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Sweet and Sour Chicken Recipe with whole chicken pieces in a cast iron skillet.

Mom's Family Style Sweet and Sour Chicken

This healthier version of Sweet and Sour Chicken doesn't sacrifice on taste. Tender melt in your mouth chicken is cooked in a sour and sweet sauce with satisfying pineapple chunks. Serve over short grain brown rice for healthy meal made in heaven.
Course Dinner
Cuisine Asian/American
Keyword Healthy Sweet and Sour Chicken, Sour and Sweet Chicken, Sweet and Sour Chicken
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Servings 6 servings
Calories 397kcal
Author Heather


Sweet and Sour Chicken

  • 1 3 1/2- 4 lb whole chicken *or the equivilant amount with chicken thighs on the bone and with skin
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1/4 cup high heat oil *such as avocado oil
  • 1 20 oz can pineapple chunks (in its own juice) *drained, reserve juice
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar *either light or dark
  • 2 1/2 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 small brown onion *julienned or cut into strips
  • 1 small yellow bell pepper *cut into strips
  • 1 small red bell pepper *cut into strips
  • diced green onions as garnish *optional

Brown Rice


  • Combine rice, butter and broth in a medium size (10 inch) frying pan. Bring to a boil over high heat. Cover with tight fitting lid and lower heat to low. Cook until all liquid has been completely absorbed and then turn off heat and let sit with lid attached for 10 mins. Fluff with a fork.
  • Heat a large skillet with butter and oil over med/high heat. Working in 2 batches, brown chicken starting with skin side down first.
    Once chicken is browned add all pieces back to skillet and cover with a tight fitting lid. Lower heat to med and simmer for 35-40 mins.
  • Meanwhile prepare onion and bell peppers, drain pineapple reserving juice.
    Combine sugar, cornstarch and salt in a small bowl. Stir well.
    Measure vinegar and soy sauce to a glass measuring cup. Mix with reserved pineapple.
  • Once chicken has simmered remove from skillet and keep on medium heat. Add in sugar cornstarch mixture. Whisk until mixed. While whisking frequently, gradually stir in vinegar, soy sauce and juice mixture. Cook stirring constantly until thickened.
    Once the sauce is thickened add in browned chicken, onion, bell peppers and pineaaple chunks. Increase heat to medium high. Cover pan and simmer for 10 mins or until veggies become tender.
  • Serve over cooked brown rice.


*Please use as many organic ingredients as possible.
Recipe Notes
  • 8-10 oz of mini sweet bell peppers cut into coins may be substituted for regular bell peppers. 
  • If rice is too firm once water has been absorbed add an additional 1-2 tbsp of water and continue cooking. 


Calories: 397kcal | Carbohydrates: 53g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 10mg | Sodium: 796mg | Potassium: 315mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 529IU | Vitamin C: 47mg | Calcium: 33mg | Iron: 1mg