Chicken Bak Kwa

January 30, 2019
Chicken Bak Kwa, thinly sweet meat, cooked over charcoal or broiler, eaten as snack during Chinese New Year celebration. 

rougan (肉干) recipe
Chinese New Year or Lunar new year will be on the 5th February 2019.
Not many days left to this celebration.

It will be the year of The Pig, according to Chinese zodiac.

I am pleased with myself that I managed to squeeze in 3 (including this Chicken Bak Kwa) recipes  and videos, for this forth coming celebration.

The other 2 are the updated Sweet Sticky Rice Cake and Love Letters. Check out the videos for these two on my YouTube Channel.

What is Bak Kwa?

Bak Kwa means dried meat. It is also known as rougan (肉干) or roupu (肉脯).

Bak Kwa is a savoury sweet meat, almost similar to meat jerky to the western world.
It was believed that meat preservation and preparation technique came from ancient China.

Marinate overnight then the mix is then spread thinly, cook and cut into square or rectangular shape.

Bak Kwa is one of the most likeable snack during Chinese New Year.

Bak Kwa slices

Preparing Chicken Bak Kwa

Traditionally bak kwa is made of minced pork, prepared with spices, salt, soy and sugar.
However, as I don't consume pork, I opt to make Chicken Bak Kwa.

Anyway preparing Chicken Bak Kwa is easy. Just add all ingredients to a mixing bowl and marinade overnight.

I posted a bak kwa recipe, back in 2010. I made this sweet meat using beef and chicken mince.
Beef bak kwa was not our favourite sweet meat. Beef tend to be 'rougher' in texture.

However, for this post, I tweaked the recipe a little, with ingredients that many are familiar with, like introducing miso paste instead of fermented red bean curd.

Added a buzz to my chicken bak kwa by adding a dash of chilli powder.

Cooking Chicken Bak Kwa


The only way I knew was to spread as thinly as I could (to fit in baking tray) then par- bake until the edges can be lifted off the pan and the meat did not break off.

At this stage, the meat is till pale and not cook.

Cut Chicken Bak Kwa into squares and place them squares under broiler/ grill until the meat is cook thoroughly with bits of charred meat here and there.


Charcoal Barbeque
1. Get the charcoal going
Forzen chicken bak kwa straight to barbeque
2. Frozen uncook Chicken Bak Kwa sheets, straight to the hot wire mesh. Cook for few minutes.

Cooking Bak Kwa
3. Peel off the baking paper, once the meat is cook.

bak kwa sheet
4. Keep turning them over for even cooking

Cooking chicken bak kwa
5. Chicken Bak Kwa will be ready in few more minutes.

chicken bak kwa for Chinese new year
We decided to use charcoal instead of grilling in the oven.

This gives Chicken Bak Kwa a unique smokey flavour.

The rest of the instruction on how to prepare Chicken Bak Kwa can be found in the recipe below.

How to store Chicken Bak Kwa?

Chicken Bak Kwa is best consume within 3 days in room temperature.
Once cool, keep Chicken Bak Kwa in an airtight container.

And if you are not able to finish eating or just wish to save for later, Chicken Bak Kwa best kept in the airtight container and in the refrigerator.

chicken bak kwa sweet savoury meat

Tips : 

  1. Use meat with some fat in it, otherwise the Chicken Bak Kwa will taste dry and rubbery. The same goes with beef mince meat.
  2. Omit salt. Miso, fish sauce and soy has high salt content.


Lastly, watch the video on "How To Make Chicken Bak Kwa".
The video will give a better understanding on the process of having a lip smacking smokey Chicken Bak Kwa

Halal Bak Kwa