Go Back
+ servings
Taiwaness three cup chicken
Print Recipe
5 from 7 votes

Three cup chicken (San Bei Ji, 三杯鸡)

Fried in sesame oil, braised in rice wine and soy sauce, then flavoured with fresh basil, Taiwanese three cup chicken is super aromatic and very easy to cook.
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time20 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Chinese
Keyword: Chicken
Servings: 3 servings
Calories: 474kcal
Author: Wei Guo


  • 6 chicken thighs (about 600g/1.3lb) cut into chunks (see note 1)
  • 2 ½ tablespoon sesame oil
  • 15 slices ginger
  • 10 cloves garlic
  • 120 ml Shaoxing rice wine ½ cup
  • 2 tablespoon light soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rock sugar or regular sugar
  • ½ red bell pepper cut into square pieces
  • 2 stalk scallions chopped
  • 1 handful fresh basil see note 2


  • Blanch chicken chunks in hot water then drain well.
  • Heat up 2 tablespoons of sesame oil with ginger and garlic in a cold wok (or a deep frying pan) over a medium heat. Fry until the ginger becomes slightly brown.
  • Stir in drained chicken. Fry for 1 minute or so.
  • Add rice wine, light soy sauce, dark soy sauce, and rock sugar.
  • Cover the wok with a lid (keep medium heat). Cook for about 5 minutes.
  • Put in bell pepper and scallions, then cover and cook for a further 2 minutes.
  • Uncover the wok and turn up the heat. Stir around until most of the liquid is evaporated and the chicken is coated evenly by the remaining sauce.
  • Turn off the heat. Stir in the remaining ½ tablespoon of sesame oil and basil leaves. Cover the wok for 1 minute.
  • Dish out and serve with plain rice.


1. I use boneless chicken thigh with skin on. You may use other cuts of chicken. For example, Chicken wings are really tasty in this dish.
2. The original version calls for Thai basil. I use regular basil (sweet basil) when I don’t have Thai ones to hand. It works fine too.


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 474kcal