This Instant Pot Sweet and Sour Chicken with pineapple is a one pot rice dish with a 5-ingredient sauce – it tastes just like takeout!
Ingredients in this recipe
Here’s what you need for this dish – the full recipe is at the bottom of the page:
- canola oil
- chicken breasts
- salt & pepper
- diced pineapple fresh, frozen or canned and drained
- rice vinegar
- soy sauce
- garlic cloves, minced
- chicken broth
- jasmine rice
- red, green and yellow bell peppers, diced into small pieces
- scallions, to serve
- sesame seeds, to serve
How to make sweet & sour chicken in the Instant Pot
1. Add canola oil to bottom of Instant Pot, followed by all ingredients except for bell peppers.
2. After pressure cooking, open lid and add bell peppers.
3. Stir in the bell peppers, then close Instant Pot and let sit.
4. Serve and enjoy!
Is sweet and sour chicken healthy?
Traditional takeout can be high in calories and contain far more sugar and sodium than you would think. However, you can easily transform this dish into a healthier alternative at home!
Easily control the amount of salt by using a reduced-sodium soy sauce. There’s also no added sugar other than a small amount of natural sweetener in honey. Choose sugar-free ketchup to reduce that amount even more.
When all is said and done, the biggest difference is that the chicken is steamed instead of breaded and fried, which reduces both the number of calories and the amount of fat.
If you prefer a lower carb option, replace the jasmine rice with cauliflower rice instead.
- Chicken breasts – If you prefer darker meat, feel free to use boneless, skinless thighs instead. Or, save a little on prep time by using chicken tenders, which are just sliced breast meat.
- Honey – Maple syrup or agave can be used instead.
- Soy sauce – Use tamari or coconut aminos to make this recipe gluten free.
- Chicken broth – Substitute chicken or vegetable stock as needed.
- Jasmine rice – Feel free to make your favorite variety of long grain rice. Even brown rice will taste delicious with this recipe. Find tips for cooking each type in my ultimate IP rice guide.
- Canola oil – Any neutral cooking oil with a high smoke point will work just fine. Vegetable, avocado, and grapeseed oil are popular choices. You could even use coconut oil if you’d like.
Why is it called sweet and sour chicken?
The name comes from the combination of flavors in the sauce. While there are dozens of variations, the base ingredients usually include some kind of vinegar, sweetener, and ketchup.
When those come together, it creates a sauce that is both sweet and sour for an irresistible bite.
What do you serve with sweet and sour chicken?
This dish is typically just served over rice since it already contains meat and vegetables. However, it’s easy to pair it with noodles or additional veggies. Or, make one or two other Asian entrees for your very own takeout buffet!
Here are some other easy side dish ideas to complete your meal:
- Chow mein or lo mein
- steamed vegetables or green beans
- Sauteed zucchini
- Veggie eggrolls or spring rolls
How many calories is sweet and sour chicken with rice?
This dish is only 399 calories per serving, meaning you can enjoy a low cal meal without sacrificing any of that sweet and sour goodness!
Storing and reheating
Transfer leftovers to a sealed container or divide the entire dish between individual meal prep containers.
You can store the chicken and rice separately or in the same container if you’d like, and be sure to use them within 3 to 4 days.
Reheat in the microwave or on the stove until warmed through to the center. It may help to add a few drops of water to the rice for moisture.
Freezing this recipe
Allow the chicken to cool completely before transferring to a freezer-safe container. This prevents ice crystals from forming, which causes both freezer burn and watery sauce when defrosted.
It should last in the freezer for up to 4 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight before reheating.
More Asian Instant Pot recipes
Meal prep tools for this recipe
- Grab some glass meal prep bowls if you plan on turning this 30-Minute Sweet and Sour Chicken into your weekly lunches.
- I get all my free-range chicken from Butcher Box, conveniently delivered to me frozen.
- Get a meat thermometer to make sure your chicken is cooked through.
- Use these Ziploc bag holders if you’re marinating the chicken then freezing it.
- Freeze this recipe in glass microwave-safe bowls up to 3 months.
Instant Pot Sweet and Sour Chicken
- 1 tbsp canola oil
- 1 lb chicken breasts, diced into 1 inch pieces
- 1 pinch salt & pepper
- 1 cup diced pineapple fresh, frozen or canned and drained
- 2 tbsp rice vinegar
- 2 tbsp honey
- 2 tbsp ketchup
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 1/4 cups chicken broth
- 1 cup dry jasmine rice
- 1 each red, green and yellow bell pepper, diced into small pieces
- Scallions, to serve
- Sesame seeds, to serve
- Add canola oil to bottom of Instant Pot, followed by chicken. Sprinkle salt & pepper over chicken. Add remaining ingredients in the order they are listed, except for bell peppers. Do not stir rice, just pat down lightly into liquid.
- Place lid on Instant Pot and make sure valve is set to seal. Press the pressure cook button and set to high, then cook for 5 minutes. Instant Pot will take about 5-10 minutes to come to pressure then pressure cook for 5 minutes.
- Do a quick release of the pressure on the Instant Pot by flicking the switch at the top with a spoon. Open the lid when pressure gauge has dropped and the lid opens easily.
- Stir in the bell peppers, then replace lid on the Instant Pot and let sit for 5 minutes.
- Serve in large bowls, topping with scallions and sesame seeds if desired. Serve and enjoy!