Sesame Oil Chicken During Confinement: Recipe & Benefits

Time to read 4 min

Hey there, fellow mamas! We get the struggle of finding the perfect post-baby meal, especially when you're balancing between ingredients and nutrients for your postpartum recovery. But here’s some good news: sesame oil chicken might just be the answer! Highly recommended to eat during the confinement period, it is a flavorful, aromatic delight with tender chicken bathed in ginger and sesame oil. Sounds tempting? Let's dive into the recipe together and uncover the secrets to cooking this hearty, delicious meal!

What Is Confinement Food?

Confinement food consists of specially prepared soups and dishes served during the confinement period — a practice commonly found across Asia, dedicated to supporting mothers through their postnatal recovery journey. These dishes aren't just about filling the stomach; they're made to replenish the body with vital nutrients lost during childbirth. Whether steamed, braised, stewed, or stir-fried, these cooking methods prioritise health and nutrition, ensuring that every meal contributes to the mother's recovery journey.

What Is The Purpose Of Confinement Food?

Amidst the whirlwind of emotions and adjustments that follow childbirth, confinement food serves as a vital source of nourishment for mothers throughout their postpartum recovery journey.

Women experience significant physical changes and blood loss after giving birth. This emphasises the need for a nutrient-rich diet to facilitate their recovery. While regular meals may suffice under ordinary circumstances, the postpartum period demands an extra boost of nourishment. This is where confinement food comes in, offering a tailored menu that supports quick recovery while encouraging breast milk production. This aspect can be incredibly important for mothers who exclusively breastfeed their babies in the initial months, as the nutrients consumed are passed to the child through breast milk.

By prioritising nutrient-dense ingredients and employing mindful cooking techniques through consuming confinement food, you pave the way for recovery and maternal well-being.

Confinement food plated and served on a dining table

What Are The Benefits Of Confinement Food?

Confinement food offers plenty of benefits thanks to its abundance of fresh, healthy, and well-balanced ingredients.

From the traditional Chinese medicinal standpoint, confinement food is believed for its ability to replenish one’s “qi”, which refers to one’s life force or vital energy. It also facilitates smoother blood flow, dissolves blood clots, and enhances breast milk production.

Meanwhile, from a modern medical perspective, the diverse ingredients found in confinement meals provide a wealth of essential nutrients. For instance, the meat and poultry commonly featured in classic confinement dishes are rich sources of protein, aiding in wound healing and supporting the immune system.

What Is Sesame Oil Chicken?

Sesame oil chicken stands as a timeless favourite within the realm of confinement food. Many women enjoy the dish during the postpartum period as it features a tender, braised chicken infused with the aromatic flavours of sesame oil and ginger.

What Are The Benefits Of Sesame Oil Chicken?

According to traditional Chinese medicine practice, sesame oil chicken is good for postpartum recovery. Sesame Oil Chicken is traditionally believed to help postpartum mothers replenish blood and maintain body warmth. Its star ingredient, sesame oil, commonly found in confinement dishes - is believed to not only dispel bodily “wind” but also enhance blood circulation and alleviate discomforts such as inflammation and constipation .

Packed with essential minerals like calcium, phosphorus, and vitamin E, sesame oil chicken helps to promote stronger bones and joints, aiding in the recovery of a mother’s overall well-being.

How To Cook Sesame Oil Chicken?

Here’s what you would need to whip up a good sesame oil chicken, along with a quick and simple recipe to guide you through it. Do ensure that you use non-toxic cookware, free from harmful substances such as PFAs. After all, you are what you eat!


  • 2 tbsp of sesame oil

  • 2-3 inches of ginger strips

  • 350g of chicken pieces

  • 2 tbsp of soy sauce

  • Water

  • Salt and ground white pepper to taste

  • Coriander and goji berries to plate

  • (Optional) 1 tbsp of Chinese rice wine

Sesame Oil Chicken ingredient list


1. Add a layer of sesame oil to the pan and heat it over high heat. To make things easier, we've chosen the multifunctional All-In-One Pan from Pretty Major for this recipe. We love it for its nonstick ceramic coating, making it easy to clean. It’s also Swiss-certified and non-toxic with 8-in-1 uses - perfect for every confinement dish.

Sesame oil poured into a pan

2. Once the oil is hot, add the ginger strips and stir-fry until they turn light brown or release their aromatic fragrance.

A plate of shredded ginger poured into a pan filled with a layer of sesame oil

3. Add the chicken to the pan and stir-fry for about 10-15 seconds before adding the soy sauce and ground white pepper.

Stir frying chicken using a wooden spatula

4. Add water to the pan. Ensure that the water covers up to half of the chicken. Give everything a few quick stirs to combine the ingredients.

Pouring water into a pan filled with stir-fried chicken

5. Cover the pan with a lid and reduce the heat to low.

Placing a lid over a pan

6. Allow the chicken to cook for approximately 10 minutes, or until the sauce thickens and the meat becomes tender.

Sesame oil chicken in a pan

7. Finally, plate the sesame oil chicken and it’s ready to be served.

 Plating braised sesame oil chicken

Enhance Your Cooking Experience!

Like any recipe, Sesame Oil Chicken offers plenty of room for personalization to suit your unique taste buds!

Here are some tips and tricks to elevate your sesame oil chicken dish.

  1. Get creative by adding ingredients like carrots or shiitake mushrooms for an extra burst of flavour.

  2. If you're looking to enhance the taste even further, consider adding a splash of cooking wine. Not only does it help eliminate any lingering gamey taste in the chicken, but it also brings out its rich flavours.

  3. For a hassle-free cooking experience and easy cleanup, consider using nonstick cookware, like the All-In-One Pan from Pretty Major. Its nonstick coating ensures that cooking and cleanup are a breeze, leaving you with more time to savour your delicious meal without worrying about stubborn residue.

Pretty Major Pan displayed in a table setting

Time To Try Out This Sesame Oil Chicken Recipe For Yourself!

With this recipe, making sesame oil chicken is a breeze! There is certainly more to explore in the world of easy confinement recipes. Join us on this journey to discover a plethora of delicious confinement foods, so you can savor postpartum culinary delights without breaking a sweat.

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