Vietnamese Ginger Chicken - Gà Kho Gừng


A fast yet flavourful Vietnamese homestyle dish where chicken thigh is braised in a caramel sauce with lots of ginger.



Chicken Marinade

  • 500g (approx 5) chicken boneless thigh fillets, cut into thick chunks
  • 6 cloves of garlic, finely chopped. Use half for the marinade and save the other half for the cook.
  • 10cm nub of ginger, peel and julienned. Use half for the marinade and save the other half for the cook. 
  • 1 small red onion, half finely chopped for the marinade, the other sliced into segments for garnishing at the end.
  • 1 small bunch of coriander, roots and bottom stalks finely chopped to add to the marinade, the rest roughly chopped for garnishing.
  • 2 teaspoons of sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon of fish sauce
  • Salt and white pepper

For the braise

  • 1 small red chilli, finely sliced
  • 2 tablespoons of white sugar
  • 2 teaspoons of fish sauce
  • ½ cup of coconut water or water.
  • 1 stalk of spring onion, roughly cut into slices


  1. Marinade the chicken first by placing chicken thigh fillets into a bowl with the sugar, garlic, onion, ginger, sesame oil, fish sauce, salt and pepper. Ideally marinade this the night before, otherwise allow to marinade for a minimum of 30 minutes.
  2. Heat a pan and add a few teaspoons of vegetable oil to coat the pan. Sprinkle over the sugar and allow the sugar to melt and caramelise for the next few minutes on medium-high heat. You’ll notice sections of the pan become golden brown faster than others and I’d recommend swirling the sugar around the pan every 20 seconds or so to evenly distribute the caramel. Be very careful and make sure you are diligently watching the caramel as it is very easy to burn. Once the sugar turns golden, I normally pull down the heat to medium low so that I can control the colour.
  3. As soon as the sugar turns dark amber, add in the remaining onions, garlic, ginger and chilli and fry in the caramel for one minute or until fragrant.
  4. Add in the chicken and spread out in the pan and cook for 1 minute to get some colour and caramelise on the bottom. Stir fry for a few minutes until the chicken is fully cooked and caramel in colour all over.
  5. Season with fish sauce and then add the coconut water to deglaze the pan and create a sauce. 
  6. Simmer for a few minutes until the sauce thickens and reduces by half.
  7. Add in the red onion slices, give it a quick toss and then turn off the heat.
  8. Add in the spring onion and coriander and toss whilst the pan is still warm.
  9. Serve and enjoy immediately with some jasmine rice and some greens on the side. I served this with sliced cucumbers and some boiled pak choy.


Watch the Process


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