How to make Trini-Chinese Style Fried Chicken

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Top view of Trinidad Chinese-styled fried chicken in a small bowl

Trini-Chinese Style Chicken is another example of the multicultural evolution of Trinidad Cuisine. This deep-fried chicken dish is known for its dark crispy or "crispy," as we say in Trinidad, skin that crunches with every bite. A mixture of five Chinese spices, garlic, ginger, and soy sauce used as a marinade gives the chicken a deep rich flavor that is trapped within the moist layers of meat. This dish pairs well with any of your favorite Chinese side dishes or are perfect as an appetizer - also known as cutters - for your next time.

For the best results when deep-frying food: make sure the oil is heated to the correct temperature for that food item and do not overcrowd the pot by making sure there is enough room for the food to be fully submerged in the oil and space for flipping.

How do you fry Chinese Style chicken?

To fry Chinese Style Chicken, the chicken is marinated for a few hours or for best results overnight if time allows. It's then dried off and left to come up to room temperature to reduce splatter from the oil. Its then fried for 8-10 minutes or until the chicken is fully cooked and no longer pink inside. The chicken is then glazed with sauce and ready to be enjoyed.  

What temperature do you fry Chinese chicken?

Chinese Chicken is fried at 350 F. 

Do you steam chicken before frying?

Yes, you can steam chicken before frying it. This will help shorten the frying time as well as ensure you're chicken is fully cooked and extra crispy. 

How long should I boil chicken before frying?

Depending on the size of the chicken as well as if it contains bones or not will determine how long you need to boil the chicken. You can place the chicken into a pot of salted water, checking it after about 8 minutes. If the chicken is still pink inside, place it back into boil for another few minutes before checking the chicken once again. Be sure not to overcook you chicken, as this will result in unpleasant, dry and chewy meat. 

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Time & Serves

Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
45 mins
Total Time
60 mins


  • 1 Teaspoon Five Spices Powder

  • 3 Tablespoons All-purpose or Light Soy Sauce

  • 2 Tablespoons Rice Wine

  • 30 grams Ginger fresh minced

  • 6 Large Cloves Garlic Minced

  • 3 Green Onions Minced

  • 1 Tablespoon Brown Sugar

  • 1 Whole Chicken cut into quarters OR 4 Leg & Thigh quarters SKIN ON

  • 750-1000 ml Frying Oil; Peanut or Soy

  • 2 Tablespoons Peanut Oil or Soy Oil

  • 1 Tablespoon Sesame Oil

  • 125 ml Oyster Sauce


Place the Chicken Five Spice powder, soy sauce, rice wine, ginger, garlic, green onions, and brown sugar into a bowl and massage the meat, making sure the chicken is completely coated.

Overview of a bowl of marinade with scallions on the side

Allow the chicken to marinate for a minimum of an hour or overnight for a deeper flavor and color.

Raw bone in chicken marinating in a bowl

Prepare the cooling station with a plate or serving dish for the chicken to be placed onto after frying.

Overview of a cooking rack with a sheet pan underneath

Once the marinating is finished, remove the pieces of chicken onto a plate and reserve the marinade liquid for making a sauce later.

Marinated chicken in a dish

Make sure to remove all excess liquid from the chicken before frying. This can be done by patting dry with a paper towel or placing the plate of chicken into the fridge for another hour uncovered. This will help reduce oil spattering during the frying and crisp the extra skin.

Chicken in a dish being dried off with paper towel

Before frying the chicken, allow it to come to room temperature for at least 20 minutes.

Using a large heavy pot or deep fryer, add the frying oil and warm the oil on medium-high heat to 350 °F, the temperature you want to maintain during the cooking process for the best results.

Large pot with oil being heated up on a stovetop

Gently place one piece of chicken into the pot or fryer and cook for 8-10 minutes on each side. Cooking time will depend on the size of the chicken quarter and how many pieces are in the pot or fryer at one time.

Pieces of chicken frying in a pot of oil

Once the chicken is finished cooking, remove it from the hot oil to the cooling station and allow it to rest while you finish cooking the remaining chicken pieces. If you want to check if the chicken is cooked thoroughly, carefully use a knife and cut a small slit near the bone to see if the meat has been thoroughly cooked.

A piece of chicken on a cooling rack being cut open with a knife and fork

After all the chicken is finished frying and is resting in the cooling station, you can prepare the sauce.

Bone in pieces of cooked chicken on a cooling rack

Using a saucepan or deep saute pan, place the 2 tablespoons of peanut or soy oil and sesame oil on medium to high heat.

Oil being added to a pot

Once the oil is hot, add the marinade liquid and oyster sauce to the pan. Stir to combine and simmer for 3-5 minutes.

A pot with dark colored sauce being stirred with a wooden spoon

Remove the sauce from the heat and pour over the chicken or place into a small bowl or a ramekin dipping dish.

Chicken on a cooling rack with dark sauce being added to the chicken

Serve the chicken with your favorite Chinese side dishes or chop it into smaller pieces and use it as appetizers/cutters.

A bowl with soy glazed pieces of chicken and green onions
Rachael Ottier Hart

Join Rachael on a global culinary journey. With a passion for travel and diverse cuisines, she crafts recipes that weave flavors, scents, and stories into each dish, igniting your wanderlust with every bite.

More posts by Rachael Ottier Hart

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Chinese Style Chicken, Trini Chinese Chicken, Chinese Fried Chicken, wings, chinese chicken recipes, asian fried chicken, best chinese chicken dish

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Rachael Ottier Hart

Join Rachael on a global culinary journey. With a passion for travel and diverse cuisines, she crafts recipes that weave flavors, scents, and stories into each dish, igniting your wanderlust with every bite.

More posts by Rachael Ottier Hart