Thai Barbecue Chicken Recipe (Gai Yang)

In this delicious recipe, chicken is marinated in a melody of Thai spices and then barbecued. This style of cooking chicken originated in the North East of Thailand, but now is served throughout the country as a favorite open market or roadside meal.

At home you can barbeque the the marinated chicken or bake it in the oven. Serve with sticky rice in bamboo baskets and spicy green papaya salad and ready-made sweet chili sauce. Enjoy eating this dish with your hands! See our sticky rice page for more details.

This copyrighted recipe is used with permission from Crying Tiger: Thai Recipes from the Heart, by Supatra Johnson; you may purchase this cookbook, along with many other authentic Thai food cookbooks in our online market (see link below).

Supatra's Thai Chicken (Gai Yang) Ingredients

  • 2 lb chicken fryer (breast, drumstick, thigh and wing)
  • 1/3 cup Thai oyster sauce
  • 6 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tbsp Thai soy sauce (Healthy Boy brand is recommended)
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 cup minced lemon grass (optional)


Thoroughly wash the chicken and pat dry with a paper towel. Combine oyster sauce, garlic, black pepper, soy sauce, sugar, salt, and lemon grass (optional) in a bowl. Mix ingredients together thoroughly and apply as a marinade to the chicken. Refrigerate for at least 15-20 minutes (or overnight).

Grill over charcoal at medium-high heat for 30-40 minutes, turning occasionally to prevent burning. (If charcoal fire is not available, roast in 375-degree oven for 30-40 minutes.)

Remove from grill and serve with chili sauce for chicken or Gai Hor Bai-toey Sauce, along with Green Papaya Salad and sticky rice. All of these recipes are available in the Crying Tiger cookbook.

Serves 4.

Recipe copyright © 2004, all rights reserved. Used with the kind permission of Supatra.

Crying Tiger: Thai Recipes from the Heart

Crying Tiger: Thai Recipes from the Heart

Features 130 easy Thai recipes, over 200 b&w photos, along with a guide to ingredients and equipment used in Thai cooking, and a special section on Thai cooking for kids!

Visit our Asian grocery store - Temple of Thai