Bubur Ayam Recipe: Indonesian Rice Porridge With Chicken

A big bowl of Indonesian rice porridge - Bubur Ayam - garnished with shredded chicken, fried soya beans, Cakwe, and some potato crisps.

Bubur Ayam For Delicious Breakfast 

Bubur Ayam is one of the most sought-after street foods and such a comforting food to enjoy for breakfast. You can easily find the food gawker selling this chicken rice porridge in Indonesia.

The soft rice congee with delicate herb fragrance marries well with flavoursome spiced yellow sauce, soy sauce and chilli sauce. One can never have enough of this humble yet full of texture rice dish. 

And you enjoy this simple rice porridge with shredded chicken, fried soya beans, Cakwe slices, spring onions and Kerupuk. 

A bowl of Bubur. Ayam - the Indonesian rice congee with shredded chicken, fried soya beans, and cakwe as garnishes with a spoon of soy sauce and spring onion slices on the side.

If you want to make simple bubur ayam, you can just make this rice congee, the sauce and the shredded chicken 

Adjustable Ingredients

Although there are typical elements that many recipes have, you can make Bubur Ayam in so many ways and enjoy it with so many different things. 

You may find the dish is slightly different from one region to the others. 

But one thing for sure is that every Bubur Ayam has rice congee and shredded chicken in it. 

To make the rice porridge, basically, you can use any type of rice such as Basmati, Thai, short-grain, or long-grain rice. 

The difference is that rice with high starch content, such as Thai rice and short-grain rice, will make stickier rice porridge with a creamier taste.  

The things that make this Indonesian chicken porridge delightful to enjoy are the flavouring sauces and the variety of garnish that accompanies the plain rice congee. 

Most of Bubur Ayam across Indonesia will have yellow spiced sauce and light soy sauce. And it will be topped with fried soya beans, shredded chicken, Cakwe slices, and some rice crackers (Kerupuk).

But some sellers put a raw egg yolk in between the piping hot rice congee. And some others will put slices of hard-boiled egg. 

So, feel free to try any of those varieties if you like.


Making the rice porridge itself is easy and doesn’t take much time. You just boil the rice in plenty of water with some herbs and salt.

photo collage of making rice congee

However, to enjoy the rice congee as Bubur Ayam, you will need to prepare at the minimum the yellow spiced sauce, shredded chicken and Cakwe. Because these are the usual elements for Indonesian chicken rice porridge. 

For the sauce, all you need is to pound the spices and cook the paste with some water until it is bubbling and simmering.

photo collage of how to make yellow sauce

As for the shredded chicken, technically, you can use any cooked chicken. Sometimes I use Indonesian fried chicken, Ayam Bumbu, and other times I use any leftover roast chicken. I include how to cook the chicken the simple way in this recipe, in case you need it.

photo collage of rice congee with and without the sauces

And you can try making Cakwe yourself by following my easy Cakwe recipe. Granted, you will enjoy it for your snacks too.

photo collage of how to assemble Bubur Ayam

Top Tips For The Most Delicious Rice Porridge

  • Add the salt to the rice when the water reaches boiling point. Else, it takes longer for the water to boil.
  • When the rice grains are fully cooked, try to stir the porridge as often as possible. The more stirring we do, the creamier our congee will be.
  • If you don’t have salam leaves, you can substitute with 3 curry leaves and 1 bay leaf. The fragrance will not be the same, but it slightly resembles.

Related Recipes

Thank you for checking this Bubur Ayam recipe. I hope you’re now planning to try. When you, please share what you think about it in the comments below.

And please follow me on Facebook, Instagram and/or Pinterest to sneak a peek at what’s cooking in my kitchen. 

Before you go, don’t forget to check out my other Indonesian food recipes for breakfast.

Thank you and all the best.

Yield: 6 portions

Bubur Ayam Recipe: Indonesian Rice Porridge With Chicken

A bowl of Indonesian rice porridge - Bubur Ayam - topped with shredded chicken, cakwe, fried soya beans, with a spoon of soy sauce and, potato crisps, and spring onion slices on the side.

Bubur Ayam is one of the most sought-after street foods and such a comforting food to enjoy for breakfast. The soft rice congee with delicate herb fragrance marries well with flavoursome spiced yellow sauce, soy sauce and chilli sauce.

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes


  • For making the congee from scratch:
  • 1 cup/ 200 gr/ 7.05 oz/ 0.44 lb rice (see the note).
  • 6 cups/ 1.5 ltr/ 50.72 fl.oz/ 3.17 pt water.
  • 2 salam leaves (see the note).
  • ½ -inch ginger.
  • 1 lemongrass.
  • 1 ½ tsp salt (see the note).
  • For making the congee using leftover rice:
  • 1 ½ cup (packed) cooked rice.
  • 5 cups/ 1.25 ltr/ 44 fl.oz/ 2.64 pt water.
  • 2 salam leaves ( see the note).
  • ½ -inch ginger.
  • 1 lemongrass.
  • 1 ½ tsp salt (see the note).
  • For the yellow sauce:
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped.
  • 4 garlic, chopped.
  • ½-inch ginger, peeled and chopped.
  • 5 Kemiri/ candlenuts (see the note).
  • ¼ tsp turmeric powder (see the note).
  • 1 tsp ground coriander.
  • 1 lemongrass.
  • ½ tsp salt, or according to taste.
  • 1 tsp sugar.
  • 1 cup/ 250 ml/ 8.79 fl.oz/ 0.53 pt water.
  • For the garnish:
  • 300 gr/ 10.58 oz/ 0.66 lb boneless chicken.
  • ½ -inch ginger.
  • ½ tsp peppercorns.
  • ½ tsp salt.
  • ½ cup/ 100 gr/ 3.53 oz/ 0.22 lb soya beans.
  • Cooking oil.
  • 3 pieces of Cakwe.
  • 2 spring onions/ scallions.
  • Prawn crackers or potato crisps (see the note).
  • Spices and condiment:
  • Ground pepper.
  • Dried red chilli flakes (optional).
  • Light soy sauce.
  • Sweet soy sauce (optional).
  • Chilli sauce/ sambal (optional).
  • Fried onions (optional).


For the congee:

  1. Place the rice/ cooked rice in a large pan with salam leaves, ginger, lemongrass, and water. Turn the heat on and boil the rice at medium-high heat.
  2. Once the water boils, add in the salt. Cook further and stir the rice every now and again. 
  3. Turn the heat down when the rice is bubbling hot and continue simmering the rice porridge until you get a thick porridge. When the grains are fully cooked, keep stirring the congee until you get a nice creamy porridge. Set aside.

For the yellow sauce:

  1. Using a pestle and mortar, pound the onions, garlic, ginger and candlenuts until you get a smooth paste. You can also use a food processor to make this paste.
  2. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a saucepan, then add in onion mixture, turmeric powder, ground coriander, salt and sugar. Fry further until the mixture releases the aroma, then add the water in.
  3. Cook the sauce until it is bubbling. Check the taste, and set aside.

For the garnish:

  1. Cut the chicken into 1-inch cubes and boil them with ginger, peppercorns and salt until the poultry is fully cooked. Drain the chicken and deep fry until it looks lightly golden. Shred the fried chicken into slivers and set aside.
  2. Soak the soya beans for half an hour or so. Drain the water and deep fry the beans until they are lightly golden and crispy. Set aside.
  3. Slice the Cakwe and set aside.
  4. Slice the spring onions and set them aside.

Assemble the Bubur Ayam:

  1. Ladle out some rice porridge into a bowl. 
  2. Put some light soy sauce and yellow sauce over the congee.
  3. Sprinkle some spring onions and fried onions (if using).
  4. Scatter some fried soya beans over the porridge.
  5. Add some Cakwe slices and shredded chicken.
  6. Enjoy your bubur ayam with some prawn crackers or Kerupuk, and chilli sauce.


  • You can use any type of rice. I often use Basmati rice as this is the rice that I always have in my pantry. But you can choose long grain rice, short-grain rice or Thai rice.
  • If you don’t have salaam leaves, you can substitute them with 3 curry leaves and 2 bay leaves. I find the mix of these two leaves gives a similar fragrance. Though not quite the same as salam leaf.
  • Add the salt according to your taste. I suggest you put less first and try adding if you need more. 
  • Kemiri can be substituted with Macadamia nuts. They give richness to the flavour. If you don’t have any of them either, you can omit them altogether.
  • You can use fresh turmeric. For this recipe, you will only need about 1/3 -inch of fresh turmeric root. If you use the fresh one, pound it together with the onion mixture. 
  • Traditionally Indonesians enjoy Bubur Ayam with Kerupuk (prawn crackers). But I often replace them with potato crisps, and they work fine, if not better. So feel free to try or have it with any crackers items that you like. 

Nutrition Information



Serving Size


Amount Per Serving Calories 665Total Fat 33gSaturated Fat 7gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 23gCholesterol 64mgSodium 2420mgCarbohydrates 63gFiber 5gSugar 9gProtein 32g

The nutrition calculation you find here is just a guide provided by online nutrition calculator. You should not use to substitute advice from nutritionists or health practitioners.

Did you try the recipe?

Share how you like the recipe in the comments below and show a picture of your creation

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.