Slow Cooker Orange Chicken – $5 Dinner Challenge

by Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom on October 24, 2011


This is me…being lazy.

I’ve been wanting to make some orange chicken for a while…recently had a conversation with a friend about it…and couldn’t put it off any longer. She shared a recipe with me and we decided that it would work with frozen vegetables too.

And the result was lovely fake-out take-out meal.

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Slow Cooker Orange Chicken

Inspired by Orange Chicken in a Crock Pot

Yield – 4 servings

Preparation Time – 10 minutes

Cooking Time – 8 hours in slow cooker


  • 1 1/2 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts (or thighs) ($2.82)
  • 8 oz. OJ concentrate ($1.34)
  • 1 12 oz. package stir-fry vegetable mix ($.80)
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar ($.05)
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger ($.10)
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder ($.05)
  • 1-2 teaspoons corn starch ($.05)
  • Noodles or brown rice ($.40 – $.50)
  • Crushed red pepper, optional


  • Cut up the chicken into bite size pieces.
  • In the base of the slow cooker, whisk together the OJ concentrate and the brown sugar, ginger, and garlic powder. Stir in the chicken pieces and vegetables into the sauce.
  • Set the slow cooker on low and cook for 8 hours.
  • Just before serving, whisk in the cornstarch into the sauce. Let sit for 10 minutes with the slow cooker on warm.
  • Prepare noodles and brown rice.
  • Serve Slow Cooker Orange Chicken over the rice or noodles with crushed red pepper.

Cost $5.61

{ 14 comments… read them below or add one }

Food on the Table October 24, 2011 at 5:57 pm

Yum! Nothing wrong with slow-cooking a fake-out take-out meal! I’ll have to try this one soon since simple preparation and good food is all I ever wish for.


MKS October 24, 2011 at 8:21 pm

Question: The instructions say to whisk the cornstarch into the SAUCE. Do you remove the chicken and veggies from the crockpot before you wisk in the cornstarch?


Jackie Brown October 24, 2011 at 8:46 pm

My kids love the fried take out at Panda Express. Does this resemble the taste except for the fried part? It looks delicious to me:)


Carol October 25, 2011 at 9:19 am

This looks great! Never have enough slow cooker recipes!


Judy October 29, 2011 at 1:36 pm

I’m looking forward to making this recipe! I have a frozen package of stir-fry mix. Could you please tell me if I should defrost it before adding to the crockpot? Or do I add it frozen?
Thanks so much for an easy and inexpensive dinner idea!


Shell November 1, 2011 at 8:47 pm

I tried this one tonight and it was an EPIC fail. I hate to be a downer and complain, but did anyone try this and like it? The orange concentrate was just too strong. We threw almost all away and just ate rice. I have been married 27 years and that is a first for us :-(


Rebecca November 9, 2011 at 1:40 pm

I too tried this recipe this week and it was awful. The orange concentrate was way too strong. I ended up throwing it away. Maybe reducing the orange concentrate may not sure.


MKS November 9, 2011 at 2:50 pm

I just made this last night. I didn’t think the orange concentrate was too strong. There are a few things I’d tweek. My sauce didn’t thicken in the crockpot, so I would pour it into a pan and thicken it there. Also the veggies were very mushy. If I were home, I’d wait till later to add the veggies in. All in all, I’d use the recipe again. It might lack a little in presentation, but it was easy, inexpensive and hearty. :)


Phaedra January 8, 2012 at 1:09 pm

I have not tried this recipe, but I would use orange marmalade with some soy sauce and about 1/2 of water. I would also leave the veggies out till the last 1-2 hours…at this time I would wisk the cornstarch with about a 1/4 -1/2 of oj and mix with the chicken sauce. I might try this myself this week.


Bryan January 11, 2012 at 6:26 pm

Wish I would have read the comments first – just tried this recipe and it was awful. It tastes like medicine and vomit. Threw it all out.


JC February 5, 2012 at 10:41 pm

I wish I would’ve read the comments too….I agree with the vomit smell and look. Tasted WAY too much like orange mush. My whole apartment stinks….tossed it all…


Angel April 15, 2012 at 6:42 pm

I also wish I would have read the comments before making this. It was seriously AWFUL! The orange concentrate was just too strong. I made it exactly as the recipe said and I couldn’t eat it. It ended up going down my garbage disposal because no one in my family liked it.


supper solutions May 28, 2012 at 9:29 am

I do believe all of the concepts you’ve presented on your post. They are very convincing and can definitely work. Still, the posts are too quick for beginners. May just you please extend them a bit from subsequent time? Thanks for the post.


Jen December 7, 2012 at 12:07 pm

We cooked this yesterday but wound up ordering take out Chinese because all four of us hated it! The chicken was weird and the sauce was horrid. The veggies were just mush.
I’m like another reviewer- First time ever (in 20 years of cooking) that I had to throw out dinner and order something else. There was no tweaking this one.


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