Tahini chicken is great made in an Instant Pot, Ninja Foodi or any other pressure cooker. This sesame seed sauce is packed with flavor.
If you have had tahini chicken at a restaurant you know how yummy it really is. Using breasts or chicken thighs like we did here, under pressure, creates fork tender meat with a creamy sauce. One of many easy Instant Pot recipes we have on our site you’ll love. (affiliate links present, originally published 4/22)
Instant Pot Tahini Chicken
Quick easy chicken recipes are my jam. Thighs are even better. Not only are they super cheap but if you ask me they have way more flavor, and are more tender than any other pieces. When cooking under pressure you need some sort of sauce that isn’t too thick.
Yes you can just throw in a bottle of bbq sauce and make Instant Pot shredded chicken, but this has a totally unique flavor. Have you tried it yet?
FIRST – You should sign up for my free newsletter so you get new posts emailed to you twice a week and never miss out on anything! Now let’s start with a few basic tips:
- Make sure to Bookmark our InstaPot recipes page. We add new ones each week!
- Then PRINT this —–> Instant Pot cooking times cheat sheet that will help you understand how long meat, vegetables and beans take to cook in your pressure cooker.
For reference, this is the pressure cooker I have (a 6 quart) and use for all recipe creations.
Instant Pot Chicken Thighs Recipe
Like I said, we use this meat quite often. You’ll want these to be fresh or defrosted. I have cooked frozen chicken thighs in pressure cooker before but you wouldn’t be able to marinate them if they were rock solid.
What is tahini made of?
If you have seen this bottled sauce at the store it is actually ground up sesame seeds with a little olive oil and salt. That is it y’all. So what does tahini taste like then? By itself it has a deep nutty flavor, if you have had a bunch of sesame seeds in your mouth you would kinda’ have an idea.
Some think it would taste like peanut butter chicken because of the brownish color but it doesn’t. In this case we aren’t marinating it in just that, there are other flavors so it looks more like a yogurt sauce than anything. With a little lemon and honey it brings a sweet freshness into the mix.
If you’ve never made this before you will likely need to order a bottle of tahini, I had to do this online. We live in a smallish town and there’s no way this would be carried at the store. You can use your Crockpot Express or Ninja Foodi machine to make this too, they all work. To make this you’ll need.
- Diced onions are optional but great
- Olive oil
- Water or use chicken broth for more flavor
- Diced air fryer roasted garlic is best, bottled minced garlic is fine
- Fresh lemon zest
- Honey for a bit of sweetness
You’ll add this into a gallon freezer bag with your boneless skinless chicken thighs and stick it into the fridge overnight. You could use chicken breasts but I would choose small ones, or slice in half so they are thinner.
If you find these on sale buy a bunch so you can use them in other recipes like our Instant Pot chicken thighs and rice dish too.
Ninja Foodi Tahini Chicken
Yes you could use a pot on the stovetop over medium high heat and simmer this until your meat was starting to fall apart for sure. I won’t fault you if you want to use that method, it will still be delicious. I love using my Ninja Foodi or Crockpot Express for meals like this though.
- Mix the ingredients for the tahini sauce marinade and pour into a large gallon Ziploc bag. Add the chicken into the bag, seal, and refrigerate overnight.
- Pour 1 cup of water into the electric pressure cooker. Dump the chicken and sauce from the freezer bag into the water.
- Cover with lid and seal steam release valve too. Set to high pressure for 15 minutes cooking time.
- Perform a quick release of the pressure when done. Remove the chicken thighs to dice on a cutting board, shred with forks right in the pot or serve cooked chicken whole.
Sprinkle with salt and pepper as needed and a little squeeze of lemon juice is enjoyed by many too.
What does Tahini go With
Let’s talk about side dishes shall we? I am sure you have a few of your favorites but if you want some new suggestions we have a few like:
- You can make some air fryer sweet potato cubes.
- The cheapest and easiest choice we probably make the most often would be a batch of jasmine rice. Serve the meat on top and pour a bit of the sauce from the pot over everything. Done.
- Butter noodles are my kids’ favorite choice probably. Now that my husband is going dairy free we don’t have those as often but I miss them.
- If I know there is going to be some left to save for the next day I will make one of our simple cabbage recipes to pair with it.
I cannot waste food so I always like to include how to store leftover chicken tips when you are done eating:
How to save leftover Tahini chicken
Do NOT throw away that sauce, tip number one. You want a bunch of that to store away and reheat for the next day. It will continue to stay moist and tender if it is submerged in it. Always wait until it is at room temperature first and then into an airtight container or bag it should go.
When you’re reheating chicken thighs, ideally you should take it out and set it on the counter for 15-20 minutes. Then in a bowl add the meat and sauce to heat in your microwave for about 1-2 minutes, flipping it over halfway thru that time. You can shred it and kinda’ make a soup of sorts out of it for lunch.
Or make one of our leftover chicken recipes here. Sometimes soaking in the sauce for another day makes it even better than it was on day one, really.
Want to see a few of my favorite things that I am totally obsessed with?? Take a peek and see how many you might already have…twinsies!
- In a ziploc freezer bag mix the ingredients for the marinade. Place the chicken thighs into the bag, seal, and refrigerate overnight.
- Pour 1 cup of water into the electric pressure cooker. Dump the contents of the freezer bag into the water. Cover with lid and seal pressure valve too. Set to high pressure for 15 minutes.
- Perform a quick release of the pressure when done. Slice, shred, or serve the chicken thighs whole. Garnish with additional tahini, sesame seeds, or chopped parsley