Bourbon Chicken is traditionally a Southern dish, and after moving to Pennsylvania from Oklahoma, I really missed this. I searched for a recipe I liked, but I couldn't find one, so this is my own delicious version, spiced up with ginger, fruit juice, red pepper, and a little Southern Comfort! Serve over rice.



Original recipe yields 8 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified


  • Heat the oil in a large heavy pan or Dutch oven, and brown the chicken pieces until lightly golden on all sides, about 10 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a bowl.

  • In the same dutch oven, whisk the water, brown sugar, 3/4 cup of fruit juice cocktail, soy sauce, ketchup, bourbon liqueur, apple cider vinegar, garlic, dried onion, red pepper flakes, and ground ginger into the Dutch oven. Bring the sauce to a boil while scraping the browned bits of food off of the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon.

  • Stir the chicken back into the sauce, and bring to a full boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low, and simmer until the sauce is reduced and thickened and the chicken pieces are no longer pink in the middle, about 20 minutes.

  • Remove the chicken pieces to a bowl with a slotted spoon. Stir together 1/4 cup of fruit juice cocktail with the cornstarch until smooth, and whisk the cornstarch mixture into the sauce, stirring constantly to avoid lumps. Bring the sauce back to a simmer, let thicken for about 1 minute, and return the chicken pieces to the sauce. Stir to combine, and serve.

Cook's Note

You can use any type of fruit juice you like, but I found that the apple/grape/cherry juice that I make from concentrate adds great flavor to the dish.

Partner Tip

Reynolds® Aluminum foil can be used to keep food moist, cook it evenly, and make clean-up easier.

Nutrition Facts

417 calories; 10.9 g total fat; 97 mg cholesterol; 1382 mg sodium. 36.7 g carbohydrates; 37.1 g protein; Full Nutrition

Reviews (127)

Read More Reviews
165 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 107
  • 4 star values: 38
  • 3 star values: 10
  • 2 star values: 6
  • 1 star values: 4
Rating: 5 stars
My family is picky to say the least and this was the first thing I have ever made that everyone went back for seconds on. I only made two small changes to cut back on the sweetness. I substituted Jim Beam for the Southern Comfort and I substituted chicken stock for the fruit juice during the thicken stage at the very end. All in all this recipe is great! Read More
Rating: 4 stars
Very good. I didn't use soy sauce and didn't have enough brown sugar so I substituted a cup of brown sugar and 2 tbsp of molasses. The sauce was pretty sweet but I also didn't have crushed red pepper flakes. Some spicy Mrs. Dash at the end didn't punch it up enough but I am sure some spice will cut the sweetness nicely. My own personal twist: with about 5 minutes of cook time left I diced a peach into fairly large chunks and threw them in. They came out soft and delicious. Served over rice. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
Excellent! Like many of the other reviews I substituted chicken stock for the juice. I didn't have minced onion so I put in about half a chopped onion. The other thing I did was just to throw all of the ingredients in the crockpot except the cornstarch. When the chicken pieces were cooked I took them out temporarily and whisked in the corn starch. Then I added the chicken back in and let it simmer for a few hours more. I think that cooking it in the crockpot keeps the chicken moist. So easy and I normally keep all the ingredients on hand. Read More
Rating: 4 stars
Very good but definitely too sweet. And I only used 1/2 cup of brown sugar. Next time I'll use chicken broth instead of fruit juice. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
This recipe is fantastic. I was unable to find the exact juice combination on the recpe so I used an apple/cranberry juice. I have made this recipe twice the first time with chicken breasts and felt the chicken got too dry. The second time I used boneless skinless chicken thighs and that made the recipe! Read More
Rating: 5 stars
I had all ingredients on hand except bourbon! But it still tasted like the bourbon chicken you can get at the food court which I really like. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
There is a reason this is called "Best". It is!!!! Easy to follow directions and the chicken is not breaded! I did take the advice of others and omitted the juice altogether. I used the same measurement but used chicken broth! My entire family loved this! This will easily be in the rotation at my house! Thanks for such a great recipe!!!! Read More
Rating: 4 stars
The flavoring of the sauce was excellent however I would recommend using skinless thighs since the white meat got too dry. Read More
Rating: 4 stars
I substituted chicken broth for the apple-grape-cherry juice right off the bat... and it seemed plenty sweet to me. I also used boneless skinless chicken thighs and it came out tasting just like the Bourbon chicken at the mall! Used Jack Daniels instead of Southern Comfort because that's what we had. After letting the chicken chunks simmer in the sauce for 20 minutes I took out the chicken and cranked up the heat to med-high and boiled for a few minutes to help cook off some of the alcohol smell and reduce the sauce even more before whisking in the slurry mixture. In the future I may also reduce the amount of soy sauce. But overall this recipe with the changes was fantastic. Definitely a keeper! Read More