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Instant Pot Teriyaki Chicken

Instant pot teriyaki chicken is the perfect one pot dinner recipe, ready in just 15 minutes. The homemade sticky teriyaki sauce is made with simple, healthy ingredients (all of which are pantry staples). Serve along side rice, quinoa or have some fun and serve this pressure cooker teriyaki chicken in tacos or on pizza!

Teriyaki chicken in instapot after cooking, white napkin on side.
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Why you will love this recipe

  • Easy to make – creating a recipe that is just as good or better than take out is so simple. This recipe is mostly a set it and forget it recipe (which makes it perfect for busy weeknights).
  • Simple, healthy ingredients – this healthy teriyaki chicken in the instant pot is gluten free and dairy free and is made with simple ingredients that you likely have on hand. The homemade teriyaki sauce is going to take your chicken to a whole new level!
  • So many uses – you can use the chicken in so many ways. Serve it with veggies and rice or quinoa, with fried rice, in tacos, on pizza or even on an Asian inspired salad. Once you make this, you are going to look for new ways to serve it, because it’s so flavorful and so easy.
Ingredients to make instant pot teriyaki chicken on a concrete countertop.

Ingredients

  • Boneless, skinless chicken – use whatever chicken you have on hand. Chicken breast, thighs or tenderloins will all work great in this recipe. The chicken gets cut down into bite size pieces (about 1 inch thick). A great time saver is to use chicken tenders, as they are already quite thin and quick to cut down into cubes.
  • Coconut aminos (or soy sauce or gluten free tamari) – coconut aminos give the teriyaki sauce a deep flavor. They provide most of the salt for the recipe. Coconut aminos are the gluten free, soy free alternative to soy sauce.
  • Rice wine vinegar – rice wine vinegar helps to really create that teriyaki flavor as the acid in the vinegar cuts through some of the sweetness and really balances everything out. I won’t recommend substituting rice wine vinegar with anything else but if needed, you could try a mixture of apple cider vinegar and lime juice.
  • Maple syrup (or honey) – maple syrup helps to sweeten the teriyaki sauce, giving it that distinct sweet, savory combination. You could also use honey or your favorite low calorie maple syrup alternative. I don’t recommend using a granulated sweetener as you need the liquid from the syrup.
  • Grated ginger – you can use freshly grated ginger (be sure to peel it first) or my hack which is to use freeze dried ginger. I don’t recommend using powdered ginger in this recipe though, it doesn’t produce the same flavor profile.
  • Spices: Salt, garlic powder, dried chives – Salt amplifies all the flavors, garlic powder adds a garlic undertone without overpowering the sauce and the dried chives add a unique onion flavor.
  • Arrowroot powder (or cornstarch or tapioca) + water – this is used to help thicken the sauce after the chicken is done cooking. This is what helps make that sticky sauce so quickly.

How to make instant pot teriyaki chicken

Start by cutting the chicken up into bite size pieces (about 1-1.5 inches squares). I like to use kitchen shears for this but you can also use a sharp knife (and a plastic cutting board).

Cubed raw chicken on a plate.

Place the chicken in the instant pot.

Combine the teriyaki sauce ingredients (except the water and arrowroot thickener). Stir well and pour over the chicken.

Put the lid on the instant pot, turn it on high pressure for 3 minutes. After it comes to pressure and cooks for 3 minutes, let it naturally release for 3-5 minutes before releasing the pressure.

While the chicken is cooking, make the arrowroot slurry. Combine the arrowroot and water in a small bowl. Stir well to make sure all the flour is dissolved in the water.

Open the lid, scoop out the chicken and put it in a bowl. Turn the instant pot to sauté mode and add the arrowroot slurry, stirring well. Let the sauce start to bubble and turn off the sauté mode when it reaches your desired thickness (this usually takes about 2 minutes).

Add the chicken back to the sauce and stir well. Serve hot.

Top tips

  • Be sure to blend together the thickener (arrowroot, tapioca, cornstarch) with water before adding to the hot liquid or it will clump.
  • For the best texture, if you are using chicken tenders take the tendon out before cutting into cubes. This is easy to do with a fork and a paper towel. Simply hold the tendon (the white piece that hangs out of the chicken tender) with a paper towel (this helps with grip) and place a fork over the tendon. Pull down with the fork as you keep steady pressure on the tendon. The chicken will easily strip away from the tendon.
  • If you have an 8 qt instant pot, you will need to double the recipe or you won’t have enough liquid to bring the Instapot up to pressure.
  • Short on time? Cut the chicken into cubes in advance and make the teriyaki sauce in advance, the chicken will be ready in under 15 minutes, start to finish.

Additional ingredients

  • Red pepper flakes or sriracha for spice
  • Green onion – add this at the end, it’s great for color and flavor
  • Cubed pineapple – add this to the instant pot along with the chicken so it can absorb the teriyaki flavor. You can use fresh or canned (drained).
Chopsticks picking up a piece of instant pot teriyaki chicken from plate.

How to serve pressure cooker teriyaki chicken

  • Over rice or quinoa with steamed veggies
  • Over pizza with pineapple and cilantro for a fun twist
  • In sandwiches or lettuce wraps
  • Over rice noodles (double the sauce if you will be serving it this way)
  • Topping for an Asian inspired salad with lettuce, red cabbage, shredded carrots, green onions, mandarin oranges and sesame ginger dressing
  • Tacos – male a fun twist on tacos by serving along side cilantro lime slaw

Common questions

Can you make this with frozen chicken?

Yes! If you are going to use frozen chicken, I would recommend frozen boneless, skinless chicken thighs which would need to be cooked on high pressure for 15 minutes from frozen with the sauce.

If you decide you want to use frozen chicken tenderloins , cook them from frozen for 6 minutes, high pressure with the sauce.

Frozen chicken breasts cook in 17 minutes from frozen, using high pressure.

Can you use chicken thighs to make teriyaki chicken in the instant pot?

Yes, I often make this recipe with boneless, skinless chicken thighs. They are very forgiving and my recommended type of chicken to use if you are going to make this recipe from frozen.

If defrosted, you can cut up the chicken thighs just like the tenders or you can cook them whole, increasing the cook time from 3 minutes to 13 minutes. After cooking remove the chicken from the instant pot and leave whole, cut into cubes or shred.

Sticky teriyaki sauce over cubed chicken, broccoli on the plate as well.

Can you double the recipe?

Yes, this recipe can easily be doubled without changing anything. The chicken may take a few more minutes to come up to pressure, but it will still cook quickly.

Storing leftovers

  • Fridge: Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days. Not that the teriyaki sauce will get thick in the fridge but will thin out a bit when reheated.
  • Reheat in the microwave (2:30 -3 minutes) or on the stove (add a little water to the pot) and cook over medium low heat covered until warmed through.
  • Freezer: Freeze in a freezer safe bag or container for up to 3 months. Note that the sauce may get a little clumpy when frozen, but should thin out when reheating. Defrost in the fridge and reheat using methods above.
Teriyaki chicken in instant pot, pair of chopsticks on the side.

If you love this teriyaki chicken instant pot recipe, you should try

Air Fryer Chicken Teriyaki

Teriyaki Chickpeas (10 minutes)

Teriyaki Salmon and Veggies

10 Minute Asian Chicken Bites

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Sticky teriyaki instant pot chicken on a plate with steamed broccoli and rice.

Teriyaki Chicken Instant Pot

Instant pot teriyaki chicken is so easy to make and ready in just 15 minutes (start to finish). This healthy teriyaki chicken has a homemade sauce that is gluten free, dairy free and soy free. This pressure cooker teriyaki chicken would be perfect for busy weeknight dinners, kids love it!
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Course: Main Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: instant pot teriyaki chicken, pressure cooker teriyaki chicken, teriyaki chicken instant pot
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 3 minutes
build/Release pressure: 7 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Cut the chicken up into 1-1.5 inch cubes (bite size pieces). I recommend using kitchen shears but you could also use a sharp knife and plastic cutting board. Put chicken cubes in instant pot.
  • Make the teriyaki sauce by combining together the coconut aminos, rice wine vinegar, maple syrup, grated ginger, garlic powder, salt and dried chives. Stir well. Pour over chicken in instant pot.
  • Close the lid and turn instant pot on high pressure for 3 minutes. Let come up to pressure and cook. Allow pressure to naturally release 3-5 minutes before manually releasing pressure.
  • While chicken is cooking, make arrowroot slurry. Combine the arrowroot powder with water in a small bowl. Stir well until all arrowroot is dissolved.
  • When the chicken is done and all pressure is released, remove the chicken from the instant pot and put it in a bowl.
  • Turn instant pot on to sauté mode, pour arrowroot slurry in and stir well. Let the sauce bubble to thicken, stirring often. Once it reaches your desired consistency, turn off sauté and add chicken back. Stir well and serve hot.

Equipment

  • Instant Pot or pressure cooker

Notes

Top tips
  • Be sure to blend together the thickener (arrowroot, tapioca, cornstarch) with water before adding to the hot liquid or it will clump.
  • For the best texture, if you are using chicken tenders take the tendon out before cutting into cubes.
    • This is easy to do with a fork and a paper towel. Simply hold the tendon (the white piece that hangs out of the chicken tender) with a paper towel (this helps with grip) and place a fork over the tendon. Pull down with the fork as you keep steady pressure on the tendon. The chicken will easily strip away from the tendon.
  • If you have an 8 qt instant pot, you will need to double the recipe or you won’t have enough liquid to bring the Instapot up to pressure.
  • Short on time? Cut the chicken into cubes in advance and make the teriyaki sauce in advance, the chicken will be ready in under 15 minutes, start to finish.
Additional ingredients
  • Red pepper flakes or sriracha for spice
  • Green onion – add this at the end, it’s great for color and flavor
  • Cubed pineapple – add this to the instant pot along with the chicken so it can absorb the teriyaki flavor. You can use fresh or canned (drained).
Tips on using frozen chicken are in post above. 
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Nutrition Information

Nutrition Facts
Amount per Serving
Calories
223
Fat
 
6
g
Carbohydrates
 
12
g
Fiber
 
1
g
Sugar
 
3
g
Protein
 
28
g
Where does nutrition info come from? Nutrition facts are provided as a courtesy, sourced from the USDA Food Database.
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