Chicken Yassa (yassa au poulet)

Senegalise Gambian chicken yassa recipe_9jafoodie

Chicken Yassa

This is a great chicken recipe from the heart of Senegal. It is tangy and delicious and definitely a great alternative to the everyday chicken recipe. If you will like to make a bigger batch than we have below, simply double or triple the ingredients.


  • 6 chicken pieces
  • 4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (Use more if desired)
  • 1 Tablespoon Dijon Mustard
  • 2 Tablespoons Vinegar
  • 3 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 2 large onions (Thinly sliced) (White onion is preferred)
  • 2-3 Bay leaves
  • Salt – To taste
  • 2 cubes Maggi
  • 2 fresh Chilli (Chopped)
  • 4 Tablespoons Oil (Divided)

Chicken Yassa Recipe 1


  • Combine all listed ingredients except oil. Marinate overnight or longer

Chicken Yassa recipe 2

  • Set a large skillet on high heat and add in half of the oil. Remove the chicken from the marinade and sear on all sides until browned

Chicken Yassa recipe 3

  • Separate the onion and marinade
  • Set a large pot on high heat, add in the left over oil. Add the onions and cook until onion is translucent

Chicken Yassa Recipe 4

  • Add the reserved marinade, 1 cup water and chicken pieces into the onions. Cover and simmer on low-medium heat until chicken is cooked through .


  • Some of the onion pieces will melt to thicken the gravy
  • You may add olives, carrot and other vegetables into the chicken
  • I made use of Red onion in this recipe but white onion is preferred
  • It does not matter if your sauce turns out on the lighter or darker side. Many factors including “char” on chicken, color of onions used and color of dijon mustard will affect the color of the cooked yassa.

Serve chicken Yassa on plain white rice

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By |July 30th, 2014|16 Comments


  1. Jen October 16, 2017 at 9:31 pm - Reply

    Really thrilled to try it out. How many teaspoons or tablespoons of crushed chili did you use in the recipe please? You mentioned 2 fresh chili chopped but was wondering what’s the conversion for chili flakes as you used in the picture please? Thanks!!

  2. Daisy August 30, 2015 at 11:09 am - Reply

    Looks yummy! How do you cut the onions so thin? What knife do you use? Thanks

    • 9jafoodie
      9jafoodie September 2, 2015 at 8:39 pm - Reply

      I use kicthenaid. any sharp knife will do though

  3. Kay July 16, 2015 at 8:11 am - Reply

    Beautiful Senegalese recipe!!

  4. Sally Tinnet Gwadah April 2, 2015 at 5:42 am - Reply


  5. Osina August 22, 2014 at 7:35 pm - Reply

    i think it will be nice to eat it with cooked yam…

  6. Renoya August 4, 2014 at 3:43 am - Reply

    I made it. It’s nice

  7. Portable August 1, 2014 at 7:49 am - Reply

    i love this ….

  8. cosmicyoruba July 31, 2014 at 7:26 am - Reply

    I absolutely love chicken yassa! It, maafe and thieboudiene form my Senegalese food trinity.

    When I make chicken yassa I add more lemons though, I prefer it even more sour and for the finished product to be lighter in colour and texture so I’d use 4 lemons instead of 4 spoons of lemon juice.

  9. immaculatebites July 30, 2014 at 6:35 pm - Reply

    I love chicken yassa , the flavors of garlic , onions, and lemon gets me all the time. Great recipe.

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