Seriously the best vegan orange chicken and rice made with soy curls and served with sautéed bok choy. A whole foods plant based, gluten free and oil free recipe that is sure to become a new family favorite.
A riff on our vegan chicken with broccoli recipe this homemade version of a fast food favorite is not to be missed. You have air fried or baked soy curls with crispy edges swimming in a luscious homemade orange sauce. What’s not to love, right ?!
100% better than any takeout! Panda Express has nothing on this!
The Orange Sauce
- It’s a classic sticky sweet and sour sauce made with simple ingredients: orange juice, tamari, rice vinegar, sweetener, garlic and ginger with an optional pinch of chili flakes or hot sauce for heat.
- You can adapt sweetness and tanginess to your taste and use a compliant sweetener for WFPB and Plantricious guidelines compliance. Remember that maple syrup is allowed on WFPB diets but only date paste is Plantricious compliant.
- You’ll notice that my sauce doesn’t call for a slurry of cornstarch because it isn’t needed. The soy curls are already lightly coated in tapioca and as soon as you’ll add them to the sauce it will thicken it into a perfect glaze.
- Cauliflower. Simply replace the soy curls with cauliflower florets, bake at 450”F for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden around the edges then toss in the orange sauce. Alternatively you could make a batter of equal parts plant milk and whole wheat pastry flour to dip the cauliflower then toss them in some panko bread crumbs before baking for extra crispness.
- Tofu. Use one block (14 oz) of drained and pressed tofu torn or cut into pieces, coated in tapioca and air fried (or baked at 400”F for 25 minutes or so) before dipping it in the sauce. Easy peasy!
- Tempeh. A plain block of tempeh cut into strips or bite size pieces could also be used here if desired using the same recipe below.
what to serve with:
P.S. If you made this recipe don’t forget to come back here to rate it, snap a photo and tag me with #VeggieSociety on Instagram, it always makes my day ~ Florentina Xo’s
how to make vegan orange chicken:
Vegan Orange Chicken Recipe (soy curls)
- 1 cup orange juice freshly squeezed
- 6 Tbsp tamari
- 5 tbsp maple syrup or sugar (replace with date paste for Plantricious compliance)
- 2 Tbsp rice vinegar (+ more to taste)
- 1 inch ginger root (peelt + grated)
- 2-3 cloves garlic grated
- zest from 1 orange
- 1 pinch red chili flakes optional to taste
- Preheat your air fryer or oven to 375 “F.
- Soak the soy curls in hot water for 20 minutes then use your hands to squeeze out as much of the moisture as you can. (Feel free to break them into smaller bite size pieces if desired).
- Transfer to a mixing bowl and sprinkle with the tapioca (or cornstarch). Toss to coat well.
- Place your soy curls in the air fryer basket making sure to shake off any tapioca excess. (If using the oven method place on a parchment lined baking sheet preferably without touching each other).
- Air fry for 13 to 15 minutes until just crips around the edges.
Make the Orange Sauce
- Combine all of the sauce ingredients and add the sauce to a medium size skillet. Bring to a simmer and cook for about 20 seconds or so to tame the garlic.
- Add the air fried ( or baked) soy curls and toss everything until nicely coated all over. Cook an additional minute until the sauce thickens a bit and glazes the soy curls to your liking.
- Serve over rice and sautéed bok choy garnished with sesame seeds, scallions or cilantro.
- To make this sauce Plantricious compliant make sure to sweeten it with date paste + water instead of sugar or maple syrup.
- The recipe makes enough sauce to coat twice the amount of soy curls in my honest opinion. However, many people prefer extra sauce on the side when serving their orange “ chick’n with rice so you’ll have to decide for yourself what you prefer.
- The bok choy in the photos is simply sautéed in a splash of water and tamari sauce until wilted. You can dress it with a drizzle of sesame oil if desired.
- You can rehydrate the soy curls and mix the sauce in advance. It is recommended you cook them just before eating for the best texture, that being said they still make really great leftovers.
- Resist the temptation to add any thickener / slurry to the sauce. The light dusting of tapioca on the soy curls will thicken it perfectly, i promise! Only if you plan to use this sauce on its own or in another recipe would you want to add cornstarch, tapioca or agar agar to thicken it.
- Depending on the type of sweetener used (maple syrup, date paste, coconut nectar or sugar, white or brown sugar), your sauce might be lighter or darker in color.
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