Slow Cooker Orange Chicken

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Slow Cooker Orange Chicken — The easiest orange chicken ever because your slow cooker does all the work!! Super juicy, tender, and coated with a sweet-yet-tangy orange glaze that’s irresistible!!

Slow Cooker Orange Chicken - The easiest orange chicken ever because your slow cooker does all the work!! Super juicy, tender, and coated with a sweet-yet-tangy orange glaze that's irresistible!!

Easy Slow Cooker Orange Chicken Recipe

When I asked on Facebook what kind of recipes you want to see, I was overwhelmed with slow cooker responses. So slow cooker orange chicken it is today with more slow cooker recipes in the upcoming weeks. Make sure you’re following me on Facebook and chime in.

This is the easiest orange chicken recipe ever and there’s no breading, browning, or frying involved. Your slow cooker does all the work for you. The chicken is so tender, juicy, and layered with complementary flavors from the orange marmalade, soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, sesame oil, ginger, garlic, and green onions.

It reminds me of Panda Express Chinese Orange Chicken except with this copycat recipe, there’s no frying.

Along with rice and steamed broccoli and peapods, my family loved this meal and it couldn’t be any easier for me. I used a slow cooker liner and cleanup was as easy as tossing the liner.

There’s plenty of cooking sauce leftover in the bottom of the slow cooker, which I spoon generously over the chicken, rice, and veggies. I love the sweet-and-tangy, savory flavor and don’t let a drop go to waste.

Slow Cooker Orange Chicken - The easiest orange chicken ever because your slow cooker does all the work!! Super juicy, tender, and coated with a sweet-yet-tangy orange glaze that's irresistible!!

What’s in Slow Cooker Orange Chicken? 

To make this orange chicken recipe with orange marmalade, you’ll need: 

  • Olive oil
  • Boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • Cornstarch
  • Salt and pepper
  • Orange marmelade 
  • Low-sodium soy sauce
  • Rice wine vinegar
  • Sesame oil
  • Ground ginger
  • Garlic powder
  • Sesame seeds
  • Green onions
  • Orange slices (optional) 

Slow Cooker Orange Chicken - The easiest orange chicken ever because your slow cooker does all the work!! Super juicy, tender, and coated with a sweet-yet-tangy orange glaze that's irresistible!!

How to Make Slow Cooker Orange Chicken

Drizzle the bottom of your slow cooker with olive oil. Then, place the diced chicken, cornstarch, salt, and pepper in a zip-top bag and shake to coat. Place chicken in slow cooker. 

Next, add the remaining ingredients to the slow cooker and gently stir the chicken to coat it evenly in the sauce. 

Cook covered on high for about 2 hours or on low for about 4 hours. If cooking on high, start checking at 90 minutes and if cooking on low, start checking at 3 hours. All slow cookers vary, so just cook until chicken is done (reaches 165F on an instant read thermometer).

I like serving my CrockPot orange chicken over rice garnished with chopped green onion and sesame seeds. 

Slow Cooker Orange Chicken - The easiest orange chicken ever because your slow cooker does all the work!! Super juicy, tender, and coated with a sweet-yet-tangy orange glaze that's irresistible!!

Can I Make Orange Chicken Without a Slow Cooker? 

I haven’t made this recipe without a slow cooker, so I can’t give specifics about how to tweak it if you don’t own one. I have other chicken recipes listed in the Related Recipes below that you can try until you can make this with a slow cooker.

Can I Add Veggies to the Orange Chicken? 

I’ve only made this recipe as written, but a few readers have reported success with adding chopped vegetables to the slow cooker in the last 30 or so minutes of cooking. Play around with it and see what works for you! 

Slow Cooker Orange Chicken - The easiest orange chicken ever because your slow cooker does all the work!! Super juicy, tender, and coated with a sweet-yet-tangy orange glaze that's irresistible!!

Tips for Making Slow Cooker Orange Chicken

Some readers have asked if they can use sugar-free orange marmalade in this easy orange chicken recipe. I’ve only made this recipe using regular orange marmalade (i.e. full sugar), so I can’t speak to how the sugar-free kind will cook down in the sauce and if it will affect the overall flavor of the dish. 

I’ve only made this orange marmalade chicken recipe using chicken breasts, but I’m sure you could get away with boneless skinless chicken thighs instead. Just be sure to dice them into even-sized pieces so the chicken cooks through evenly. 

If you have a sesame allergy, you’re welcome to use additional olive oil in the orange chicken sauce instead of sesame oil. And skip the sesame seed garnish. 

Slow Cooker Orange Chicken — The easiest orange chicken ever because your slow cooker does all the work!! Super juicy, tender, and coated with a sweet-yet-tangy orange glaze that's irresistible!!

Slow Cooker Orange Chicken — The easiest orange chicken ever because your slow cooker does all the work!! Super juicy, tender, and coated with a sweet-yet-tangy orange glaze that's irresistible!!

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4.42 from 765 votes

Slow Cooker Orange Chicken

By Averie Sunshine
The easiest orange chicken ever because your slow cooker does all the work!! Super juicy, tender, and coated with a sweet-yet-tangy orange glaze that's irresistible!!
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours 5 minutes
Servings: 4
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Ingredients  

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 ½ to 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • cup cornstarch
  • ½ teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • ½ teaspoon pepper, or to taste
  • 1 cup orange marmalade
  • ¼ cup low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • ½ to 1 teaspoon ground ginger, or to taste
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder or 2 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 2 tablespoons sesame seeds, lightly toasted if desired (add to a dry skillet and cook over medium heat for about 30 seconds or until fragrant)
  • 2 tablespoons green onions, sliced thin for garnishing
  • orange slices, optional for garnishing

Instructions 

  • Line a 3 to 6-quart slow cooker with a liner if using one. I prefer to use liners for easy cleanup.
  • Drizzle 1 tablespoon olive oil over bottom of the liner or slow cooker.
  • To a large, gallon-sized ziptop plastic bag, add the chicken, cornstarch, salt, pepper, seal bag, and toss to coat chicken evenly. Add chicken to slow cooker, evenly distributed; set aside.
  • To a 2-cup measuring cup or medium bowl, add the orange marmalade, soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, sesame oil, ginger (I prefer 1 teaspoon but some people are sensitive to ginger), garlic, remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil and stir to combine.
  • Pour mixture over the chicken, using a spoon to distribute the sauce as necessary, making sure all pieces are coated.
  • Cook covered on high for about 2 hours or on low for about 4 hours. If cooking on high, start checking at 90 minutes and if cooking on low, start checking at 3 hours. All slow cookers vary so cook until chicken is done (reaches 165F on an instant read thermometer).
  • Add chicken to a plate with as much extra cooking sauce spooned over the top as desired, garnish with sesame seeds, green onions, optional orange wedges, and serve immediately.

Notes

Chicken is best warm and fresh but will keep airtight in the fridge for up to 5 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Nutrition

Serving: 1, Calories: 722kcal, Carbohydrates: 67g, Protein: 73g, Fat: 18g, Saturated Fat: 4g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 13g, Cholesterol: 193mg, Sodium: 1053mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 49g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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Originally posted February 15, 2016 and reposted January 10, 2020 with updated text.

4.42 from 765 votes (712 ratings without comment)

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Please note: I have only made the recipe as written, and cannot give advice or predict what will happen if you change something. If you have a question regarding changing, altering, or making substitutions to the recipe, please check out the FAQ page for more info.

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Comments

  1. 4 stars
    Marmalade chicken, delicious but can’t help being shocked that we should all be doing our bit – not just for health but for the planet that you line the bowl with plastic to save washing up!!

    1. The recipe was originally posted February 15, 2016 so over 8 years ago at this point and it’s not a choice I would remake but hey, my family and I survived. We are currently in Greece where I am shocked to see the amount of plastic water bottles (can’t drink the tap water) everywhere, hundreds of thousands of people every day drinking and throwing away plastic bottles of all sizes. There are lots of parts of the US that don’t recycle or say they do but in reality, it’s not in practice or so difficult to do it, that no one does. Just sharing my experiences.

  2. 5 stars
    Absolutely Delicious! We had no left overs, which made me a little sad the next day. This recipe is definitely a keeper!

    1. Thanks for the 5 star review, Sherry, and I am glad it was so delicious that you didn’t even have leftovers! Well at least you know it’s a keeper then for your family!

  3. 4 stars
    Delicious! I found the sauce a little thick, so I added some chicken stock and it still had a very good orange flavor. I will make this again for sure.

    Thank you!

    1. Thanks for trying the recipe and I’m glad you enjoyed it. Depending on how hot your slow cooker gets, that could be the reason the sauce got quite thick and/or you cooked it longer than it needed to. But sounds like you found a way to thin it out and that it had a very good orange flavor!

  4. 5 stars
    For anyone wanting to know if you can make this with NSA (no sugar added) marmalade you absolutely can and it turns out fantastic! Made this for my type 1 diabetic husband and his diabetic bestie, and let’s just say there were no leftovers. Served it with fried cauliflower rice and we had a very delicious low carb meal!

  5. 5 stars
    For anyone wanting to know if you can make this with NSA (no sugar added) marmalade you absolutely can and it turns out fantastic! Made this for my type 1 diabetic husband and his diabetic bestie, and let’s just say there were no leftovers. Served it with fried cauliflower rice and we had a very delicious low carb meal!

    1. Thanks for the 5 star review and I am glad that NSA marmalade worked well and that you were able to tweak this to suit your needs! And that there were no leftovers, that’s a win!