Ayam Betutu / Chicken with Balinese Recipe

Ayam Betutu is a well-known dish in Indonesia, particularly Bali. You will be surprised by how easy it is to make this dish. It has a unique flavor thanks to the combination of spices added during the cooking process. Instead of tin foil, it takes a traditional approach, which is using banana leaves. The whole chicken is wrapped in banana leaves before it is steamed. Let the spices marinate the chicken. It is a great meal for lunch or dinner.

Ayam Betutu Chicken with Balinese Recipe

Interestingly enough, it is also used in local ceremonies. Yes, betutu is regarded as a special treat in this province. The reason why betutu uses banana leaves instead of aluminum foil is because it holds the moisture and enriches the taste. Chicken is not the only option. You can replace with a duck. The spices are what makes the dish special. Without them, it will taste like a typical chicken dish. The chicken should be steamed in the pot for a while. It will then be transferred into an oven. The high temperature will make the inside tender. It can also be served with cassava leaves.

Ayam betutu ingredients:

  • 1 whole chicken
  • 4 bay leaves
  • Banana leaves to wrap the chicken
  • 100g cassava leaves


  • 4 shallots
  • 6 cloves garlic
  • 4 stalks of lemongrass, chopped
  • 2 red chillies
  • 2 candlenuts
  • 3 cm ginger
  • 2 cm galangal
  • 3 cm tumeric
  • ½ tsp sesame seeds
  • ¼ tsp nutmeg powder
  • ¼ tsp cumin powder
  • ½ tsp ground black pepper
  • ½ tsp ground corriander
  • 1 tsp shrimp paste
  • Salt (to taste)

Ayam Betutu Chicken with Balinese Recipe 2


  1. Cut the whole chicken in half. Make sure you cut it along the breastbone because it is easier to stuff the chicken when you do it this way.
  2. Put the spices, like garlic, ginger, shallots, galangal, chilies, and turmeric into a blender. Add a little water to help mix all the spices. Blend until the paste becomes smooth. It probably takes less than a minute to combine all of them. And then, add the rest of the spices, such as sesame seeds, nutmegs, cumin, shrimp paste, ground lemongrass, candlenuts, corriander, and black pepper. We need a thick paste, so don’t add more water.
  3. Place the chicken in a large serving plate. Use half of the paste to rub the whole chicken. Meanwhile, mix the rest with the cassava leaves.
  4. Stuff the spiced leaves into the chicken. Don’t forget to close both ends of the chicken with toothpicks. Avoid using another material because you will cook it at a high temperature. Others may release harmful substances or simply not safe enough for baking.
  5. Once you’re done rubbing the rest of the paste all over the chicken, add the bay leaves and then wrap the chicken in banana leaves.
  6. Tie it safely with a string. You can use anything that doesn’t melt at a high temperature.
  7. Put the chicken in the oven at 180 ° c – 350 ° f. It takes around 2-3 hours until it is fully cooked, but it depends on the size of the chicken. See occasionally to prevent burning.
  8. Remove from the oven, let it rest for 10 minutes. You can serve the chicken hot with rice and prawn crackers. Some also like to eat it with sambal matah.
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