Drunken chicken recipe


Drunken chicken recipe

Drunken chicken is a delicious and flavorful dish that is perfect for a weekend gathering with friends or a family dinner. This dish is a popular Chinese dish that involves cooking chicken in a marinade made with Chinese rice wine, soy sauce, and other spices. The chicken is then served cold, making it a refreshing and tasty dish that is perfect for summer.


To make drunken chicken, you will need the following ingredients:

  1. 1 whole chicken (about 3-4 pounds)
  2. 2 cups of Chinese rice wine
  3. 1 cup of soy sauce
  4. 1 cup of water
  5. 1/4 cup of sugar
  6. 4 cloves of garlic, crushed
  7. 1 piece of ginger (about 2 inches), peeled and sliced
  8. 2 scallions, chopped
  9. 2 star anise
  10. 2 cinnamon sticks
  11. 1 teaspoon of Sichuan peppercorns (optional)

Preparing the Chicken:

Before marinating and cooking the chicken, you need to prepare it first. First, remove any giblets and excess fat from the chicken cavity. Rinse the chicken inside and out with cold water, and then pat it dry with paper towels. Next, you can either cut the chicken into pieces or leave it whole, depending on your preference.

Marinating the Chicken:

To make the marinade, combine the Chinese rice wine, soy sauce, water, sugar, garlic, ginger, scallions, star anise, cinnamon sticks, and Sichuan peppercorns (if using) in a large pot. Bring the marinade to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for about 5 minutes.

Remove the pot from the heat and let the marinade cool to room temperature. Once the marinade has cooled, add the chicken to the pot and make sure it is fully submerged in the liquid. Cover the pot and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight, turning the chicken occasionally to make sure it is evenly marinated.

Cooking the Chicken:

To cook the chicken, remove it from the marinade and pat it dry with paper towels. If you cut the chicken into pieces, you can either pan-fry or grill them until they are cooked through. 

If you left the chicken whole, you can either steam it or bake it in the oven until it is cooked through. The cooking time will depend on the size of the chicken and the method you choose, so be sure to use a meat thermometer to check for doneness. The chicken should reach an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C).

Serving Suggestions:

Once the chicken is cooked, you can either serve it hot or cold, depending on your preference. If you are serving it cold, let it cool to room temperature before slicing it into bite-sized pieces. Drizzle some of the leftover marinade over the chicken for extra flavor, and garnish with chopped scallions and cilantro.

Tips and Tricks:

To make this dish even more flavorful, you can add other spices and aromatics to the marinade, such as dried chili peppers, bay leaves, or lemongrass.

If you are short on time, you can use boneless, skinless chicken thighs instead of a whole chicken.

To make the chicken more tender and juicy, you can brine it before marinating it. Combine 1/4 cup of salt and 4 cups of water in a large bowl, then add the chicken and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before marinating.


Drunken chicken is a delicious and easy-to-make dish that is perfect for any occasion. With its flavorful marinade and tender chicken, this dish is sure to be a hit with your family and friends. Try making variations and adaptations to the drunken chicken recipe:

  • Swap the rice wine for another type of alcohol: While traditional drunken chicken calls for Chinese rice wine, you can experiment with other types of alcohol, such as white wine, sherry, or even beer. Each type of alcohol will give the dish a unique flavor profile.
  • Use different cuts of chicken: While a whole chicken is the most traditional cut to use for drunken chicken, you can also use chicken thighs, wings, or breasts. Thighs and wings are especially flavorful and juicy when marinated in the drunken chicken sauce.
  • Add vegetables to the marinade: To make a complete meal, you can add vegetables to the drunken chicken marinade, such as carrots, mushrooms, or bok choy. The vegetables will absorb the flavors of the marinade and add extra texture to the dish.
  • Make it spicy: If you like spicy food, you can add some heat to the drunken chicken marinade by adding chili flakes, fresh chili peppers, or hot sauce. Just be careful not to add too much, as you don't want to overpower the other flavors.
  • Serve it over noodles or rice: While drunken chicken is traditionally served cold, you can also serve it warm over noodles or rice for a more filling meal. The chicken and marinade will make a flavorful sauce for the noodles or rice.
  • Add a dipping sauce: To enhance the flavors of the drunken chicken, you can serve it with a dipping sauce on the side. A simple soy sauce and vinegar dipping sauce is a classic choice, but you can also make a spicy chili oil dipping sauce or a sweet and sour sauce.

By experimenting with different variations and adaptations, you can make the drunken chicken recipe your own and create a dish that is perfect for your taste preferences.

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