Chicken Inasal Burger

I had been craving for this amazing Filipino grilled chicken for a long time and sad to say, I wasn't satisfied during my visit to the Philippines. I guess I have to do it myself. Actually I just wanna make some chicken inasal to end my cravings, probably over some simple salad. Then this idea of using all the Filipino elements and make it into a burger just exploded in my mind.

I tried making my own pandesal but somehow or rather they cracked and went outta shape during final baking process. I am always skeptical about making bread in my kitchen. Probably due to lots of factors which I can think of; temperature of the oven, humidity in my kitchen, dough rising time, etc etc. Anyway, having come this far, I decided that the show must go on. I did not upload any pandesal recipe as I have yet make it work. You can use regular burger buns or ready made pandesal, or you might even have your own homemade pandesal recipe (pls let know if you do).

In my humble and honest opinion, this burger does not require any sauce. I feel that the sauce overpowered everything else. I ran outta of sriracha, so I used LaoGanMa's spicy chili crisp and mayo (my daughter's suggestion). What is your opinion on this? Sauce or no? Pls let me know. An important key note, annatto oil is what makes this chicken inasal so unique. If you can't get your hands on annatto oil, try to get annatto powder (it is annatto seeds ground into powder form). The directions are below. Without much delay, let's get started with the recipe.


(Make 4 Burgers)

  • Chicken:

  • Chicken Breast Skinless Boneless, 4

  • Lemongrass White Part Only Finely Minced, 3 Stalks

  • Sea Salt, Pinch

  • White Pepper, Pinch

  • Ginger Powder, 1/2 TSP

  • Garlic Powder, 1/2 TSP

  • Dark Muscovado Sugar, 1/8 Cup

  • Coconut Vinegar, 1/2 Cup

  • Homemade Limoncello, 1/2 Cup

  • Fresh Lime Juice, 1 Lime

  • Fresh Lime Zest, 1 Lime

  • Sinamak:

  • White Distilled Vinegar, 1/4 Cup

  • Granulated Sugar, 1/8 Cup

  • Sea Salt, Pinch

  • White Peppercorns, A Small Handful

  • Red Chili Deseeded, 1 Adjust To Preference

  • Green Chili Deseeded, 1 Adjust To Preference

  • Carrot Shredded, A Handful

  • Red Onion Thinly Sliced, 1

  • Green Onion Coarsely Sliced, A Handful

  • Basting Sauce:

  • Canola Oil, 1.5 TBSP + More For Grilling

  • Annatto Powder, A Small Pinch

  • Unsalted Butter Melted, 1/4 Cup

  • Sea Salt, Pich

  • Fresh Lime Juice, 1/2 Lime

  • Fresh Lime Zest, 1/2 Lime

  • Burger:

  • Pandesal, 4

  • LaoGanMa's Spicy Chili Crisp, 1/8 Cup (Optional)

  • Kewpie Mayo, 1/4 Cup (Optional)


  • Griddle

  • Meat Mallet

  • Sauce Pot


  1. Prepare the chicken.

  2. Place chicken breast on a working surface.

  3. Using a sharp knife and run the breast lengthwise to butterfly and divide into halves.

  4. Line the 8 pieces of chicken breast apart from one another.

  5. Cover with cling film.

  6. Using a meat mallet and gently pound until even thickness throughout.

  7. *If you don't have a meat mallet, a rolling pin will do just fine.*

  8. In a bowl, add in the rest of ingredients.

  9. Mix to combine well.

  10. Add in the chicken, making sure the chicken is fully submerged.

  11. Cover with cling film and marinade in the fridge for 1 to 4 hrs.

  12. Prepare the sinamak.

  13. In a sauce pot over medium hear, add vinegar, sugar and salt.

  14. Swirl the pot until the sugar has fully dissolved.

  15. Transfer into a bowl.

  16. Add in the rest of the ingredients.

  17. Stir to combine well.

  18. Make sure everything is fully submerged in the vinegar mixture.

  19. Set aside in the fridge until ready to use.

  20. Prepare basting sauce.

  21. In a small bowl, add in oil and annatto powder.

  22. Stir to combine well.

  23. You can see that the oil turn into a bright orangey red color.

  24. *If you have annatto oil, skip the above steps and use the same amount as the canola oil.*

  25. Add in the rest of the ingredients.

  26. Stir to combine well.

  27. Set aside until ready to use.

  28. Grill the chicken.

  29. In a griddle over medium high heat, add in oil.

  30. Once the oil is heated up, lay in the chicken away from you.

  31. *If you hear the sizzle, the oil and griddle are heated properly. This is called the maillard reaction.*

  32. Immediately brush the chicken with the basting sauce generously with a pastry brush.

  33. Cook until bottom is lightly browned and charred.

  34. Flip and brush the chicken with the basting sauce generously.

  35. Cook until bottom is lightly browned and charred.

  36. Remove from heat and transfer onto a plate.

  37. Repeat the process for the remaining chicken.

  38. Brush any leftover basting sauce onto the chicken.

  39. Discard the marinade.

  40. Assemble the burger.

  41. Slice the pandesal bread into halves lengthwise.

  42. Grill the pandesal in the same griddle over medium heat until light charred.

  43. *This is optional and it is to your preference, as IMHO, this burger doesn't require any sauce.*

  44. In a small bowl, combine chili crisp and mayo.

  45. The ratio is 1 : 2. Taste and adjust the ratio to preference.

  46. Spread the sauce onto the grilled sides of the pandesal.

  47. Place the bottom bread onto a working surface.

  48. Place 2 chicken on top.

  49. Top with the pickled carrot, onion and green onion.

  50. Lastly cover with the top bread.

  51. Repeat the steps for the remaining burgers.

  52. Serve immediately.

#pandesal #chickeninasal #anythinginbetween #sinamak #filipino

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