Street Food - Chicken Rice

Street Food - Chicken Rice

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Also Known As:
Chicken Rice, Hainanese Chicken Rice, Nasi Ayam

Average Price Per Serving:
SGD $2 - $8

Chicken Rice is a very popular Hainanese dish in Singapore, and is often consided as the country's 'National Dish'.

There are 3 main variations of Chicken Rice.

Chicken Rice (Roasted Chicken) is the most popular variation. A cleaned whole chicken is given a dry rub of salt and pepper. Then it is stuffed with sliced ginger and spring onions (Scallions), and roasted. A well roasted chicken will have slightly crispy, golden brown skin, juicy tender meat, and the juices should be clear.

Chicken Rice (Poached Chicken) is the most traditional version. A cleaned whole chicken is stuffed with sliced ginger and spring onions (Scallions). Then it is submerged in a large pot, filled with boiling water, garlic, salt, and pepper, and slow poached. Immeditely after the chicken is cooked, it is pulled out of the pot, and submerged in an ice bath. A well poached chicken will have juicy tender meat, tight skin, and a gelatinous-like layer under the skin.

Then there is Chicken Rice (Braised Chicken). This is the rarest version. A cleaned whole chicken is braised in a thick sauce made from chinese 5-spice powder, light soy sauce, dark soy sauce, ginger, sesame oil, and Chinese shaoxing rice wine. The sauce should be savoury and thick without being gooey.

For the Chicken Rice itself, white rice is lightly fried with ginger, garlic, chicken fat, and oil. Salt and chicken stock are then added, and the rice is simmered / cooked till done. This gives Chicken Rice its signature buttery texture with an aromatic fragrance. Sesame oil is normally sprinkled before serving.

Chicken Rice Chili is made from blending chili, lime juice, ginger, garlic, sugar, salt and chicken stock. This creates a spicy, garlic tasting, acidic chili sauce, that helps cut through the oil in the rice.

Chicken Rice is usually served with the actual Chicken Rice, a choice of Chicken (Roasted / Poached / Braised), sliced cucumbers, a clear chicken soup, the special chili sauce, dark sweet soy sauce and ginger paste.


Personally, I used to prefer Chicken Rice that comes with Roasted Chicken, but these days, I prefer Poached Chicken instead.

These are the top 3 stalls which I feel serve the best Chicken Rice in Singapore.


Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice
@ Maxwell Food Centre 1 Kadayanallur Street #01-10
Opening Hours: 11am - 8pm Closed Mon

@ 12 Jalan Pari Burong
Opening Hours: 10.30am - 10pm Closed Mon

@ 443 Joo Chiat Road
Opening Hours: 10.30am - 10pm Closed Mon


Wee Nam Kee Hainanese Chicken Rice Restaurant
@ Novena Ville 275 Thomson Road #01-05
Opening Hours: 10.30am - 12am Daily


Nan Xiang Chicken Rice
@ 90 Whampoa Drive #01-21
Opening Hours: 11am - 10pm Daily

@ Novena Square 2 10 Sinaran Drive #01-156
Opening Hours: 10am - 10pm Daily