Make this delicious Instant Pot Portuguese Chicken and Rice Recipe (Pressure Cooker Portuguese Chicken and Rice) Galinha à portuguesa 焗葡國雞飯! Imagine a spoonful of tender chicken & veggies, soaked in aromatic coconut turmeric sauce, paired with perfectly cooked fried rice, topped with creamy melted cheese. Comforting Macanese dish that you’ll gobble one bite after another!
If you’re Portuguese and are scratching your head wondering why you have never heard of this dish, I won’t blame you!
This Baked Portuguese Chicken and Rice dish (Galinha à portuguesa 焗葡國雞飯) did not come from Portugal, but Portuguese Macau (Macao).
Macau was once administered by the Portuguese Empire from mid-16th century to 1999, being the last European colony in Asia!
At the time, Portuguese traders and sailors attempted to replicate dishes back home with aromatic spices and flavors they can get their hands on.
This was how many unique Macanese dishes were born blending Cantonese and Portuguese cuisines, along with some Indian, African, and Southeast Asian influences.
We were thrilled to be able to visit Macau last year. As we were strolling down the streets and sights, we were amazed by the Portuguese influenced Macanese culture, rustic historic buildings, and FOOD! 😀
Before we left for the trip, we created a loooong list of must-eat food and restaurants in Macau. As we hopped from one restaurant to another, we found that many of them were closed due to the Macau Grand Prix Event.
We were so disappointed on missing out many of the most raved about food. But, there’s hope!
We hopped on a bus to the extravagant food festival! We knew we couldn’t eat it all, so we quickly scanned through aisles and aisles of food with our wide-opened shiny eyes like a kid in a chocolate factory.
We were so excited when we found many of the authentic Macanese food and snacks! We were so lucky to be able to taste lots of local food including Pork chop bun, Portuguese-style egg tart, Ginger milk, Fresh Coconut, Baked Portuguese Chicken and Rice! This is when I wish I had 2..or maybe 3 stomachs. LOL~
We stayed at the festival until the very last minute and ran to catch the last ferry-ride home with two full & satisfied bellies. 🙂
It gave us a lot of joy that many dear readers loved our Pressure Cooker Pork Chops in HK Onion Sauce. So, we’re excited to share this third Cha Chaan Teng 港式茶餐廳 (Hong Kong style cafes) classic favorites – Baked Portuguese Chicken and Rice 焗葡國雞飯 with you.
This Portuguese Chicken and Rice dish is not spicy with strong aromas from the turmeric and coconut milk. You’ll love this flavorful yet mild & creamy sauce! 😀
Ingredients for Instant Pot Portuguese Chicken and Rice
- Chicken quarters
- Garlic cloves
- Green bell pepper
- Bay leaves
- 100% Pure coconut milk – this is the best tasting one out of the 4 we tried in creating this recipe. It’s not diluted, no additives, stabilizers, thickeners, gums, or preservatives.
- Light soy sauce
- Peanut oil
- Turmeric powder
- Ground cumin
- Kosher salt
- Ground black pepper
- Cornstarch + Water
Rice: Jasmine rice, Water
Optional Flavor Enhancing Ingredients: Egg, Grated cheese
Tools for Instant Pot Portuguese Chicken and Rice
- Instant Pot Electric Pressure Cooker
- 5″ Steamer Rack
- Oven-safe bowl
- Optional: Multi-Ply Clad Stainless-Steel 13-Inch Wok – This high quality 18/10 stainless steel wok heats up evenly and quickly. Perfect for stir-frying. Definitely a keeper!
Tips for Instant Pot Portuguese Chicken and Rice
1. Coconut Milk: High quality coconut milk will really make this dish shine. We tested this recipe with 4 different brands of coconut milk and found it makes a big difference in flavorful and taste of the final dish! This 100% Pure coconut milk is creamy and is the best out of the 4 we tried. In fact, the best we have used so far!
2. Oven-Safe Container: we tested the optional oven step using 2 different types of oven-safe containers and had different final results. So, find containers that will suit your preference!
- Pre-heated cast iron: the fried rice turned out drier
- Glazed Terracotta earthenware: the fried rice turned out more moist
3. Do you need to use overnight leftover rice to make fried rice? It’s a very common practice for Chinese to use overnight leftover rice to make fried rice in order to achieve the dry and perfect texture. However, if you’re able to cook rice with the right dry texture, there’s no need to use leftover rice. So, be sure to use the exact measurements for cooking the rice, or else the fried rice will turn out wet and mushy.
4. Can I use other chicken parts other than chicken quarters? Yes! If you don’t want to debone the chicken raw, you can use 5 bone-in chicken thighs (6 minutes + Natural Release) or 6 bone-in chicken legs (8 minutes + Natural Release) for this recipe. Or, you can easily remove the bones and cut them into pieces after they have fully cooked in the pressure cooker. This way, the sauce will be even more flavorful!
Watch How To Make Instant Pot Portuguese Chicken and Rice Recipe Video:
Can’t see the cooking video? Watch it here.
Now it’s YOUR turn to take out your pressure cooker and make some Instant Pot Portuguese Chicken and Rice!
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Recipe type: Brunch, Dinner, Lunch, Main Course, Meat, One Pot Meals, Rice, Sauce, Vegetables, Easy
- 3 chicken quarters (See Notes) - divided into drumsticks and thighs, deboned and cut into ~ 1 inch thick pieces
- 1 medium carrot or 2 small carrots, cut into chunks
- 2 small potatoes, quartered
- 1 small onion, sliced
- 1 small shallot, sliced
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 green bell pepper (230 grams), cubed
- 2 small bay leaves
- 200 ml high quality coconut milk
- 1 tablespoon light soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon peanut oil
- 1 ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- Kosher salt and ground black pepper to taste
- 1 ½ tablespoon cornstarch mixed with 2 tablespoons water
- 230 ml water (1 cup minus 1 ½ tablespoon)
- 250 grams jasmine rice (1 cup + 1 ½ tablespoon)
- 1 extra large egg, beaten
- 250 grams pressure cooked jasmine rice
- 2 tablespoons peanut oil
- Salt to taste
- Grated cheese (we used a mixture of cheddar cheese + mozzarella cheese + parmesan cheese)
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- Marinate the Chicken Thighs: Marinate chicken with ½ teaspoon of sugar, a dash of ground white pepper, 1 tablespoon of light soy sauce, and 1 tablespoon of Shaoxing wine for 20 minutes.
- Prepare the Pressure Cooker: Heat up pressure cooker (Instant Pot: press Sauté button and click adjust button to go to Sauté More function). Make sure the pot is as hot as it can be when you place the onions in (Instant Pot: wait until indicator says HOT).
- Sauté the Onion, Shallot, and Garlic: Add 1 tablespoon of peanut oil into the pressure cooker. Add sliced onion & shallot, sauté until brown & fragrant. Add minced garlic, sauté until fragrant. Season layering with kosher salt & ground black pepper if desired.
- Sauté the Chicken Thighs: Pour in the chicken, sauté until slightly browned (let the chicken caramelize on one side first before stirring, you don’t have to stir continuously). Add in 1 ½ teaspoon of turmeric powder & 1 teaspoon cumin powder. Sauté & mix well to let the spices release their aroma. Add quartered potatoes, carrots, & 2 small bay leaves. Mix well.
- Deglaze: Pour in 200 ml of coconut milk & 1 tablespoon of light soy sauce, completely deglaze the bottom of the pot with a wooden spoon.
- Pressure Cook the Portuguese Chicken and Rice: Place a steamer rack into the pressure cooker and carefully place a bowl with (250g OR 1 cup + 1 ½ tablespoon) of Jasmine rice onto the rack. Pour (230 ml OR 1 cup minus 1 ½ tablespoon) of water into the bowl of rice. Make sure all the rice are soaked with water.
Immediately close lid and cook at High Pressure for 4 minutes. Turn off the heat and Full Natural Release. Manually release the remaining pressure by carefully turning the venting knob to the venting position. Open lid carefully.
- Optional Flavor Enhancing Step - Preheat Oven: While the Portuguese chicken and rice is cooking in the pressure cooker, preheat oven to 425°F.
- Thicken the Coconut Sauce: Fluff rice and set aside to allow it to cool down. If you are making the optional fried rice, preheat a wok or skillet on high heat with 2 tablespoons of peanut oil.
Turn heat to medium (Instant Pot: Press sauté button). Add green pepper, cook for one minute, taste the seasoning. Add more light soy sauce, coconut milk, or salt if desired. Mix the cornstarch with water and mix it into the coconut sauce one third at a time until desired thickness. Turn off the heat.
- Optional Flavor Enhancing Steps - Fried Rice: When the oil starts to smoke, add in the fluffed rice and press them against the wok with a wok chuan (wok spatula) to separate the rice from each other. Repeat for roughly 20 - 30 seconds. Add 1 beaten extra-large egg on top of the rice and quickly stir-fry the rice to allow the beaten egg to coat the rice evenly. Stir-fry for another minute until fragrant, then season with sea salt. Mix well and turn off the heat.
- Optional Oven Step: Fill an oven-safe container half-way full with fried rice. Fill up the container with Portuguese chicken and vegetables. Add grated cheese (as much as you like!) over the top and place into oven for 5 – 10 minutes.
- Serve: Remove from oven and serve immediately (piping hot!)
Coconut Milk: High quality coconut milk will really make this dish shines! Be sure to use one that's great quality.