5 mins prep + 4 simple ingredients to make this Easy Pressure Cooker Salt Baked Chicken Recipe 鹽焗雞腿! Tender & juicy pressure cooker chicken bursting with savory fragrance & flavors. A budget, comfort dish full of chicken deliciousness! 😀
The Origin of Salt Baked Chicken 鹽焗雞
Salt Baked Chicken 鹽焗雞 is a traditional Cantonese dish originated from Hakkas 客家 people. Hakka people are a subgroup of the Han Chinese.
Nowadays, it’s rare even for restaurants to make Hakka Salt Baked Chicken 古法鹽焗雞 the traditional way. Many restaurants use a much easier & quicker way with salt water.
We were lucky to taste one from our Hakka restaurant client. The salt-baked cooking method they used was similar to the ancient way.
The chicken was first marinated with a special blend of Chinese herbs & spices. Then, the chicken was hung and air-dried for a couple of hours. Next, they wrapped the chicken in parchment paper.
The chicken was slow-baked in a clay pot with piping hot coarse salt. The chicken was mainly cooked by the heat from the salt, hence the name “Salt Baked Chicken“. It was gorgeous when they unwrapped this delicious beauty.
Making Hakka Salt Baked Chicken the traditional way takes a lot of work and time. One of the toughest part is stir-frying the salt.
So, we created a simple, fast, easy pressure cooker version of salt baked chicken you can make at home using just the chicken legs! 😀
Ingredients for Pressure Cooker Salt Baked Chicken
- Chicken Legs
- Dried Sand Ginger 沙薑粉 – we bought ours at a local Asian market, for those who don’t have access to one, this Kaempferia Galanga (Zeodary Powder) is the same.
- Kosher Salt
- Five Spice Powder
- Optional: Ground White Pepper
With this recipe, we’re using the steam in the pressure cooker to “bake” the chicken. The released meat juice will be locked inside the parchment paper and mixed with the spices. This will simulate the delicious savory, salty flavors and fragrance of the authentic version. You can also use an oven to create this dish.
Hope this will satisfy your cravings for now! 😉
Tools for Pressure Cooker Salt Baked Chicken
- Steamer Rack
- Parchment Paper – don’t use aluminum foil as it’ll affect the cooking time & final results of the dish.
Watch How To Make This Pressure Cooker Salt Baked Chicken:
Can’t see the cooking video? Watch it here.
Now it’s YOUR turn to take out your pressure cooker and make some Pressure Cooker Salt Baked Chicken!
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Recipe type: Dinner, Lunch, Main Course, Meat, Quick Meals, Snack, Super Easy
Serving: 8 Drumsticks
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- Season the Chicken Legs: Place the chicken legs in a large mixing bowl. Pour in 2 teaspoons of dried sand ginger 沙薑粉, 1 ¼ teaspoon of kosher salt, and ¼ teaspoon of five spice powder. Mix well.
- Wrap the Chicken Legs: Place the seasoned chicken legs on a large piece of parchment paper (Do NOT use aluminum foil). Wrap it up tightly and place it on a shallow dish with the opening side facing upwards. Do not stack more than 2 levels of chicken legs.
- Pressure Cook the Chicken Legs: Place a steamer rack in the pressure cooker and pour in 1 cup of water. Carefully place the chicken legs dish onto the rack. Close lid and cook at High Pressure for 18 – 26 minutes (Please see notes), then Natural Release for 20 minutes (turn off the heat and do NOT touch it).
Open the lid carefully. Remove the dish from the pressure cooker and unwrap the parchment paper carefully.
- Optional Step - Finish in the Oven: Pour out all the juice on a small bowl (don't throw it away!), then place the chicken legs on a wire rack on top of an oven tray. Put it under the broiler until the skin is browned but not dried out.
- Serve: Serve immediately. The remaining meat juice can be used as a dipping sauce for the chicken. Taste and add more dried sand ginger to your liking.
You can also make this dish with the oven.