This is one of Singapore’s most popular dish, even with tourists. It is difficult not to like it because the entire dish is flavorful; from the rice to the chicken, and to the broth. Not forgetting the sauce accompaniments – chilli sauce, ginger paste and dark soya sauce. As with Asian cooking, you need some patience to cook and prepare. Time has been significantly lowered due to the use of the IP.

PS: Learnt this from somebody who operates a Hainanese Chicken Rice store.

Took this off Google Images (using breast meat). This is how it should be plated.

Serves 3-4 Paxes | Cook Time: 1 hour Instant Pot

Ingredients (Chicken)

  • 1 Whole Fresh Chicken; 1.4kg or 3 pounds *Kampong/Free-Range Chicken if you have access to it (optional)
  • 8 1/2 cups Water
  • 8 1/2 cups unsalted Chicken Stock
  • 30g or 1oz Ginger; sliced
  • 30g or 1oz Spring/Green Onion; knotted
  • 1 clove of Garlic
  • 2 1/2 tsp Salt (1 tsp if using salted chicken stock); adjust to taste after cooking it
  • 1/2 tsp Sesame Oil

Ingredients (Rice)

  • 500g Thai Jasmine Rice (optional – 450g Thai Jasmine Ricd and 50g Glutinous Rice)
  • 4 1/4 cups stock from Chicken
  • 4 Pandan/Screwpine Leaves; knotted
  • 1 bulb of Garlic
  • 1 tsp Salt (use lesser if you prefer less salty)
  • 2 tbsp Shallot oil (Shallots fried in Peanut Oil)

Ingredients (Sauce for Chicken)

  • 1/4 cup stock from Chicken
  • 1/4 cup Light Soya Sauce
  • 1 tbsp Sugar
  • 1 tbsp Sesame Oil

Ingredients (Ginger Paste)

  • 50g Ginger
  • 3 Shallots
  • 1 tbsp Sesame Oil
  • 1 tbsp Peanut Oil
  • 2 tbsp stock from Chicken
  • 2 tsp Sugar
  • 1/8 tsp Salt 

Ingredients (Chilli Sauce)

  • 3 Red Chilli
  • 3 Red Chilli Padi
  • 30g or 1oz Ginger
  • 5 cloves of Garlic
  • juice of 5 small Limes
  • 2 tbsp White Vinegar
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 tbsp Sugar 
  • 4 tbsp stock from Chicken
  • 1 tbsp Sesame Oil

Garnish (Optional)

  • 12 Cucumber Slices
  • 2-3 sprigs Chinese Coriander/Cilantro
  • 10g Spring Onions/Green Onions; chopped


  1. Wash rice and let it soak for at least an hour (maximum 2 hours).
  2. In the Instant Pot/Stovetop, bring the Water, Chicken stock and Chicken Feet (removed from the Chicken) to boil. 
  3. Insert Spring/Green Onions, Ginger and Garlic into the cavity. Seal with a toothpick or tie legs up. 
  4. Add Sesame Oil and Salt to the liquid.
  5. Poach the Chicken till skin has tighten.
  6. Either this method —> A. Instant Pot: Sit Chicken in the IP. Set ‘Manual’, 4 minsHigh Pressure. Seal the vent. Immediate/quick release. Chicken is not cooked yet! Taste the broth and adjust level of salt to your preference. Let Chicken rest in the broth for 45 mins on ‘Keep Warm’ mode (cooking chicken in residual heat).
  7. or this method ——> B. Stovetop: Let Chicken boil (high fire) in broth for 10 mins, with the lid open (should have bubbles). Turn off the fire. Let the chicken sit in the broth for 45 mins (lid covered). 
  8. Make Ginger paste by blending all the ingredients together. Set aside.
  9. Make Chilli paste by blending all the ingredients together. Set aside. *Chilli can be stored in the refrigerator for a week (didn’t try longer than that as it will be gone by then)
  10. Drain rice completely. 
  11. Instant Pot: Method 1 for Rice – Using Sauté mode (HOT), sauté Ginger, Garlic and Rice in Shallot oil 2-3 mins. Use the Chicken broth to deglaze. Add Salt and the knotted Pandan Leaves. Set to ‘Manual’, ‘High Pressure’, 4 mins. Immediate/Quick Release. Fluff rice with fork. Method 2 for Rice *prefer this texture – Using Sauté mode (HOT), sauté Ginger, Garlic and Rice in Shallot oil 2-3 mins. Use the Chicken broth to deglaze. Add Salt and the knotted Pandan Leaves. Transfer to stainless steel bowl and let it sit on steamer rack with 1 1/2 cups of Water. Set to ‘Manual’, ‘High Pressure’, 9 mins. Immediate/Quick Release. Fluff rice. Let it stay in ‘Keep Warm’ mode. **Cooking time on rice might differ due to different brands and bowl used, if you still see water in your bowl. Do another 2 mins.**
  12. Rice Cooker (Method 3): Using a saucepan, sauté Ginger, Garlic and Rice in Shallot oil 2-3 mins. Add Chicken broth, Salt and the Pandan Leaves. Transfer to rice cooker pot and cook as per ‘White Rice’ instruction on your cooker. I reckon it takes 40-45 mins.
  13. Put Chicken into a Ziploc bag and soak it in iced water for 10 mins. This will ensure a springy texture (but not rubbery) on the chicken meat. 
    My drumsticks in a Ziploc bag. I did not use the entire bird as we prefer drumsticks for Chicken Rice. Shorter cooking time (2 mins).
  14. Remove Chicken from iced water.
  15. Remove seasonings from cavity.
  16. Chop the chicken. 
  17. Prepare Chicken Sauce. 
  18. Arrange plate (rice should be steaming hot). Drizzle Chicken sauce. Garnish.
  19. Serve with sauces and soup broth (garnish with Spring/Green Onions)
  20. ENJOY!