Dorm Room Orange Chicken





Introduction: Dorm Room Orange Chicken

About: I want to stir things up in the kitchen and get creative with what I cook. I'm not a professional, just a college student with a passion for cooking.

I am one of the lucky few college students that has a kitchen in their dorm room, but most college students are stuck with a microwave as their kitchen. However, that doesn't mean you can't cook something besides ramen for dinner! Using only a microwave and some readily available, inexpensive ingredients, you can cook some better-than-delivery orange chicken in the comfort of your dorm.

Step 1: Ingredients


  • Storage Container
  • Plastic Wrap
  • Grater
  • 1 Chicken Breast
  • Optional: 1/2 tsp cornstarch

Found at my Dining Hall:

  • 1 orange (Juice and Zest of One Orange)
  • 4 packets (1 tbls) honey or sugar
  • 2 packets (1/4 tsp) black pepper
  • 4 packets (2 tbls) soy sauce


To make the sauce, all of the ingredients I got from my dining hall. At my college, they have oranges you can grab to take for a snack, as well as condiment packets. This can really cut down on cost for the dish, especially if you don't frequently cook and wouldn't use a whole container of honey/black pepper/soy sauce.

Step 2: Cube the Chicken

Cut the chicken breast into bite-sized cubes.

Step 3: Microwave the Chicken

Put the cubed chicken into the container and cover with plastic wrap. Microwave until cooked through, about 6 minutes. Stir the chicken halfway through cooking.


The chicken sticks together when cooked in the microwave, leaving spots that are raw. Stirring the chicken halfway during the cooking process will assure that the chicken gets cooked evenly.

Step 4: Set Chicken Aside

Drain the chicken and set it aside on a paper towel. Rinse out the container to prepare the sauce in.

Step 5: Make the Sauce

Add the orange zest, orange juice, pepper, honey/sugar, and soy sauce to the container. Microwave the sauce uncovered to warm, about 2 minutes.

Optional: Before microwaving, add the cornstarch to the sauce, stirring until completely incorporated. Microwave the sauce uncovered until it thickens, about 3 minutes.


Cornstarch is purely optional for this recipe, because I realize it's an ingredient that most college students won't use frequently. The purpose of the cornstarch is to thicken the sauce, but it doesn't change the flavor whatsoever. If thicker sauce is desired, then I highly recommend using cornstarch in this recipe.

Step 6: Combine the Chicken and Sauce

After heating the sauce, return the chicken to the container with the sauce. Stir the chicken until each piece is coated with sauce.

Step 7: Serve and Enjoy!

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I did it, and it's not just delicious but quick. Thank you!

Have you considered putting this into the Instructables Cooking for One contest? I haven't (yet) tried any of the current entries, so I don't know if this is "the best" relative to the other entries, but I do know this would be an excellent entry. Good luck!

1 reply

That's a great idea! Thank you for the advice!

First time I tried this it was good, but far too salty, the only thing I could think of containing salt was the soya sauce, so I tried it again with half the soya sauce and it was still too salty... So, checked the chicken, which I had bought frozen and the package noted that salt had been added.... So, I will plan on doing this recipe with a fresh chicken breast this weekend and see how that goes, but as a warning to others if using frozen chicken breasts check for salt, it may be an issue... The above issue noted, I do love recipes for one, being single it is far too easy to fall in to ruts when cooking at home.

2 replies

Tried the recipe with a fresh chicken breast and it worked out well. So, beware at least some frozen chicken breasts, at least the ones were they have added salt...

If you find that it's still too salty, I would make sure to squeeze all of the juice you can get from the orange, to try and cut it to your preference. You might have to use two oranges if you're still finding it too salty. Taste the sauce before you pour it onto your chicken, so you can be sure that it's to your liking. The chicken breasts I used weren't pre-salted, so that might be the difference in your attempt. Hopefully you get better results with fresh chicken!

Will try this soon as a dinner option but I will boil the chicken with ginger garlic so that the smell can be removed

1 reply

That's awesome! Most college students don't have access to a stove, which is why I did everything in the microwave, but I'm sure you'll get some good results by boiling the chicken!

Definitely! Let me know how it turns out!