Sesame Chicken vs General Tso: Differences and Similarities

When visiting a Chinese restaurant, sesame chicken and General Tso’s chicken are popular dishes you can substitute for one another.

Sesame chicken and General Tso’s chicken have become fan favorites among many Asian cuisine lovers and are now served in restaurants other than Chinese across North America.

As a result, this article will examine the key differences and similarities between sesame chicken and General Tso’s chicken. It will also tell you which dishes are the healthiest, which have the most calories, and so on.

What is sesame chicken?

sesame chicken - millenora

Sesame chicken is a popular dish in North America that comes in a variety of forms, but they all share the same tangy and sweet sauce that Chinese food fans adore.

What is General Tso chicken?

general tso chicken - millenora

General Tso’s chicken is another well-known Chinese American dish in North America. The sauce is famous for being thick, tangy, sweet, and spicy.

Is General Tso chicken and sesame chicken the same?

No, but they do share some characteristics.

General Tso chicken is sour and made from chicken breast and thighs, while the sesame chicken is sweet and made from better chicken thighs.

Sesame Chicken vs General Tso: The similarities

These two dishes are well-known and adored by foodies everywhere. Some might even assert that these two dishes are very similar to one another, which is true but also untrue.

Therefore, the major similarity between both sesame chicken and General Tso’s chicken is that both have many types.

One of the types of sesame chicken is a dish called “almond shrimp,” which uses shrimp as its main ingredient. This dish’s flavor comes from shaved almonds rather than sesame seeds, but they have similar tastes and appearances.

In addition, Kung Pao chicken and General Tso’s chicken have infamously been compared.

Kung Pao has a hot and spicy flavor profile, while General Tso has a peppery and sweet depth of flavor.

Sesame chicken vs General Tso: The differences

The main difference between sesame chicken and General Tso chicken is that the former is sweeter and made exclusively of chicken thighs, while the latter is spicier and made of both chicken breast and thighs.

Furthermore, General Tso chicken lacks sesame seeds, while sesame chicken has a visible appearance of sesame seeds.

In addition, General Tso chicken contains more calories than sesame chicken, though both are sweet and tangy.

Moreover, the addition of dried herbs and spices gives General Tso a spicier flavor.

However, the level of spice in each dish varies. General Tso may be spicier in one restaurant, while sesame chicken is spicier in another.

Sesame chicken vs General Tso: Which is healthy?

If you want something healthy, sesame chicken is an excellent option because it has more nutrients and health advantages than General Tso’s chicken.

Sesame chicken vs General Tso: Calories

If you’re watching your calories or seeking a healthier meal, choose sesame chicken.

Although it is true that both sesame chicken and General Tso chicken are fried and have additional sweetness, sesame chicken has less sugar and is low in calories overall.

Sesame chicken vs General Tso: Which is spicier?

General Tso takes the lead in terms of spiciness due to the addition of dry spices and herbs that give General Tso a peppery flavor.

Which is better, sesame chicken or General Tso?

Saying one is superior to the other is difficult because the main difference seems to be that sesame chicken is more nutritious than General Tso.

Asides from that, sesame chicken is a good choice if you are craving something sweeter.

Additionally, you can go for General Tso’s chicken if you like your food hot and peppery. In any case, either of these dishes will satisfy your craving for Asian food.


Can you substitute sesame for General Tso chicken?

Yes, you can if you want.

You could order one if the other is out of stock or unavailable even though the dishes are not precisely the same due to spiciness.

As a result, you may not want to use sesame chicken in place of General Tso chicken due to the substantial difference in spice level.

However, these two dishes are very similar at first glance, and as soon as you taste the food, it becomes clear that they are not the same.

What is in sesame chicken?

A translucent, reddish-brown, semi-thick, sweet sauce made of corn starch, vinegar, wine, chicken broth, sugar, and deboned chicken thighs are the main ingredients in sesame chickens.

Which is better, orange chicken or sesame chicken?

While orange chicken is typically soft, sesame chicken is crunchier and grittier, making the former more appealing.

Furthermore, sesame chicken is typically deep-fried, while orange chicken is stir-fried. Both chickens, however, are capable of being baked.

What is the closest thing to General Tso Chicken?

One of the best General Tso’s chicken substitutes is Lazi Ji.

You can choose this Chinese dish, Lazi Ji, if General Tso isn’t ready or if it is not on the menu and you want something similar.


Sesame chicken and General Tso’s chicken are iconic Chinese dishes that have become staples on many people’s menus.

When visiting a Chinese restaurant, you will notice that these two delicacies are popular choices among many Chinese food lovers.

Conversely, sesame chicken and General Tso’s chicken may appear similar, but they differ- one is spicier, and the other is healthier.

Furthermore, one is made from chicken thighs and breast (General Tso), whereas the other is made entirely from chicken thighs (sesame chicken).

Also, find out if eating chicken is healthy for fatty liver.

Thanks for reading.