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Feb 15

Orange Ground Turkey

Orange Ground Turkey plated with rice and broccoli

This simple Orange Ground Turkey skillet is bursting with bold citrus flavor and comes together in about 20 minutes! This recipe is based off the tasty flavors of orange chicken that you could order from a Chinese restaurant, so you could certainly use ground chicken breast instead. I use ground turkey because the leaner breast-meat variety is easier to find at my grocery stores! The sauce for this dish has a strong orange flavor from the fresh orange juice and zest with a little bit of “bite” from the ginger, vinegar and crushed red pepper. There’s also sugar for sweetness and soy sauce and sesame oil to make it savory. You’ll thicken the sauce up with a quick cornstarch slurry to make it cling to the ground turkey, and your easy, flavorful sauce is complete! Not only is this Orange Ground Turkey super tasty and quick to make, a 2/3 cup serving is just 210 calories or 4 Weight Watchers/WW Points! To view your current WW Points for this recipe and track it in the WW app or site, click here!

Orange Ground Turkey with sides overhead

I posted a recipe for Korean-Inspired Ground Turkey last summer that turned out to be a big hit with readers, so I wanted to do something similar but with a different flavor profile. This Orange Ground Turkey is just as fast and easy-to-make for a quick weeknight dinner! I like to serve it with brown or white rice (pictured with ¾ cup white jasmine rice) and cooked vegetables (like broccoli, green beans or snow peas), but it would also be great in lettuce wraps! My favorite lettuce to use for lettuce wraps is Boston/Bibb lettuce because the leaves are the perfect size and make great cups, but you can use whatever lettuce you prefer. If you serve it in a lettuce wrap you may also want to add vegetables like shredded cabbage, shredded carrots, or sliced bell peppers.

Orange Ground Turkey in a skillet

Looking for more tasty, lightened up Asian-inspired recipes? Check out my Korean-Inspired Ground Turkey, Chicken Lo Mein, Vegetable Fried Rice, Teriyaki Steak Lettuce Wraps, Thai Chicken Chopped Salad, Chicken Teriyaki Stir Fry, Asian Chicken Wonton Cups, Thai Turkey with Carrot Noodles, Cashew and Basil Chicken Lettuce Wraps, Teriyaki Chicken and Rice Casserole, Thai Chicken Skewers with Peanut Sauce, and many more in the Asian category of my recipe index!

Orange Ground Turkey on a plate close up

Orange Ground Turkey on a plate close up
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4.65 from 17 votes
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Orange Ground Turkey

This simple Orange Ground Turkey skillet is bursting with bold citrus flavor and comes together in about 20 minutes!


  • 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons fresh orange juice
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest, (about the amount from one orange)
  • 2 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons white granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoons water
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 lb uncooked 99% lean ground turkey breast, (or ground chicken breast)
  • 1 tablespoon minced ginger root
  • 2 teaspoon minced garlic
  • ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 scallions, sliced


  • Combine the vinegar, orange juice, orange zest, soy sauce, sugar, and sesame oil in a bowl and whisk together to mix. Set aside. In a small dish, stir together the cornstarch and water until cornstarch is dissolved. Set aside.
  • Add the canola oil to a large saute pan or skillet and bring over medium heat. Once the oil is hot, add the ground turkey and stir to break it up and coat it in the oil. Cook the ground turkey for about 5 minutes, breaking up with a spoon to break into chunks and stirring occasionally, until the turkey is cooked through. Add the ginger, garlic, and crushed red pepper and stir together. Cook for another 30-60 seconds.
  • Stir the sauce from step one and add it to the pan. Stir to coat the meat and bring the sauce to a boil. Stir in the cornstarch slurry from step one for about 30 seconds until the sauce is thickened. Sprinkle with scallions before serving.


To view your current WW Points for this recipe and track it in the WW app or site, click here!
WW Points per (2/3 cup) serving: 4 (Points calculated using the recipe builder on weightwatchers.com)
Nutrition Information per (2/3 cup) serving:
210 calories, 13 g carbs, 7 g sugars, 6 g fat, 0 g saturated fat, 27 g protein, 0 g fiber, 427 mg sodium (from myfitnesspal.com)
MYWW SMARTPOINTS PER (2/3 cup) SERVING: (SP calculated using the recipe builder on weightwatchers.com)
Green: 5 SmartPoints/ Blue: 3 SmartPoints/ Purple: 3 SmartPoints
Weight Watchers Points Plus:
5 per (2/3 cup) serving (PP calculated using a Weight Watchers PointsPlus calculator and the nutrition info below)
Adapted from Dinner Then Dessert

24 comments on “Orange Ground Turkey”

  1. I’m thinking this may be a fabulous filling for egg rolls, or wonton wrappers!

  2. Made this tonight and it was delicious, I used a tbsp garlic bc i love garlic. I try to eat a bit cleaner of a diet what would you recommend to substitute the corn starch and sugar for that’s healthier?  Also can I switch tamari for soy sauce and olive oil for canola oil?  


    • Have you tried Lakanto Monk Fruit Sweetener? It’s a 1-1 sugar replacement. Tastes the closest to sugar to me. For oils, anytime a recipe calls for a neutral oil (like canola) I use avocado oil. I haven’t tried those substitutions for this recipe though but thought I would share. 

    • I have to eat gluten free so I use Tamari in every recipe that requires soy sauce and have never had a problem. You can also use coconut aminos but I find that to be a bit sweeter. As far as the cornstarch goes, I have heard good things about tapioca starch (also known as tapioca flour) but I haven’t tried it yet.

  3. Very tasty. I ground my own chicken breast in my food processor. It was what I had on hand. Everything else I made as directed. Next time I would double the sauce (we like sauce), but it was really good!4 stars

  4. Made this tonight. Fam fave now. Great flavor!5 stars

  5. I’m on the blue plan and use quite a few recipes from this site. This one might be my favorite. My husband ate his with rice and he really, really liked it. I think he went back for seconds. I ate mine with cauliflower rice and the next night I added a little cooked cabbage to it. It was almost like an eggroll in a bowl that way. YUM! I will be making this at least monthly..5 stars

  6. Yum! Added a can of water chestnuts (drained and diced) when I added the garlic and ginger and rolled the filling up in butter lettuce for lettuce wraps. The orange flavor comes through and my whole house smelled amazing!5 stars

  7. Just made this for meal prep next week and it tastes so great! I paired mine with rice and sugar snap peas.5 stars

  8. I loved it! Really fresh tasting. Thank you. 5 stars

  9. Very very dry. 1 star

  10. Has anyone cooked broccoli in with this?

    • I cooked some broccoli in a separate pan and added it to my rice bowl after so it could mix in with the flavors from the ground turkey. It turned out great! I didn’t want to mix it right into the pan because I wanted to make sure the measurements were correct.

  11. This recipe is amazing! I have already made it twice for meal prep. I personally doubled the recipe for the sauce so its a bit saucier- I eat it with a side of white rice & roasted broccoli. Will definitely make this again and again.. Thanks Emily!5 stars

  12. This is delicious and so easy! Always looking for quick recipes since I have two littles! This is a winner! I switched half of the sugar for stevia and it would’ve tasted okay to sub sugar for stevia entirely. Yum!5 stars

  13. I made this a week or so ago. Grating orange peel and ginger and then juicing the orange makes it labor intensive I think. However my husband said “you can make this again”. It was delicious and we did enjoy it. I will keep it on our menu rotation. I’ve used several of your recipes and they all have been delicious. Thank you Emily.

    Brook5 stars

  14. Fantastic and satisfying! Did half soy sauce and half fish sauce. This one goes onto the rotation.5 stars

  15. Thank you for such a delicious recipe! We loved this, even my very picky five year old. I did double the sauce and served over brown rice and broccoli. I wonder if this would freeze well? I’d love to make it ahead of time and defrost individual servings as needed. Thank you, again!5 stars

  16. The taste from the sauce was Delicious! But the ground turkey was SO CHEWY! Would not use that. Next time I will use chicken breast cut in chunks, or maybe broken up in my food processor a bit. But the ground turkey was terrible, and I used 93% fat free, so why it was rubbery and tough I don’t know. Any ideas? I LOVE Emily’s recipes, but won’t use ground turkey again….????

  17. WHOA! This smells so freaking amazing. I used lean pork instead of turkey. I also used 1 tablespoon of sugar and one packet of splenda. I got two tablespoons of orange juice from half my orange and I used 1 tablespoon of pineapple juice I had in the fridge. I also chopped up a red bell pepper and added it near the end of cooking. I also added a few pineapple chunks I needed to get rid of. Oh, and I skipped the crushed red pepper for my daughter and husband’s sake. I added sriracha on top instead and it was wonderful. I would definitely make this again. I will probably try ground chicken next time.5 stars

  18. i used all the pulp from the orange and added some chili garlic sauce to make it spicier.
    It was delicious.4 stars

  19. So delicious! The orange sauce is amazing!
    A little work for prep, nothing too difficult, but very worth it! 5 stars

  20. We just had this recipe. I used honey in place of the sugar and lemon in place of the vinegar and liquid aminos in place of the soy sauce. I put Annie’s pad Thai brown rice noodles into the turkey mixture. It was a little dry, but very favorable. I used Mary’s organic ground turkey breast. We had a lettuce salad with the recipe. I like your recipes Emily .5 stars

  21. Delicious, made just as written.
    Any suggestions for a wine pairing?5 stars

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