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Simple and Amazing Baked Char Siu Chicken

This addictive and flavorful Baked Char Siu Chicken is a gentle twist to the classic Cantonese Style Barbeque Pork. This Baked Chinese BBQ Chicken, marinated in chinese spices, is sweet and savory and is amazingly delicious!

If you love Chinese, this Baked Char Siu Chicken is a recipe that your family would devour! It’s a hassle free baked recipe of BBQ Asian Chicken made super easy for you.

Char Siu, or Char Siew, is a classic Chinese recipe made with pork. We tweaked it to make an oven roasted Chinese style BBQ Chicken.  

Get an amazing barbeque flavor with this simple recipe of Char Siu Chicken that the kids love. Here, the chicken is baked, eliminating the need to fuss with the grill – and bonus; easy cleanup!

Why This Recipe Works?

  • Can be easily made Vegan and Gluten free.
  • Bursting with Chinese Spicy flavors.
  • A quick and easy recipe.
  • Kids friendly.
  • Exotic flavors obtained from Chinese Marinade.
  • Easily available Ingredients.
  • Make-Ahead Chinese Chicken.
  • Low Carb and High Protein Dish, this is a great recipe of Keto Char Siu.
  • The Best Baked Char Siu Chicken ever!!

Ingredients

This recipe uses super easy ingredients that can be purchased from a local store if you don’t already have them in your pantry. Read the Recipe Card for the measurements.

  • Chicken Thighs – is the star ingredient of this Baked Char Siu Chicken Recipe.  For the best flavor and texture, we recommend using boneless and skinless chicken thighs. You can also use breasts, but they might taste a bit dry.
  • Chinese Five Spice Powder – These flavor packed Chinese spices add the perfect depth to this baked Chicken. 
  • Honey – Honey creates a humble balance between sweet and savory flavor in this Chinese Chicken. You may always control its quantity to adjust the sweetness in the baked chicken.
  • Ketchup – The mild tanginess comes from the ketchup and helps you create a kid friendly chicken.   
  • Hoisin Sauce – is a thick sweet salty sauce that is recommended for making Chinese marinade for chicken, pork or Paneer. It makes the perfect glaze on this baked chicken.
  • Soy Sauce – is the classical Chinese sauce that is added to several Chinese dishes. If you are planning to make a Gluten Free Baked Chicken, you might wish to look for Gluten Free Soy Sauce. 
  • Sesame Seed Oil – Though sesame oil works best for this recipe, you may use Avocado oil as well.
  • Cayenne Pepper – Adding Cayenne Pepper is optional. We love the heat that comes from it and it creates a subtle balance in savory and sweet marinade sauce.

Equipment 

Variations

  • Make-Ahead Char Siu Chicken: When making this recipe ahead of time, simply marinade the Chicken thighs and store them in a covered container in the refrigerator. Bake them before serving and let the marinade attain room temperature before baking.
  • Vegan Char Siu Chicken: To make Vegan Char Siu Chicken, the same recipe would work with Paneer or Tofu. 
  • Gluten free Char Siu Chicken: You may use the gluten free Soy sauce to make this Chinese Red Chicken recipe gluten free.
  • Char Siu Fried Rice: The fried rice flavored with Char Siu spices is a quick meal that can be teamed with Chicken gravy. 
  • Air Fryer Char Siu Chicken: This oven roasted BBQ Chicken can be made in an air fryer as well. The marinated Chicken Thighs can be added to the grill pan of Preheated Air fryer for around 10 minutes for each side.
  • Add another garnishing: We have added Sesame seeds and spring onion as garnish over the baked Chinese Chicken thighs. You may also add cilantro or nuts as another garnish to it.
  • Add another protein: Char Siu Ham is another variation of this recipe and can be made with this recipe without any changes. 
hero shot baked char siu chicken thighs

What To Serve With This Chinese Oven Baked Chicken?

This Baked Chinese Chicken can be had as a hearty lunch or dinner with fresh steamed rice or if you love the crispy baked chicken, have it as a snack of its own. 

How To Store Leftover Char Siu Chicken?

Store the leftover Char Siu Chicken in a dry container with a lid in the refrigerator. Let it thaw before using. Once it attains room temperature, reheat it in the oven for about 10 minutes.

How To Make Baked Char Siu Chicken

Step 1: Prep 

  • Clean chicken and remove any fatty bits. Pat the chicken down with a paper towel to remove any excess moisture.
  • If the thighs are large or uneven in thickness, butterfly each one. Lay the thigh, smooth-side down, on your cutting board. With your knife, cut the thigh to create a flap of meat, stopping shy of cutting all the way through the meat. Fold back the meat flap that you just created. The thigh should now be a bit longer and even in thickness.

Step 2: Make Char Siu Marinade

  • In a separate bowl, combine the minced garlic, Chinese five spice powder, honey, hoisin sauce, soy sauce, cayenne pepper, ketchup and sesame oil. 
  • Remove about half the marinade and set aside for glazing later. Add the chicken to a bowl, coating the pieces well. 
  • Here, we are using a pyrex bowl that comes with a handy cover. If your bowl doesn’t come with a cover, use plastic wrap instead. Marinate at room temperature for 30 minutes, or refrigerate up to 24 hours. If refrigerated, be sure to return chicken to room temperature before cooking.

Step 3: Into The Oven

  • Heat oven to 400 degrees F, spray non-stick spray on foil lined pan. Be sure to line your pan really well, as things will get very sticky. Place marinated chicken on a pan and bake for 25 minutes. 

Step 4: Reduce Marinade

  • While chicken is baking in the oven, reduce the reserved marinade to half. In a small saucepan, add reserved marinade and cook over medium-low heat stirring every few minutes. This usually takes about 20 minutes. 
  • You will know your marinade is done once it coats the spatula and sticks to it. The marinade should be thick enough to stay on the thighs without running off onto the foil.

Step 5: Bake and Baste

  • Remove chicken from the oven and test for doneness by piercing the flesh with the tip of a knife; the chicken is cooked when juices run clear. 
  • Once the juices run clear, turn the oven up to 500 degrees. Baste with the reduced marinade and bake at 500 degrees for an additional 7 minutes. Transfer to a platter and let rest for 5 to 10 minutes before serving.

The Baked Char Siu Chicken is ready. Serve them with your choice of rice or have them as is!

Expert Tips

  • If the thighs are large or uneven in thickness, butterfly each one. Lay the thigh, smooth-side down, on your cutting board. With your knife, cut the thigh to create a flap of meat, stopping shy of cutting all the way through the meat. Fold back the meat flap that you just created. The thigh should now be a bit longer and even in thickness.
  • Reserve some marinade sauce for the glaze.
  • If marinade is refrigerated, be sure to return chicken to room temperature before cooking.
  • You will know your marinade is done once it coats the spatula and sticks to it. The marinade should be thick enough to stay on the thighs without running off onto the foil.
What temperature should chicken thighs be baked at?

The chicken thighs used for the Char Siu Chicken recipe shall be oven baked at 500 degrees F.

What is char siu sauce made of?

Char Siu Sauce is made of Soy sauce, sugar, Chinese 5 spices mix, honey, and garlic.

More Chicken Recipes

Simple and Amazing Baked Char Siu Chicken

Simple and Amazing Baked Char Siu Chicken

Yield: 4 to 6
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Additional Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 55 minutes

This addictive and flavorful Baked Char Siu Chicken is a gentle twist to the classic Cantonese Style Barbeque Pork. This Baked Chinese BBQ Chicken, marinated in chinese spices, is sweet and savory and is amazingly delicious!

Ingredients

  • 2.5 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 3 large garlic cloves, put through a press or minced and mashed
  • 1/2 teaspoon Chinese five-spice powder
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • Brimming 1/4 cup hoisin sauce
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons ketchup
  • 4 teaspoons sesame seed oil
  • 1/8 teaspoon of cayenne pepper (Optional)

Instructions

  1. Clean the chicken thighs, removing excess fat.
  2. Pat down the chicken thighs with a paper towel to remove excess moisture.
  3. With a knife, cut the thigh to create a flap of meat, stopping shy of cutting all the way through the thighs.
  4. In a separate bowl, combine the minced/mashed garlic, Chinese five spice powder, honey, hoisin sauce, soy sauce, cayenne pepper, ketchup and sesame oil.
  5. Set aside half the marinade to be used for glazing the chicken during cooking.
  6. Marinate the chicken using the remaining half of the marinade in either a large bowl or a glass dish (pyrex) - make sure all the chicken is coated well.
  7. Place the chicken that is marinating in the refrigerator until about an hour before cooking (return the chicken to room temperature before cooking). Marinate for at least 30 minutes at room temperature or up to 24 hours in a refrigerator.
  8. Bake (roast) the chicken at a temperature of 400 degrees F for 25 minutes.
  9. When you first place the chicken into the oven to cook, reduce the half of the marinade that will be used for glazing in order to thicken it. Use a low heat on the stovetop and let it cook down until it gets a nice thickness to it (should take about 15-20 minutes).
  10. Remove the chicken from the oven after the 25 minutes and test for doneness by piercing the flesh with a tip of a knife. The chicken is cooked when the juices run clear.
  11. Once the juices run clear, turn the oven up to 500 degrees. Baste with the reduced marinade and bake at 500 degrees for an additional 7 minutes.
  12. Transfer to a platter and let rest for 5 to 10 minutes before serving.






Notes

  • If the thighs are large or uneven in thickness, butterfly each one. Lay the thigh, smooth-side down, on your cutting board. With your knife, cut the thigh to create a flap of meat, stopping shy of cutting all the way through the meat. Fold back the meat flap that you just created. The thigh should now be a bit longer and even in thickness.
  • Reserve some marinade sauce for the glaze.
  • If marinade is refrigerated, be sure to return chicken to room temperature before cooking.
  • You will know your marinade is done once it coats the spatula and sticks to it. The marinade should be thick enough to stay on the thighs without running off onto the foil.

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