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Delicious easy-to-make Apricot Chicken in one skillet pan on the stove top. Chunks of chicken simmer in an easy homemade apricot sauce using apricot preserves, orange juice, and honey bbq sauce for tons of flavor with little effort. Your family will love this one pan dinner recipe!
Apricot Chicken Skillet Pan Recipe
This easy to make apricot chicken has been on repeat at my house lately! The combinations of flavors are so unexpected but I am telling you, this has quickly become one of my family’s most favorite dinners.
Chunks of boneless, skinless chicken breast are cooked in a skillet pan with some onion and oil. Prepare a simple apricot sauce with some convenient bottled ingredients and let it simmer together.
It’s a much easier way to get apricot chicken on the dinner table with simpler ingredients and short-cuts that make it completely delicious.
- Oil – Use your favorite cooking oil like olive oil, canola oil, avocado oil.
- Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breast – You need about 3 chicken breasts for this recipe. Cut into small, bite-sized pieces.
- Finely Diced Yellow Onion
- Kosher Salt
- Apricot Preserves – This is a jam or jelly found by the other jellies at the grocery store. It’s specifically labeled as ‘apricot preserves’ on the jar. I use the Smucker’s brand.
- No-Pulp Orange Juice
- Garlic – Use fresh garlic cloves that have been minced or pressed, chopped garlic from a jar, or garlic paste.
- Honey BBQ Sauce
- Reduced-Sodium Soy Sauce
- Cornstarch + Cold Water – This creates the cornstarch slurry that thickens the apricot sauce for serving.
How To Make Apricot Chicken with Apricot Preserves
- Cut The Chicken : Prep the chicken by dicing it into small bite-sized chunks. If the chicken pieces are larger then they will need a longer cook time. I aim for small bite-sized pieces.
- Cook Chicken + Onion : Add the oil, chicken chunks, onion, and kosher salt into a skillet pan and cook, over medium-high heat, for 5-8 minutes. Stir it occasionally to make sure all sides of the chicken gets cooked.
- Drain : Drain the excess liquid and oil from the skillet pan.
- Apricot Sauce : In a small bowl, whisk together all the apricot sauce ingredients. Pour it into the skillet pan with the chicken. Bring to a boil, and once boiling reduce the heat to medium and let it simmer for about 5-8 minutes or until thickened slightly and the chicken is completely cooked through.
- Thicken The Apricot Sauce : Stir together the cornstarch + cold water with a fork and stir it into the skillet pan. It won’t take long at all for the sauce to thicken once you add the cornstarch slurry.
- Serve : Remove from the heat and serve over white rice with a drizzle of extra apricot sauce, green onions, and sesame seeds.
FAQ’s + Expert Tips
- Serving Suggestions : We love this served over some white rice (you can even make Instant Pot White Rice) and garnished with green onions and sesame seeds. You can also serve it over brown rice, quinoa, cauliflower rice, or serve the apricot chicken inside lettuce wraps.
- Drain The Chicken Juices After Cooking : It might seem unnecessary, but trust me, you need to drain the extra juice from the pan (after cooking the chicken) to avoid the sauce being thin from to much liquid.
- Prepare Ahead of Time : You can mix up the apricot sauce ahead of time and leave it in the fridge, covered, until you’re ready to make dinner. That way you just have to grab it and dump it in when it’s time.
Use sugar-free apricot preserves to ‘lighten up’ the apricot sauce. I also recommend using pulp-free orange juice in this recipe!
Prep Ahead of Time – Mix together the apricot sauce ingredients, cover it with a lid or plastic wrap, and refrigerate until you’re ready to use it. The chicken breasts can also be chopped ahead of time and stored in the fridge, covered, until dinner time.
Easy Apricot Chicken
- 1 tablespoon oil (olive, avocado, canola)
- 3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 1½ to 2 pounds)
- 1 small yellow onion (finely diced)
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup apricot preserves
- 1/2 cup no-pulp orange juice
- 2 cloves garlic (minced or pressed, chopped, or paste)
- 2 tablespoons honey bbq sauce
- 2 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 1 tablespoon cold water
- PREP : Dice the chicken breasts into small, bite-sized pieces. About 1-inch pieces. You can cut them larger or smaller, but depending on the size they might need longer or shorter to cook. Finely dice the yellow onion as well.3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, 1 small yellow onion
Cook The Chicken
- In a skillet pan, over medium-high heat, add the oil, chicken chunks, finely diced onion, and kosher salt. Cook for 5-8 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the chicken is white and mostly cooked. * No need to test with a thermometer at this step. We'll do that later.1 tablespoon oil, ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- Drain the excess liquid from the skillet pan. Either use a colander to drain it OR use paper towels to soak it all up.
- In a mixing bowl whisk together the apricot preserves, orange juice, garlic, honey bbq sauce, soy sauce, and honey until well combined.1 cup apricot preserves, 1/2 cup no-pulp orange juice, 2 cloves garlic, 2 tablespoons honey bbq sauce, 2 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce, 1 tablespoon honey
- Pour the apricot sauce into the skillet pan with the chicken. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat.
- Once boiling, reduce the heat to medium and let it simmer for about 5-8 minutes or until slightly thickened and the chicken is completely cooked through to 165℉.
- In a small bowl mix together the cornstarch and cold water with a fork. Pour it into the apricot chicken and let it cook for about 1 minute or until it's thickened. This won't take long at all so watch it carefully.1 tablespoon cornstarch, 1 tablespoon cold water
- Serve a scoop of apricot chicken over cooked white rice (or other base of choice) and drizzle extra sauce from the skillet pan over it. Garnish with green onions and sesame seeds if wanted.