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a close up picture of chicken tenderloins in a golden sauce

Maple, Lime and Ginger Chicken

It is not uncommon for me to try a new recipe, think ‘that was great’ and then immediately cast it aside to be forgotten for months or years (!) before I get around to making it again. It drives my husband crazy – he is a more adventurous eater than I and loves trying new things, but has been known, on occasion, to utter something along the lines of, “can we not have ANYTHING more than once”?!

It’s not that I don’t like consuming the same foods over and over – in fact leftovers in many forms rate spectacularly highly on my list of good things to eat, and I can happily go through an entire week of the same soup or salad for lunch when I’m on a roll. I think it has more to do with the fact there are just SO. MANY. RECIPES. in the world, and there will never, in my lifetime, be enough meals to cook or eat all the ones I want to.

So it’s strange, then, that I should have made the following dish not once but three times this week. And even more so because there’s nothing obviously enticing about it: it’s a chicken dish, which, having spent a good deal of time exclusively developing products and recipes for a poultry company (and eating a lot of the stuff), means I am not easily interested in anything much to do with chicken. Also, the sauce it’s cooked in contains pineapple juice, lending a distinct fruity vibe to the finished dish. I have a general aversion to pineapple or its juice in food, steering well clear of savouries involving the words ‘sweet and sour’ or ‘Hawaiian style’ (pizza aside. I know. I’m sorry), and cakes of the Hummingbird/upside-down-pineapple variety. Despite all those – admittedly odd – reasons to just skim past the recipe whilst flicking through the latest issue of this magazine, I didn’t, and it turned out to be an easy little weeknight number which cooks like a dream in the combi-steamer.

The dish transcends the sum of its parts to become sticky, tender and delicious, and completely deserving of it’s three-round go here. If you, like me, don’t love pineapple-spiked food, you could use orange juice instead for the sauce. I cooked a batch each way just for fun – both were good but the pineapple version was the standout.

Either way, I hope you’ll like it as much as we do.

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A close up picture of Maple Lime Ginger chicken tenderloins in a golden sauce

A close up picture of Maple Lime Ginger chicken tenderloins in a golden sauce
Print Recipe
4.14 from 15 votes

Maple, Lime and Ginger Chicken

Sticky, sweet and fragrant, this chicken is easy to put together and utterly delicious.
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time25 minutes
Total Time35 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Western
Keyword: ginger chicken, lime and ginger chicken, maple lime and ginger chicken, soy ginger chicken
Servings: 6
Calories: 245kcal

Ingredients

  • ½ cup pineapple juice
  • 2 tbs ketchup tomato sauce
  • 2 tbs light soy sauce
  • 2 tbs maple syrup pure, or use honey. Don’t use maple-flavoured syrup, it’s full of synthetic flavouring which will ruin the dish
  • 1 tbs dark brown sugar
  • 1 inch fresh ginger a thumb-sized piece, peeled and grated
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 ½ tsp ground cumin
  • 1 lime zest and juice
  • 1.3 lb chicken tenderloins or boneless, skinless thighs
  • 3 sweet potatoes small to medium, scrubbed and cut into wedges
  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • ½ tsp ground cumin extra
  • 4 sprigs fresh parsley torn
  • 1 red chilli finely chopped, for garnish (optional)

Instructions

  • Mix the everything except the chicken and sweet potatoes in a small saucepan and bring to the boil over high heat. Cook until the mixture reduces by half, then remove from heat and set aside to cool slightly.
  • Set your oven to 400°F/200˚C, combination steam setting. If you have variable steam settings, use 80% or 100%. If not, don't worry! Just set to combi steam at the correct temperature and the oven will work out the humidity.
  • Mix the chicken with the sauce in a snug-fitting tray or baking dish. Toss the sweet potatoes with the oil and extra cumin and place in a single layer on another tray (I use the perforated tray which came with my steam oven).
  • Put the sweet potatoes into the oven. If you’re using chicken thighs, put them in now (potatoes on bottom shelf and chicken above), and cook everything for approximately 20-25 mins until it’s all tender and browning at the edges. If you’re using tenderloins, cook the sweet potatoes for 10 minutes first, then add the tray of chicken and cook for a further 12-15 minutes.
  • Sprinkle the chicken with parsley and chilli if using, then serve hot with steamed rice or tucked into a piece of flatbread, with the sweet potato wedges on the side.

Notes

  1. Adapted from the ‘Sticky Hawaiian Chicken’ recipe in Taste.com.au Magazine (March 2015 issue).
  2. Though the photographed version was made with chicken tenderloins, the first time I cooked this was with thigh fillets. It’s great both ways and just depends on your preference. I’ve given cooking times below for both cuts.
  3. We ate ours with rice (steamed in the oven first then covered and set aside to keep warm while the chicken and sweet potatoes got combi-steamed). Couscous, quinoa, millet or some flatbread and salad would also be worthy accompaniments.
  4. The nutrition information for this recipe is given for chicken tenderloins rather than thighs.

Nutrition

Calories: 245kcal | Carbohydrates: 26g | Protein: 23g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 63mg | Sodium: 535mg | Potassium: 696mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 12g | Vitamin A: 9404IU | Vitamin C: 20mg | Calcium: 44mg | Iron: 2mg

*But I don’t have a steam/combi-steam oven! You can bake the dish in a regular oven at 200˚C, just add a touch of water to the sauce if it looks as though it’s getting a bit thick/dry during cooking. The sweet potatoes and chicken thighs will take about 30 minutes, and tenderloins 15-20.

5 Responses

  1. Thanks for your kind words about my books and chart, Elsie! Yes, our tablespoon and cup measures are different (20ml for a tablespoon vs your 15ml). For a recipe like this it really doesn’t matter too much, it’s more about getting the correct ratios of the ingredients than the exact milliliter amounts. If you feel like using your own measures won’t give you enough sauce, feel free to increase the quantities a little (though I don’t think you’ll notice if you don’t).

  2. I live in Canada and want to make this, but my understanding is that Australian tablespoons are larger than Canadian/American ones in that yours are 18 ml while ours are 15 ml. Should I adjust the tablespoon quantities accordingly? By the way, I have all your books and purchased your conversion chart yesterday. They have been a huge help to me, figuring out how to use my Anova Precision Oven as the manual that came with it is not very helpful.

  3. 5 stars
    My new favorite way to cook sweet potatoes ~ steaming! The texture is so tender and not dry at all. This is a very good recipe ~ the first savory recipe I’ve tried in my new Fotile steam combi oven. I cut back the soy sauce to 1 tablespoon, a precaution I take in just about every recipe that contains soy sauce. For our taste, it was just right. Used honey as suggested instead of maple syrup (sorry Canadians!). It did take a lot longer to cook in my countertop oven, probably because it’s much smaller than what Emily uses and therefore more crowded (i.e., less movement of the hot air). Probably took an additional 20 minutes to get the inside of the chicken thighs up to 165 F. Delicious and will definitely make this again! Thank you, Emily!

  4. I have a Neff vario steam oven. Either low, medium or high what should I do please?

4.14 from 15 votes (14 ratings without comment)

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