Mom’s Soy Sauce Chicken With Pineapple and Bok Choy

October 29, 2020 Updated: October 29, 2020

Mom’s Soy Sauce Chicken With Pineapple and Bok Choy

A reddish-stained, soy sauce-marinated chicken is one that’s infused with loads of salty, fermented umami—and when you roast it with the skin on, you get even more umami from the crispy skin. These flavor bombs were invented by my mom and eight zillion other people who also know that soy sauce and chicken just go together. It’s not really fair to give her full credit, but I will anyway.

Here, instead of grilling, we’re throwing them on a sheet pan to crisp alongside some bok choy, which, in my mom’s kitchen, is commonly braised. In Taiwan, where my mom is from, pineapples are plentiful, and they’re used in everything from chicken soups to fermented sauces. One key ingredient here is dark soy sauce, a more intense, concentrated type of soy sauce that will stain chicken a deeper shade of maroon when marinated overnight. You can find it in Asian groceries—or heap on some more light soy sauce if you can’t.

Scoop this dish over a bowl of sticky rice, ham fried rice, or sesame noodles.

Serves 4

For the Marinade

  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon dark soy sauce (or an additional 2 tablespoons soy sauce)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon white pepper
  • 2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
  • 4 scallions, chopped
  • 1 (2-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and thinly sliced

To Roast

  • 2 pounds bone-in, skin-on chicken pieces
  • 3 small heads baby bok choy, halved
  • 2 tablespoons neutral oil, such as grapeseed
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups fresh pineapple chunks
  • 2 scallions, chopped
  • Crispy chile oil (optional)

Make the marinade: Combine the soy sauce, dark soy sauce, salt, white pepper, sesame oil, scallions, and ginger in an airtight container or zip-top bag. Add the chicken to the marinade, cover the container or seal the bag, and marinate in the refrigerator for 12 to 24 hours.

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

Combine the baby bok choy, 1 tablespoon of the neutral oil, and the salt on a sheet pan and toss to coat. Arrange the bok choy cut-side down. Toss the pineapple chunks with the remaining 1 tablespoon neutral oil and scatter the pineapple around the pan.

Remove the chicken pieces from the marinade, shaking off any excess, and arrange them on the sheet pan nestled among the bok choy and pineapple. Roast for 25 to 30 minutes, then check on the bok choy; flip them or remove them from the sheet pan if they’re sufficiently crisped. Rotate the pan and roast for another 10 minutes, until a kitchen thermometer inserted into the thickest part of a piece registers 160 degrees F. Sprinkle with the scallions and crispy chile oil (if using) and serve.

Recipe courtesy of “Sheet Pan Chicken: 50 Simple and Satisfying Ways to Cook Dinner.” Copyright 2020 by Cathy Erway. Photography by Lizzie Munro. Published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House.

Sheet Pan Chicken cover
“Sheet Pan Chicken: 50 Simple and Satisfying Ways to Cook Dinner” by Cathy Erway (Ten Speed Press, $18.99).