Ayam Betutu Balinese Chicken Betutu Recipe: Rich In Spices, The Secret Of Sliced Spice

Balinese Chicken Betutu Recipe: Rich in Spices, The Secret of Sliced Spice

5.0 from 1 vote

Bali’s Chicken Betutu originates from the Balinese language, consisting of two syllables, ‘be’ and ‘tunu’. ‘Be’ means meat, while ‘tunu’ is to burn. Therefore, betutu signifies roasted meat. Betutu dish is typically made with chicken or duck. However, more people tend to use chicken as the main ingredient due to its availability and popularity.

This signature Balinese chicken dish, Betutu, is not only famous in Bali but has spread to various cities across Indonesia. It has even become a favorite among foreign tourists visiting Bali. Its distinctive taste and the aroma of its spices will leave you constantly longing for the delectable flavors of this cuisine.

The Origin of Balinese Chicken Betutu Recipe

Sejarah Ayam Betutu Balinese Chicken Betutu Recipe: Rich In Spices, The Secret Of Sliced Spice
Sejarah ayam betutu balinese chicken betutu recipe: rich in spices, the secret of sliced spice

In the 16th century, during the Majapahit kingdom era, Islam had just entered the region of Java Island. Consequently, a majority of the Majapahit people, who predominantly practiced Hinduism, migrated to Bali. It was from the Majapahit culture that the culinary tradition of Chicken Betutu originated and eventually became extremely famous.

The first person to prepare Chicken Betutu was Ni Wayan Tempeh or Men Tempeh, originating from the Abiansi region in Gianyar city. Men Tempeh started making Chicken Betutu dishes in 1976. Initially, this cuisine was served during religious ceremonies and traditional events, such as otonan (coming of age ceremony), weddings, and odalan (temple anniversaries). Later, alongside her husband, she established a small eatery selling Chicken Betutu.


In the past, the preparation involved stuffing the chicken’s cavity with Bali’s signature spice blend called ‘base genep.’ The chicken was then wrapped in betel leaves and roasted over rice husk fire for 8 to 10 hours. However, with changing times, modern cooking methods like ovens are now used for chicken Betutu preparation.

Chicken Betutu is known for its distinctive spicy taste, rich spices, and intense aroma. It’s typically served with sambal matah, peanuts, and vegetables. Additionally, Betutu chicken is rich in nutrients, containing approximately 60.87% water content, 1.84% ash content, 14.69% fat content, and 21.33% carbohydrate content. If you’re visiting Bali, don’t miss out on this culinary delight!

Balinese Chicken Betutu Recipe

Balinese Chicken Betutu Recipe

Recipe by Hani
5.0 from 1 vote

Experience the iconic flavors of Balinese chicken Betutu —spicy, packed with aromatic spices, and rich in distinctive flavors. Elevate your everyday dining with a touch of creativity using this renowned dish in your daily menu.

Course: MainCuisine: Balinese, IndonesianDifficulty: Medium


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Ingredients (Shop in the Green Link)

  • Main Ingredients
  • 1 free-range chicken

  • 1 tsp lime juice

  • 1 tsp salt

  • ¼ tsp white pepper powder

  • 1 tbsp coconut oil

  • 2 liters water

  • 2 stalks lemongrass, white parts, bruised

  • 2 bay leaves, crushed

  • ½ tsp brown sugar

  • Complementary Ingredients
  • 200 g peanuts with skin, fried until crispy

  • Sufficiently fried shallots

  • Sufficient lime wedges

  • Sufficient cooking oil

  • Sufficient banana leaves

  • Betutu Seasoning
  • 12 curly red chilies

  • 7 red bird’s eye chilies

  • 2 green bird’s eye chilies

  • 12 shallots

  • 8 cloves garlic

  • 2 candlenuts, toasted

  • 4 cm ginger, peeled

  • 5 cm galangal, peeled

  • 2 cm turmeric, peeled and grilled

  • 2 cm lesser galangal, peeled

  • 2 lemongrass stalks, thinly sliced

  • 1 tsp shrimp paste, toasted

  • 2 kaffir lime leaves, remove the stems, finely chopped

  • 1 ½ tsp salt

  • ½ tsp black pepper powder

  • Wangen Spice Blend
  • ½ tsp coriander powder

  • ¼ tsp cumin powder

  • ¼ tsp nutmeg powder

  • 1/8 tsp clove powder

  • Plecing Kangkung
  • Sufficient water spinach

  • Fried peanuts with skin

  • 1 tbsp lime juice

  • Ground Spices
  • 1 fresh tomato (less than 200g)

  • 4 curly red chilies

  • 10 red bird’s eye chilies

  • 1.5 tsp shrimp paste, toasted

  • 1 tsp salt

  • ½ tsp white pepper powder

  • ½ tbsp brown sugar

  • Sambal Matah
  • 15 shallots, thinly sliced round

  • 7 red bird’s eye chilies, thinly sliced diagonally

  • 3 lemongrass stalks, white parts, bruised and thinly sliced

  • 3 kaffir lime leaves, remove the stems, thinly sliced

  • 1 tsp shrimp paste, toasted, mashed

  • 1 tsp salt

  • 5 tbsp coconut oil

  • 3 tbsp lime juice

  • Sambal Mbe
  • 3 tbsp cooking oil

  • 6 shallots, sliced

  • 3 garlic cloves, sliced

  • 12 red bird’s eye chilies, sliced

  • 1 tsp shrimp paste, toasted, mashed

  • ¼ tsp granulated sugar

  • ½ tsp salt

  • 1 lime


  • Betutu Chicken
  • Roast all the wangen spice blend ingredients. Combine all the spices evenly, set aside 3/4 tsp for later use. Coarsely chop, then roughly pound all the betutu seasoning ingredients, ensuring not to make it too fine. Cut and set aside the chicken head and feet. Then, halve the free-range chicken into 2 parts. Coat the chicken with lime juice, then sprinkle with salt and white pepper powder. Let it sit for 5 minutes.
  • Evenly mix the betutu seasoning with coconut oil. Then coat the free-range chicken with the betutu seasoning mixture until fully covered. Sprinkle 3/4 tsp of the combined wangen spice blend powder on all sides of the chicken.
  • Place the chicken in a pot with 2 stalks of lemongrass, 2 bay leaves, and water enough to submerge the free-range chicken. Cook on high heat until boiling, then reduce the heat. Add brown sugar, stir well. Cook until the chicken is done, flipping it a few times, and wait until the sauce reduces.
  • Drain the chicken, set aside the sauce and spices for later serving.
  • Plecing Kangkung
  • Boil water spinach with enough water until cooked.
  • Roughly blend or crush all the ground spices, then sauté until fragrant. Add lime juice, mix well. Pour the seasoning over the arranged water spinach on a plate and sprinkle with fried peanuts.
  • Sambal Matah
  • Thoroughly mix shallots, bird’s eye chilies, lemongrass, and kaffir lime leaves in a bowl. Then add shrimp paste, mix well. Add salt, mix well. Heat coconut oil, then pour the mixed ingredients into the hot oil. Stir the sambal. Remove from heat, add lime juice. Mix well.
  • Sambal Mbe
  • Sauté shallots and garlic until fragrant, add red bird’s eye chilies. Stir. Cook until onions are cooked but not burnt or dried out. Add shrimp paste, sugar, and salt. Mix well. Remove from heat, add lime juice. Mix well.
  • Finishing
  • Serve on banana leaves, pour adequate sauce and coarse spices, then place the chicken, sprinkle with fried peanuts and fried shallots. Add lime wedges.
  • Serve betutu chicken with plecing kangkung, sambal matah, and sambal mbe.

Recipe Video