Poulet Yassa

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Average: 3.1 (2 votes)
Serves 4-6

Chicken Yassa or Poulet Yassa is a traditional Senegalese 'grilled chicken cooked in onion' dish, and is one of the most popular West African recipes that can be found in Senegalese restaurants the world over. You may feel daunted by the amount of onions used, but they totally do make the dish.

chicken, skin removed and cut up into 8 pieces
(approx 1.5 kg)
large onions, cut in halves and then thinly sliced
(preferably white/yellow onions)
1/2 cup
lemon juice, freshly squeezed
1/4 cup plus 1 tbsp
1/4 cup
cider vinegar
bay leaves
2 tbsp
(I use regular yellow mustard although Dijon is preferable if you can get a halal version)
garlic cloves, minced to a paste
2 tsp
freshly cracked black pepper
1 tsp
red chilli powder or cayenne pepper
fresh red chilli or scotch bonnet pepper, finely chopped
(optional, for added heat)
2 tsp
salt or to taste
1 cup
chicken/vegetable stock or water
2-4 tbsp
fresh coriander, chopped

In a large bowl, add the chicken pieces, onion slices, bay leaf and scotch bonnet. Mix together the quarter cup of oil, vinegar, lemon juice, mustard, garlic, pepper, cayenne and salt, then pour this marinade over the chicken and onions. Combine well, cover and refrigerate for a few hours, preferably overnight. 

When ready to cook, remove the bowl from the fridge half an hour before you begin. Separate the chicken pieces out of the rest of the marinade.

Heat the 1 tbsp of oil in a pan and then add the chicken pieces, brown them on both sides for just a few minutes per side, make sure not to crowd the pan. You can do this in batches. Remove on to a plate and set aside. In the same pan, add the onion slices (leaving the liquids in the bowl to be used later) and fry until they are caramelised. Then add the browned chicken pieces back in along with the reserved marinade liquid and the chicken stock or water. Turn the heat down and simmer for about 15-20 minutes or until the liquid is almost all gone and the chicken is tender and cooked through. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Sprinkle in the chopped parsley or coriander and serve over steamed rice or mashed potatoes.





hmmmm yasa poulet is very delicious and easy to prepare. its best when the chicken is charcoal grilled instead of frying. it gives it this wonderful taste and aroma.

What is cider vinegar? Is it apple cider vinegar or the normal vinegar? If it's apple cider vinegar then what's the substitute for it to use instead?

Fauzia's Kitchen Fun's picture

Yes, apple cider. If you do not have it you can use regular vinegar.

Hello good evening please am I going to put 1/4cup of vinegar plus 1tbsp ? I tried the yeast donuts they are really nice but mine was a little bit oily what did I do wrong ?please

Fauzia's Kitchen Fun's picture

Hi, it is 1/4 cup plus 1 tbsp of OIL not vinegar. The quarter cup goes in the marinade and the 1 tbsp is used later.