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Instant Pot Orange Chicken Recipe

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Instant Pot Orange Chicken  is a quick and easy gluten free weeknight dinner with sweet and tangy asian flavor. Our family enjoys this delicious meal and so does the cook! Ready in about 30 minutes!

Instant Pot Orange Chicken
Instant Pot Orange Chicken

I never know when dinner will be. Life is hectic and my hubby has work hours that are hard to predict. My instant pot recipes are great for quick and easy dinners. 

More Asian Recipes You May Enjoy:

Instant Pot Asian Orange Chicken Recipe:

Nothing like very fast pressure cooking when the day gets away from me. This Asian orange chicken instant pot method makes a quick and easy weeknight dinner.

Since my instant pot came into my life I do both slow cooking and quick and easy pressure cooking all in the same handy small kitchen appliance.

Instant Pot Orange Chicken
Instant Pot Orange Chicken

This dinner is one of the few ways I can get my hubby to eat chicken. He loves his flock of Egg layers but can’t really get into eating chickens. He finds the meat bland.

Well this Instant pot chicken dinner is a hit even with him. The orangy sweet N spicy chicken over rice will be on our regular meal rotation now.

Instant Pot Orange Chicken
Instant Pot Orange Chicken

We used to buy our orange chicken from the freezer section at Costco (You had to know that was coming). But I quit buying it because, yeah it’s processed an all.

The instant pot turns out to be just as fast as throwing a freezer meal together once the veggies are prepped.

Healthier Orange Chicken:

This recipe is made from fresh real ingredients and organic chicken. WAY big step up on the healthy meter right there. Healthy chicken recipes and very easy chicken recipes begin in the instant pot.

Here are more tips on making this recipe healthier.

  • Orange chicken calories can be reduced even further by substituting a zero calorie brown sugar.
  • Reduce the carbs by replacing the rice with riced cauliflower.

The Orange Chicken Sauce Recipe:

The sauce I used is an adaptation of my Asian Orange Sauce. This is a handy, versatile sauce for many recipes like my Baked Tilapia in Asian Orange Sauce.

It’s an easy sauce to make and even EASIER in the instant pot!

I added brown sugar to this recipe because it needs a sweeter sauce to make that tangy orange flavor stand out.

Adjusting the Sauce:

The asian orange sauce is the heart of this recipe. If you are used to store bought sweet orange sauces like panda express this one may surprise you. It has a bit of spice and is less sweet than you might be expecting.

Here are a few suggestions:

  • For a sweeter sauce double the brown sugar called for
  • That zip of sriracha is completely optional. For a less spicy sauce reduce or eliminate the sriracha sauce.
  • The orange zest is another secret for pumping up the flavor of the fresh orange juice. Add more zest for a stronger orange flavor.
  • You may also opt for a sweetened condensed orange juice rather than fresh squeezed if you REALLY want to up that sweet orange flavor.

Suit your family by adjusting this recipe. Let me know what you do.

Making the sauce:

  • Throw all the ingredients EXCEPT the cornstarch into the Instant pot.
  • Cook the recipe under pressure as directed.
  • Quick release.
  • Set your instant pot to saute.
  • Add the in cornstarch slurry and cook the sauce until it is as thick as you like.
  • Adjust the cornstarch amounts to suit yourself and your chicken.
  • I aimed for a stickier sauce for this recipe so it will stick to the chicken well.

The sauce thickness will need adjustment depending on the type of chicken you choose. Are you choosing frozen, water added or fresh? Your chicken will release water into the dinner and the instant pot will NOT evaporate it.

Orange chicken dinner
serve this easy dinner buffet style or serve it individually on your plates.

Recipe Note:

The kind of chicken you use will affect the sauce consistency. Cooking under pressure means no liquid lost in the cooking. So you will need to adjust the thickness of the sauce at the end with the cornstarch.

For example: I used free range fresh chicken with no added water and the results are as you see pictured. If you are using frozen chicken or fresh chicken with water added please double the cornstarch called for.

Feel free to adjust the spices to please the crowd you are feeding. Small kids will love this if it’s not too spicy.

Your Printable Recipe Card:

Instant Pot Orange Chicken
Yield: 8 servings

Instant Pot Orange Chicken

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

A Quick N Easy dinner the whole family will love. Homemade orange sauce with chicken and rice is an excellent well appreciated meal for a busy weeknight.

Ingredients

  • 4 large boneless skinless Chicken Breasts-chopped into one inch chunks
  • 1 large orange-freshly squeezed to make 1 Cup of orange juice, with pulp ok
  • 1 Tablespoon Orange zest, from the fresh orange
  • 1/2 inch piece of ginger-minced
  • 4 large cloves garlic-minced
  • 3 Tablespoon Gluten Free Tamari
  • 3 Tablespoons honey
  • 3 Tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 Tablespoon sriracha sauce
  • 1/4 Cup brown sugar, If you want it sweet
  • 2 Tablespoons cornstarch, as preferred whisked together with water to form a slurry
  • For Garnish
  • 1 tsp. sesame seeds
  • 1 tablespoon chopped chives
  • 4 Cups Cooked Rice

Instructions

  1. Prep your chicken and Set the instant pot to saute function.
  2. Meanwhile, Heat your rice water in a pot on the stove. When it boils add the rice, reduce to simmer and cook covered until tender. Set aside.
  3. To the instant pot, Add the sesame oil and chicken and saute 3 minutes.
  4. Prep your ginger, garlic and orange.
  5. Add the ginger, garlic and remaining ingredients to the instant pot and Set to manual on high for 5 minutes.
  6. Quick release and set the instant pot to saute.
  7. Add the cornstarch whisked with water slurry and cook until the sauce is as thick as you prefer. About 5 minutes)
  8. Serve over cooked rice.

Notes

This recipe is affected by your choice of chicken. I used fresh chicken. Frozen chicken has more water and may require more thickening in the sauce. The sauce is easily adjusted by increasing the cornstarch as needed when thickening the sauce.

This is a flavorful dinner loved by kids and grownups alike. For children maybe reduce the stronger flavors (like sriracha). I like to sauté my meat for extra flavor. It's ok to ignore the saute if you are in a real hurry and cook on manual for six minutes. Cook the rice on the stove when you prep the veggies to make the cooking times come out right. Enjoy!

Nutrition Information

Yield

8

Serving Size

2 cups

Amount Per Serving Calories 317Total Fat 4gSaturated Fat 1gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 3gCholesterol 51mgSodium 479mgCarbohydrates 46gFiber 2gSugar 19gProtein 22g

Did you make this recipe?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Instagram

Pin it:

Instant pot orange chicken-pin image
Just like Panda Express but healthier, faster and in your own kitchen. This orange chicken recipe is easy to make and absolutely delicious, cook it in your instant pot or crockpot and serve over rice, noodles or with broccoli for an easy asian dinner. #orangechicken #easy #crockpot #instantpot #healthy #recipe #pandaexpress
Instant Pot Orange Chicken-pin image
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Mike

Tuesday 7th of April 2020

At the point where Iuse the corn starch, and cook again for 5 min, is that sautéed or pressure cook

Diane

Tuesday 7th of April 2020

Hi Mike, That is Sautè mode.

GAIL E PARMENTIER

Monday 29th of July 2019

So newbie here with the instant pot. I liked the quickness of the cooking, but had some fails. First I turned my pot onto saute, but the oil was getting too hot, so I turned it off. When I turned it back on once I was ready to saute my chicken, I didn't let it get to hot again so 1st mistake. I forgot to add the tamari (soy) sauce to it, so I had already started pressurizing it and had to stop to add that- 2nd mistake. Then once I was beyond these 2 issues and turned the instant pot on manual to cook for 5 minutes I had it on vent instead of seal. ARRRGGHHH I wanted the sauce to be super thick so I didn't add a ton of water to my slurry and ended up adding almost 2 tsp of additional cornstarch and could have added more. Now my question is when I juiced my orange I needed 2 oranges to make my 1 c of juice, should I just have done the 1 orange? Also you say 4 large chicken breasts - my package I bought had 4 large breasts - total weigh of the package was over 4#. I thought this recipe would be more flavorful, but I needed to put a lot of garlic salt on it. I would try this recipe again, but probably not have my daughter helping me either..... Any feedback is greatly appreciated.

Kayti Lavergne

Monday 29th of July 2019

Hi Gail, the instant pot does have a Few challenges for newbies. I’m glad you got through it though. Suggestions: The sauté mode for the instant pot can be turned to low heat so your chicken will not burn. The flavor is completely under your control. That’s what’s so great about home cooking. You can add more orange zest, ginger, soy sauce and brown sugar and taste the sauce just before you thicken it. It’s ok to add as much Cornstarch as you wish. Just be sure to boil it on sauté until the sauce turns clear and you like the thickness. Hope this helps! Thanks so much for comment and asking question

Bess Haynes

Monday 17th of September 2018

I absolutely love wandering around Pinterest or other recipe sites and coming across one of yours! Love and miss you Diane! You'll always be one of my surrogate moms. It was your allowing me to play and experiment in your kitchen in highschool that influenced my passion for cooking and made me the cook I am today (which I've been told on many occasions that I'm pretty good ??) I owe it all to you!

Diane

Monday 17th of September 2018

Ahhh How sweet of you to stop by and give me a cyber love. Right back at ya! I am SO proud of the woman, wife and mother you have grown into. I'm thrilled to know our kitchen times were fun and inspiring for you. Special times for sure. Many Cyber hugs to you baby girl. keep on cookin!

Xara

Friday 16th of March 2018

So good! I made it for family dinner tonight. My fussy three-year-old granddaughter liked it, as did my sister who has a sophisticated palate! Thanks so much for this recipe, which I will look forward to making again. (I didn't have chives or sesame seed and didn't want to buy a bit of each for one recipe, and it was great without them. I did cook the rice in advance, chill, and reheat it in order to increase the resistant starch.)

Diane

Friday 16th of March 2018

Hi Xara, Thank you so much for letting us know you loved our Instant Pot Orange chicken recipe. It's so great that you made it your own and shared the details. Lol. I have a few fussy grandkids too. They are really the ultimate taste testers. Glad this recipe passed muster. Thanks ever so much for the 5 star rating! Have a great Weekend!

BCox

Sunday 7th of January 2018

Just a quick question when you say “prep the chicken” do you just mean cut it? Or bread it or season it or something lease? Just curious. :)

Diane

Sunday 7th of January 2018

Hi BCox, Prepping the chicken in this recipe means cutting the chicken into one inch chunks. Thanks for the question. Have a great day!

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