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A bowl of rice porridge with shredded chicken, garnished with green onions.

Chao Ga (Vietnamese Chicken Porridge)

Vietnamese chao ga is a nutritious and aromatic chicken rice porridge cooked in chicken stock made with ginger, onion and seasoning. Garnished with fresh herbs and a squeeze of lime.
5 from 16 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 40 mins
porridge cooking time 20 mins
Total Time 1 hr 10 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Vietnamese
Servings 6 people
Calories 254 kcal


  • 2 to 3 pound whole free range chicken
  • 1 to 2 ounce knob of ginger, peeled
  • 1 whole yellow onion, peeled
  • 16 cups water about 4 quarts or enough to cover chicken and ingredients. filtered water preferred.
  • 1 tablespoon natural mushroom seasoning
  • 2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¾ cup uncooked jasmine rice
  • 1 to 2 teaspoon olive oil

Optional garnish and seasoning

  • 1 stalk green onion, chopped
  • 1 bunch cilantro leaves
  • ground pepper
  • 1 lime, cut into wedges
  • fish sauce
  • mushroom seasoning


  • Add the whole chicken, onion, ginger, salt and mushroom powder to a 6 to 8 quart pot. Fill the pot with water, enough to cover ingredients.
  • Take the pot of water to a boil on high heat, then reduce the heat to a simmer on medium low heat.
  • Use a ladle to skim any scum and foam off the top of the broth.
  • Let the stock simmer uncovered for 40 minutes, or until chicken is done.
  • Use tongs to remove chicken from the pot. Set aside.
  • Wash the rice. Add rice to a mesh strainer and rinse it thoroughly with cold water until water runs clear. About 15 to 20 seconds.
  • Heat a medium pan on medium heat. Add about 1 to 2 teaspoon of olive oil. Add the rice, stir frequently and roast until rice is dry, about 30 seconds.
  • Add the rice to the pot of broth and simmer for 20 minutes or until the rice expands and is fully cooked.
  • Shred the chicken into bite size pieces (add it back into the pot if it needs to be reheated). Ladle the porridge into a bowl, add the chicken. Garnish with cilantro, green onions and season with ground pepper and squeeze of lime. Optional: add fish sauce and additional mushroom seasoning as needed to taste.


  • If you prefer, you may "clean the chicken" prior to cooking it. Scrub the whole chicken with about ½ tablespoon kosher salt and a cut lime. Then rinse it off with water in the sink.
  • Cooking times may vary depending on the weight of chicken. 
  • To check the doneness of the chicken, use a chopstick to poke through the thickest part of the chicken thigh. If a slightly pinkish juice leaks out of the chicken, then give it some more time to cook. The juice should run clear.
  • For cooked rice, use about ½ cups of rice and simmer for about 15-20 minutes.
  • When ready to eat, shred the chicken meat into bite size pieces. Shred only enough to eat for the meal.
  • To store: keep the chicken whole and place it in an airtight container. Store the pot of porridge in the fridge or in an airtight container. Will keep in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.


Serving: 6peopleCalories: 254kcalCarbohydrates: 21gProtein: 15gFat: 12gSaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 54mgSodium: 889mgPotassium: 195mgFiber: 1gSugar: 1gVitamin A: 144IUVitamin C: 5mgCalcium: 37mgIron: 1mg
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