Hainanese Chicken Rice

by Lisa K. on Thu, March 21, 2019

I can’t imagine a world without chicken rice. Such a simple and tasty dish to enjoy but it takes patience and time to make a good batch. Use good quality chicken, preferably the ones with yellow fat, for best flavour. And don’t skip the dipping sauces. They are essential for Hainanese Chicken Rice.

A dish worth the time and effort

Serves 4 - 6 people

Traditionally a whole chicken is simmered, not chicken parts. But I find it easier to manage and cut smaller chicken parts compared to a whole chicken.

Use organic chicken, corn fed chicken or ayam kampung for best flavour.

Foodster's Verdict

Hainanese Chicken Rice


  • Preparation
  • Total
    1hour 15minutes
    1 whole chicken, cut into 4 parts
    2 tsp. salt
    40g ginger, sliced
    2 sprigs spring onion
    Water for boiling

    3 cups rice, washed
    2 tbsp. oil
    30g ginger, sliced
    4 garlic, crushed
    1 pandan leaf
    4 ½ cups chicken stock

    Garlic & Ginger Dip
    3 tbsp. spring onions, finely chopped
    2 tbsp. ginger finely chopped
    1 tbsp. garlic finely chopped
    ¼ cup hot oil
    ¾ tsp. salt
    ¾ tsp. sugar

    Chilli Sauce
    100g red chillies
    20g red cili padi
    50g ginger
    6 cloves garlic
    1 ½ tbsp. vinegar
    5 tbsp. chicken stock
    1 tsp. salt
    1 tbsp. sugar
    Soy Sauce Dressing for Chicken
    2 tbsp. light soy sauce mixed with 4 tbsp. chicken stock

    Cucumber and coriander for garnishing


1. Clean chicken parts thoroughly with water and place it in a large pot. Add in ginger, spring onions and cover with water 1 inch above chicken and add in salt.

2. Simmer with a lid on for 30 minutes, or until chicken is cooked. Remove the gunky foam that floats to the top. This helps keep the stock clear.

3. To tell if chicken is cooked, poke the thickest part of the chicken and if the juices should run clear without any pink-ness.

4. Dunk chicken pieces in ice water for 3 – 4 minutes to stop cooking process.

1. Heat up oil and sauté ginger and garlic until becomes fragrant.

2. Add in pandan leaves and washed rice grains and sauté for a minute to allow rice to absorb fragrant oil.

3. Transfer rice into rice cooker and pour in chicken stock. Let rice cook.

Garlic & Ginger Dip
1. Mix spring onions, ginger and garlic in a heat proof bowl and pour in hot oil. It will sizzle slightly.

2. Season with salt and sugar to taste. Adjust seasoning to taste.

Chilli Sauce
1. Put all ingredients together into a pot and blitz until fine. Adjust seasoning to taste.

To Serve
1. Cut chicken up into smaller pieces and arrange nicely on a platter. Pour soy sauce dressing all over and garnish with coriander and sliced cucumbers.

2. Fluff up cooked rice and discard ginger, garlic and pandan leaf. Dish out onto plates.

3. Dish out remaining hot chicken broth into individual bowls.

4. Serve with both dipping sauces.