Browsing Tag

orange chicken

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Panda Express launches plant-based Orange Chicken in all 2,300 US locations

  • Panda Express launched Beyond The Original Orange Chicken on Wednesday in all 2,300 locations across the U.S.
  • Co-developed with Beyond Meat, the dish is a plant-based spin on Panda Express’ classic Orange Chicken recipe.
  • The dish was first introduced in Southern California and New York in July 2021, and then in 70 locations in 10 markets in October.

For the first time, American Chinese restaurant Panda Express is offering a plant-based Beyond Meat version of its Orange Chicken entrée in all 2,300 locations across the U.S.

The trademarked dish, officially known as Beyond The Original Orange Chicken, combines the “irresistibly crunchy texture and flavor” of the classic Panda Express favorite and Beyond Meat’s “best-in-class plant-based protein capabilities,” according to a news release.

Panda Express chef on the appeal of orange chicken and why American Chinese is its own regional cuisine

Panda Express
  • Across 2,200 stores, Panda Express has become a staple of Chinese American fast food, and central to questions about cultural and culinary authenticity.
  • A third of the chain’s customers order the staple orange chicken, but new dishes like Sichuan chicken keep the brand busy with innovation.
  • Chef Jimmy Wang, director of culinary innovation, spoke to NextShark about the process of creating the next big dish, authenticity in the kitchen and his own Panda Express order.

Chef Jimmy Wang, executive director of culinary innovation at Panda Express, spoke to NextShark about the process of creating the next big dish, authenticity in the kitchen and his own go-to order.

What comes to mind looking at the circular Panda Express logo, featuring a soft, curvy panda with a blank expression popping out against a red background? For many, the zesty taste of orange chicken is synonymous with the brand. Or maybe it’s nostalgic memories of sitting in a mall food court, a scent vaguely reminiscent of Asian cuisine hanging in the air.