Platter of sweet and sour chicken.
Main courses

Homemade sweet and sour chicken


Homemade sweet and sour chicken is one of my family’s favorite meals. This sweet and sour sauce is sweet and tangy without being too sweet. My favorite part is the pineapple chunks! Homemade Chinese food isn’t as hard as it sounds. Before you begin cooking, make sure you take the time to chop, measure and lay out everything you need.

Platter of sweet and sour chicken.
Sweet and sour chicken with rice and vegetables

This sweet and sour chicken recipe features tender breaded chicken, bell peppers, onions and pineapple. The preparation is the hardest part of this recipe as it comes together fast when you start stir-frying. Using cracker crumbs instead of a batter helps reduce the fat content. If you’re gluten free, you can also use gluten-free bread crumbs. Make your own gluten-free bread crumbs by finely chopping up your favorite gluten-free bread. Serve this sweet and sour chicken with with steamed brown rice.

Sweet and sour chicken on a plate served with brown rice.
Sweet and sour chicken at home

This recipe serves four to six people.

Sweet and sour chicken

This homemade sweet and sour chicken recipe features tender breaded chicken, bell peppers, onions and pineapple.



  • One 15 1/4 ounce can pineapple chunks, keep liquid
  • 1/4 cup ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar (or white vinegar)
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 4 teaspoons sugar


  • 2 sweet peppers (1 red, 1 green, or other color of your choice, chopped into bite sized pieces)
  • 4 green onions, sliced into small pieces

Coating for chicken:

  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 cup finely crushed saltine crackers
  • 12 ounces boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 2-3 tablespoons vegetable oil for cooking


  1. Preheat oven to 250 (this is to keep cooked chicken warm)
  2. Drain pineapple, reserving 3/4 cup of the juice. In a small bowl, stir together the reserved pineapple juice, the ketchup, 1 tablespoon cornstarch, vinegar, water and sugar. Set aside.
  3. In a medium mixing bowl, stir together egg and 1 tablespoon cornstarch until smooth. Add chicken pieces and stir to coat chicken with the egg mixture. In another shallow bowl, add the cracker crumbs. Roll the chicken pieces in the crackers to coat evenly.
  4. Add 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil in a large wok or skillet. On medium/high heat add sweet peppers and stir fry for 2-3 minutes or until crisp tender. Near the end of cooking time, add the green onions. Remove the vegetables from the wok and set aside.
  5. Next, add 1-2 tablespoons of vegetable oil in a large wok or skillet. Continue with heat at medium/high. Add half of the chicken to the wok. Stir-fry about 3 minutes or until no pink remains. Remove from the wok to a baking pan and place in the oven to keep it warm. Repeat the process with remaining chicken. Try to remove any cracker bits at the end before you combine everything.
  6. Next, stir in the sauce mixture and heat through. Stir and it will thicken and turn bubbly. Return chicken, vegetables and reserved pineapple chunks to the wok. Coat and heat through all ingredients. Serve sweet and sour chicken family-style on a large platter.


  1. Greetings,
    Thanks for the delicious recipes. Sweet and sour our favorite.

  2. I can’t wait to make this recipe. We always order Sweet and Sour Chicken with Pineapple. I definitely prefer homemade.

  3. Michelle Barsness

    Great! Hope you enjoy it. You can also make the chicken ahead of time, like on the weekend in preparation for a busy weeknight meal. Let it cool, refrigerate for up to 2 days. Reheat it in the oven while you make the veggies. Then put it all together in the wok or skillet.

  4. We loved the Sweet and Sour chicken and had left-overs for a second meal. The second day these were even better!


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