AfricanChicken & PoultryHealthyMain Dish

Poulet Yassa (Senegalese Chicken)

When I first heard about this chicken yassa recipe, I was really skeptical about the amount of onion called for in the marinade and sauce. I mean, seriously… four onions? Good grief!

I’m glad I took a leap of faith and tried it out, because this chicken is delicious and the onions totally make the dish.

Yassa Poulet Recipe, also called Senegalese Chicken Recipe

You’ll want to plan a head when you make this, because the yassa chicken needs to marinate in the onion-lemon-vinegar mixture at least 8 hours, or overnight. The lemon juice and vinegar totally take the bite out of the onions, then it all cooks down into a completely delectable sauce that is to-die-for.

Yassa Senegal Recipe, also called Senegalese Chicken Recipe

As if by magic, some of the onions just melt right into the yassa sauce, while other pieces remain intact to give the dish a bit of texture. It’s so, so good.

Poulet Yassa Recette, also called Senegalese Chicken Recipe

I served mine with fluffy Basmati rice, but a side of sauteed leafy greens (spinach, kale, etc.) would be lovely.

I wanted to make sweet potatoes to go with this poulet yassa recipe, but it turns out that the husband hates sweet potatoes. He also let me know that he’s told me that several times, yet I keep making them…. so evidently I just haven’t been listening to him. Whoops.

Poulet Yassa Senegal Recipe, also called Senegalese Chicken Recipe

The best way to cut your chicken breasts into two thin pieces is to place your hand on the top of the breast, then use your other hand to cut through the breast while keeping the blade parallel to your work surface. Alternatively, you could pound out the chicken breast into one large flat piece, then cut that in half down the middle.

Either way, the point is to get the chicken breasts to be in two thin pieces, rather than one large piece. It will cook faster and more evenly this way.

Poulet Yassa (Senegalese Chicken)

Here’s the Poulet Yassa Recipe!

Poulet Yassa (Senegalese Chicken)

Poulet Yassa Recipe (Senegalese Chicken Recipe)

A popular, Senegalese dish, this tender chicken is marinated in an onion-lemon-vinegar mixture that then cooks down into a completely delectable sauce that is amazing.
4.4 from 90 votes
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Course: Main Dish
Cuisine: African
Prep Time: 8 hrs
Cook Time: 1 hr
Total Time: 9 hrs
Servings: 6
Calories: 351kcal
Author: The Wanderlust Kitchen, adapted from The Africa Cookbook
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Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup peanut oil - or vegetable oil
  • 3 boneless - skinless chicken breasts, cut in half horizontally to make two thin fillets
  • 4 large yellow onions - roughly chopped
  • 8 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 8 Tbsp. cider vinegar
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 4 cloves garlic - minced
  • 2 Tbsp. Dijon or stone-ground mustard
  • 1 jalapeno pepper - seeded and finely chopped (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. black pepper
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 Tbsp. peanut or vegetable oil

Instructions

  • Combine all of the ingredients except for the last 2 Tbsp. of oil in a large zip-close bag and allow chicken to marinate in the refrigerator 8 hours, or overnight. When ready to cook, remove the chicken from the bag, but save the marinade.
  • Heat a large saute pan over medium-high heat and add 2 Tbsp. peanut or vegetable oil once hot. Sauté chicken for two minutes on each side. Remove, and set aside on a plate.
  • Use a slotted spoon to scoop the onions out of the marinade bag, add to the hot pan and cook for 5 minutes. Add the remaining marinade and bring to a boil. Cook at a boil for ten minutes.
  • Continue to cook the marinade until it becomes a sauce (about 20 minutes). Reduce heat to medium, then return the chicken and drippings to the sauce, cover and simmer until chicken is cooked through (about another 10-15 minutes). Serve with rice.
Nutrition Facts
Poulet Yassa Recipe (Senegalese Chicken Recipe)
Serving Size
 
1 serving
Amount per Serving
Calories
351
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
24
g
37
%
Saturated Fat
 
4
g
25
%
Polyunsaturated Fat
 
19
g
Cholesterol
 
51
mg
17
%
Sodium
 
588
mg
26
%
Carbohydrates
 
12
g
4
%
Fiber
 
2
g
8
%
Sugar
 
5
g
6
%
Protein
 
21
g
42
%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Did you make this recipe?Take a picture and tag @thewanderlustkitchen on Instagram or tag #thewanderlustkitchen! We can't wait to see your version!

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About the Author

Anetta

Hi, I'm Anetta! Welcome to The Wanderlust Kitchen, where I share recipes and travel stories from all around the world. Here you'll find a world of recipes you can have confidence in. These recipes celebrate authentic food heritage as well as modern techniques and ingredients. I believe that food brings us together as much as it sets us apart. Be brave, try something new!

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Comments:

  1. I am looking forward to trying this recipe this weekend. Would it be a sin if I cut up chicken thighs in chunks instead? Also, I am thinking of adding chick peas as a starch as I try and stay away from rice as much as possible. Thanks again and looking forward to this.

  2. This is A. MAZ. ING. I used Jalapeno olive oil so it was a bit hotter which I really liked. Thank you for this recipe !

  3. Anetta,

    I tried this recipe tonight. It came out way too tart. I think the 8 tbsp of cider vinegar might be a tad too much.

    Cheers,
    Arnab

    1. Hi Arnab – I haven’t had that problem with this recipe, perhaps your vinegar is stronger than mine. What brand are you using? I’m using Braggs.

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