For this classic Vietnamese breakfast chicken pice porridge (cháo) adapted from Charles Phan’s Vietnamese Home Cooking, jasmine rice and ginger simmer in an easy chicken broth.

This recipe is featured on our Summer of Clean Eating channel.

  • Yield: 4 servings
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Total: 2 hrs 
  • Active: 30 mins 

Ingredients (12)

To poach the chicken:

  • 1 small whole chicken, about 3 pounds
  • 1 bunch scalions, about 6
  • 1 (2-inch) piece fresh unpeeled ginger, crushed with the side of a chef’s knife or cleaver
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt, plus more to taste

For the rice porridge:

  • 1 cup raw rice, preferably jasmine
  • 3 quarts chicken broth or stock
  • 1 (2-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and sliced 1/4-inch thick
  • Freshly ground black pepper

For garnishing:

  • Sliced scallions
  • Chopped cilantro
  • Chopped roasted peanuts
  • Fried shallots


Poach the chicken:

  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil over hight heat. Add the chicken, green onions, smashed ginger, and measured salt.
  2. Bring the water back to the boil, then simmer for 15 minutes. Turn off the heat, cover the pot, and let sit for 15 minutes for a 3-pound chicken (add 10 minutes for a larger bird). Fill a large bowl 2/3rds full with ice cubes and cold water.
  3. Remove the chicken from the poaching liquid and plunge it into the ice water. Reserve 2 cups of the poaching liquid, and strain it through a fine strainer. Discard the rest of the poaching liquid (or save it for some other use). Keep the chicken in the ice water for 20 minutes.
  4. Lift the chicken out of the ice water. Using your hands, break down the chicken, removing and discarding the skin. Take the meat from the bones and discard the bones. With your fingers, shred the poached chicken into medium-size pieces. You should have about 4 cups of shredded meat.

Make the porridge: While the chicken is poaching and cooling, cook the rice. In a large, heavy pot, combine the rice, stock, ginger, and the 2 cups reserved chicken cooking water over high heat. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to maintain a steady simmer. Simmer until the rice is broken and looks like porridge, i hour. Taste and season with salt.

To serve: Ladle the porridge into warmed serving bowls and top with the shredded chicken and a sprinkling of pepper. Serve the garnishes in separate bowls at the table, for guests to help themselves.