Instant Pot Chinese Whole Chicken with Gravy (gluten free)

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This Instant Pot Chinese whole chicken is so good. It’s juicy, tender and very easy. Infusing the chicken with the flavour of these aromatic Chinese ingredients will leave you with a tender whole chicken and a killer gravy. Perfect each time.

The holidays are coming and they are definitely looking a little different this year. With COVID going on, a whole turkey may be a bit too much. And so, enter this whole chicken recipe, the perfect addition to your table! I love cooking with asian flavours so much and they’re always the star of my holiday meals. This year I decided to cook my whole chicken in the Instant Pot and seriously, game changer!

The thought of cooking a whole chicken can seem daunting. To be honest, I definitely wasn’t cooking full chickens very often before this recipe. By using the pressure cooker, preparing a whole chicken is no longer a fuss and is actually super consistent! The meat comes out crazy flavourful and so tender that the wings literally fall off the bones. All that was left was to work in some of that crispy roasted skin that we love.

I have found that it is often more economical to buy a full chicken than just chicken breasts, which has definitely made it easier to make this chicken more often. This recipe works great for special occasions but also for a big batch meal at the beginning of the week! That way you have lunches or dinner already taken care of. Yay for one less thing to worry about during a busy schedule!

The gravy is very simple to make and just as consistent as the chicken. You don’t need much to be able to enjoy it when serving with the chicken and sides. I especially love to pair it with steamed asian greens and rice stuffing. Drizzle with some of my favourite chili crisp and it is even better!

If you make this recipe, I would absolutely love to hear your feedback and would love to talk to you all some more so please leave a comment! Also, if you do make this recipe, I’d really love to see your creations so please tag me on Instagram.

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My Essential Pantry Items

Lao Gan Ma Spicy Chili Crisp

OXO Good Grips Silicone Pressure Cooker Roasting Rack

Instant Pot Chinese Whole Chicken with Gravy

This Instant Pot Chinese whole chicken is so good. It’s juicy, tender and very easy. Infusing the chicken with the flavour of these aromatic Chinese ingredients will leave you with a tender whole chicken and a killer gravy. Perfect each time.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 1 hr
Brine/Marinade Time: 1 d
Course Chicken, Dinner, Lunch, Main Course
Cuisine Chinese
Servings 6 people

Ingredients
  

  • 1 Whole chicken about 4lbs
  • 8 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 cup salt
  • 8 cups water
  • 3 inch ginger sliced
  • 5 small dried chilis halved
  • 4 star anise
  • 6 cloves
  • 3 pieces dried orange peel
  • 6 whole peppercorns
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce, gluten free if necessary
  • 1 tbsp chinese cooking wine
  • 1 tsp chicken better than bouillon (or bouillon cube) *(see notes below for alternative)
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • ¼ cup all purpose flour
  • 3 tsp granulated sugar based on your tastes

Instructions
 

For the brine/marinade:

  • Combine garlic, salt, water, ginger, chilis, spices, sugar, soy sauce, and chinese cooking wine in a large bowl with a lid that will fit your chicken. (I use the instant pot since I know it fits)
  • Mix together until salt and sugar dissolves
  • Add the chicken, breast side down, to the bowl, cover, and set in the fridge for 12-24 hours. I like to set it up overnight so it is ready by the time I need to cook it.
  • When you are ready to cook the chicken, strain the brine and keep the spices.

To cook the chicken:

  • Add the spices, garlic, ginger, bouillon and water or broth to the instant pot.
  • Add the steaming rack and place the chicken on the rack, breast side up. Seal the Instant Pot.
  • Cook on high pressure for 24 minutes. You can either release the pressure manually after the time has elapsed or let it release naturally until you are ready for next steps.
  • To get a nice golden skin, heat the oven to 425°F degrees C and prepare a sheet pan with a roasting rack (silicone or metal).
  • Remove the chicken from the pot and place it, breast side up, onto the prepared rack.
  • Strain and discard the spices from the remaining liquid in the pot. Set the liquid in the fridge for about 10 minutes. I find this helps the fat separate and makes it easier to remove afterwards.
  • Brush 1-2 tbsp soy sauce onto the chicken for extra umami (savory flavor). I like to rub it into the skin.
  • Place the chicken onto the rack and bake for 15 minutes or until the skin is golden to your liking.
  • Let the chicken rest for about 10 minutes before carving.

To make the gravy:

  • Remove the cooking liquid from the fridge and skim the fat off the top.
  • Heat a small saucepan at medium heat and melt butter.
  • Add flour and whisk until the mixture is golden.
  • Whisk in the broth and simmer until thickened, can be up to 5 minutes.
  • Taste and add sugar to adjust the flavor to your liking.
  • Transfer the gravy to a gravy boat or bowl and serve with the carved chicken. I love how this pairs with my sticky rice stuffing! Drizzle with some of my favourite chili crisp and it is even better! (link in the pantry box)

Notes

You can substitute the bouillon cube and water with 1 cup of chicken broth.
Keyword Easy, Holiday, Instant Pot

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