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Sweet, savory, and oh-so-saucy, this Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken has family-favorite flavors and two simple ways to prepare it. Yes, you have the option to use your Crockpot or Instant Pot! And with so many versatile serving options, this is a dinner everyone can enjoy. It’s also a great meal prep lunch idea!
Table of Contents
- Easy Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken – Instant Pot or Crockpot!
- Why You’ll Love this Teriyaki Chicken Recipe
- Teriyaki Chicken Ingredients and Substitutions
- How to Make Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken
- Instant Pot Directions
- Crockpot Directions
- How to Make Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken Bowls
- Storing and Reheating Leftovers
- How to Meal Prep this Recipe
- Serving Suggestions
- Get the Recipe
- More Instant Pot Recipes
Easy Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken – Instant Pot or Crockpot!
Asian-inspired recipes are always a hit in our house. But whether it’s Slow-Cooker Orange Sesame Chicken or Egg Roll Bowls, making these favorite meals at home is a more nutritious and affordable option than ordering takeout. Plus, I know I can make them safely gluten free. In this dish, the flavor of pineapple adds a subtle sweetness so perfectly balanced by all of the savory Asian-style flavors.
Cuisine Inspiration: Japanese
Primary Cooking Method: Crockpot or Instant Pot
Dietary Info: Gluten-free, Dairy-free, Nut-free, Egg-free
Skill Level: Easy
Why You’ll Love this Teriyaki Chicken Recipe
Once you’ve tried it, the family will definitely request that you add this to your collection of their favorite slow cooker or instant pot recipes. And you’ll be happy to make it a regular part of your dinnertime rotation. Here’s why:
- Delicious flavors. Juicy chicken is tenderized by the pineapple juice which also adds a sweetness to the thick combination of the umami of soy sauce and aromatic ginger and garlic. It’s a bold but not overpowering combo that delights tastebuds of all ages.
- Quick preparation. The Instant Pot makes it all come together fast, but even if you prefer to go the slow cooker route, the prep work takes almost no time.
- Wholesome ingredients. This recipe is filled with fresh and simple ingredients. It’s made with lean boneless, skinless chicken breasts. Just like with my Pineapple Teriyaki Turkey Meatballs, there is no added sugar other than what is naturally in the pineapple juice. And it is thickened with a starch slurry instead of adding extra fats and flour.
- Simple to make gluten free. Since it already doesn’t use any flour for thickening, the only thing you have to do is make sure you use gluten free soy sauce or tamari. Easy peasy.
- Loads of serving options. I’ll give you more ideas later on, but from grains to veggies to garnishes and sauces, you can completely customize this meal just as you like it.
Teriyaki Chicken Ingredients and Substitutions
Whether you choose to make it in the low cooker or pressure cooker, here’s what you’ll need to make this pineapple teriyaki chicken. Be sure to scroll down to the recipe card for specific amounts.
- Chicken: Boneless, skinless chicken breasts are usually what I have on hand, but feel free to substitute with thighs.
- Canned Pineapple Tidbits: Save the juice from the can. It tenderizes the meat and adds sweetness and flavor.
- Soy Sauce or Tamari: Make sure it is gluten free, if needed. You can even use coconut aminos to make it paleo.
- Sriracha: You can also use another kind of chili sauce if you prefer.
- Rice Vinegar: The acid helps balance the sweetness.
- Fresh Garlic and Ginger: Both will need to be minced. You can use dry ginger if you prefer.
- Cornstarch: To thicken the sauce by making a slurry with water. You can substitute tapioca starch for paleo.
- Optional garnishes: sesame seeds, julienned carrots or scallions.
How to Make Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken
As I mentioned, you can make this in a pressure cooker or slow cooker. Let’s go over both options. Then get all of the detailed directions in the recipe card.
Instant Pot Directions
- Separate the pineapple fruit and juice. Drain the canned pineapple tidbits, collecting the juice in a small bowl or a measuring cup. Set the fruit aside for later.
- Make the teriyaki sauce. Mix the pineapple juice with soy sauce or tamari, sriracha, rice vinegar, garlic, and ginger.
- Add to the chicken and cook. Then place the chicken breasts in your pressure cooker and add the sauce. Close the vent and set to the Instant pot to the Manual setting for 12 minutes.
- Shred the chicken. After the time is up, let the pressure naturally release for five to ten minutes for doing a quick release. Remove the chicken from the Instant Pot and shred with a fork, then set it aside.
- Thicken the sauce. Whisk together the cornstarch or tapioca starch and water to make a slurry. Set the pressure cooker to Saute. Add the slurry while whisking, and let it boil till thickened.
- Mix chicken and pineapple tidbits. Return the shredded chicken to the sauce and stir in the pineapple tidbits. Now you can serve it over rice, cauliflower rice, or ramen noodles and vegetables and garnish with green onion and sesame seeds.
You can also prepare this dish as a slow cooker recipe. Follow the steps above up until you turn on the pressure cooker. Instead of doing that, you’ll cook the teriyaki chicken on Low for 6-8 hours or High for 3-4 hours, or until the chicken is cooked through and shreds easily.
When you remove the chicken from the slow cooker, transfer the teriyaki sauce to a pot to thicken it. You can also add the thickening slurry to the crockpot and let it cook for an additional 30 minutes. It will not get quite as thick, but it is an option if you don’t want to use the stove.
How to Make Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken Bowls
One of the most popular ways to enjoy teriyaki chicken is to use it in a meal in a bowl. Serving it over white rice my be the most common, but you can add more flavor by using Cilantro Lime Rice or trying some of these other options.
Choose your base:
Spoon your base into the bottom of your bowl as the start to building your dinner creation.
- Rice: Pack in more nutrition by using brown rice or even cauliflower rice for a lower carb alternative. You can even use an entirely different grain like quinoa
- Noodles: Our favorite is brown rice ramen noodles, but zoodles are also an option, as well as more flavorful base like Spicy Sesame Noodles.
Now you can choose your favorite vegetables to top your base.
Finish with a garnish:
Now spoon your chicken over the veggies and add a little something extra for flavor or texture.
Storing and Reheating Leftovers
Transfer your leftovers to an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3 or 4 days. You can also freeze it for up to 2 months. It’s actually easy to make a double batch to freeze it for another meal.
If frozen, be sure to thaw it in the refrigerator overnight. Then the teriyaki chicken can be reheated in the microwave or in a saucepan or skillet on the stove over low heat.
How to Meal Prep this Recipe
While I love to make this for the family for dinner, it is also a great option for meal prep lunches. I always keep a supply of meal prep containers on hand so that I can easily pack lunches for myself or my husband.
Choose one or more of the bases and divide it between 4 to 6 containers. Add a side of vegetables to each container, then top with the pineapple teriyaki chicken. Add your garnishes, or keep them in a separate small container to sprinkle on top after you reheat the dish.
Then it’s easy to just grab and go, and pop them into the microwave at lunchtime.
Above I gave you ideas for turning this teriyaki chicken into a delicious meal in a bowl. But there are lots of other options to enjoy it too.
- Make Lettuce Wraps. Yes, you can spoon this into cups of lettuce to make Teriyaki Chicken Lettuce Wraps. Serve it with a bowl of Beef and Broccoli for a couple of filling options.
- Spoon into Buns. This tender chicken would also make a great filling for my Gluten Free Bao Buns in place of the pork.
- Serve a Creative Side. Instead of the usual rice and veggies, make the meal a little more fun by pairing it with Gluten Free Vegetable Pancakes or some Shrimp Summer Rolls.
Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken
- 1 ¼ to 1 ½ lbs boneless skinless chicken breasts
- 20 oz. can Dole Pineapple Tidbits in 100% Pineapple Juice
- 1/3 cup soy sauce or tamari
- 2 teaspoons sriracha or other chili sauce
- 2 Tablespoons rice vinegar
- 1 clove garlic, minced or crushed
- 1 Tablespoon minced fresh ginger or ½ teaspoon dried ginger
- 2 Tablespoons cornstarch or tapioca starch
- 2 Tablespoons cold water
- Rice, rice ramen, cauliflower rice, or zoodles and vegetables for serving
- Sesame seeds, julienned carrots, and scallions for garnish, optional
- Place chicken breasts in your pressure cooker (see Note for slow cooker directions).
- Drain the can of Dole Pineapple Tidbits saving the juice for the sauce (you’ll have about 3/4 cup). Set aside the pineapple for later.
- Combine the pineapple juice, soy sauce or tamari, sriracha, rice vinegar, garlic, and ginger in a small bowl or measuring cup and stir together. Pour over the chicken.
- Close your pressure cooker and set to Manual for 12 minutes. Allow it to reach pressure and cook.
- When the cooking time is complete let the pressure naturally release for 5-10 minutes, then do a Quick Release to release the remaining pressure.
- Remove the chicken to a plate and shred with a fork. Set aside while you thicken the sauce.
- Set the pressure cooker to Saute. Whisk together the starch and water, then whisk into the sauce. Bring to a boil and cook for a few minutes until thickened.
- Return the chicken to the pressure cooker and toss to coat. Stir in the Pineapple Tidbits. Start with about half of the can, then decide if you’d like to add more.
- Serve over rice, rice ramen, cauliflower rice, or zoodles and vegetables, and garnish with sesame seeds, julienned carrots, and scallions if desired.
More Instant Pot Recipes
I love my pressure cooker to make meals quickly and tenderize meats easily. Here are some my family loves.