Mouthwatering Shantung Chicken Recipe: Make It Tonight!

Welcome to one of my favorite recipes: Shantung Chicken. If you’re looking for a flavorful and savory dish, you’ve come to the right place. This traditional Chinese recipe is perfect for home chefs who love hosting dinner parties with friends and family. The Shantung Chicken recipe is a popular dish served across numerous Chinese restaurants, but why not bring that restaurant experience to your own kitchen?

As someone who loves experimenting in the kitchen, I was thrilled when I discovered this recipe. Trust me when I say I was skeptical at first. But once I took a bite of this crispy and juicy chicken, I knew it was a winner.

This recipe has quickly become one of my go-to meals when hosting guests or enjoying a quiet night in. The exciting blend of garlic, ginger, and soy sauce gives the chicken its irresistible flavor. Even better, the ingredients are accessible at most local grocery stores.

Whether you’re an experienced chef or new to cooking, this Shantung Chicken recipe will be a crowd-pleaser. So let’s roll up our sleeves and cook up some deliciousness!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Shantung Chicken
Shantung Chicken

If you’re anything like me, you’re always on the lookout for a great chicken recipe to add to your cooking repertoire. Look no further than the Shantung Chicken Recipe!

This dish is not only simple to make, but it’s also bursting with bold and unique flavors that are sure to impress your guests. Whether you’re hosting a dinner party or just looking for a meal to spice up your weekly food routine, this chicken recipe is sure to satisfy.

One reason why you’ll love this recipe is because of its versatility. You can make it with whole chickens or chicken pieces – whichever suits your preference. Additionally, substitutions and variations are encouraged, so feel free to experiment with different ingredients and adjust the recipe to your liking.

Another reason why you’ll love this recipe is the combination of flavors. The garlic, ginger, and Szechuan peppercorns provide a bold and spicy kick, while the soy sauce and sherry add depth and richness. And let’s not forget the black vinegar sauce – it adds an extra layer of tangy sweetness that perfectly complements the crispy chicken.

Not only is this dish delicious, but it also has a fascinating history. “Shantung” or “Shandong” is a region in China known for its cuisine, specifically roast chicken dishes like this one. In fact, this dish was originally a restaurant specialty before becoming popular in Chinese households.

So what are you waiting for? Try out this Shantung Chicken Recipe for yourself and experience the unique flavors of Shandong cuisine in your own kitchen. Trust me; your taste buds will thank you!

Ingredient List

“Satisfy your cravings with this aromatic Shantung Chicken!”

Here is what you’ll need to get started on creating your delicious Shantung Chicken:

Whole chickens

You can typically find these at your local grocery store, but be sure to choose ones that are about 2-3 pounds each.

Szechuan peppercorns

These can be found at most Asian grocers or online. They add a unique numbing flavor to the dish.

Soy Sauce

This classic ingredient can be found in almost every pantry. Make sure you use dark soy sauce for this recipe.

Dry sherry

Dry sherry has a nutty and mild taste that will enhance the flavors of your chicken nicely.

White wine vinegar

With its sour and acidic taste, white wine vinegar will balance out the flavors of the dish and help tenderize the meat.

Caster sugar

This is an essential ingredient to give depth and complexity to the dish.

Fresh ginger and garlic clove

These aromatic ingredients possess unique flavors that bring extra warmth and depth to the recipe.


Cornstarch serves as a binding agent for the marinade.

Black vinegar

A staple in Chinese cuisine, black vinegar complement chicken with slightly sweet, malty, and woody undertones.

With these ingredients, you’ll be well on your way to creating a flavorful Shantung Chicken that will surely impress your guests!

The Recipe How-To

“Indulge in this flavorful chicken feast with friends and family”

Now that we’ve got our ingredients sorted, let’s dive right in and get cooking. Shantung Chicken is a dish made of crispy chicken pieces topped with simple black vinegar sauce, and it’s a popular Chinese restaurant dish that you can now make at home. You can use either whole chickens or chicken pieces, depending on your preference.

Step 1: Marinate the Chicken

If using chicken breasts or thighs, cut them into narrow strips. Combine 1 tablespoon of cornstarch, 1 tablespoon of soy sauce, 1 tablespoon of sherry, 1 clove of garlic (finely chopped), and a 2cm piece of grated ginger juice in a small bowl. Stir in the chicken and let it stand for about 5 minutes.

Step 2: Fry the Chicken

For the next step, heat a large wok or deep frying pan over high heat with enough oil to deep-fry the chicken until golden brown and crispy. Fry the chicken in batches until each piece is golden brown on all sides. Once done, place them on paper towels to drain off any excess oil.

Step 3: Prepare the Vinegar Sauce

For the sauce, combine 5 tablespoons of caster sugar, 1 tablespoon of white wine vinegar or rice vinegar if you don’t have it), and 1 tablespoon of dark soy sauce in a small bowl. Set aside.

Step 4: Combine the Fried Chicken Pieces and the Vinegar Sauce

Now that both the fried chicken pieces and vinegar sauce are ready, it’s time to put them together. Reheat your wok or frying pan over high heat and stir-fry another clove of garlic (finely chopped) until fragrant before adding your fried chicken pieces back into the pan.

Next, add prepared vinegar sauce to the fried chicken pieces to glaze it with slightly caramelized flavors as it further cooks on medium-high heat for another five minutes until everything is well combined.

Step 5: Serve Hot

Serve your homemade Shantung Chicken recipe hot along with rice or noodles. For some added crunch and texture, you may also garnish your dish with finely sliced cucumber or scallions on top. Enjoy!

Quick tip: To make your chicken extra crispy, pat dry your meat so that there’s no excessive moisture left on its surface before applying flour or batter. Additionally, flipping each piece of meat several times during frying would prevent each side from sticking on the pan too long without browning evenly all around.

By following these recipe steps closely, you should have a flavorful Shantung Chicken that is both tender inside and crispy outside – just like restaurant-quality food but infinitely more satisfying since you made this fantastic recipe from scratch!

Substitutions and Variations

“Love Chinese cuisine? Shantung Chicken is a must try!”

Cooking is an art form that allows us to be creative and experiment with different ingredients. This Shantung Chicken recipe is no exception to this rule. Here are some substitutions and variations that you can try to make this dish more customizable and tailored to your preferences.

If you don’t have Shaoxing wine, you can substitute it with dry sherry or white wine vinegar. They will add slightly different flavors but will still provide the sweetness and acidity that are crucial to the recipe.

For those who do not eat meat or prefer vegetarian options, you can replace the chicken with your favorite plant-based protein like tofu, tempeh or vegetables like mushrooms, cauliflower or potatoes. You can also use soy chunks soaked in hot water or vegetarian chicken substitutes that are made from plant protein.

If Szechuan peppercorns are not available at your local grocery store, you can swap them with black peppercorns for a milder taste. If you’re looking for more heat, you can add red pepper flakes to the dish.

For a healthier version of Shantung Chicken, consider cutting down on the oil and salt content. You could use skinless chicken breasts to lower the fat levels in the dish or even replace it with tofu or paneer for a vegetarian option

If you’re feeling adventurous and want to experiment with different flavors, try adding other ingredients like scallions, chili flakes or sesame seeds. You could also try adding cashew nuts for a crunchy texture.

In conclusion, there are many variations and substitutions that you can try with this Shantung Chicken recipe. Whether you choose to mix things up by adding new ingredients or tweaking the current ones in the recipe, don’t be afraid to unleash your creativity in the kitchen!

Serving and Pairing

“Get ready to impress your taste buds with this mouth-watering dish”

Now that your Shantung Chicken masterpiece is ready, it’s time to serve and indulge! This dish has crispy and juicy chicken pieces that go well with steamed rice or noodles. It’s a satisfying meal in itself, but if you want to add more flavor to your meal, try adding stir-fried vegetables like bok choy or snap peas.

For the pairing, there are several options to choose from. A cold glass of white wine complements the flavors of this dish well. You can also pair it with an Asian beer like Tsingtao or a light lager which can balance out the spice.

As for the presentation, place the Shantung Chicken pieces on a platter with finely chopped spring onions, coriander leaves, and sesame seeds on top for a pop of color and added texture. A drizzle of black vinegar sauce or soy sauce and ginger sauce will elevate the dish even further.

Sharing is caring, so why not serve Shantung Chicken at your next get-together? It’s a beloved Chinese restaurant dish made crispy and delicious at home. Your guests will be delighted with the savory flavors and crispy skin of the chicken pieces making for an unforgettable dining experience.

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

“Add some spice to your life with this fiery Shantung Chicken recipe!”

If you’re planning to have a Shantung Chicken feast and don’t want to be slaving away in the kitchen, you can easily prepare the chicken ahead of time. When making Shantung Chicken, it’s best to cook it fresh; however, there are a few things that can be done ahead of time. The recipe allows for prepping and storing the chicken overnight in the fridge.

After completing the recipe, allow the Shantung Chicken to cool completely before storing it in an airtight container. This will prevent any moisture from getting trapped, causing the crispy skin to become soggy. Refrigerate your cooked Shantung Chicken pieces for up to 24 hours after cooking them.

When reheating leftover Shantung Chicken, it is essential to use an oven or toaster as microwaving may cause it to lose its crispy skin. If using an oven or toaster, preheat to 350°F before putting the chicken on foil and heating for around 10 minutes or until hot.

When serving leftovers, remember that the sauce has a strong flavor and can quickly overpower other dishes on your menu. If you want everyone to enjoy your Shantung Chicken leftovers at their fullest potential, serve them with a plain side dish like white rice or salad.

Preparing Shantung Chicken ahead of time is simple if you follow these practical tips for reheating and storing it. Whether you’re preparing for an upcoming party or planning meals ahead of time, this recipe will allow you to meal prep with ease while still enjoying crispy chicken every time!

Tips for Perfect Results

“Experience the perfect balance of sweetness and heat in every bite”

To achieve the perfect Shantung chicken, it’s essential to follow the recipe steps closely while incorporating some techniques that will give your dish a unique taste. Here are tips that will make your Shantung chicken taste restaurant-level delicious:

First and foremost, ensuring the chicken pieces’ skin side is dry before cooking is critical. Pat them dry with a paper towel to avoid moisture from steaming the chicken instead of browning it.

Additionally, if you want your Shantung chicken to be crispy, don’t overcrowd the pan. When too many chicken pieces are put in at once, they release water and not enough heat circulates to brown them evenly. Fry or roast them in batches for a consistent result.

Another technique to getting a robust flavor is marinating the chicken ahead of time. You can marinate for as little as one hour or up to overnight for even more flavor infusion.

When it comes to cooking the chicken, avoid overcooking it, leading to dryness. Once the chicken pieces reach an internal temperature of 165°F or when you see clear juices when cutting through a thick part, remove them from heat.

After cooking such delicious Shantung chicken, letting it rest for several minutes is critical. This time allows the juices to settle, enhancing the flavor’s depth and leaving tender meat.

Lastly, mix the black vinegar sauce with soy sauce and fried garlic in a separate bowl and pour over your chicken; this will add another layer of umami flavor that will leave your guests wondering what your secret ingredient is!


Before we conclude this recipe article, let’s address some frequently asked questions to help you better understand this dish and make it without any trouble. Whether you are a culinary genius or someone who is just starting to explore the magic of cooking, these FAQs will cover all the important aspects of Shantung Chicken Recipe. From ingredient substitution to storage tips, we’ve got you covered. So let’s dive in!

What is shantung picnic chicken?

This recipe article features a Chinese restaurant classic known as Shandong Chicken, consisting of delectable crispy chicken accompanied by a black vinegar sauce. The recipe is shared by none other than my mother, who also provides a fantastic time-saving tip for those in a rush to whip up this dish in just five minutes!

How to get crispy skin chicken?

To get perfectly grilled chicken with crispy skin, start by seasoning the chicken skin with a pinch of salt. Grill it over low to medium heat, making sure to keep the heat low, as high heat may sear the fat rather than rendering it. The goal is to cook the chicken slowly, allowing the fat to melt away, resulting in deliciously crispy skin. Once the skin is nice and crisp, flip the chicken and grill it for a few more minutes until it’s cooked through.

What is Chinese chicken on a stick made of?

The main ingredients of this recipe are primarily chicken breasts, modified tapioca starch, vegetable oil (fully refined soybean), and various spices and flavorings. The chicken has also been seasoned with garlic, onion, star of anise, cinnamon, ginger, clove, and fennel extracts to enhance its flavor. Additionally, stabilizers such as sodium tripolyphosphate and soy sauce powder have been added, along with dextrose and yeast for added texture and taste.

Is Shandong chilli spicy?

If you are wondering whether Shandong Chicken is a spicy dish, the answer is that it depends. The only source of spice in this recipe is a small amount of chopped chilli that can be added at the end. It is entirely up to you to decide whether you want to add it or not.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, Shantung Chicken is a must-try recipe for anyone looking to add some excitement to their dinner table. With its crispy chicken pieces and flavorful sauce made from a blend of white wine vinegar, soy sauce, garlic and ginger, this dish is sure to satisfy all your taste buds.

Whether you’re looking to impress your guests with a restaurant-quality dish or simply want to try something new for family dinner night, our Shantung Chicken recipe is the perfect addition to your culinary repertoire. So why not give it a try? You won’t be disappointed!

And if you’re feeling adventurous, feel free to experiment with different variations of the recipe. Add some spice with Szechuan peppercorns or swap out the chicken for shrimp or tofu to create a vegetarian-friendly option.

In the end, cooking is all about having fun and being creative, so don’t be afraid to think outside the box and make this Shantung Chicken recipe your own. Happy cooking!

Shantung Chicken

Shantung Chicken Recipe

From the Australian Women's Weekly New Asian cookbook - this sounds so good and reasonably easy to make. Times at this stage are estimated and does not include overnight refrigeration time.
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Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 20 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Chinese
Calories 983 kcal


  • 1 garlic clove (crushed)
  • 10 g fresh ginger (2cm piece grated)
  • 1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon dry sherry
  • 2 teaspoons szechuan peppercorns (crushed)
  • 2 teaspoons peanut oil
  • 1 5/8 kg whole chickens

Shantung Sauce

  • 1/3 cup caster sugar (75 grams)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1 fresh red Thai chile (chopped finely)


  • Combine garlic, ginger, sauce, sherry, pepper and oil in large bowl; add chicken, coat in marinade and cover and refrigerate overnight.
  • Next day - preheat oven to 220C/200C fan forced (430F/390F fan forced).
  • Half fill a baking dish with water and place an oiled rack over the baking dish and place the chicken on the rack.
  • Roast the chicken uncovered for about 1 hour and 20 minutes or until cooked through (I would keep an eye on the water level and possibly replentish if looking at drying out).
  • While the chicken is cooking make the shantung sauce - Combine sugar and the water in small saucepan, stir over low heat until sugar dissolves and bring to a boil and let boil for about 5 minutes (uncovered) WITHOUT STIRRING until sauce thicken slightly.
  • Remove from the heat and stir in vinegar and chilli.
  • Remove chicken from the oven, when cool enough to handle, remove bones and chop meat coarsely and serve drizzled with the shantung sauce (do a gentle reheat of sauce if required).

Your Own Notes


Serving: 466gCalories: 983kcalCarbohydrates: 18.1gProtein: 70.2gFat: 66.7gSaturated Fat: 18.8gCholesterol: 296.6mgSodium: 530mgFiber: 0.1gSugar: 16.9g
Keyword < 4 Hours, Asian, Chicken, Meat, Poultry, Whole Chicken
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