Chinese Turmeric Chicken Recipe (黃薑雞)

Succulent chicken that is pan-fried to perfection with crispy garlic pieces. This recipe will change your mind about how you see turmeric chicken.

Garnish with some green onions and you have a quick and delicious weeknight dinner in under an hour.

What Is Chinese Turmeric Chicken?

Chinese Turmeric Chicken Recipe (黃薑雞)

Turmeric is the star of the dish here.

Now if you haven’t had turmeric before, you’re in for a treat.

Turmeric powder is bright yellow in color and it has a warm and peppery taste. It’s a spice that’s widely used in many South Asian and Middle Eastern cuisines.

Just a few generous dashes of turmeric powder can transform your plain-old chicken into a flavor bomb.

Oh, and because this is a Chinese recipe blog. We can’t forget our ginger, garlic, and green onions.

All these flavors blend so well with the delicate flavor of chicken, I promise you’ll come back for seconds (or thirds—don’t worry, we don’t judge.)

P.S. Because the flavor is so rich, this dish doesn’t even need a sauce.

Key Ingredients For Chinese Turmeric Chicken

Chinese Turmeric Chicken Recipe (黃薑雞)

1. Chicken

For this recipe, I recommend you use skinless boneless chicken thigh meat.

The thigh meat is much more flavorful and succulent compared to other cuts of chicken such as chicken tenderloins.

If you want to make this recipe in a pinch, you can substitute this with chicken tenderloins or boneless chicken breasts.

Love chicken? Check out these other chicken recipes: Soy Sauce Chicken Wings RecipeSteamed Chicken with Shiitake Mushrooms and Black FungusChinese Curry Chicken Recipe

2. Turmeric Powder

Turmeric powder is made from dried grounded turmeric root. It is bright orangey-yellow in color and has a warm, peppery, and slightly bitter taste.

This popular spice is widely used in many South Asian and Middle Eastern dishes.

Turmeric powder is the main ingredient in curry, hence the distinctive yellow color and flavor of this dish.

It is a versatile spice that can be used in both savory and sweet dishes.

3. Ginger, Garlic, and Green Onions

A.k.a. the holy trifecta of Cantonese cooking.

Seriously, almost every stir-fried dish contains a combination of these ingredients.

Tip for fresh ginger: The skin of the ginger root is where the flavor lies, so for this recipe leave the skin on. Just cut the knobby bits off and scrub the ginger root gently, then slice for use.

Frequently Asked Questions For Chinese Turmeric Chicken

What can I serve this dish with?

Turmeric chicken is best served with freshly cooked jasmine rice. This long-grain white rice is a staple in Chinese cuisine.

Can I prepare this in advance?

No. This dish is best served fresh off the stove.

Can this dish be frozen?

No. This dish is best served fresh off the stove.

Chinese Turmeric Chicken Recipe (黃薑雞)

Turmeric Chicken

Elaine Fung
An exotic dish of vibrant yellow that is a little earthy, a little peppery, and a little spicy!
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Additional Time 1 hr
Total Time 1 hr 40 mins
Course Chicken
Cuisine Chinese
Servings 6 servings
Calories 323 kcal


  • 850 Grams Medium Pieces Skinless Boneless Chicken Thigh
  • 8 Large Slices of Ginger
  • 3 Garlic Cloves Sliced
  • 4 Green Onions Cut into 1 Inch Long Strips
  • 2 tbsp Oil


  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Sugar
  • 1 tbsp Soy Sauce
  • 11/2 tsp Cornstarch
  • 2 tbsp Water
  • 2 tbsp Turmeric Powder
  • 1 tbsp oil


  • Rub marinade except the oil evenly into the meat, then coat with oil. Leave for at least an hour.
  • Heat oil on medium, add ginger, when fragrant, add garlic.
  • Add chicken, increase to high heat and leave to sear for 1 minute.
  • Turn meat over to sear for another minute. Reduce heat to medium, stir to mix well.
  • Cover pan and cook for 5 minutes. Remove cover, stir well.
  • Reduce heat to medium low, cover pot and cook for 10 minutes.
  • Uncover pot, turn heat to medium high, add green onions and saute for 1 minute.


1. Patting meat dry with paper towels helps the marinade to coat the meat better.
2. Gently rubbing the marinade by hand into the meat for 1 minute ensures an even coating and thorough absorption.
3. Sealing the meat with oil holds the flavor and moisture.
4. Searing both sides of the meat locks in the juices and improve flavor. It is important not to move the meat around in order to get a good searing.
5. This dish goes well with plain or coconut rice.

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