Switch up Your Hainanese Chicken Rice by Making It with Soy Chicken, Instead

August 11, 2019

Everybody loves Hainanese Chicken Rice. (If you don’t, then the ones you’ve tried probably suck.) It’s an incredibly simple dish—even visually—yet it surprises all who eat it with delightful, succulent pangs of flavor. And while we don’t want to disrespect the quintessential Singaporean fare, we can’t help but want to switch it up sometimes. Don’t worry, we’re not dreaming of anything far-fetched (and incompatible). In fact, we’re only really changing the chicken; and we’re preparing it in a localized Singaporean way. Kind of.

“I love your tan.”

We’re talking about soy glazed chicken. It pairs well with the fragrant rice, since both are well… (made with/of) chicken. But the Cantonese-inspired dish adds a very welcome smokey, salty taste to add a little more oomph in each mouthful. Pair your dish with our trusty green chili sauce (or if you have your own chili sauce, go ahead; but you’re missing out), add a few leafy greens, and you’ve got yourself a hearty weekend dinner.

Soy Glazed Chicken with Hainanese Rice

  • Serves: 2-4 people
  • Active time: 1 hr 30 mins
  • Total time: 1 hr 30 mins
  • Difficulty: Easy


Hainanese Dressing

  • 2 tbsp. ginger, grated
  • 1 clove garlic, grated
  • ½ cup spring onion, sliced
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil

Soy Glazed Chicken

  • 1 large chicken, spatchcocked
  • ⅓ cup sweet soy sauce
  • Salt and pepper to taste

For Serving

  • 2 cups white rice, cooked
  • 2 limes, quartered
  • 1 cup lettuce
  • Green chili sauce, for serving, optional


  1. In a small heatproof bowl, add the ginger, garlic, and spring onion.
  2. Mix well.
  3. In a small pot over medium heat, heat the oil until rippling, about 3-5 minutes.
  4. Carefully pour the hot oil over the ginger, garlic, and spring onion mixture.
  5. Mix until thoroughly combined and set aside.
  6. Preheat oven to 375F.
  7. Place chicken in a sheet pan with a rack.
  8. Season well with salt and pepper, then brush with sweet soy sauce.
  9. Place in the oven and roast until the internal temperature reaches 165F, basting with sweet soy sauce every 10 minutes.
  10. Remove chicken from oven and slice into quarters.
  11. To serve, arrange white rice, limes, lettuce, and chicken on a large platter.
  12. Spoon over Hainanese dressing over rice, and serve with green chili sauce if desired.​
Jica Simpas Jica Simpas

Jica hopes that by writing about food she'll actually learn how to cook. But for now, she'll happily just eat everything—especially cookies.

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