• Andrew Zimmern Cooks: Hainanese Chicken Rice


Hainanese Chicken Rice with 3 Dipping Sauces

By Andrew Zimmern

A popular dish in southern China and Southeast Asia, Hainan-style chicken and rice is a dish I crave often—and I’m not the only one. The ginger-scented, perfectly poached chicken served with fatty, unctuous rice seems to have developed a cult following over the years. I think its simplicity is what sells it. The technique is very easy, yet the flavors are incredibly complex. Save the poaching liquid and freeze it to make this dish a second time—intensifying the rich flavor—or use it as a base for soup.

Watch Andrew make this recipe:

Hainanese Chicken Rice

Servings: 4


  • 3 quarts chicken stock
  • 1 bunch scallions, chopped, plus more for garnish
  • 8 slices ginger
  • 10 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 3 star anise buds
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 all-natural chicken
  • Cooked Japanese short-grain rice, for serving
  • Garlic chives, for garnish

Ginger Scallion Oil

  • 1 cup peanut oil
  • 1 cup minced scallion
  • 3 tablespoons ginger, grated
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Soy & Ginger Sauce

  • 4 tablespoons ginger, grated
  • 1 cup scallions, minced
  • 3 tablespoons cilantro, minced
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar, or more to taste
  • 1 teaspoon yuzu kosho

Hot Sesame Oil Sauce

  • 2 tablespoons garlic, grated
  • 4 tablespoons ginger, grated
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon ground Szechuan peppercorns
  • 2 dry hot chiles, crushed (I like Chinese Tsin Tsin chiles)
  • 1/2 cup toasted sesame oil


Place the stock, scallions, ginger, garlic, star anise and cinnamon in a large stock pot.

Truss your chicken, securing the legs and wings.

Place the chicken in the pot and slowly bring to a boil. Cook at a boil for 5-8 minutes, depending on the size of your chicken. Cover and turn off the heat, let the chicken rest for 90 minutes—it will continue to cook via thermal momentum. Meanwhile, make the rice and the sauces.

Ginger Scallion Oil

In a small saucepan, heat the oil to 275 degrees F. Place scallions, ginger and salt in a mixing bowl. Pour the hot oil over the ingredients and let cool. Reserve in the fridge until ready to use.

Soy & Ginger Sauce

Combine all of the ingredients in and mix well until the sugar dissolves. Let sit for 1 hour before serving.

Hot Sesame Oil Sauce

Place all the ingredients except the oil in a mixing bowl. Heat the oil to 250 degrees F in a small saucepan. Pour the hot oil over the ingredients and let cool to room temperature.

Divide the rice onto 4 plates. Skim the rendered fat off the top of the stock in the chicken pot. Drizzle a tablespoon or so of fat over each portion of rice. Top with pieces of the poached chicken, garnishing with garlic chives or scallion. Serve with the dipping sauces.

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