Instant Pot Island chicken bowls are the perfect easy summer meal! Shredded chicken is tossed in a sweet and tangy teriyaki-inspired sauce, quickly cooked in the Instant Pot, then served over rice with a side of fresh pineapple and avocado salsa.

2 wooden bowls filled with white rice topped with island chicken and pineapple avocado salsa on a marble board


This recipe is…

When it comes to summer food, I gravitate toward dishes that are fresh and simple. As much as I love cooking, the last thing I want on a hot day is to spend hours in the kitchen heating up my house, and I definitely don’t want to sit down to anything too hearty.

While it makes perfect sense to use your Instant Pot in the summertime, it can be hard to find Instant Pot recipes that are light and fresh instead of hearty soups and stews. That’s where these tasty island chicken bowls come in!

The chicken is made in the Instant Pot (or the slow cooker if you prefer!), so no heating the kitchen, they’re topped with the most deliciously fresh pineapple and avocado salsa, and they come together in under 30 minutes. The whole family will be able to get behind these!

wooden bowls filled with white rice topped with island chicken and pineapple avocado salsa on a marble board

How to Make Instant Pot Pineapple Chicken

So, there are a lot of variations of what exactly makes an island-inspired chicken out there – from BBQ to sweet and sour to spicy, but for this recipe we decided to go with a teriyaki-inspired sauce for our chicken! The sauce is perfectly sticky, and hits all the right notes of sweet, tangy, and salty. The first step in making these island chicken bowls is putting the sauce together, which is a breeze with the Instant Pot!

  1. Reduce the coconut aminos. Coconut aminos are our secret weapon when it comes to making delicious soy-free teriyaki sauce! You’ll simply set your Instant Pot to ‘saute’ then add a cup of coconut aminos and let them simmer for 5-8 minutes reduced by half. This thickens the coconut aminos and concentrates their flavors.
  2. Add the remaining sauce ingredients. Next, you’ll add lime juice, sriracha, garlic powder, ginger, sesame oil, and pineapple juice to the sauce. Give it a whisk then turn off the Instant Pot.
  3. Add the chicken. Next up, you’ll add 2 pounds of chicken to the Instant Pot. I personally prefer using boneless/skinless chicken thighs for Instant Pot recipes because they retain the most flavor and don’t dry out – but if you prefer white meat you can use either chicken tenders or boneless/skinless chicken breast instead. Either way, you’ll simply toss the chicken with the sauce and then set it to cook for 12 minutes.
  4. Make the rice. While the chicken cooks, make your favorite rice according to the package instructions. If you’re eating grain-free, feel free to substitute with cauliflower rice instead!
  5. Make the pineapple salsa. To make the pineapple salsa, you’ll dice up 2 cups of pineapple, an avocado, some cilantro, red onion, and a small jalapeno, then toss it with lime juice.
  6. Shred the chicken and thicken the sauce. Once the timer on the Instant Pot goes off, you can manually release the pressure, then pull the chicken out and shred with two forks. Turn the Instant Pot back to ‘saute’ mode, then whisk together some arrowroot starch and water and pour it into the sauce. Whisk it again and let it come to a boil. Once the sauce is thickened, turn the pot off, then add the shredded chicken and toss to coat.
  7. Assemble the bowls. Spoon the rice into a bowl, then top with the chicken and pineapple salsa and serve!
wooden bowls filled with white rice topped with island chicken and pineapple avocado salsa on a marble board

Video

Instant Pot Island Chicken Bowls with Pineapple Salsa

4.80 — Votes 25 votes
By Cassy Joy Garcia
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Total: 30 minutes
Servings: 5 servings
With sticky-sweet chicken and a fresh pineapple and avocado salsa, these Island chicken and rice bowls are the perfect easy summer meal!

Ingredients  

For the Island Chicken

  • 1 cup coconut aminos
  • 1/3 cup pineapple juice
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice about 1 lime
  • 2 tablespoons sriracha optional
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger or 1 teaspoon ground
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken thighs (may also use chicken breasts or tenders)
  • 2 tablespoons arrowroot or tapioca starch
  • 4 1/2 cups cooked white rice or cauliflower rice for serving

For the Pineapple Avocado Salsa

  • 2 cups pineapple diced
  • 1 large avocado diced
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice about 1 lime
  • 1/3 cup fresh chopped cilantro
  • 1/4 red onion diced
  • 1 small jalapeno seeds removed, diced (optional)

Instructions 

  • Add the coconut aminos to the Instant Pot on saute mode and cook for 5-8 minutes, until thickened and reduced by half, then turn off the Instant Pot.
  • Stir in the lime juice, sriracha, garlic powder, ginger, pineapple juice, and sesame oil. Add the chicken and toss to coat, then set the Instant Pot to ‘manual’ and adjust to cook for 12 minutes.
  • While the chicken cooks, make the pineapple salsa. Add all of the salsa ingredients to a bowl and toss to coat, then set aside.
  • When the timer on the Instant Pot goes off, manually release the pressure, then remove the chicken from the pot and shred with two forks, or with the paddle attachment of your stand mixer.
  • Put the Instant Pot back on ‘saute’ mode, then whisk the arrowroot starch with 1/4 cup water. Pour the arrowroot mixture into the sauce and whisk to combine. Let the sauce come to a boil and thicken, then turn off the Instant Pot and return the chicken to the pot and toss it to coat with the sauce.
  • Assemble the bowls with the rice, chicken, and pineapple salsa and enjoy!

Recipe Notes

To make in the slow cooker:
Thicken the sauce in a pot over medium heat for 5-8 minutes, until reduced by half, then add to the slow cooker along with the chicken and toss to coat. Cook for 4 hours on high or 8 hours on low. Once the chicken has finished cooking, remove it from the slow cooker and transfer the sauce to a pot and continue following the instructions in step 5.

Nutrition

Calories: 497kcal | Carbohydrates: 82g | Protein: 17.3g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 1.9g | Cholesterol: 56mg | Sodium: 1137.2mg | Fiber: 4.2g | Sugar: 8.5g

Additional Info

Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American
Servings: 5 servings
Calories: 497
Keyword: fresh pineapple salsa, instant pot chicken breast, Island chicken bowls

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Amber Goulden


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75 Comments

  1. Hello! Is the nutritional information for one serving or the whole dish? Thank you!

  2. I sent the link to my sister this morning and said I was planning to make it for dinner. She replied that she had made it last night haha and it was delicious. Well, she was right! Super easy, and so flavorful! I used GF flour instead of arrowroot (because that’s what I had) and canned pineapple. I also didn’t have jalapeño for the salsa but it was still delicious! Side note: I’ve never used thighs to make shredded chicken in the instant pot, and it was such a game changer! So much juicier! Thanks for another GREAT recipe!

    1. YAY! We’re so glad you loved this recipe, Krysta!!

  3. 5 stars
    Quote from my husband: “Good Lawd Woman!!! This is delicious!” My entire family agreed. Thank you 🙂

    1. We love to hear that, Mary! Thank you so much for taking the time to share with us. -Team FF

  4. 5 stars
    This was such a good meal! It rivaled going out to dinner! My husband and I both enjoyed this!

    1. We are so glad to hear that, Erica! Thank you for taking the time to share with us! -Team F&F

  5. This was AWESOME and soooooo easy! I expected to have leftovers but there were none! I saved the sauce to put over some chicken tomorrow. This was great and the family loved it. Thank you for a great recipe!

    1. So glad that the entire family enjoyed, Shelly! Thank you for taking the time to share with us.

  6. This was good but definitely didn’t need all the sauce and I am so thirsty after eating it. Tasted really salty. When I figured the sodium just in the coco aminos, this dish has a whopping 7840 mg of sodium!!! There has to be a better alternative for using a full cup of coco aminos. (They’re also expensive) Any lower sodium alternatives?

    1. Hi Melissa! I am sorry the dish was too salty! We use Coconut Secret coconut aminos and find that they have less sodium than other brands. You can also try subbing 1/4 cup coconut aminos + 3/4 cup chicken broth and skip the step of reducing at the beginning. I hope this helps!

  7. WOW!! This dish is full of flavor and so simple. I prefer to make it in my crockpot, and it turns out great every time. This recipe is one the entire family loves, which is a sometimes hard to do with little ones. I love that I don’t have to buy special ingredients that I will only use for this recipe. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

    1. We are so glad to hear that is is a hit for the entire family! Thank you for taking the time to share with us. -Melissa

  8. Is there any way to make this low carb? It sounds delish, but my husband is pre-diabetic.

    1. Hi! You could swap the rice for cauliflower rice, but the pineapple juice and coconut aminos may still make the dish too carb-heavy though.

  9. 5 stars
    Made this for dinner tonight, it was delicious! The flavors were unique too. Loved it for a quick summer dinner. Thanks so much!

    1. Oh good! So glad you enjoyed it, Chelsea. Thank you so much for sharing this with us!

  10. I wanted seconds and thirds! So good! My entire family LOVED this meal. My husband has requested that it makes a regular appearance on our table. I did not thicken the sauce though because we like the juice to be absorbed by the rice.

    1. Wahoo! So great to hear that, Cynthia! We’re so glad it was a hit!