Instant Pot Chicken Satay

Chicken Satay

One of my all-time favorite treats in Thai cuisine are Chicken Satay. Featuring a thick sauce that has a thrilling combination of accessible Thai ingredients kissed with peanut butter, chicken satay is as much a hit at home as it is on a Thai menu. While wonderful for dinner, I also love serving them as Hors d’Oeuvres for gatherings. Making them in the Instant Pot takes this iconic dish to the most convenient, one-pot level. As RuPaul may say after trying one, we’re about to Satay Away!

Watch The Video!

Instant Pot Chicken Satay

Searing The Chicken

Add some butter top the Instant pot and give it some heat.
Add some butter top the Instant pot and give it some heat.
Adding chicken tenderloins to pot
Take some chicken tenderloins…
Searing chicken in butter
…and add it to the pot of melted butter. In batches, sear the chicken on each side…
Flipping chicken with tongs to sear other side
…for about 60-90 seconds. NOTE: Move the chicken around slightly while searing so it doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pot too much (It’s fine if it does a little).
Placing seared chicken on plate
Once they have a bit of a lightly seared “crust” on them, you’re good! Let them rest on a plate.

Deglazing The Pot

Adding soy sauce and Worcestershire sauce to pot
Add some soy sauce and Worcestershire sauce to the pot…
Deglazing pot
…and use a spatula to deglaze/scrape the bottom of most of the browned chicken bits.

Starting The Sauce

Adding thin and unsweetened coconut milk to pot
Let’s get this sauce going, shall we? Add some coconut milk (NOTE: make sure it’s watery and not thick and lumpy – shake the can to make sure and if you hear it sloshing around easily, that’s what you want)…
Can of massaman curry paste
massaman curry paste
Adding massaman curry paste to pot
…(only use some of it at this stage)…
Adding lime juice to pot
…juice of a lime…
Adding fish sauce to pot
…fish sauce (trust me – it won’t be anywhere near as pungent once blended into the sauce as it is on its own)…
Adding apple cider vinegar to pot
…apple cider vinegar…
Adding crushed ginger to pot
…crushed ginger (I use squeeze ginger)…
Adding brown sugar and cumin to pot
…light or dark brown sugur and cumin…
Adding tarragon leaves to pot
…and tarragon or Thai basil leaves.
Stirring sauce in pot
Stir everything together into the pot.

Pressure Cooking

Returning chicken to pot with sauce and pressure cooking
Return the chicken to the pot and pressure cook.
Removing pressure cooked chicken to a plate
When done, use tongs to remove the chicken to a plate to rest and heat the sauce in the pot so it comes to a bubble.

A Slurry Thickens In A Hurry

Mixing equal parts cornstarch and water together
Meanwhile, combine equal parts cornstarch and cold water…
…and mix together to form a slurry!
Adding slurry to bubbling sauce in pot
Stir the slurry into the pot of bubbling sauce. It will thicken immediately into the perfect consistency.

The Finishing Touches

Adding peanut butter to thickened sauce in pot
To truly give the sauce that Satay flavor, we’ll add in some peanut butter…
Adding more massaman curry to sauce in pot
…as well as the remaining (or some more of the) curry paste (see Jeff’s Tips in the recipe card below).
Stirring until peanut butter and curry paste is melded into the sauce.
Stir until the peanut butter and curry pate is melded into the sauce and it looks smooth and luscious!

Dressing The Chicken

Sticking wooden skewers into chicken on plate
If you wish to serve these chicken satay like the do in restaurants or cocktail hours, insert a wooden skewer into each tender.
Brushing the sauce onto the chicken skewers.
From there, brush the sauce onto the chicken.
Adding crush peanuts on top of the sauced skewars
Feel free to sprinkle on some crushed peanuts as well! And just like that, these chicken lollipops are ready to serve!

Satay Away!

Man holding up plated chicken satay
Feel free to be a gracious host and pass them around at a party. They do make quite a statement!
Man holding up one chicken satay lollipop
But not after trying one for yourself first!
Man eating chicken satay lollipop
<insert eating sounds here>
Man approving of the chicken
They’re simply perfect!
Man holding platter and calling for others to try the chicken
Now feel free to yell “Satay Away!” and serve to your guests. Goes great over rice as well!
Yield: 6

Instant Pot Chicken Satay

Instant Pot Chicken Satay

One of my all-time favorite treats in Thai cuisine are Chicken Satay. Featuring a thick sauce that has a thrilling combination of accessible Thai ingredients kissed with peanut butter, chicken satay is as much a hit at home as it is on a Thai menu. While wonderful for dinner, I also love serving them as Hors d'Oeuvres for gatherings. Making them in the Instant Pot takes this iconic dish to the most convenient, one-pot level. As RuPaul may say after trying one, we're about to Satay Away!

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Additional Time 10 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) salted butter
  • 2 1/2 pounds chicken tenderloins
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce, tamari, or coconut aminos
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 (13-14-ounce) can unsweetened coconut milk (it should be thin like water, not thick and lumpy)
  • 4 ounces massaman curry paste, divided (see Jeff's Tips)
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 3 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon crushed or minced ginger (I use squeeze ginger)
  • 1/4 cup fresh Thai basil or tarragon leaves
  • 1 tablespoon light or dark brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch + 2 tablespoons cold water
  • 1/2 cup smooth or chunky peanut butter
  • Crushed peanuts, for topping (optional)

Instructions

  1. Add the butter to the Instant Pot, hit Sauté, and Adjust so it's on the More or High setting. Once the butter's melted, add the chicken in batches (about 2-3) and sear on each side for about 60-90 seconds, gently moving them a bit while searing so they don't stick to the pot too much (a little is fine). Transfer to a plate, set aside and repeat until all the tenderloins have a slightly browned edge to them.
  2. Add the soy sauce and Worcestershire sauce to the pot and deglaze (scrape the bottom of most browned chicken bits). Add the coconut milk, 2 tablespoons of the curry paste, the lime juice, fish sauce, apple cider vinegar, ginger, Thai basil (or tarragon), brown sugar, and cumin. Stir well.
  3. Return the seared chicken to the pot, submerging in the sauce. Secure the lid, move the valve to the sealing position and hit Cancel followed by Pressure Cook or Manual at High Pressure for 10 minutes. Quick release when done.
  4. Make the cornstarch slurry by mixing together the cornstarch and cold water.
  5. Using tongs, transfer the chicken to a serving dish. If you wish to serve these lollipop-style as they do in most restaurants, stick a wooden skewer into each tenderloin.
  6. Now let's focus on giving the sauce its grand finale! Hit Cancel on the pot followed by Sauté and Adjust to the More or High setting. Once bubbling, stir in the slurry and let bubble for 30 seconds where it'll thicken significantly. Hit Cancel to turn the heat off.
  7. Stir in the remaining curry paste (see Jeff's Tips) and the peanut butter until melded into the sauce. Slather the sauce over the chicken (I like to brush it on with a silicone brush) and sprinkle with crushed peanuts, if desired. Serve alongside some Jasmine Rice.

Jeffrey's Tips

In Step 6 when adding the remaining curry paste, feel free to add it to taste instead of the remaining amount. I like the whole 4 ounces in there but every brand is different and all taste buds vary.

Massaman curry can be found in most Asian market and certainly online, but you can also use panang curry, or even red curry paste if you want it spicy. It will just change the flavor profile a bit.

If you have leftover sauce, you can keep it in the fridge for up to a week or freeze it. You can also serve it over rice, veggies and/or pasta!

Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. Pamela

    this sounds delicious as usual. I am having issues with my pot and am lost without it.
    I have followed you since your start, and so proud of you and your success. here’s to the three of you! ( I counted banjo too) she said clinking her own wine bottle. ( yes, I said bottle… don’t judge.

  2. Mary Duncan

    1. There’s only two of us in our household and in our mid 70s we don’t t 2.5 lbs of meat at a meal. Can this be halved? Id like to do it in our 3 qt. IP

    2. Can it be done with b/s thighs cut into chunks? Not a big fan of tenders.

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