Instant Pot Mongolian Chicken takes just five minutes to throw into the pressure cooker, and only 30 minutes to cook a flavorful, tender, and juicy chicken! Also, check out the short video tutorial attached below.
Best Instant Pot Mongolian Chicken
Instant Pot Mongolian Chicken is such a perfect, delicious, and quick Asian meal made in just 30 minutes! It’s faster to make this meal at home than to drive to a restaurant or to order takeout. Also, by making it at home you will save some good dollars and will have amazing leftovers.
This dish is super flavorful and juicy, with crispy slices of chicken breast soaked in a delicious sweet and savory sauce. It is one of those dishes that tastes even better when cooked at home!
We love serving it over rice, but you can try it over soba noodles as well. This recipe is one that I make over and over again, it’s a time saver during crazy weeknights, and I am always excited to have the leftovers the next day.
Why you will enjoy this Instant Pot Mongolian Chicken:
- It is easy to make, and it takes only around 30 minutes!
- Only one pot to clean and that is the Instant Pot, so minimum dishes for you.
- The dish is packed with amazing flavors and lean protein.
- Also, the meat is soaked in a sweet and savory sauce, which beats any Chinese restaurants out there!
- You will have delicious leftovers that can be stored in the fridge, in an airtight container for 3-4 days.
What is Mongolian Sauce made of?
The secret ingredient to this dish is definitely the Mongolian sauce which is a combination of soy sauce, sesame oil, and brown sugar. In addition, we add some garlic, ginger cooking process. To garnish, we used some green onions and sesame seeds, but these are optional.
How to make Mongolian Chicken in the Pressure Cooker?
This delicious Asian dish is super fast and easy to make in the Pressure Cooker. For a quick, step by step tutorial please watch the recipe video attached. But the general steps are as follows:
- Saute the meat: Using the Sautee function of your Instant Pot, quickly sautee the poultry for about 2-3 minutes. Remember to properly stir while browning the chicken.
- Deglaze: After sauteeing it, ensure that there is nothing stick to the bottom of the pot, otherwise, you will get a “burn notice”. To avoid it, deglaze the pot with 1/4 cup water and scrape them with a wooden spoon. If you leave the bits stuck to the bottom, they may burn or cause the pot not to come to pressure.
- Add the rest of the ingredients and cook: Next, add the rest of the ingredients and stir well to combine. Then, close the lid and cook on High pressure.
- Add the cornstarch and serve: Lastly, in a bowl, prepare the cornstarch with 1/4 cup water, whisk together, and add the mixture to the pot. Gently stir, and let it cook on Sauté function on LOW for a few more minutes without the lid, until the texture thickens.
- Serve: Enjoy warm over some rice.
How to avoid the “burn notice”?
Sometimes, you might get the “burn notice” when cooking in the IP or any other pressure cookers. To avoid this, we highly recommend ensuring that there are no browned bits of meat stuck to the bottom of the pan after sautéeing food.
Also, as stated above, try to deglaze it with some liquid and gently scrape up the browned bits with a wooden spoon.
How to make Mongolian Chicken on the stovetop?
If you want to try this recipe on the stovetop, it is equally easy to prepare. You can check the Stovetop Mongolian Chicken recipe on our blog as well. The general steps are as follows:
- Cut or Cube the chicken: Start by cutting the poultry breast into thin pieces. Prior to cutting, I recommend partially freezing the breasts for about 15 minutes. This will make it easier to slice.
- Coat the meat: Next, coat the poultry in cornstarch. Use about 1/4 cup cornstarch in a resealable plastic bag, and then shake to coat evenly.
- Stir-fry: Once coated, stir-fry for about 3-4 minutes per side until crispy. Then, remove it from the pan and place on a plate lined with paper towels.
- Prepare the sauce: In the same pan, add the garlic and ginger, and cook for 30 seconds. Next, add the soy sauce, sesame oil, water, and brown sugar to it, and bring it to a simmer. After, add 1.5-2 teaspoons of cornstarch combined with 1 tablespoon of cold water. Gently stir and bring to boil just until it has the proper thickness.
- Combine the sauce with chicken: Lastly, add back the meat to the sauce, and toast to properly and evenly coat it. Serve over rice or noodles.
Can Mongolian Chicken be made in the Crockpot?
This dish can also be made in your Crockpot or in the Instant Pot using the Slow Cooker function. Add browned beef to the Slow Cooker, add the mixtures except for the cornstarch slurry. Cover and cook on High for 3 hours or on low for 6 hours.
Then, make the cornstarch slurry, gently stir it in and cook on high for 20 more minutes. Serve and enjoy!
Can I substitute beef for chicken in this dish?
Yes, beef or pork is a great alternative for chicken in many recipes including this one. The cooking time will also vary best on the cut that you choose. You can check the beef recipe here: Instant Pot Mongolian Beef.
What to serve with Mongolian chicken?
Can you cook the rice with the chicken in the pressure cooker?
What is a 10 Minutes Natural Pressure Release?
A Natural Pressure Release (NPR) means that the pressure is released gradually. For a Natural Pressure Release, you click on Keep Warm, and wait 10 minutes, after which you open the valve and let any leftover pressure release. Another option is to Turn Off/Unplug the pressure cooker, wait 10 minutes, and after that open the valve.
A natural release is usually used when cooking soups, meat, pasta or steel-cut oats. This method prevents any foam from the dish to shoot out through the valve, which can happen during a Quick Pressure Release.
Instant Pot Mongolian Chicken Recipe Tips:
- Use high-quality meat. A good meat-centered meal starts with quality meat, so use organic chicken breasts when possible.
- Also, you can reduce the sugar in half, restaurant-style Mongolian meat requires lots of sugar, so feel free to adjust. However, keep in mind, if you reduce the sugar, you will have to reduce the soy sauce as well. Otherwise, the dish may taste saltier.
- To cut on sodium and sugar, reduce the sugar to 1/2 cup and soy sauce to 1/2 cup if desired.
- Cornstarch is a key ingredient in here, do not try to replace it with flour, the results will not be the same.
- In addition, using carrots in the recipe is totally optional. I added them for a veggie boost and I also like their sweetness, but the dish can be prepared without them.
- Using fresh ginger and garlic will add amazing flavor and taste to the sauce.
- I try to keep this recipe as close as possible to the restaurant version. However, you can absolutely any types of vegetables that you like. Some great alternatives would be using: zucchini, broccoli, mushrooms, red peppers, etc.
- I love serving it over rice, but it works well over soba noodles and chow mein.
Tools/Ingredients I used to make the Instant Pot Mongolian Chicken Recipe:
- Instant Pot – I use it all the time, either the Pressure Cooker function or the Slow Cooker function, I also like that I can just sauté / brown the meat and veggies directly in the pot using the Sauté function.
- Garlic Powder – love this one, I add it to almost all the savory meals, also great to make meat rubs and seasonal veggies.
- Cornstarch – I prefer using cornstarch instead of flour to thicken sauces, and this organic brand is my favorite.
Instant Pot Mongolian Chicken
- 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts (cut into one-two inch cubes)
- 2 tablespoons sesame oil (or extra virgin olive oil)
- 3/4 cup brown sugar ((use less if you want))
- 4 garlic cloves (minced)
- 1 tablespoon fresh ginger (minced)
- 3/4 cup lite soy sauce* ((use 1/2 cup if you are sensitive to sodium))
- 3/4 cup water or chicken broth
- 1 cup carrots (chopped*)
- 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes*
- 1 tablespoon garlic powder
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1/4 cup green onions (chopped)
- 1 teaspoon sesame seeds
- 2 cups basmati rice
- 2 cups water
- 2 tablespoons herbed or unsalted butter
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Heat up your pressure cooker: press Sauté -> click on the Adjust button -> select More to get the Sauté More function, which means that the food will be sautéed over medium-high heat. Wait for the Instant Pot indicator to read HOT.
- Add the oil to the hot Instant Pot, add the chicken and sauté for 2-3 minutes, stirring a few times. Cook until it just starts to get golden. When sautéing it, stir constantly so it doesn't stick to the bottom of the pan.
- Also, after you sauté the chicken, check if bits stuck to the bottom, in that case, deglaze the pot with 1/4 cup water and scrape them with a wooden spoon. If you leave the bits stuck to the bottom, they may burn or cause the pot not to come to pressure.
- Add the rest of the ingredients to the pot: minced garlic, minced ginger, lite soy sauce, brown sugar, water, carrots, garlic powder and red pepper flakes.
- Stir well until all the ingredients are combined and coated in sauce.
- Add the rice, salt and the two cups of water to an Instant Pot safe dish/pot. Stir to combine.
- Add a long legged trivet to the Instant Pot on top of the chicken. Add the pot with the rice onto the trivet. Cover with aluminum foil and pinch a few times with a fork.
- Close lid and pressure cook at High Pressure for 5 minutes + 10 minutes Natural Release. Turn off the heat. Release the remaining pressure. Open the lid.
- Open the lid, remove the pot with the rice, let it rest covered for 5-10 minutes. Before serving, fluff the rice with a fork.
- Select again the Sauté function, on LOW. In a medium bowl combine 2 tablespoons of cornstarch with 1/4 cup water, whisk until all combined with no lumps. Add the mixture to the Instant Pot and gently stir to combine. Cook on Sauté function on LOW for a few more minutes without the lid, stirring gently, until the sauce thickens.
Turn off your Instant Pot.
- Serve over rice and garnish with fresh chopped green onions and sesame seeds.
- Carrots are optional in this recipe.
- Add more or less Red pepper flakes, based on the level of heat you like in a dish. Also, they can be omitted from the recipe.
- Garlic powder was added for extra garlic flavor on top of the fresh garlic.
- Use gluten free tamari or amino acids if you want to avoid gluten.