Skip the takeout tonight and try this instant pot sesame chicken for dinner instead. A deliciously classic Asian dish ready in half the time it normally is. Lightly sweet and tangy, with a sticky sauce over juicy chicken, this recipe is one to keep around.
When it comes to dinner, going for Chinese takeout or even making an Asian dish at home is always a good choice. It’s rare to find people who dislike it and the flavors are usually so bold, you can’t help but rave over it. I make this style of dinner often because it always goes over so well at my house. Some of my favorites are Sweet and Sour Shrimp or Pineapple Chicken Stir Fry.
Step by Step – Recipe Instructions
- Add everything to the instant pot – Add all the ingredients except the cornstarch slurry to the instant pot. Mix well.
- Cook – Cover and seal the IP and set it to high pressure for 4 minutes. Do a quick pressure release and remove the lid.
- Add the cornstarch slurry – Set the IP to the saute setting. In a small bowl, combine the water and cornstarch and stir until combined. Add to the Instant Pot with the chicken mixture. Stir well.
- Cook again – On low heat, allow the mixture to cook for another 5 minutes while occasionally stirring.
- Serve – Once the sauce has thickened, turn off the IP and serve the Instant Pot Garlic Sesame Chicken over rice.
Tips and Variations
- Storage – Place in an airtight container and store in the fridge for up to 4 days. Freeze for up to 1 month in an airtight container.
- Reheating – Reheat in the microwave if coming out of the fridge. Be sure to add a couple of tablespoons of water just to the rice so it will soften up again. When reheating from the freezer, allow the Instant Pot Garlic Sesame Chicken to thaw before following the other reheating steps already mentioned.
- Make it mild – If you don’t like the spice of the dish, simply remove the red pepper flakes. There’s no need to replace this ingredient if removed.
- Add in vegetables – If desired, you can always add some vegetables into the mix. This will leave the vegetables slightly crunchy, similar to the restaurants. However, they won’t be overly soft. If you prefer them this way, boil the vegetables separately and add them in afterward.
- Serve with noodles – if desired, instead of serving over rice, you can serve this dinner over rice noodles. There are a couple of kinds to choose from and it’s up to you on which to choose. All of them should work just fine with this dish. Lo mein is a personal favorite.
Is Sesame Chicken and Orange Chicken the Same?
No, although they might have some similar ingredients, they’re not the same dish. Both have thick, sweet, and sticky sauces, but their flavors are very different. Orange chicken is much sweeter and has an orange flavor to it. Sesame chicken is less sweet and tastes closer to cashew chicken than it does anything else. The best way to tell the difference is to try them side by side. You’ll love them both.
Feel free to tell me all about your experience making this instant pot sesame chicken recipe, in the comments below!
More Asian Recipes You’re Sure to Love:
- Firecracker Baked Salmon
- Spicy Honey Shrimp and Broccoli
- Healthy Orange Chicken
- Honey Garlic Shrimp
- Shrimp and Vegetable Stir Fry
Instant Pot Sesame Chicken
- Instant Pot
- 2 lbs chicken thighs skinless boneless
- 1/2 cup soy sauce low sodium
- 1/3 cup honey
- 1/4 cup water
- 1 tbsp sesame oil
- 2 tbsp ketchup
- 1 tbsp rice vinegar
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- 1 tsp ginger minced
- 1/4 tsp red crushed pepper optional
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 tbsp cornstarch
- 2 tbsp water
- Add the chicken, soy sauce, honey, water, sesame oil, ketchup, rice vinegar, garlic, ginger, and red pepper flakes into the Instant Pot sleeve.
- Mix everything well, close the lid, and set the pressure release valve to seal.
- Adjust to pressure cook or manual on high for 4 minutes.
- Cook till done then perform a quick pressure release and open the Instant Pot.
- Select the Sauté setting on low heat.
- Make the cornstarch slurry by combining the cornstarch and water in a mixing bowl until smooth and add this into the sesame chicken and combine.
- Stir frwuently until the sauce thickens, anything up to 5 minutes or to your preference.
- Switch off the heat and serve your Instant Pot Garlic Sesame Chicken over rice and with any desired garnishes.