Sesame Oil Chicken

Sesame Oil Chicken Recipe

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Sesame oil chicken (麻油鸡) is a childhood dish which is the ultimate comfort food to me. This recipe is from my mum. Whenever I cook this dish, my house will be filled with the wonderful aroma of the simmering chicken, sesame oil and ginger which is so familiar and therapeutic. Best of all, this is a simple dish which is easy to prepare with minimal key ingredients – just chicken, sesame oil and ginger.

Sesame Oil Chicken Recipe

Sesame Oil Chicken Recipe

Sesame Oil Chicken Recipe

This is popular food for women on confinement (one month after childbirth). The confinement recipe usually contains more sesame oil, ginger and hard liquor because it is believed that “heaty” foods are beneficial for women recuperating from childbirth.


  • 1/2 chicken (about 500g) cut to small pieces (you can also use drumlettes or chicken thighs)
  • 2 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp cooking oil
  • 5 slices ginger sliced to thin strips
  • 2 tbsp Shaoxing wine to taste

(A) Seasonings

  • 50 ml water
  • 1 tsp dark soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp light soy sauce


  1. Heat sesame oil and cooking oil, then add ginger strips. Stir fry until fragrant.
  2. Add chicken pieces and stir fry for a few minutes, until cooked on the surface.
  3. Add (A) and stir to coat chicken evenly in the sauce. Cover and simmer for 5 minutes
  4. Add more water if the sauce is drying out. Use kitchen tongs to turn chicken pieces over, cover and simmer for another 5 minutes.
  5. When the chicken is cooked, add Shaoxing wine and after a few seconds you can smell the wonderful aroma of the wine evaporating. Garnish with coriander and serve with warm steamed rice.

Noob Cook Tips

  1. Instead of Chinese wine, you can also add hard liquor like D.O.M or X.O.
  2. The simmering time will depend on the size of the chicken pieces – the smaller the pieces, the shorter the cooking time.
  3. My mum love to add canned button mushrooms though I prefer my sesame oil chicken without them. If you like them, you can add them during the last few minutes of simmering.