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Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken

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Pineapple chicken with rice is an easy weeknight meal beautifully served in pineapple boats. It is a sweet and savory dish that is perfect for any occasion, whether it’s a simple family dinner or a backyard barbecue celebration. The delicious meal is made by cooking chicken in a delicious pineapple teriyaki sauce and serving them with a bed of rice.

Two pineapple teriyaki chicken with rice in pineapple boats.

Teriyaki Chicken Recipe

The combination of sweet pineapple with a savory, juicy chicken and teriyaki sauce makes this meal so fun and unique. Pineapple teriyaki chicken is often served with rice and vegetables, but today we’re serving it in pineapple boats! Although these are certainly not required in order to make this recipe. You can also serve this chicken recipe in a bowl over a bed of rice.

  • EASY – Cooking the chicken in a teriyaki sauce couldn’t be easier!
  • QUICK – If you skip the pineapple boats, this recipe is fast and simple, making it perfect for busy weeknights.
  • FUN – Serving this recipe in a pineapple boat truly makes this meal a fun change from the ordinary.

Overall, pineapple teriyaki chicken is a versatile and flavorful dish that is sure to please anyone in the family who loves sweet and savory flavors.

Recipe ingredients on the counter including sliced pineapple boats, bowls of apple cider vinegar, pineapple chunks, cornstarch, chicken breasts, rice, soy sauce, ginger powder, brown sugar and a garlic bulb.

Recipe Ingredients

Here’s an overview of the ingredients you’ll need. The full recipe details are in the recipe card at the bottom of this post:

CHICKEN – This recipe uses 1 1/2 lbs of boneless chicken breast, cut into bite-size pieces. You can also use chicken thighs, tenders or chicken legs.

PINEAPPLE – You’ll need 1 cup of pineapple chunks to create the sauce. The rest can be added to the chicken mixture for more flavor.

RICE – Brown rice or white rice will work. I used short-grain brown rice. If serving in a regular bowl (not pineapple) feel free to substitute with pasta, quinoa or cauliflower rice.

SOY SAUCE – 1/2 cup of soy sauce is the base flavor of the sauce. Try a reduced-sodium soy sauce if you want to use less salt.

BROWN SUGAR – Brown sugar is used to sweeten the sauce. You can also use coconut sugar or white granulated sugar. For a sugar-free alternative, monk fruit sweetener will also work.

CORNSTARCH –  To thicken the soy sauce. Cornstarch is typically used as a sauce thickener, while arrowroot starch is a gluten-free version. Use arrowroot in a 2:1 ratio to cornstarch.

VINEGAR – You can use rice vinegar or apple cider vinegar.

GROUND GINGER – 1 tsp of ginger powder adds a sweet and spicy flavor.

TOPPINGS – Sprinkle freshly chopped green onion and sesame seeds on top for garnish. This is optional.


More vegetables, nuts and seeds can be added to the recipe for different textures and flavors. Here are a few ideas:

  • BELL PEPPERS – Add chopped green or red bell pepper and stir fry until soft and tender.
  • GINGER – Grate some fresh ginger and add to the sauce.
  • SNAP PEAS – This would add a crispy crunch and can be served chopped or whole.
  • GREEN BEANS – Green beans taste great with anything, including this recipe.
  • SCALLIONS – Chopped scallions can be added for more flavor.
  • CASHEWS – Sprinkle the top of each pineapple bowl with chopped cashews for added crunch.
Four images together, first is a blender with liquid ingredients dumped in, second is chopped chicken with a knife on a cutting board, third is cooked chopped chicken dumped over brown sauce in frying pan, fourth is chicken pieces tossed in a brown sauce in frying pan.

How To Make Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken Recipe

Here is an overview of how to make the recipe. More detailed instructions with step-by-step photos are in the recipe card at the bottom of this post.

  1. MAKE RICE – Cook the rice the same way you normally enjoy it. You will need 1 cup of cooked rice per serving.
  2. PINEAPPLE BOATS – Slice a ripe pineapple in half. Then slice a circle shape 1″ from the edge of each pineapple half, and cut slices from top to bottom and vertically. Use a spoon to scoop the pineapple pieces out (see below for more details). Reserve 1 cup of chopped pineapple for the sauce and the rest to serve with the recipe.
  3. BLEND SAUCE – Add 1 cup pineapple chunks, brown sugar, ginger powder, rice vinegar and cornstarch to a blender. Blend until smooth and creamy.
  4. COOK CHICKEN – Chop the raw chicken breasts into bite-size pieces. Season them with salt and pepper. Brown the chicken in a frying pan over medium-high heat. Remove from pan and add them to a bowl.
  5. THICKEN SAUCE – Add minced garlic and a bit of oil to the frying pan and cook 1-2 minutes. Pour the blended sauce into the frying pan with garlic. Stir for 1 minute until thickened.
  6. ASSEMBLE – Add back in the cooked chicken and heat through for 1 minute. Add 1 cup of cooked rice to each pineapple boat. Spoon in the cooked teriyaki chicken to the other half. Drizzle the remaining sauce overtop of everything and sprinkle the tops with chopped green onions and sesame seeds.

Pro Tip: For an extra burst of pineapple flavor, add some diced pineapple chunks (you can even use chopped pineapple rings) to the skillet once the chicken and sauce have been mixed together. Cook for an additional 1-2 minutes, just until the pineapple is heated through.

How To Store Leftovers

These pineapple boats won’t store well and should be served fresh. However, You can store the rice and cooked teriyaki chicken separately in the fridge.

  • REFRIGERATE – Allow the chicken and rice to cool before placing it in an airtight container. You can keep this in your fridge for about 3-5 days.
  • FREEZE – Add leftovers to an airtight container or freezer bag. Remove as much air as possible to prevent freezer burn. Store it in the freezer for up to 2-3 months.
  • REHEAT – If frozen, thaw it overnight in the refrigerator. Reheat in the microwave for 1-2 minutes until warmed through.
Four images of a pineapple in steps, sliced and scooped to create pineapple boats.

How to Cut a Pineapple and Make a Pineapple Boat

Serving your homemade teriyaki sauce and chicken in a pineapple boat is a fun and creative way to add some tropical flair to your meal!

However, cutting a pineapple can be a bit intimidating for some people. Here are some simple steps to help you cut a pineapple and make a pineapple boat. You can also watch this pineapple boat tutorial video.

  • Step 1: Place the pineapple on its side and carefully slice the pineapple in half, including the top step.
  • Step 2: Cut vertical lines that are 1 inch from the edge of the pineapple. Repeat by making horizontal lines.
  • Step 3: Use a large spoon to scoop the pineapple out. Save the middle tough pieces for the blender and the softer pieces can be added to the cooked teriyaki chicken afterward.
  • Step 4: As you scoop out the pineapple, this will create a hollowed out shell. Be sure to keep the pineapple wall about 1-inch thick or it may leak through.
  • Step 5: Fill the pineapple boat with rice, teriyaki sauce chicken and pineapple chunks, then serve!

Do You Eat The Pineapple Boat?

No, the actual pineapple boat is for decoration. But all the pineapple that is scooped out, chopped and added to the recipe is what will be eaten.

Two pineapple boats with rice and pineapple teriyaki chicken with a frying pan and more of the chicken pieces beside it.

Recipe Tips

  • BROWN THE CHICKEN: Heat the frying pan over medium-high heat with a bit of cooking oil. Once it’s hot, sear the chicken breasts on both sides for 2 minutes. This will help to seal in the juices, making the meat moist and tender. This step is done before adding the sauce to the pan.
  • THICKEN SAUCE WITHOUT CORNSTARCH: Although cornstarch is naturally gluten-free, many cornstarch brands are manufactured in a facility that processes other ingredients with gluten. If you’re avoiding gluten, you can substitute it with arrowroot flour. This is an easy substitute for any recipes you make requiring cornstarch.
  • STIR SAUCE FREQUENTLY: This sauce uses brown sugar which can sometimes burn while cooking in the frying pan. It is important to stir frequently. I prefer to use a silicone spatula which helps to scrape the sides of the pan while the sauce begins to thicken.

How To Tell When Chicken Is Cooked

According to the USDA cooking temperatures, the safest internal temperature for cooking chicken is 165°F. This is the interior temperature that the chicken will read at once removed from the frying pan.

You can use a meat thermometer, which will be poked into the thickest part of the chicken to read the temperature. The chicken will also no longer be pink inside and juices will run clear.

Serving Suggestions

When it comes to serving, there are plenty of options to choose from. Here are a few serving suggestions:

  • RICE – Serve over a bed of steamed rice for a classic teriyaki chicken bowl.
  • VEGGIES – Pair with roasted vegetables, such as broccoli or carrots, for a balanced meal.
  • MORE PINEAPPLE – Serve with a side of pineapple chunks for an extra burst of sweetness.
  • TOPPINGS – Top with sliced green onions and sesame seeds for added flavor and texture.

Pro Tip: For a fun twist, try serving the chicken on skewers for a tasty appetizer or party snack. Simply thread the chicken onto skewers with chunks of pineapple and grill on the barbecue until cooked through. Serve with a side of teriyaki sauce for dipping.

No matter how you choose to serve it, Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken is sure to be a crowd-pleaser. Its sweet and savory flavor makes it a versatile dish that can be enjoyed any time of year.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I have to make the pineapple boats?

No! This is a fun way to serve the recipe but it certainly isn’t required. These can also be served with rice and veggies in a regular bowl.

Can I use other meats instead of chicken?

Yes, you can use other meats like pork or beef instead of chicken. However, keep in mind that the cooking time may vary depending on the type of meat you use.

Can I use canned pineapple instead of fresh?

Yes, you can use canned pineapple instead of fresh pineapple. However, fresh pineapple is recommended as it has a better flavor and texture compared to canned pineapple. Without fresh pineapple, you can’t create the pineapple boats, but you certainly don’t need them to enjoy the recipe!

A pineapple boat with rice, teriyaki chicken bites, sprinkled with green onion and sesame seeds.

Overall, Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken is a great option for those looking for a flavorful and easy-to-make meal. It is perfect for a weeknight dinner and will wow anyone when you’re entertaining guests.

More Chicken Recipes

A pineapple boat with cooked rice and teriyaki chicken pieces inside.

Pineapple Chicken With Rice Recipe

Chopped chicken is cooked with a pineapple teriyaki sauce, and served with rice in pineapple boats.
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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 2 pineapple boats


  • 1 medium pineapple - with 1 cup of pineapple chunks reserved


  • 1 ½ lbs boneless skinless chicken breasts - cut into bite sized pieces
  • ½ tsp Salt
  • ¼ tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 Tbsp cooking oil - vegetable oil, coconut oil, olive oil etc.


Serve With:


Prep The Rice:

  • Cook the rice according to package instructions and the way you normally do (I use a rice cooker). You'll need about 2 cups of uncooked rice for the pineapple boats.

Make Pineapple Boats:

  • Slice the pineapple in half, including the stem. Use a sharp knife to slice around the edge, leaving 1 inch from the edge and along the inner stem. Cut and scoop out the inside pieces being careful not to cut through the pineapple skin. Save the pineapple chunks in a bowl. Set pineapple boats aside.
    Pineapple sliced in half with chunks taken out to create a pineapple boat.

Make The Sauce:

  • Add 1 cup of the pineapple chunks, ¼ cup soy sauce, ¼ cup water, 3 Tbsp brown sugar, 1 tsp ginger powder, 3 Tbsp rice vinegar and 2 tsp cornstarch to a blender or food processor. Blend until it creates a smooth creamy sauce.
    A blender with blended sauce before and after.
  • Chop 1 ½ lbs of raw chicken breasts into bite size cubes. Season with salt and pepper.
    Chopped raw chicken breast with a knife on a cutting board.
  • Heat a frying pan with 1 Tbsp cooking oil over medium high heat. Once hot, add the raw chopped chicken. Season it with ½ tsp salt and ¼ tsp black pepper. Brown the chicken on all sides, but do not overcook. Transfer the cooked chicken to a bowl and set aside.
    Two images of a frying pan, first with raw chopped chicken pieces, second with cooked chicken pieces.
  • Cooked chicken pieces in a white bowl.
  • Add the 3 minced garlic cloves to the frying pan over medium high heat and cook 1 minute. Pour in the blended sauce and heat for 1-2 minutes, stirring slowly until begins to thicken.
    Two images of a frying pan, first with teriyaki sauce and a spatula. Second with chicken pieces dumped on top of the teriyaki sauce.
  • Add the cooked chicken back to the pan and mix everything together. Let it warm through another 1 minute then remove from heat.
    Teriyaki chicken pieces in a frying pan.
  • Scoop 1 cup of cooked rice into half of each pineapple. Spoon in the teriyaki chicken on the other half. Sprinkle the tops with chopped green onion and sesame seeds. Serve and enjoy!
    Pineapple boats with rice and teriyaki chicken pieces and a frying pan with more chicken.

Recipe Notes:

This recipe will make 6 servings, but only 2 pineapple boats. The rest can be served in bowls with rice.
These pineapple boats won’t store well and should be served fresh. However, You can store the rice and cooked teriyaki chicken separately in the fridge.
  • REFRIGERATE – Allow the chicken and rice to cool before placing it in an airtight container. You can keep this in your fridge for about 3-5 days.
  • FREEZE – Add leftovers to an airtight container or freezer bag. Remove as much air as possible to prevent freezer burn. Store it in the freezer for up to 2-3 months.


Calories: 325kcal | Carbohydrates: 42g | Protein: 27g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 0.01g | Cholesterol: 73mg | Sodium: 330mg | Potassium: 628mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 21g | Vitamin A: 142IU | Vitamin C: 74mg | Calcium: 43mg | Iron: 1mg

The nutritional information provided is an estimate and is per serving.

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Easy 30 minute pineapple teriyaki chicken in pineapple boats with a frying pan with teriyaki chicken pieces.

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