Chinese Lemon Chicken Burger

My youngest daughter had been asking me to make this for a long time. It is her ultimate favorite. Since there is orange chicken, there should be no surprise that lemon chicken exist. This is perhaps an American-Chinese dish. Because lemon is seldom used in Chinese cuisine, right me if I am wrong tho. Instead of just making lemon chicken, I decided to make a burger outta it.

I used chicken breast instead of chicken thigh. It didn't came as savory as I expect, maybe I should stick with chicken thigh. Despite so, it still tastes yummilicious. I double dredged the chicken with flour and egg for that extra crispy crunch. The secret to a good lemon sauce is using a plum sauce. Plum sauce adds another layer of tang and sweetness which elevates the sauce. When it comes to plum sauce and Chinese cooking, I only trust Lee Kum Kee.

Broccolini seems to be on season here, so instead of using the usual coriander or green onions, I sauted them in the lemon sauce with a touch of Chinese chili bean sauce and lemon confit. I know what you're thinking. The broccolini doesn't look freshly green at all. This is how Chinese sauted broccolini; broccolini actually soaked up the sauce blends with it's color without loosing it's crunch and nutrients. Anyway, I really hope you give this recipe a try.


(Make 4 burgers)

  • Chicken:

  • Chicken Breast Boneless Skinless, 1

  • Dark Soy Sauce, 1.5 TSP

  • Light Soy Sauce, 1 TSP

  • Sesame Oil, 1/2 TSP

  • Cornstarch, 1 TSP

  • ShaoXing / Hua Tiao Wine, 1 TSP

  • White Pepper, Pinch

  • Sauce:

  • Fresh Lemon Juice, 6 TBSP

  • Fresh Lemon Zest, 1 Lemon

  • Plum Sauce Preferably Lee Kum Kee, 4 TBSP

  • Light Muscovado Sugar, 4 TSP

  • Water, 8 TBSP

  • Cornstarch, 1 TSP

  • Sea Salt, Pinch

  • White Pepper, Pinch

  • Dredge:

  • Bleached All Purpose Flour, 1/4 Cup

  • Cornstarch, 1/4 Cup

  • Baking Soda, 1/2 TSP

  • Dried Mushroom Powder, Pinch

  • Egg Lightly Beaten, 1

  • Canola / Peanut / Vegetable Oil, For Frying

  • Burgers:

  • Broccolini, 1 Bunch

  • Lemon Confit Finely Diced, Pinch

  • Chinese Chili Bean Sauce Preferably Lee Kum Kee, 1/2 TBSP

  • Steamed Bao, 4


  • Sauce Pot

  • Cast Iron Skillet / Pan

  • Griddle

  • Meat Mallet


  1. Please visit my "How To Make Mantou / Bao / Turnover Bao" page for the recipe.

  2. Please visit my "How To Make Lemon Confit" page for the recipe.

  3. Marinade the chicken.

  4. Butterfly the chicken by slicing the chicken breast lengthwise in half.

  5. Half again to make it 4 equal portions.

  6. Cover with cling film and using a meat mallet or a rolling pin to tenderize the chicken.

  7. Pound gently until almost the same thickness.

  8. Transfer into a shallow bowl.

  9. Add in soy sauce, sesame oil, cornstarch, ShaoXing and pepper.

  10. Mix to combine well and until the chicken is fully coated.

  11. Cover with cling film and set aside in the fridge to marinade for at least 4 hours.

  12. Prepare the sauce.

  13. In a sauce pot over medium heat, add all the ingredients.

  14. Stir to combine well.

  15. Bring it up to a simmer.

  16. Once the sauce thickens and coats the back of a spoon, remove from heat.

  17. Transfer half of the sauce into a bowl.

  18. Leave the remaining half in the pot.

  19. Set aside.

  20. Once the chicken has marinated, fried the chicken.

  21. In a shallow bowl, add flour, cornstarch, baking soda and mushroom powder.

  22. Mix to combine well.

  23. In another shallow bowl, add egg.

  24. In a skillet over medium-high heat, add in about 2 inches of oil.

  25. *To check the temperature of the oil, insert a wooden chopstick into the oil. Once bubbles start to form around the chopstick, the temperature is ready for frying.*

  26. Dredge the chicken into beaten egg and into the flour mixture.

  27. Shake off any excess flour, back into the egg and return into the flour mixture.

  28. *Press the flour onto the chicken so that the flour will adhere to the chicken.*

  29. Shake off any excess flour and carefully lay the chicken into the oil away from you.

  30. Shallow fried until golden brown on both sides.

  31. Remove from heat and drain off any excess oil on a wire cooling rack.

  32. Repeat the steps for the remaining chicken.

  33. Assemble the burgers.

  34. Separate the florets of the broccolini from the stems by slicing with a knife.

  35. Chop the stems into 1/8 inch slices.

  36. Bring a pot of water to a boil.

  37. Blanch the florets for 15 secs and transfer into the pot with the remaining sauce.

  38. Blanch the stems for 30 secs and transfer into the same pot.

  39. Over medium heat, add lemon confit, chili bean sauce and 1 TBSP of the blanched liquid.

  40. Saute to combine well.

  41. Continue sauteing for 45 secs.

  42. Remove from heat and cover to steam for 2 mins.

  43. Transfer onto a plate and set aside.

  44. Slice the bao in halves lengthwise.

  45. Toast the bao on a griddle until lightly charred.

  46. Set aside.

  47. Spread the sauce on each bao.

  48. Place the chicken on the bottom bao.

  49. Spoon the sauted broccolini over the chicken with some of it's sauce.

  50. Cover with the top bao.

  51. Serve immediately.

#lemon #lemonconfit #lemonchicken #anythinginbetween #chicken #chinese

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