Orange Sauce Recipe

4.45 from 224 votes

Sweet and tangy orange sauce is delicious in stir fry! It is easy to make at home, and perfect for bringing dishes like orange chicken and tofu with orange sauce to life in your own kitchen.

spoon inside a mason jar of orange sauce
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Making your own orange sauce is so easy!

Orange chicken was one of my favorite things to order takeout growing up. This recipe is inspired by the taste of something that you would buy at your favorite Chinese restaurant.

orange cauliflower in a takeout container

This recipe is what I used to make orange tofu, and vegan orange chicken (orange cauliflower) and it also makes a great sauce for veggie stir fry served over sticky white rice!

It is really so easy to make it yourself at home, and the flavor is amazing. I tested this recipe four times until the flavor was perfect. The end result is a flavorful, easy recipe that takes just 15 minutes to make!

chinese orange sauce on a wooden spoon

What is orange sauce made of?

Homemade orange sauce is heavenly! This sweet sauce is made of orange juice, brown sugar, pure maple syrup, rice vinegar, soy sauce, minced garlic, and minced ginger.

ingredients for orange sauce in glass bowls

How to make orange sauce

First, you will start with fresh minced ginger and garlic. Not much, as we want the orange flavor to be the star of this sauce! 

In a sauce pan, add 1 teaspoon of neutral flavored oil.mCook the minced garlic and ginger for around 2 – 3 minutes, until fragrant. 

step by step images showing the ingredients added to the sauce pan to make orange sauce

Next, add the orange juice, brown sugar, maple syrup, rice vinegar, and soy sauce. Heat for 3 minutes. In a small bowl, make a slurry from 2 tablespoons of cornstarch and ¼ cup of water. 

orange cauliflower in a bowl topped with green onions

What is a cornstarch slurry? 

A cornstarch slurry is simply a mixture of cold water and cornstarch which is often used as a thickening agent in asian inspired sauces. 

up close texture of the orange sauce

Add the slurry to the sauce, and whisk for 5 minutes, until thickened. Your sauce is now ready to serve! 

orange tofu in a white bowl with sesame seeds and green onions

I can’t be the only one obsessed with orange sauce on rice! Honestly, that might be my favorite part of finishing my plate. 

This dish is perfect for veggie stir fry, orange chicken, tofu with orange sauce, or crispy orange cauliflower. Try making this at home and let me know what you think!

a spoon dipping into orange sauce

Is this recipe spicy?

No, it is not spicy. If you want a spicier sauce, add red pepper flakes to taste. I suggest starting with ⅛ teaspoon and going from there. 

a jar full of orange sauce with a wooden spoon in it

Is this orange sauce gluten free?

Yes it is! As long as you use gluten free soy sauce, all other ingredients are gluten free. 

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spoon dipping into orange sauce for chicken
4.45 from 224 votes

Orange Sauce

By: Joy Shull
This easy orange sauce is simple to make and tastes delicious!
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 12 minutes
Total: 17 minutes
Servings: 6

Ingredients 

  • cup water
  • ½ cup orange juice
  • cup brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon fresh minced ginger
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil , or other neutral oil

For the Cornstarch Slurry

  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • ¼ cup water

Instructions 

  • Heat 1 teaspoon of olive oil or other neutral flavored oil in a sauce pan
  • Add the minced garlic and minced ginger and cook for 2 – 3 minutes, until fragrant. Stir often to avoid burning
  • Add ⅓ cup water, orange juice, brown sugar, maple syrup, rice vinegar, and soy sauce and heat for 3 minutes, stirring often
  • In a small bowl, whisk the 2 tablespoons of cornstarch and ¼ cup of water to form the slurry
  • Add the cornstarch slurry to the sauce and whisk to thicken, around 3 – 5 minutes
  • Add orange sauce to your orange chicken, orange tofu, orange cauliflower, or use as sauce for stir fry veggies!

Video

Notes

To make this recipe gluten free, use gluten free soy sauce.

Nutrition

Calories: 98kcal, Carbohydrates: 22g, Protein: 1g, Fat: 1g, Saturated Fat: 0.1g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 0.5g, Sodium: 546mg, Potassium: 99mg, Fiber: 0.2g, Sugar: 18g, Vitamin A: 41IU, Vitamin C: 11mg, Calcium: 25mg, Iron: 0.4mg
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54 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Excellent recipe! however I added a little bit more orange juice, but I really didn’t have too.

  2. I have made this recipe twice and cannot get it to form a sauce. It always comes out like water and I ended up marinading tofu in it instead. I followed the recipe, why could this be happening?

    1. I have never had this happen. Are you following the slurry step for long enough? That is what thickens the sauce.

  3. Thank you for this delish recipe! I made it a few times using regular soy sauce & dark brown sugar. It was good. Tonight I made it w/low sodium soy sauce & light brown sugar. In a word YUM!!! Best recipe I’ve made from Pinterest!

  4. This recipe is SO EFFIN GOOD! My only modification was that I was out of soy sauce, so I used Ponzu. Still delicious!.

  5. Did anyone try to can this recipe? I am going to try to can this but wanted to know whether anyone else had tried it. What is the reason to exclude the “slurry” as some of the comments state? Would it go bad?

    1. @Shelley, you could probably change out the flour in the slurry to clear jel to thicken it. That is an approved canning thickener I use for pie filling, etc.
      But the red to the recipe not sure on canning. But I would love to can it up!

    2. @Shelley, I’m considering substituting the slurry with a SMALL amount of pectin, and doubling or tripling the recipe. Kinda like making a loose jam or jelly. Wish me luck.

  6. I added a tiny splash of sesame oil and red pepper flakes, also I didn’t have fresh ginger so I added about a 1/4 tsp of dried and I also wanted more orange flavor so I added some orange zest and muah! Chefs kiss, it was sooo good! I served over rice with veggies and This made an amazing and quick recipe for a delicious weekday meal!

    1. @Elena, Very smart to add the Zest, really enhances the orange flavor. And I used fresh juice from the same orange! I always use the Zest, even when recipes call for lemon or lime, I think it adds a depth of Flavor!

  7. I made some breaded chicken last night for the peeps to make the sauce they wanted to cover. This AM I made this sauce for leftover lunch and it was delicious!! The recipe makes enough to fill a pint mason jar. I put the leftover sauce in the jar and placed it in the fridge. I will be surprised it is still there come tomorrow AM.