Straightforward Bourbon Hen | Diethood

February 20, 2022

Straightforward Bourbon Hen is a takeout-style dinner that may’t be beat! Everybody will love this candy and savory rooster, swimming in a thick sauce ready with brown sugar, soy sauce, garlic, and naturally – bourbon!

wooden spoon stirring through bourbon chicken while cooking in a stainless steel skillet.

Candy and Sticky Bourbon Hen, Made out of Scratch!

If you’d like a crowd-pleasing rooster dish, you actually can’t go fallacious with bourbon rooster. This mall-and-takeout traditional is made with tender chunks of rooster, stir-fried and coated in a thick, sticky sauce that’s flavored with actual bourbon! It’s well-balanced between candy, salty, and tangy, making it a satisfying household favourite – particularly with a heaping serving to of your favourite rice.

Bourbon rooster is the type of meals I fondly keep in mind from a day hitting the mall, a welcome scorching meal in the midst of all that strolling and buying! Effectively, let me inform you, it’s additionally a welcome dinner on the finish of a protracted day.

Plus, it’s fast and simple to make. The one prep it’s a must to do is reduce up the rooster, a couple of scallions, and a bit of garlic, after which whisk collectively the sauce components. 

up close shot of cut up chicken thighs covered in bourbon sauce and topped with sesame seeds and sliced green onions.

Why Is It Referred to as Bourbon Hen?

This recipe is nearly actually referred to as bourbon rooster due to the bourbon within the sauce, however some folks additionally suppose the dish originated on Bourbon Avenue in New Orleans! Actually, it could have been invented by a Chinese language restaurant cook dinner in New Orleans, explaining its similarity to many Chinese language-American stir-fry dishes.

The Components

The key to this dish is within the wonderful sauce, loaded with wealthy umami taste from the rooster and soy sauce, and balanced with heat brown sugar and tangy apple cider vinegar.

  • Hen: I choose boneless, skinless rooster thighs on this recipe, however you can even use rooster breasts. Reduce the rooster into 1-inch items.
  • Cornstarch: Cornstarch offers the rooster a silkier texture and thickens the sauce.
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Oil: You’ll want a small quantity of high-heat oil for frying. My most popular oil is primary vegetable oil or avocado oil, however you would use peanut oil or another excessive warmth oil you want.
  • Scallions and Garlic: Thinly slice the scallions, and mince the garlic.
  • Broth: Low-sodium rooster broth is my go-to! Be at liberty to substitute bone broth or vegetable broth, although!
  • Soy Sauce: Once more, I take advantage of low-sodium soy sauce. Common soy sauce can be positive, as are tamari sauce and coconut aminos.
  • Bourbon: The alcohol within the bourbon cooks off because the sauce simmers, leaving simply the gentle bourbon taste. Nonetheless, if you wish to substitute, take a look at the part beneath!
  • Brown Sugar: Packed gentle brown sugar sweetens the dish fantastically! Honey and maple syrup are additionally good choices.
  • Apple Juice: Just a bit apple juice provides a slight fruity sweetness.
  • Apple Cider Vinegar: Rice vinegar or rice wine vinegar are good choices right here, too.
  • Ginger: Floor ginger is ok. If you happen to use recent ginger, grate or mince it very finely.
  • Garnishes: Toasted sesame seeds and sliced inexperienced onions make pretty non-obligatory garnishes, including taste, texture, and coloration.
  • Rice: Cooked rice is my common aspect for serving, or you’ll be able to take a look at the serving strategies and variations beneath for extra concepts.
chicken thighs in a mixing bowl tossed with cornstarch.

What to Use As an alternative of Bourbon

If you happen to don’t wish to use bourbon in your recipe, no worries! Any whisky will do. And, should you don’t wish to use alcohol in any respect, you should use additional apple juice, or a bit of water combined with hoisin sauce. The bourbon rooster will style barely totally different, however nonetheless wonderful!

Find out how to Make It

Let’s check out the method for making home made bourbon rooster. Like many stir-fries, this one is all about cooking the rooster to tender perfection, after which making the sauce in the identical skillet or wok. It’s simple!

  • Coat the Hen in Cornstarch, and Cook dinner. Mix your cornstarch, salt, and pepper in a big mixing bowl, and add the rooster items. Toss them gently to coat. Subsequent, warmth the oil in a wok or a big skillet over medium warmth. Cook dinner the rooster in batches till it’s browned and cooked by, about seven minutes per batch. Don’t stir the rooster too typically, or it could stick. 
  • Cook dinner the Garlic and Scallions: Take the rooster out of the skillet and set it apart. Add a bit of extra oil to the skillet, and set it again on the burner. Add the scallions and cook dinner for 30 seconds, after which the garlic for one more 20 seconds. Stir steadily to maintain the scallions and garlic from scorching.
  • Make the Sauce. In a medium bowl, whisk collectively the rooster broth, soy sauce, bourbon, brown sugar, apple juice, apple cider vinegar and ginger. Pour this combination into the new skillet and produce to a gentle simmer.
  • Cook dinner the Hen within the Sauce Briefly. Lastly, add the rooster again to the skillet and produce it to a boil. Scale back the warmth to medium-low, and let the rooster cook dinner within the sauce for about 5 to 7 minutes, or till the sauce is sticky and thick.
  • Take pleasure in! Serve the rooster over rice, garnished with sesame seeds and sliced inexperienced onions.
photo of a skillet while cooking cut up chicken thighs in bourbon sauce.

Straightforward Ideas and Variations

There are such a lot of wonderful methods to tweak this recipe! Be at liberty to make it your individual! Listed below are a couple of of my favourite concepts for customizing home made bourbon rooster:

  • Make It Spicy: For a bit of kick, add a contact of Sriracha sauce or cayenne pepper to the sauce whereas it cooks. Begin small, and add extra to style.
  • Bourbon Popcorn Hen: For a crunchy twist, make Popcorn Chicken as a substitute of the rooster on this recipe, and coat it within the candy, sticky bourbon sauce. Discuss tasty!
  • Add Pasta: Whereas I normally serve rice, this saucy dish can be fabulous with scorching, cooked lo mein (or linguine) stirred proper into the skillet on the finish of cooking. The pasta absorbs the sauce to create a stunning noodle bowl!
  • Add Veggies: For additional diet, you’ll be able to undoubtedly stir-fry sliced or chopped onions, mushrooms, and peppers with the rooster – or toss some steamed broccoli proper into the skillet on the finish of cooking.
  • Play with the Proportions: Need the sauce a bit of sweeter? Add extra sugar! Slightly extra tangy? Add extra vinegar. Extra bourbon-y? Extra bourbon, after all! 🥃

What to Serve with Bourbon Hen

Rice is a pure companion for bourbon rooster, absorbing all that scrumptious sauce and including a healthful carb part. Nonetheless, there are many different nice sides you would make in addition to (or along with) rice! Take a look at these simple recipes for aspect dish inspiration!

  • Bok Choy: Steamed bok choy with a bit of sesame oil and soy sauce is all the time unbelievable, or you would make Baby Bok Choy with Warm Garlic Soy Dressing. Yum!
  • Grilled Zucchini: Grilling takes the naturally gentle taste of recent zucchini to savory new heights! Gentle charring brings out a touch of heat sweetness on this recipe for Perfect Grilled Zucchini, with easy seasoning and a bit of sesame oil.
  • Fried “Rice”: Flip your dinner right into a low-carb feast with Shrimp Fried Cauliflower Rice! It’s a straightforward grain-free model of the takeout favourite.
overhead shot of a white dinner plate with bourbon chicken and rice arranged on top of it, and a pair of chopsticks set at the bottom of the plate.

Storing and Reheating the Leftovers

  • To maintain your leftover bourbon rooster recent, retailer it within the fridge, in airtight containers or meals storage baggage. Use inside 4 days.
  • To reheat, simply place the rooster and any sauce in a lined skillet over low warmth. Permit to warmth till the sauce bubbles and the rooster is steaming scorching throughout, stirring sometimes.

Can I Freeze Bourbon Hen?

Sure, you’ll be able to! You’ll be able to truly freeze this one earlier than cooking, or simply freeze the leftovers after cooking.

  • To freeze earlier than cooking, make the sauce and add the chopped rooster and sauce to a freezer bag. Seal the bag, urgent out as a lot air as potential. Freeze for as much as 2 months. Thaw in a single day within the fridge earlier than cooking.
  • To freeze cooked bourbon rooster, cool the rooster and sauce utterly. Pack the rooster and sauce right into a freezer bag, and freeze for as much as three months. Thaw in a single day within the fridge earlier than reheating.


Straightforward Bourbon Hen

Prep Time5 minutes

Cook dinner Time20 minutes

Whole Time25 minutes

Everybody will love this candy and savory rooster, swimming in a thick sauce made with apple cider vinegar, brown sugar, soy sauce, garlic, and bourbon.


  • 2 kilos boneless skinless rooster thighs, reduce into 1-inch items (you can even use rooster breasts)
  • ¼ cup cornstarch
  • salt and recent floor black pepper, to style
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
  • 3 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup low sodium chicken broth
  • ¼ cup low sodium soy sauce
  • ¼ cup bourbon
  • ¼ cup light brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons apple juice
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon floor ginger
  • toasted sesame seeds, for garnish, non-obligatory
  • sliced inexperienced onions, for garnish, non-obligatory
  • cooked rice, for serving


  • In a big mixing bowl toss the rooster items with cornstarch, salt, and pepper.

  • Set a wok or a big skillet over medium warmth and warmth it up.

  • Add 1 tablespoon vegetable oil to the wok; then add within the rooster items.

  • Cook dinner the rooster for about 6 to eight minutes, or till browned and cooked by. In case your skillet isn’t large enough to suit all of the rooster items in a single single layer, cook dinner the rooster in batches.

  • Take away rooster from skillet; cowl and put aside.

  • Add remaining vegetable oil to the skillet and set it again on the burner over medium warmth.

  • To the new oil, add the sliced scallions and cook dinner for 30 seconds.

  • Stir within the garlic and cook dinner for 30 seconds, stirring steadily.

  • In a mixing bowl, mix the rooster broth, soy sauce, bourbon, brown sugar, apple juice, apple cider vinegar and floor ginger; whisk till completely integrated.

  • Pour into the new wok/skillet; cook dinner for 3 minutes and produce to a gentle simmer.

  • Add the rooster again to the skillet and produce to a boil.

  • Scale back the warmth to medium-low and cook dinner for about 5 to eight minutes, or till sauce is thickened.

  • Take away from warmth.

  • Garnish with sesame seeds and sliced inexperienced onions.

  • Serve over rice.

Diet Information

Straightforward Bourbon Hen

Quantity Per Serving

Energy 335
Energy from Fats 72

% Day by day Worth*

Fats 8g12%

Saturated Fats 2g10%

Trans Fats 1g

Polyunsaturated Fats 2g

Monounsaturated Fats 3g

Ldl cholesterol 172mg57%

Sodium 606mg25%

Potassium 564mg16%

Carbohydrates 21g7%

Fiber 1g4%

Sugar 12g13%

Protein 37g74%

Vitamin A 116IU2%

Vitamin C 2mg2%

Calcium 39mg4%

Iron 2mg11%

* % Day by day Values are primarily based on a 2000 calorie weight loss program.

Dietary information is an estimate and offered as courtesy. Values could differ in keeping with the components and instruments used. Please use your most popular dietary calculator for extra detailed information.

Key phrases: bourbon rooster chinese language, rooster stir fry, sticky rooster

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