How to Make Oyakodon (Chicken and Egg Rice Bowl) at Home
Oyakodon is a donburi or Japanese rice bowl dish consisting of chicken cooked in a soy sauce-based sauce with onions and eggs served over warm rice.
Since one bowl of oyakodon contains meat, vegetables, egg, and rice, it can be considered a full nutritious meal. It is also easy to prepare at home and can be made with a few simple ingredients. That’s why oyakodon is popular and frequently cooked in Japanese households.
Let’s learn about the origins of oyakodon’s name. In Japanese, “oyako” means “parent and child” because it is made of chicken = parent and egg = child. Also, “don" comes from the word "donburi," which is a large, deep bowl.
In Japan, there are many donburi dishes in which warm rice is placed at the bottom of the bowl, and various ingredients are added on top. These kinds of dishes are called donburi. In addition to oyakodon, there is also katsudon, with pork cutlet (tonkatsu), gyudon, with beef (gyu), and kaisendon, with kaisen (sashimi).
Oyakodon is said to have originated in a long-established chicken restaurant during the Meiji Era (1868-1912). The idea of oyakodon was inspired by a customer who ate their leftover chicken by flavoring it with soy sauce, adding eggs, and placing it over rice. The dish was so delicious that it spread nationwide and became a favorite for children and adults.
Today, outside of the home, oyakodon can be found at udon or soba noodle restaurants and in the bento corner of supermarkets and convenience stores. Since raw or soft-boiled eggs are preferred in Japan, a tender egg is key to a delicious oyakodon. The harmony of half-cooked egg, well-seasoned chicken, and white rice together is superb.
Let’s cook this simple and yummy dish together!
Prep time: 15 mins
Cook time: 15 mins
Total time: 30 mins
Total servings: 2
- 200g Chicken Thigh
- 2 Eggs
- 1/2 Onion (medium-sized)
- Mitsuba (Japanese Parsley) for garnish
- 150ml Water
- 2 Tbsp Soy Sauce
- 2 Tbsp Mirin
- 1 Tbsp Sake
- 1 Tbsp Sugar
- 1 tsp Dashi Powder
- 250g Cooked Rice
To make a good-looking oyakodon, the finished ingredients must be placed onto the rice without making a mess. If you scoop the ingredients out of the pan with a ladle, they will lose their shape. This special oyakodon pan has a handle pointing upward and a shallow bottom, so you can shake and slide the ingredients to the side and place them onto the rice without them collapsing.
1) Gathering the Ingredients
Gather all of the ingredients together.
2) Cutting the Chicken
Cut the chicken thigh into bite-sized pieces. Remove unnecessary fat and skin if you wish.
3) Slicing the Vegetables
Peel and slice the onion. Cut the mitsuba into 3cm intervals.
4) Beating the Eggs
Beat the eggs.
Note: Do not mix it too much, you want there to be a marbling effect between the egg white and yolk. The white and the yolk become more pronounced when cooked, not only making the dish more visually appealing but also adding dynamic flavor.
5) Cooking the Chicken and Onions
Put all of the seasonings and water in a pan and heat it over medium heat. When it boils, add the chicken and the onion and cook them until they are tender.
6) Adding the Eggs and Serving
When the chicken and the onion are cooked, add the beaten egg.
After 1 minute, spread the cut mitsuba over the oyako don and turn off the heat. Cover the oyakodon mixture for another minute.
Transfer the chicken and egg mixture over a bowl of warm cooked rice and it’s done!
Notes: Do not lower the heat when adding the egg. If the heat is too weak, the beaten egg and the seasonings will combine as a liquid then the egg won’t shape well.
If you spread the ingredients so that you can't see the rice, it will look more delicious.