Boo Kee Bean Sprouts Chicken

Special thanks to Boo Kee Bean Sprouts Chicken for extending this food review invitation.

Update: This business has ceased its operations.

Boo Kee Bean Sprouts Chicken (巫记芽菜鸡) just opened a new shop at Jalan Air Itam today. Operating over 20 years at several locations throughout Air Itam, this business finally found a proper air-conditioned premises along this heavy-traffic corridor.
Several "old town" nostalgic portraits and landscape artwork decorate the walls of the dining section. The restaurant has extra dining space on the upper floor too, but it is not ready nor necessary yet.
As the name implies, Boo Kee Bean Sprouts Chicken specializes in bean sprouts chicken (芽菜鸡), a dish originating in Ipoh but has enjoyed mainstream popularity throughout Malaysia. The chicken is cooked in boiling water to give a yellowish layer of skin, pleasing to both the sense of sight and taste.
Using his trusty meat cleaver which has served him well over the years, the proprietor (Mr. Ooi) masterfully cuts whole chicken into proper serving portions, while removing bones in the process.
Not to forget fresh slices of cucumber which are bread and butter when enjoying bean sprout chicken.
The menu is rather straightforward: Chicken can be ordered à la carte (whole, half, quarter), or as a set with bean sprouts and rice. Hor fun (河粉) is also available in lieu of rice.
My meal today consists of a serving of Chicken Breasts (鸡肉), Bean Sprouts (芽菜) and rice. This set meal is priced at RM5.00, which is quite affordable considering that similar businesses halve the chicken serving for the same price. Ordered separately is a bowl of Fish Ball Soup (鱼丸汤, RM1.00) with 4 pieces of fish balls and meatballs.
Starting with the signature dish: Chicken Breasts, the flesh is smooth and tender, thinly veiled by a fatty layer of succulent chicken skin. Chopped scallions (spring onions) are sprinkled over for refreshing scent and visual appeal. The chicken is seasoned with a shallow layer of light soy sauce, which is not too overpowering but serves to moisturize the chicken.
I like the natural goodness of this boiled chicken even without the soy sauce coming into play. This is the type of chicken which you can enjoy over and over without feeling unpleasantly satiated.
The Bean Sprouts are fresh and crunchy, thanks to the brief boiling process. The taste is enhanced by a sprinkle of fried garlic which gives a pungent twist to the flavor. Freshly sliced chili peppers are served on top should you prefer to tantalize your taste buds to the next level.
The Spicy Garlic Chicken Feet (辣蒜凤爪, RM3.00) is a special order from the kitchen. This dish is highly recommended and cannot come at a better time. The chicken feet are served in a concoction of spicy soup made from whole chili peppers. The combination of pungency and sourness certainly serve to expand my appetite by a significant degree.
One must not forget the garlic chili which is the standard issue when enjoying bean sprout chicken. In fact, there are two types of such condiments: red and green versions. Personally, I find it difficult to choose between the two as they are both good.
My beverage is a warm glass of Prunella (夏枯草, RM1.00). I appreciate businesses which still serve homemade drinks. Nowadays, many restaurants cut corners by providing canned drinks only. If I want a can of Coca-Cola, I can always buy one at the local 7-Eleven store, right?
The operations at Boo Kee Bean Sprouts Chicken are still quite messy, resulting in a number of confused orders. Serving time is still limited to how fast Mr. Ooi can chop chicken, but I believe there is room for improvement in the ordering and serving process.

Name: Boo Kee Bean Sprouts Chicken (巫记芽菜鸡)
Address: 554-L, Jalan Ayer Itam, 11400 Air Itam, Pulau Pinang
Contact: 016-460-6283
Business hours: 4:00pm-10:00pm
Website: Facebook
Coordinates: 5.40498 N, 100.29044 E
Directions: From Chung Ling High School (钟灵中学), travel west towards Penang Hill. After the first traffic light junction, there is a BHP gas station on the left. Boo Kee Bean Sprouts Chicken is directly across the street, right behind the bus station.


  1. Look nice... i must go. Does Boo Kee Bean sprouts chicken is comparable or better when compare to Ipoh version?


    1. Thanks for dropping by! :-)

      Unfortunately, I do not have a good reference for the Ipoh version. Do you know any authentic ones which can be found in Penang? :-)

  2. Looks great. Thanks for sharing. Is this owner from the one selling bean sprout chicken rice opposite Indian Temple at Air Itam?

    Great that they have homemade drinks. Agree with you canned drinks can get everywhere. I don't like those shops that only selling canned drinks and "3 in 1" drinks to serve their customers. They reluctant to prepare drinks by their own.

    1. I am not sure where exactly the original stall is, but I know the owner has been operating (as a stall) at several locations around Air Itam. The place you described may be one of them. :-)

      Thanks for dropping by, Janet. Much appreciated! :-)

      If you are interested, please subscribe my newsletters from the upper right side of this page. :-)

  3. oh i tried the food here before! quite decent! we ordered the blanched chicken feet which i didn't quite enjoy..i prefer braised ones! ooh lala :D

    1. Thanks for dropping by, Ann! :-)

      When did you visit? This shop is opened recently, so your visit was at its former location? :-)