How to make Hainanese Chicken Rice at home

Hainanese chicken rice is one of my absolute favorite comfort foods. This classic Southeast Asian dish features tender, poached chicken served on top of fragrant, garlic-infused rice. It’s simple yet packed with flavor, and has become popular all over the world. As a food blogger and home cook, I’ve enjoyed learning all about the history and origins of Hainanese chicken rice. At Food And Meal, I’ll share everything you need to know to make this iconic dish at home, along with my tips and personal twists. Let’s get cooking!

A Brief History of Hainanese Chicken Rice

A Bowl Of Hainanese Chicken Rice, With Poached Chicken On Fluffy Garlic Rice And Garnished With Cucumber And Cilantro.
A bowl of hainanese chicken rice, with poached chicken on fluffy garlic rice and garnished with cucumber and cilantro.

While many people associate Hainanese chicken rice with Singaporean cuisine, the dish actually originated in the Hainan province of southern China. Chinese immigrants from Hainan adapted a recipe called Wenchang chicken to create this tasty one-pot meal. The rice absorbs the chicken broth as it cooks, giving it an irresistible aroma and flavor. During World War II, Hainanese servants and restaurant workers in Singapore started selling their own versions, popularizing what became the national dish. From Singapore, Hainanese chicken rice spread to Malaysia, Vietnam, Cambodia and Thailand, taking on local influences along the way.

Hainan chicken rice is a traditional food in Hainan. Hainan Wenchang chicken is generally used for local production in Hainan. Wenchang chicken is small in size, round in shape, bright in color, thin skin and tender meat, and rich in meat flavor. Hainanese chicken rice should also be accompanied by rice dipped in chicken oil and
chicken broth. The unique rich fragrance of Wenchang chicken is integrated with the rice, and it has become a hometown flavor that cannot be parted in the hearts of Hainanese living in a foreign land.

Ginger Chili Sauce, An Essential Condiment That Adds A Fiery Kick To Mild Chicken And Rice.
Ginger chili sauce, an essential condiment that adds a fiery kick to mild chicken and rice.

Hainanese chicken rice spreads to Malaysia, Singapore and other places along with the migration of Hainanese. Local chicken is used instead of Wenchang chicken when making it. The Hainanese immigrants in the Malacca area still retain the old ancestor worship habits.
When making Hainanese chicken rice, the rice balls are made into pieces. The outer surface is round and the inside is soft. Taste, everything is available.

Best Hainanese Chicken Rice at home Recipe

How To Make Hainanese Chicken Rice At Home 1

Hainanese Chicken Rice

Hainanese chicken is said to have originated from southern China when immigrants from Hainan created this poached chicken dish inspired by Wenchang chicken. It is usually served with seasoned rice, chili sauce, and chopped cucumber.
5 from 1 vote
Course: Main dishes, Rice
Cuisine: Chinese
Keyword: chicken, chicken rice
CookingStyle: Stir-frying
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 2 servings
Calories: 376kcal
Author: Tracy Hilton
Cost: 20
Add to Collection




  • Pour the olive oil into the Instant Pot.
  • Add the garlic, ginger, shallot and green onion to the pot.
  • Cook while stirring for 2 minutes.
  • Pour the broth into the pot.
  • Add the chicken and salt.
  • Seal the pot.
  • Cook on high pressure for 8 minutes.
  • Release pressure naturally.
  • Serve with rice, chopped cucumber and chili sauce.



I hope this guide has you excited to make Hainanese chicken rice at home. This versatile recipe is definitely worth the time and effort. The fragrant rice, tender chicken and punchy sauces come together to create a truly iconic Southeast Asian dish. Let me know if you have any other tips or tricks for nailing it! Now it's time for me to get cooking.
Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
Read  Cheese Lover's Dream: Crafting Irresistible Cheese Donkatsu at Home


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 376kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 23g | Fat: 28g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 14g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 123mg | Sodium: 4254mg | Potassium: 401mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 123IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 43mg | Iron: 1mg
© Food And Meal

This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition data is gathered primarily from the Spoonacular Database, whenever available, or otherwise other online calculators.

Tips and Tricks

Fresh, Crunchy Cucumber Slices Make A Refreshing Contrast To The Rich Chicken And Rice.
Fresh, crunchy cucumber slices make a refreshing contrast to the rich chicken and rice.

Tips for Perfect Hainanese Chicken Rice at Home

I find that sourcing high-quality, fresh ingredients is key. I always look for plump, free-range chicken with smooth, glowing skin. Gently poaching the chicken keeps the meat incredibly moist and tender. Skimming away any scum ensures a crystal clear, aromatic broth, which I then use to cook the rice. The broth infuses each grain with mouthwatering flavor!

My favorite part is stirring in those last special touches – minced garlic, ginger, and scallions sautéed in rendered chicken fat. It adds a lovely fragrance and depth of flavor. I also mix in a bit of soy sauce for sheen and color. A squeeze of lime juice and black pepper brings all the components together into perfect harmony.

When serving this soul-warming dish, I enjoy spooning the chicken over a bed of those fabulous fat grains of rice. The contrast of flavors and textures sends my tastebuds dancing! I’ll squeeze over a little extra lime or chili sauce to suit my mood.

Frequently Asked Questions

Hainanese Chicken Rice Is A Fantastic One-Bowl Meal Full Of Complex Flavors.
Hainanese chicken rice is a fantastic one-bowl meal full of complex flavors.
  • What kind of rice works best? The traditional choice is long grain white rice. Basmati or jasmine rice are great options that give fluffy, separated grains.
  • Can I use chicken breasts instead of a whole chicken? You can, but the rice won’t have as much flavor. Use chicken stock along with the poaching liquid.
  • Is the chicken served warm or cold? Hainanese chicken rice is usually served with the warm rice and chilled poached chicken. But some enjoy it with warm chicken too!
  • What drink pairs well with this dish? I like serving it with chilled white wine or Asian beers like Tsingtao. Green tea also makes a refreshing beverage.

Serving Suggestions

Soy Sesame Oil Dip Provides A Tangy, Nutty Component To Balance The Rice And Chicken.
Soy sesame oil dip provides a tangy, nutty component to balance the rice and chicken.

Hainanese chicken rice, a beloved Southeast Asian dish known for its simplicity and rich flavor, offers a versatile canvas for pairing with an array of sides and starters. Among the delectable recipes to accompany this culinary gem, Soy Sauce Eggs stand out as a delightful appetizer or side, their savory marinade offering a perfect counterbalance to the mild chicken. Adding a crunchy texture and extra flavor, Shrimp Tempura atop the rice brings a delightful contrast, enhanced by the sweet dipping sauce. For a fusion twist, combining the savory richness of Tonkotsu Ramen with tender slices of Hainanese chicken creates an intriguing East meets Southeast Asian delight. Meanwhile, Teriyaki Salmon, with its sweet and sticky glaze, provides a harmonious contrast to the chicken rice, offering a burst of flavor with every bite. And to conclude the meal on a refreshing note, creamy Matcha Ice Cream serves as a delightful dessert, its gentle bitterness complementing the savory tones of the chicken rice. These tantalizing serving suggestions aim to elevate the dining experience, ensuring each bite is a harmonious blend of flavors and textures, celebrating the culinary richness of Southeast Asia.

Read  Homemade Blueberry Crepes Flavors of Summer
Serving Hainanese Chicken Rice In Stuffed Bell Peppers Makes For An Exciting Presentation.
Serving hainanese chicken rice in stuffed bell peppers makes for an exciting presentation.

As a passionate home cook and foodie, I’m so excited to share my ultimate guide to making authentic Hainanese chicken rice. This post dives into everything from the dish’s origins to my best cooking tips, plus answers common FAQs. I even include serving suggestions to turn this into a full meal. I’d love for you to try this iconic recipe and let me know how it goes! Please share this with any other chicken rice fans.

I'm Tracy F Hilton, a devoted culinary professional shaped by a mix of natural aptitude and refined skills from a top culinary school. In the dynamic kitchen environment, I'm a catalyst for seamless operations and timely, high-quality dish preparation. My culinary creations are a blend of art and skill, offering visually and gustatorily delightful experiences. A learner at heart, I'm continuously honing my craft, embracing new techniques, and culinary innovations. My positive, collaborative nature is amplified in fast-paced settings, showcasing my commitment to team efficiency and guest satisfaction. Each dish I present is a meticulous blend of tradition and innovation, promising an unforgettable dining experience that marries taste, aroma, and aesthetic appeal in perfect harmony. Join me on a gastronomic journey where each bite encapsulates a rich, evolving narrative of flavors and culinary artistry.
Affiliate DisclaimerAbout The Content
As an affiliate, we may earn a commission from qualifying purchases. We get commissions for purchases made through links on this website from Amazon and other third parties.
All content published on the website is compiled and edited by the editorial team of Hana Hotel Travel Company. Before publication, each piece undergoes thorough scrutiny and is approved by our Expert Review Board to ensure its quality and relevance. Sir Mark Zoch oversees the entire process and is responsible for ensuring the quality and accuracy of the content presented on the site.
Scroll to Top