What Goes With Lemon Chicken? Perfect Pairings

Lemon Chicken has a lot going for it. It’s quick to throw together, healthy, and tastes great. It is perfect for busy weeknights or even for special family gatherings. But what other dishes are perfect to pair with this dish?

Here are what goes with lemon chicken:

  • Side dishes: white rice, rice pilaf, mashed potatoes, green beans, etc.
  • Other dishes: Chicken parmesan, Pork tenderloin, Lemon-herb cod fillets, etc.
  • Desserts: Baked apples, Pumpkin pie, etc.
What Goes With Lemon Chicken? Perfect Pairings
Chinese lemon chicken. Credit: canva

What are the other dishes that go well? And how to prepare them? Let’s find out!

What country does lemon chicken come from?

Kostopoulos lemonato
Kostopoulos lemonato (Greek lemon chicken). Credit: canva

There are so many versions around the world.

In the Canadian and British-Chinese versions, it’s usually made from pieces of chicken that are sautéed or battered and deep-fried and then coated with a thick, tangy, sweet lemon-flavor sauce.

At the Panda Hotel in Tsuen Wan, Hong Kong, they used to serve their version with chicken pieces coated in batter and rolled in almond slivers. They would then deep fry them and serve them with a lemon glaze sauce.

An Australasian version involves coating the chicken in batter and frying it. Then, cover the chicken with lemon sauce.

Lemon chicken in Italy (Pollo al Limone), and Greece (Kostopoulos lemonato), consists of a whole chicken roasted with white wine, lemon, fresh thyme, and mirepoix.

A similar dish in Spain, Pollo al Romero con Limon y piñones, includes pine nuts, rosemary, and ham.

French poulet aux citrons include Dijon mustard in the sauce and are served with roasted potatoes.

What is a lemon chicken sauce made of?

What Goes With Lemon Chicken? Perfect Pairings
Chicken breast with lemon sauce. Credit: canva

The sauce for this recipe comprises two main ingredients, fresh lemon juice, and butter.

It may also include salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne pepper, or other spices.

Is lemon chicken Chinese?

No, it’s not. But many dishes have been influenced by Chinese cuisine. Some people think it was invented in China.

What Goes with Lemon Chicken?

It can be paired with just about anything.

Side Dishes that Go Well with Lemon Chicken

lemon chicken and rice
Chinese lemon chicken with white rice. Credit: canva

If you want to make your meal more interesting, you can add an accompaniment for lemon chicken. Try pairing it with one of these side dishes:


Lemon chicken and rice go together like peanut butter and jelly. The combination works well because it has a tart flavor that complements the sweetness of cooked rice.

Rice Pilaf

This classic Asian side dish pairs nicely. It’s a simple mixture of rice, onions, carrots, celery, and peas.

Green beans

This vegetable is often served as an appetizer at restaurants. However, if you’re looking for something different, try serving green beans alongside.

Green beans are perfect because they add crunchiness to the plate.

Mashed potatoes

What Goes With Lemon Chicken? Perfect Pairings
Chicken thigh and mashed potatoes. Credit: canva

You don’t need much else to complete mashed potatoes. If you want to make them extra special, try adding cheese, herbs, or bacon bits.

Sautéed vegetables

Try sautéing some veggies along with the chicken. You can use any kind of veggie you’d like. Try carrots, broccoli, onions, peppers, mushrooms, etc.

Vegetable soup

Another way to enjoy it is by having it over a bowl of hot vegetable soup. It makes a great lunchtime meal!

Creamed corn

Corn on the cob is always delicious when it’s topped with melted butter and sprinkled with paprika. But if you prefer creamy corn instead of crispy, try creamed corn. It’s a great way to enjoy corn without all the fuss.

Sweet potato fries

Sweet potatoes are naturally sweet, making them a natural choice for dipping.

Roasted Asparagus

What Goes With Lemon Chicken? Perfect Pairings
Lemon chicken and asparagus. Credit: canva

Asparagus is another vegetable that pairs perfectly. Roasting it brings out its natural sweetness.

Grilled zucchini

Zucchini is also a good match. Grilling it adds a smoky flavor.

Fried okra

Okra is a Southern staple. Fried okra is a popular snack in the South.

Cucumber salad

When you combine cucumber, you get a refreshing salad that will leave your mouth feeling clean.

Cucumbers are low in fat and high in water content, making them ideal for cooling down after eating spicy foods.


italian lemon butter chicken
Italian lemon butter chicken with pasta. Credit: canva

Pasta is an excellent option for those who love to eat but don’t have time to cook. Just boil pasta until it’s done, then toss it.

Fresh fruit

Some fruits work better than others when trying to balance out the flavors in a dish. For example, pineapple tastes sweet enough, so it doesn’t need much else added.

On the other hand, applesauce adds a tangy flavor to apple pie. You’ll know what fruit works best for you by experimenting.

Other Recipes That Go Well With Lemon Chicken

turnip cabbage salmon
Grilled salmon with turnips and cabbage. Credit: canva

Here are some other recipes:

Chicken Parmesan

Parmesan cheese pairs perfectly. The sharp taste of parmesan balances out the milder flavors of the chicken.

Pork Tenderloin

Pork tenderloin can be used in place of chicken. Pork tenderloins are usually leaner than chicken breasts, complementing the richness.

Lemon-Herb Cod Fillets

Cod fillets are a healthier alternative to fried fish. They’re easy to prepare and delicious. Serve cod fillets over a bed of steamed spinach or sautéed greens.

Grilled Salmon

Grilling salmon is a fun way to cook seafood. When you grill salmon, you get a flavorful piece of fish that’s packed with omega-3 fatty acids.

Grilled Shrimp

Shrimp is one of the most popular types of seafood. Grilling shrimp brings out all of its natural sweetness. Try grilling shrimp with fresh herbs such as rosemary and thyme.

Oven-Baked Fish Fillet

Fish fillets are an excellent source of protein. Oven-baking fish lets you enjoy the benefits of fish without having to worry about cooking it yourself.

Fish Sticks

Fish sticks are a quick and easy meal option. Just pop the frozen sticks in the oven and let them bake until crispy.

Desserts That Pair With Lemon Chicken

What Goes With Lemon Chicken? Perfect Pairings
Baked apples. Credit: canva

For dessert, there are plenty of options. Here are three ideas:

Baked apples

Apples baked with cinnamon and vanilla are a classic dessert. Serve this apple recipe for a tasty treat.

Apple Crisp

A warm crumble topping paired with juicy apples is a favorite fall dessert. This recipe from Food Network is a great place to start.

Pumpkin pie

The pumpkin spice latte craze has made pumpkin pie more popular than ever. Make sure to serve this version of the dessert alongside.

How to Make

Simple Lemon Chicken Recipe

What Goes With Lemon Chicken? Perfect Pairings
Chicken with broccoli

This is a simple yet tasty recipe. This meal is made with just four ingredients, making it a perfect weeknight dinner. It’s also gluten-free!


  • One tablespoon of olive oil
  • Two boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (about 4 ounces each)
  • 1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • One teaspoon of kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • One large head of broccoli, cut into florets


  1. Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a skillet over medium-low heat.
  2. Add the chicken cutlets and cook, turning once, until the chicken crust and golden brown, 5 to 6 minutes per side. Remove from the pan; set aside.
  3. Whisk the remaining tablespoon of olive oil and lemon juice in a small bowl—season with salt and pepper.
  4. Pour half of the mixture into the same skillet where the chicken was cooked; add the broccoli and toss to coat.
  5. Cook, occasionally stirring, until the broccoli begins to soften, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer to a serving plate.
  6. Repeat with the remaining chicken, lemon juice mixture, and broccoli. Top with the reserved chicken pieces. Garnish with additional lemon slices if desired.

Lemon Chicken with Buttery Sauce Recipe

What Goes With Lemon Chicken? Perfect Pairings
Chicken with buttery sauce. Credit: canva


  • 4 (5 oz) boneless chicken breasts, pounded to an even 1/3-inch thickness
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 4 Tbsp unsalted butter, sliced into 1 Tbsp pieces, divided
  • 1 1/2 tsp minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup low-sodium chicken broth (chicken stock)
  • 3 Tablespoons lemon juice (fresh)
  • 1/2 tsp fresh lemon zest
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp minced fresh parsley (optional)


  1. Pat the chicken breasts dry and season both sides of the chicken with salt and pepper.
  2. Put flour in a shallow dish, then coat both sides of each piece of chicken in flour, one at a time.
  3. Heat a 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat.
  4. Add olive oil and one tablespoon of butter, let the butter melt, then add chicken breast meat in a single layer.
  5. Sear until the chicken browns at the bottom, about 4 – 5 minutes, then flip and continue to cook until chicken registers 165 degrees (internal temperature) in the center, about 4 – 5 more minutes.
  6. Transfer chicken to a plate while leaving any little bit of excess oil in the pan.
  7. Reduce to medium heat. Add garlic to the pan, and cook for 20 seconds or until lightly golden brown. Then add chicken broth while scraping up any brown bits.
  8. Add lemon juice, bring mixture to a boil, reduce heat slightly, and let simmer for about 2 minutes.
  9. Add 3 tablespoons of butter and lemon zest and stir to melt the butter.
  10. Return chicken to skillet, spoon sauce over chicken, and garnish with parsley. Serve warm.

Cooking Tips

Here are some tips that will help you get delicious results every time:

  • You can use frozen chicken instead of thawed chicken. Just be sure to defrost it first.
  • You can also use skinless chicken thighs for a more flavorful dish. Put the chicken thighs’ skin side up when searing.
  • When using fresh lemons, always squeeze them before juicing. The juice should be bright yellow and not cloudy. If your lemons are sour, they’re too ripe and won’t work well in this recipe.
  • When cooking meat, don’t overcrowd the pan. It’ll take longer to sear the meat properly.
  • To avoid burning the chicken outside, turn down the heat after searing it.
  • If you have leftover chicken, try making chicken salad sandwiches.
  • If you want to serve this as a main course, double the recipe and freeze half for another day.


What sides are good with chicken?

Try mashed potatoes, rice pilaf, couscous, pasta, or roasted vegetables like sweet potato or butternut squash.

What is Chinese lemon chicken made of?

It is usually made from chicken thighs or drumsticks. They’re often marinated in soy sauce, sesame oil, and other spices.

What does lemon pepper go well with?

Lemon pepper has a strong citrusy flavor, which pairs well with many things. Try it on grilled fish, salads, and soups. You can also make lemon pepper chicken.

How do I store leftovers?

Leftover chicken tastes great reheated in the microwave. You can also toss it into a pot of boiling water for 10 minutes and drain the liquid.

For best storage, wrap leftover chicken tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to three days.

Related Topics

Is roast chicken healthy?

Yes, roast chicken is healthy. Roasting chicken is an excellent way to cook it because it doesn’t require extra oil or butter, and the high heat helps seal the moisture.

Chicken is a good source of protein, vitamins B6 and B12, selenium, phosphorus, and zinc. It also contains the antioxidant lycopene.

What sides go with bbq chicken?

BBQ chicken is a very versatile dish and can be paired with various sides.

Some popular sides that go well with BBQ chicken include potato salad, macaroni salad, cole slaw, green beans, corn on the cob, and biscuits.

You can also get creative and pair BBQ chicken with unique sides like peach or blackberry cobbler for dessert.

What goes with orange chicken?

There are so many delicious options that go great with orange chicken! You could try steamed rice, chow mein noodles, or fried rice.

If you’re looking for something a little healthier, you could always try some steamed broccoli or bok choy. Whatever you choose, I’m sure it will be delicious!

Do you wash chicken before marinating?

Yes, you should always wash chicken before marinating it. Any bacteria on the surface of the chicken will be killed during the cooking process, but it’s best to start with a clean bird just to be safe.

Plus, washing the chicken will help the marinade penetrate the meat better.

What cut of meat is milanesa?

Milanesa is a thinly sliced, breaded, and fried cut of meat. It can be made from beef, pork, chicken, or veal.

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