine them and add the garnish before serving.
- Cut, season, and coat the chicken with flour as directed in the recipe.
- Preheat the air fryer to 380˚F. Then, spray the basket with olive oil, put the coated chicken cubes in the air fryer, and spray them with olive oil.
- Cook the chicken bites at 380˚F for 10-12 minutes, stirring halfway through, until they are lightly browned and reach an internal temperature of 165˚F.
- While the chicken is air frying, make the honey garlic sauce in a saucepan. Heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the minced garlic and cook for 1-2 minutes.
- Then, add the honey, light soy sauce, and hoisin sauce. Bring to a boil.
- In a small bowl, mix together one tablespoon of cornstarch and two tablespoons of cold water. Add the mixture to the sauce and cook, while stirring constantly, until thickened. Remove from the heat.
- Transfer the crispy chicken bites from the air fryer to the saucepan and stir to coat the chicken with sauce. Garnish with green onions and sesame seeds.
Crock Pot Honey Garlic Chicken
Crock pot honey garlic chicken is another way to prepare this recipe. You’ll cook the chicken and the sauce in a slow cooker and then thicken the sauce on the stovetop before serving.
- Cut the chicken and season it but skip coating it with flour.
- Put the chicken pieces, minced garlic, and sauce in the crock pot and stir to coat.
- Cover and cook on low for 2-4 hours until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165˚F.
- Remove the chicken and set it aside. Transfer the sauce to a saucepan.
- Bring the sauce to a boil over medium heat.
- In a small bowl, mix together one tablespoon of cornstarch and two tablespoons of cold water. Add the mixture to the sauce and cook until thickened, stirring constantly.
- Remove the sauce from the heat, add the chicken, and stir to coat.
Honey Garlic Chicken Tenders
Another option is to make honey garlic chicken tenders instead of chicken bites.
- To do so, you’ll need chicken tenderloins. Or if you have boneless skinless chicken breasts on hand, you can cut them into strips.
- Follow the recipe as directed but skip cutting the chicken into bite-sized pieces.
- Increase the frying time to 4-5 minutes per side since the chicken tenderloins are bigger.
- Add the sauce as directed and turn to coat both sides during the final 3-4 minutes.
Honey Garlic Chicken Recipe FAQs
The recipe calls for boneless skinless chicken breasts, but skinless chicken thighs or chicken tenderloins would work as well.
Chicken breasts are cut into pieces in this recipe so that it cooks faster, there are more crispy bits, and you get honey garlic sauce in more areas. But the chicken breasts can be left whole if you prefer, but you will need to extend the cooking time depending on the thickness of the chicken breasts.
Stir in cut-up broccoli, cauliflower, peppers, carrots, or peas for honey garlic chicken stir-fry.
If you want a thicker sauce, mix one tablespoon of cornstarch into two tablespoons of cold water. Stir the mixture into the sauce.
If you want a thinner sauce, add a little water at a time until it reaches the consistency you prefer.
Yes, you can use gluten free flour, use cornstarch in place of the flour, or skip the flour coating and thicken the sauce with cornstarch, as mentioned above.
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Honey Garlic Chicken
Honey Garlic Sauce
- Whisk together honey, light soy sauce, olive oil, and hoisin sauce in a small bowl. Add red pepper flakes for heat, if desired. Set aside for later.
Honey Garlic Chicken
- Cut boneless, skinless chicken breasts into pieces. Sprinkle with salt, black pepper, and garlic powder.
- Put the chicken pieces in a gallon sized plastic bag. Add the flour, close the top of the bag, and shake the chicken to coat it evenly with flour.
- Heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the flour coated chicken. Cook for about three minutes, flip the pieces over and cook for another three minutes.
- Add the minced garlic, stir, and cook for 1-2 minutes.
- Turn the heat down to medium. Add the honey garlic sauce. Stir and cook for 3-4 minutes.
- Sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds and sliced green onions.
One: Chicken OptionsYou can substitute the boneless skinless chicken breasts with chicken thighs or chicken tenderloins.
Two: VeggiesAdd broccoli or cauliflower florets, sliced bell peppers, chopped carrots, or peas.
Three: Air FryerPlace the coated chicken pieces in the greased air fryer basket and spray them with olive oil. Cook in a preheated air fryer at 380˚F for 10-12 minutes. Make the sauce in a saucepan. Heat the oil over medium heat, add the garlic, and cook for 1-2 minutes. Add the honey, soy sauce, and hoisin and bring to a boil. In a small bowl, combine one tablespoon of cornstarch and two tablespoons of cold water. Add it to the sauce and cook, while stirring, until thickened. Coat the cooked chicken pieces with the sauce and garnish.
Four: Crock PotSeason the chicken but skip the flour coating. Put the chicken pieces, minced garlic, and sauce in the crock pot. Cover and cook on low for 2-4 hours. Remove the chicken and transfer the sauce to a saucepan. Bring it to a boil over medium heat. In a small bowl, mix together one tablespoon of cornstarch and two tablespoons of cold water. Add the mixture to the sauce and cook until thickened, stirring constantly. Remove from heat, add the chicken, and stir to coat.
Five: StorageStore cooled leftover chicken in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-4 days or in the freezer for up to two months.