This bourbon chicken is so delicious and flavorful you won’t believe that it takes less than 30 minutes to throw together!

You guys, this bourbon chicken is so delicious, you won’t believe it takes less than 30 minutes to throw together.

It is a complete lifesaver on those weeknights when you have neither time nor energy but hungry mouths are still clamoring for dinner to get on the table ASAP (sigh, no rest for the hardworking home cook).

Bourbon sauce covered chicken on white rice on a white plate.

Oh, and PS, there is no bourbon in the recipe so no worries if that had you concerned (don’t ask me why it is named what it is; I don’t ask questions when something is as fantastic as this meal).

The chicken is slightly crispy on the outside and perfectly tender on the inside and the sauce is the a wonderful balance of sweet, tangy and a teensy bit of spice.

I’ve gushed before about Brian’s adoration of his beloved sweet and sour chicken. If it is any indication, this much faster saucy-chicken-over-rice-type-of-meal takes a very close second. Or in other words: bourbon chicken rocks.

White rice and sticky bourbon chicken with a side of broccoli on a white plate.

FAQs for Bourbon Chicken

Does this recipe actually include bourbon?

Nope, that just the name of the recipe!

Exactly how much cornstarch do you use?

I don’t usually measure- but its about 1/3 cup.

What To Serve With This:

Fresh fruit or green salad
Buttery Peas with Thyme
Simple Buttermilk Drop Biscuits

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Bourbon Chicken

4.88 stars (16 ratings)



  • 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 2 tablespoons canola, vegetable or coconut oil
  • Cornstarch for dusting the chicken pieces


  • 1 garlic clove, finely minced
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ginger or 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ – ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • ¼ cup apple juice + 1/2 cup water, or sub out the apple juice and water for 3/4 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • cup packed light brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • cup low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch, optional – helps thicken the sauce a little bit more


  • In a gallon-sized ziploc bag, toss the chicken pieces with a couple tablespoons of cornstarch.
  • Whisk all the sauce ingredients together and set aside.
  • In a large, 12-inch nonstick skillet, heat the oil over medium heat until hot and rippling. Cook half of the chicken in a single layer for 30 seconds or so on each side until golden brown but not all the way cooked through. Lift the chicken pieces out of the skillet to a plate and repeat with the remaining chicken, also removing it to a plate.
  • Wipe any excess oil out of the skillet and return it to medium heat. Pour in the sauce and add the chicken pieces. Bring the mixture to a simmer and cook for 8-10 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through and the sauce has thickened slightly (don’t overcook the chicken or it might be dry).
  • Serve the chicken and sauce over hot, cooked rice or quinoa.
Serving: 1 Serving, Calories: 281kcal, Carbohydrates: 16g, Protein: 33g, Fat: 9g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 97mg, Sodium: 701mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 14g

Recipe Source: adapted from Blog Chef