Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken and Rice

Easy Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken with Rice dripping with flavor and cooked all in the same skillet!

Teriyaki Chicken + pineapple + rice =  Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken AKA a match made in heaven.  The marinade doubles as the Glaze (no double work) for incredibly juicy chicken with flavor through and through – not just on the surface.  The Teriyaki Glaze seeps into the rice for slightly tangy, sweet, teriyaki pineapple rice that perfectly compliments your chicken.  It doesn’t get any better. 

top view of Teriyaki Chicken breasts in a skillet with rice

Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken

Teriyaki Chicken has to be one of the most beloved Asian foods of all time.   Its savory, slightly sweet, and just so satisfying.  And even more satisfying when its made with pineapple all in one pot to create Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken,  my happy place.

In Seattle Washington, they love their teriyaki chicken.  In 2010, there were over 83 restaurants with the word teriyaki in it.  It became the signature cuisine, in lieu of traditional fast food options.

I am sure they have lots of great variations of teriyaki in Seattle but because we can’t all fly to Seattle when we want teriyaki chicken, I am giddy to bring you THIS Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken Recipe bursting with flavor to perfectly compliment your palate, and your busy lifestyle, and your dislike of dishes, and above all, your love of teriyaki chicken, this teriyaki chicken.   Happy Teriyaking!

a serving spoon picking up a the best teriyaki chicken glazed in teriyaki sauce

What is Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken?

Teriyaki is used to describe any chicken, beef, fish, etc. marinated in or served with teriyaki sauce.  Teriyaki sauce is typically made of soy sauce, sake, sugar and ginger.   So essentially, it is a dish, flavor, and sauce all with an interesting history.

The word “Teriyaki” is Japanese, and describes the method of cooking:  yaki- means grilled, and teri refers to a shine given from the sugar, so the direct simplistic translation is “shine-grilled.”

Although the word teriyaki is of Japanese origin, teriyaki cooking is actually tied to Hawaiian roots.  It is believed that Japanese immigrants in Hawaii used the local foods there and came up with teriyaki, and if you’ve been to a Hawaiian barbecue, you’ll know the deliciousness I’m talking about.

The first Hawaiian/Japanese people used pineapple juice as their sugar and acid to get the shine while Japanese soy sauce remained the main ingredient.  So teriyaki chicken has its origins in japan … and Hawaii.  It is a blend of two great cultures and one of the best blends of simple ingredients in the world!

WHAT CHICKEN IS BEST FOR Pineapple TERIYAKI CHICKEN? 

You have two options when it comes to what chicken you would like to use for this Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken recipe:

  • Boneless skinless chicken thighs: are dark meat and therefore inherently juicier and more forgiving as far as cooking time.  It is hard to dry out chicken thighs, so although the pictures show chicken breasts, I actually recommend chicken thighs. 
  • Boneless skinless chicken breasts:  are leaner but still emerge wonderfully juicy from the marinade. If you use chicken breasts, take care they are pounded to an even thickness so they cook evenly.  Chicken breasts vary wildly in size, so adjust cooking time accordingly.  
brushing Teriyaki sauce on Teriyaki Chicken

Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken Ingredients and Substitutions

Making Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken at home is EASY and only requires a few pantry staples. You can also customize it to fit YOUR personal preference whether that be more sweet, more savory, or more heat.

Traditional Teriyaki Sauce is equal parts, soy and mirin (a sweet cooking sake) and sugar to taste.  Another version of simple teriyaki is equal parts soy sauce to granulated sugar which is what I have used in this Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken recipe.

  • chicken: as previously mentioned, you can either use 4 small boneless skinless chicken breasts or 4 boneless chicken thighs.  I have included cooking times for each in the recipe. 
  • rice:  use long-grain white rice as brown rice will require different cooking times and ratios.  
  • pineapple:  use one 20 oz. can crushed pineapple.
  • olive oil:  you may substitute with your favorite cooking oil such as avocado oil or coconut oil. 
  • soy sauce:  make sure you use reduced sodium soy sauce or your Teriyaki Chicken will be too salty.
  • sugar: is necessary to balance the soy sauce and the vinegar.  You may substitute with some honey, or brown sugar but it will create a slightly different flavor profile. 
  • apple cider vinegar:  provides the fruity, tangy balance to the soy sauce.  You may substitute with rice wine vinegar or white vinegar if that’s all you have on hand. White vinegar has more acidic than apple cider vinegar, so only use 3 tablespoons. 
  • garlic:  one teaspoon garlic powder will do the trick. 
  • ginger:  adds a warm spicy, almost pepper taste that cuts through the sweetness. You will need 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger.
  • salt and pepper:  enhance all of the flavors.
  • Sriracha: you can use sriracha or sambal oelek.  Use more or less to taste.
up close of easy Teriyaki Chicken being picked up by a spoon

How to Make Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken 

  • Whisk marinade ingredients together. To make this irresistibly delicious Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken, whisk together your Teriyaki Sauce ingredients of soy sauce, sugar, cider vinegar, ginger, garlic, Sriracha and cornstarch and remove some to a freezer bag with your chicken to marinate one hour up to overnight – the longer, the better.  The marinade alone makes this chicken super tender and flavorful and allows you to use chicken breasts (although you are welcome to use skinless chicken thighs) without loosing juiciness.
  • Reserve remaining marinade for Teriyaki Sauce. The remaining Teriyaki Sauce creates a luscious glaze by simmering it in your pot for a couple minute.  You then remove the glaze, brown your moist chicken and then its time for pineapple rice!
  • Cook rice with crushed pineapple.  Your rice is simmered in a can of crushed pineapple with its juice and water so the rice drinks up the slightly tangy, sweet, pineapple essence, perfectly complimenting the soy based teriyaki chicken which you nestle in your rice to finish cooking, periodically basting with your glaze, so the sticky, flavorful teriyaki glaze seeps further into the drool-worthy chicken and glides down to permeate the rice to create teriyaki pineapple rice.  mind. blown.
top view of Teriyaki Chicken with teriyaki marinade

What to serve with Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken?

Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken is fantastic served with any sautéed, roasted or grilled veggies you have on hand.  Broccoli, snow peas, peppers, are great vegetables to add to make it healthier and well balanced.  But don’t stop there, here are some more ideas to spice up your Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken:

IS CHICKEN TERIYAKI HEALTHY?

The chicken in Teriyaki Chicken is very healthy.  It is a lean protein which means it doesn’t have very much fat which can help you maintain a healthy lifestyle and even lose weight all while helping to sustain your muscles.  Chicken is also full of calcium and phosphorous which helps strengthen your bones and reduce the risk of arthritis.

To keep your Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken on the lighter side, make sure to cook it on the stove, grill or in the oven as opposed to deep frying.  As far as teriyaki sauce, soy sauce is quite high in sodium so take care to use a low sodium soy sauce.

Looking for More Teriyaki Recipes?

chopsticks picking up sticky Teriyaki Chicken

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Easy One Pot Teriyaki Chicken with Pineapple Rice dripping with flavor and cooked all in the same skillet!

One Pot Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken and Rice

Easy One Pot Teriyaki Chicken with Pineapple Rice dripping with flavor and cooked all in the same skillet! Teriyaki Chicken + pineapple + rice = a match made in heaven.  The marinade doubles as the Glaze (no double work) for incredibly juicy chicken with flavor through and through – not just on the surface.  The Teriyaki Glaze seeps into the rice for slightly tangy, sweet, teriyaki pineapple rice that perfectly compliments your chicken.  It doesn’t get any better. 
Servings: 4 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes

Ingredients

  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts or thighs
  • 1 1/2 cups long-grain white rice
  • 1 20 oz. can crushed pineapple
  • olive oil

Teriyaki Sauce/Glaze

Instructions

  • Whisk together Teriyaki Sauce ingredients in a small bowl. Add ⅓ cup of this sauce plus 1 tablespoon olive oil and chicken to a freezer bag/shallow dish and marinate 1 hour up to overnight. Refrigerate remaining Teriyaki Sauce separately.
  • When ready to cook, strain pineapple juice from crushed pineapple and add water to strained juice to equal 3 ½ cups liquid (“Pineapple Water”). Set aside.
  • Stir reserved Teriyaki Sauce and add to large skillet (nonstick works best). Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer until slightly thickened, stirring constantly (glaze will continue to thicken upon standing). Remove Teriyaki Glaze to same bowl it was refrigerated in.
  • Wipe skillet (doesn’t have to be thorough) and heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over high heat. Let excess marinade drip off chicken and add to skillet. Cook over medium high heat for 5 minutes on each side (3 minutes on each side for thighs) or until nicely browned (will not be all the way cooked through) and remove to a plate.
  • Wipe skillet and add 1 tablespoon olive oil and Pineapple Water. Bring to a simmer then stir in crushed pineapple and rice. Cover, reduce to medium low and cook for 12 minutes. Stir rice and nestle chicken on top and brush with Teriyaki Glaze. Cover and continue to cook for an additional 8-12 minutes or until rice and chicken are cooked through.
  • Brush chicken with additional Teriyaki Glaze and season rice with freshly cracked salt and pepper. Add sriracha for some heat if desired.

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58 Comments

  1. Jim says

    Hi! I never leave comments on recipes, and we found this one years ago so I hope that you might see this, but I just wanted to say that this is probably my favorite dinner. Period. It’s absolutely phenomenal. Sorry that it took so long to acknowledge it’s sheer greatness. Keep up the great work and thank you for blessing my life with this incredible dish!

    • Jen says

      Thank you for your incredibly kind comment Jim and for making my day! I’m thrilled to hear this recipe is a family favorite!

  2. Parbeen Uddin says

    Hi there. I want to follow the teryaki chicken recipe but could you rephrase this :
    “When ready to cook, strain pineapple juice from crushed pineapple and add water to strained juice to equal 3 1/2 cups liquid” (“Pineapple Water”). Set aside.

    Do you mean to mix strained pineapple juice 1/2 cups X3 and water 1/2 cups X3 together?

    • Jen says

      Hi Parbeen, it means to add water to the strained pineapple juice until it equals 3 1/2 cups total liquid.

      • Parbeen Uddin says

        Im so sorry! Back again! I’m British so not used to US measurements of cooking… this is really embarrassing but i want to get it right. So when you say 3 1/2 cups -do you mean 1/2 cups three times or
        3 WHOLE cups and then 1/2 cup?

        • Jen says

          No reason to be embarrassed! I mean the latter – 3 WHOLE cups and then 1/2 cup

      • Parbeen Uddin says

        Omg i just realised you would use dry cups for dry ingredients and the wet cup for wet ingredients! If i didnt know this i would’ve used the dry cup for measuring water!

        • Jen says

          Not sure what you mean by this? We use the same measurements 1 cup/16 oz. for wet and dry ingredients.

  3. Kristina says

    The best part of the pineapple rice was the charred bits at the bottom! This was also one of the best teriyaki sauces I’ve tasted.

    • Jen says

      Yessss, my fav too! When I make coconut rice I always add less liquid just so I can enjoy those crispy bits! I’m so pleased you loved the teriyaki sauce too!

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