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Hainanese Inspired Chicken Rice | WednesdayNightCafe.com

Hainanese Inspired Chicken Rice

The Singaporean classic remade in one pot. Chicken thighs are braised over rice, infusing it with flavor. Round out the meal with stir-fried veggies.
Course Dinner, Main Dish
Cuisine Asian
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 4
Author Tara Leung


  • 8 skin-on, bone-in chicken thighs (roughly 3 1/2 pounds)
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 tablespoons grapeseed or canola oil, divided
  • 4 scallions, sliced, white and green parts separated
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 inch piece of ginger, chopped
  • 2 1/2 cups white rice, rinsed under cold water
  • 3 1/3 cups chicken broth
  • 8 ounces baby bok choy, cut in half lengthwise (chop if using a large bok choy)
  • 4 ounces shiitake mushrooms, sliced
  • 8 ounces snow peas, ends trimmed
  • 1 cucumber, sliced
  • optional garnish: sliced starfruit

Dipping Sauce

  • 2 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup or honey
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar


  1. Pat chicken dry with paper towels. Season chicken with salt and pepper on both sides. In a large Dutch oven, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium-high heat. Cook the chicken, skin side down, until the skin gets a nice golden brown, 5 to 7 minutes. Use a splatter guard if you have one. Turn the chicken over and cook the other side until browned, about 5 minutes. (If chicken does not fit in the pot in a single layer, brown in two batches.) Remove chicken from the pot and set aside. Pour about half of the chicken fat out of the pot and discard.
  2. Cook white parts of scallions in remaining chicken fat over medium heat for 3 minutes. Add garlic and ginger and cook 2 more minutes, stirring often. Scrape up any little pieces of chicken stuck to the bottom of the pan. Add rice. Cook two more minutes, stirring almost constantly.
  3. Pour in chicken broth. Place chicken thighs on top, skin side up. Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer, covered, for about 30 minutes, until chicken is cooked through and all liquid has been absorbed by the rice. Halfway through, stir the rice. (You’ll probably need to remove the chicken for a minute to do this.) Check the pot after chicken has been cooking 20 minutes to make sure you are not running out of liquid. If it looks too dry, add more chicken broth or water. When chicken is done, turn off heat and let rest, covered, for 5 minutes.
  4. When you have 10 minutes left on the chicken, stir fry the vegetables. Heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in a wok or large pan over medium-high heat. Add bok choy and mushrooms and salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, for 5 minutes. Add snow peas and cook for a few more minutes, until bok choy stalks are crisp tender.
  5. At any point while chicken is cooking, make the dipping sauce. Mix sauce ingredients in a small bowl.
  6. To serve: Divide rice, chicken thighs, and vegetables between serving plates. Garnish with green parts of scallions and sliced cucumber, and starfruit if using. Serve dipping sauce on the side.