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Chinese Sweet and Sour and Chow Mein

If you like Sweet and Sour Chinese, then this is easy recipe for you. It doesn't matter which veggies you use or which meats you use. Making your own sweet and sour sauce is so much better than you get at the Chinese Fast Food Restaurants.

Also see this recipe for Sweet and Sour Meatballs. Very easy to make!

My Chinese Sweet and Sour Recipe

How to make the rice and veggies

Cook 1 cup rice in 2 cups water. Bring to a boil, cover, then turn to low for about 12 to 15 min. While rice is cooking, chop your vegetables and meats into bite size pieces. Stir fry in a skillet with 2 Tablespoons oil, one vegetable at a time. Put all slightly cooked vegetables in a skillet.

My Sweet and Sour Sauce

Put all the cooked vegetables in the skillet, then add:
  • 2/3 cup vinegar
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 2/3 cup water
  • Bring to a boil.
  • In a cup mix
  • 2 Tablespoons cornstarch in 1/4 cup cool water and pour this into the skillet.
  • Immediately stir and add:
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground allspice.

It should thicken nicely, add a little more water if you like it thinner. Serve over the rice.

Sweet and Sour Sauce

Pour warm over apple dumplings.

  • 2 c water
  • 1/3 cup vinegar
  • 1/3 cup butter or margarine
  • 1/3 cup flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp nutmeg

Heat water, vinegar and butter together. Combine remaining ingredients; mix thoroughly. Stir into hot mixture; cook over low heat, stirring until thickened. Makes about 2 1/2 cups.
Recipe from a 1959 Farm Journal Country Cookbook pg 212

Easy Sweet and Sour Sauce

  • 1/4 cup catsup
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/4 cup white vinegar
  • 2 T. (heaping) cornstarch, dissolved in 2 T. water
  • 1 green pepper, cut into squares
  • 2 T. canned pineapple chunks

Combine first 4 ingredients in saucepan. Bring to a boil. Thicken with dissolved cornstarch, stirring constantly. Add green pepper and pineapple. Stir. Use as a dip. May be refrigerated or frozen.
Recipe from a 1998 Platte SD Hospital Recipe book pg 8

Dani's Sweet and Sour Chicken

  • 1/2 cup white vinegar
  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 2 tbsp. soy sauce
  • 1 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 cubes chicken bouillon
  • 1 cup water

Boil sauce in pan, then turn heat down to medium. Cut 4 chicken breasts into chunks and dip in 2 beaten eggs, then cornstarch. Brown chicken in olive oil in a saucepan. Set cooked chicken in baking pan and cover with sauce. If sauce is too strong, add water. Bake at 375 for 25-30 minutes. Serve with rice.

Sweet and Sour Chicken

(don't double the recipe) but 1 lb is not enough
  • 3 T soy sauce
  • 1 T sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 t. garlic powder
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1 lb boneless chicken cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 2 c. veg oil

Combine first 6 ingredients, mix well. Add chicken stirring to coat. Heat oil in electric skillet. Fry chicken until lightly brown, drain on paper towel


  • 1 16oz can pineapple chucks drained reserve the liquid
  • 2 T. cornstarch
  • 1/2 c. sugar
  • 1/4 c. catsup don't add all at once
  • 1/4 c. apple cider vinegar
  • 1 T soy sauce
  • 1 med green pepper cut into 1 inch pieces

Add enough water to reserve pineapple juice to make 1 cup. Add 2 T cornstarch to juice and stir well. Combine pineapple chunks with the juice mixture. Add next 4 ingredients into a saucepan, bring to a boil to thicken. Stir in green pepper and chicken sauce, cook until thoroughly thickened.
Serve over hot cooked rice
Recipe from Jason in Tulsa OK

Sweet and Sour Spareribs

  • 2 pounds of spare ribs
  • 2 small garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons vinegar
  • 2 cups canned pineapple chunks, reserve juice
  • 2 tablespoon cornstarch

Cut spareribs in 1 1/2 inch pieces. Combine all ingredients except pineapple and cornstarch. Simmer 1 hour. Set aside for a few minutes. Pour off excess fat. Place meat in a separate bowl. Heat liquid. Add pineapple juice to liquid, bring to a boil. Add cornstarch, cook until thick. Pour sauce over spareribs. Arrange pineapple chunks on top. Serve hot.
Recipe from a 1974 Family Circle cookbook

Sweet and Sour Smokies

  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1-13 1/4oz can pineapple chunks, undrained
  • 1/3 cup vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 small green pepper, chopped
  • 2 pkgs Smokies wieners

Mix brown sugar and cornstarch in skillet. Stir in pineapple and juice, vinegar and soy sauce. Heat to boiling, stirring constantly. Reduce heat. Add 2 packages of Smokies sausages. Cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, for about 10 to 15 minutes. Stir in green pepper. Cover and simmer until tender.

Sweet and Sour Pork

Here's a Chinese dish that will make a meal outstanding.

  • 3 1/2 lbs. lean pork
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 Tblsp. fat or oil
  • 3/4 c. water
  • 1 c. drained pineapple chunks
  • 1/2 c. pineapple juice
  • 3/4 c. water
  • 3 Tblsp. brown sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. ground ginger
  • 3 Tblsp. cornstarch
  • 1/4 c. cider vinegar
  • 2 Tblsp. soy sauce
  • 1 green pepper
  • 1 medium onion
  • Hot fluffy rice

Cut lean meat into 1/2 inch x 2 inch strips. Sprinkle with salt. Brown in fat in skillet. Add water. Cover, simmer 1 hour. Drain pineapple. Combine 1/2 c. pineapple juice and 3/4 c. water. Add brown sugar, ginger, cornstarch, vinegar and soy sauce. Pour over meat. Cook until slightly thickened. Cut green pepper into strips lengthwise; cut onion into thin slices. Add to meat. Add 1 c. pineapple chunks. Bring to a boil. Cook for 5 minutes. Serve with rice. Makes 4 servings.
Recipe from a 1959 Farm Journal Country Cookbook pg 120

Sweet - Sour Cabbage

Brown 4 slices cut up bacon, until light brown, add and saute' 1 small onion. Slice 1 small head of cabbage. Cook with 1/2 cup water (more if needed) for 10 minutes. Combine bacon and onion along with bacon grease, cabbage, 1/2 brown sugar and 1/4 cup amber vinegar. Simmer for 20 minutes or more. Crockpot works good for this too.
Recipe from a 1996 Faith Lutheran Church, Parkston, SD Cookbook pg 93

Sweet 'N Sour Green Beans

  • 2 cans green beans
  • 4 slices of bacon, diced
  • 1 small onion, sliced
  • 1/4 c. vinegar
  • 1/4 c. water
  • 1 tsp. sugar

Cook green beans (or heat canned beans). Drain; keep hot. Fry bacon and onion, stir in vinegar, water, and sugar. Bring to a boil. Pour over hot beans. Garnish with onion slices. Makes 6 to 8 servings.
Recipe from a 1959 Farm Journal Country Cookbook pg 46

Sweet and Sour Salad Dressing

  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1 teaspoon celery salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup salad oil

Place all ingredients except oil in a blender. Blend until onion is liquid. Add oil and beat again. Serve on lettuce or tossed salad.
Recipe from 1974 Family Circle Cookbook

Sweet and Sour BBQ Sauce

  • 1/2 c. brown sugar
  • 1/2 c. sugar
  • 2 T. cornstarch
  • 1 c. ketchup
  • 2/3 c. vinegar
  • 1/2 c. water

Combine sugars and cornstarch in a medium pan. Stir in ketchup, vinegar and water. Bring to a boil. Cook and stir until thickened and clear. See more BBQ sauces

Chinese Chicken Wings

  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup soy sauce
  • 1 cup brown or white sugar
  • 1/4 cup pineapple juice
  • 3/4 cup oil
  • 1 tsp. ginger
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 20 to 24 chicken wings cut in half

Mix all ingredients except chicken wings in a blender or food processor. Pour over chicken wings and marinate. When ready pour 1/2 cup of marinade into pan, add the chicken wings and use the rest of the marinade to baste. Bake at 350 for 45 to 60 min Brush with reserve marinade. These freeze well and make good Hor d'Oeuvres.

Below are some more Chinese style recipes.

Easy Chow Mein

  • 2 Tblsp salad oil
  • 3 stalks of celery sliced diagonally
  • 1 med onion sliced thin
  • 2 Tblsp cornstarch
  • 1 can drained bean sprouts
  • 1 bouillon cube
  • 1 Tblsp sugar
  • 2 Tblsp soy sauce
  • 1 1/2 cups diced cooked chicken or turkey
  • 2 cups cooked rice

About 20 minutes before serving, heat a 12 inch skillet over high heat, add the oil, celery and onion, fry until crisp tender. Stir in the cornstarch until blended. Stir in the bean sprouts, bouillon cube, sugar, soy sauce and 1 cup water. Cook over med heat stirring occasionally, until thickened. Stir in chicken. Cook until heated through. Serve over rice or chow mein noodles.

Oriental Skillet Supper

In a heavy skillet, stir fry your vegetables until crisp tender. Remove and set aside. Add meat to hot skillet, brown quickly.

  • 2/3 cup water
  • 2 T soy sauce
  • 4 tsp cornstarch
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
Add to skillet. Cook and stir until mixture is thick and bubbly. Add your vegetables and heat through. Serve over rice.

Also see this recipe for Chop Suey, American style of course! Published in an Indiana church cookbook from the 1980's.

Cathy's Chicken Cashew

  • 1 1/2 lbs chicken breast
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 2 tsp chicken bouillon
  • 1 1/4 cup boiling water
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp to 1 tbsp cornstarch to desired thickness
  • mushrooms, sliced
  • 1/2 cup green onions
  • 1 small green pepper, cut into strips
  • 2 cups cashews
  • hot cooked rice

In a saucepan, dissolve bouillon in water. Combine soy sauce, cornstarch, sugar and ginger. Stir until slightly thickened. Stir into bouillon mixture. In large skillet, brown chicken in oil. Add bouillon mixture. Add mushrooms, onions and green pepper. Simmer uncovered to desired crispness. Add cashews before serving. Place hot cooked rice onto platter. If you like more sauce, double sauce.

Easy Crockpot Teriyaki Chicken

  • 2-3 lbs. skinless chicken pieces
  • 20 oz. can pineapple chunks
  • dash of ground ginger
  • 1 cup Teriyaki sauce

Place chicken in slow cooker. Pour remaining ingredients over chicken. Cover and cook on low 6-8 hours.
Recipe from a 1998 Platte SD Hospital Recipebook

Also see these recipe pages!

Easy rice dishes

Pork recipes

Chicken recipes

Food for Thought:
"If you see someone without a smile, give him one of yours."

Have a great day!