Spicy Pineapple Chicken Stir Fry

May 19, 2013
4 Ratings
Photo by James Ransom
  • Serves 4
Author Notes

A no effort sweet and spicy stir fry. The marinade also works magic on pork and salmon. —QueenSashy

What You'll Need
  • 8 ounces pineapple
  • 1/3 cup soy sauce
  • 1/3 cup molasses
  • 3 tablespoons malt vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon sriracha (this will be pretty mild, add more for extra heat)
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated ginger
  • 2 pounds chicken, cut into one inch cubes
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • Some red pepper flakes (optional)
  1. In a blender pure the pineapple. Add the soy sauce, molasses, vinegar, ketchup, sriracha, garlic, and ginger, and mix well. Cover the chicken with the marinade and leave in the refrigerator for about six hours.
  2. In a large sauté pan heat the oil until very hot. Place the chicken with the marinade that sticks to it in the pan and fry for about 15 minutes, until chicken is well done and marinade is reduce to a caramelized coating on the chicken. (Make sure you do not overcrowd the pan, so you may have to do this in batches. If you have any leftover marinade, deglaze the pain with it and reduce to thick sauce.) Serve with steamed rice.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Melanie Jane
    Melanie Jane
  • Matteo Cavelier
    Matteo Cavelier
  • Christine Marie
    Christine Marie
  • Sara S.
    Sara S.
  • cookiemo
Aleksandra aka QueenSashy is a scientist by day, and cook, photographer and doodler by night. When she is not writing code and formulas, she blogs about food, life and everything in between on her blog, Three Little Halves. Three Little Halves was nominated for 2015 James Beard Awards and the finalist for 2014 Saveur Best Food Blog Awards. Aleksandra lives in New York City with her other two halves, Miss Pain and Dr. V.

61 Reviews

NXL June 2, 2022
Because of the many reviews complaining about the texture of the mixture, I left the pineapple out and then added pineapple chunks to the stir fry. Everything got great color when cooked all at once on outdoor griddle. We loved the flavors!
S March 26, 2020
I've had very good luck with this recipe. Rather than blending the ingredients, I simply use a full can of crushed pineapple. That's a bit more than called for, but it works well.
rhubarb_season August 30, 2017
This recipe turned out very flavorful and I thought it was great! Followed the recipe exactly and used canned pineapple. Blended everything in our Vitamix, marinated for a few hours and husband and I thought it was good. A little indulgent with the molasses and pineapple sauce but nothing wrong with that. Thanks for a great recipe!
Melanie J. April 26, 2017
Made this the other night. Despite all the delicious ingredients, this was a total "meh" for me. I used fresh pineapple and the first night it only marinated about 3 hours but once it cooked up the consistency of the sauce was just weird and sort of, um pastey? I thought it might be better after marinating longer, so I made it the following evening. By then it had benign the marinade for 24+ hours. Flavor was pretty good but the weird texture of the sauce was still the same, would not try again. I was really hoping that I loved this, oh well.
Maria E. August 31, 2016
I have made hundreds of Food 52 recipes with overwhelming success and this one is a total fail!!! Marinade turned the chicken to mush and tasted heavy and pasty...tried to salvage it with adding some pineapple juice and a little coconut milk to the remaining marinade for a sauce. Still not a good outcome ...debated pitching the whole thing in the garbage and just eating the nice coconut rice I made to accompany it but we struggled through it and unfortunately threw out the leftovers ...which there was a lot of...bummer
Tad May 22, 2016
Nice recipe. I did not have sriracha, so I substituted it with a few dashes of salsa picante, a few pickled hot mini red peppers and rounded up with crushed red pepper flakes to make sure the marinade is spicy. For molasses I took some inexpensive artificial maple syrup and it worked fine. Also, did not have malt vinegar, took balsamic instead and 3x the garlic. For deglazing I used some ready beef stock from carton to make/finish the sauce. It was delicious, just make sure you make it in small batches as prescribed by the author. Thank you for the recipe.
DennisH March 5, 2016
Your instructions say to cut the chicken into 1 inch cubes. The photo shows skin on parts. Which is it?
QueenSashy March 5, 2016
The first photo is from Food52, it looks like they cut the chicken into larger cubes. Take a look at my photo (second) it shows smaller cubes. This is a free style dish so feel free to do whatever you prefer.
Michael M. November 3, 2015
Can you sub Tamarind molasses for just plain molasses?
QueenSashy November 3, 2015
Yes, I always use plain molasses. Maple syrup works fine too.
Dory G. April 22, 2015
I made this tonight and we loved it. I marinated 4 hrs. And topped with chopped scallions. Next time I will add some sliced water chestnut for crunch and a fresh pineapple salsa on the side.

QueenSashy April 22, 2015
Dory, thank you for the comment. I love all the thoughtful additions you made (especially the salsa) and cannot wait to give them a try.
Matteo C. April 10, 2015
"Deglaze the pain." Very apt suggestion.
Christine M. December 26, 2014
This sounds so good. I have leftover maple syrup that we'll probably never use. Can that sub for molasses?
QueenSashy December 26, 2014
Absolutely, and the darker the better.
newly December 3, 2014
I took this recipe and turned it on its side to fit my dinner requirements. My family is still talking about it. I put 2" chunks of salmon and some marinade in a zip top bag. I then put some chopped onions, peppers, celery and fresh pineapple into a pan with some oil. Softened that for 5 minutes over a high heat, poured some marinade on that and turned the heat down to med high. I covered that with Swiss chard and let that wilt for two minutes, covered. Finally I emptied the bag with salmon/marinade on top of the chard, covered it and let the salmon steam for about 10-12 mins. I served it with wild rice and it was amazing!
QueenSashy December 3, 2014
It sounds mouthwatering, and far more exciting than my original dish! You should post the recipe :)
Julie M. May 22, 2014
I know I'm late to respond, but I just wanted to say that we really loved this. I used a little brown sugar instead of molasses, but I followed the recipe otherwise (using canned pineapple!) I left most of the marinade behind when I sauteed the chicken in batches; by the last batch, the pureed pineapple was beginning to stick on parts of the pan, but it cleaned up easily enough. I boiled the leftover marinade for extra sauce, and chopped up roasted asparagus to serve with the chicken over rice. We loved the flavor--just a little spicy, but also a nice combination of sweet and savory. Thanks for a fun recipe.
Al April 29, 2014
Truly vile. Clearly no one tested this recipe before posting. Every ingredient is either sugar or loaded with sugar so the marinade burns on contact in an appropriately heated stir fry pan rendering the sauce both charred and sickly sweet. Plus, the flavor of pineapple, which should be the star ingredient, is obliterated by the molasses. Yuck!
Andie April 29, 2014
I agree! Way too much molasses! Waste of good money.
Jason April 16, 2014
@SarainAmerica I agree, it was a bit bland.
Sara S. April 16, 2014
I made this tonight. Granted, I did use Ataulfo mango in place of pineapple because that was what I had, but I found it kind of bland!
V April 16, 2014
I made this last night and it was yummy. however my skillet (Calphanon non-sick) was burned black. took a boy of soaking and scrubs with baking soda to get it off. it was horrible. is this because I did out all the marinade in with the chicken? I followed the initial directions to a tee so I don't understand. I now see below a suggestion below not to add the extra marinade. There was quite a bit left over so I put it all in there with the chicken which I did in two batches. it reduced, got sticker to the chicken and honestly looked like you photo but it killed my pan. I marinaded the chicken for 4+ hours yet it was like a soup. Any advice? I am NOT an experienced cook; my friends would pass out knowing I'm cooking let alone on a cooking website :) I'd like to make again but I do not want to go through the mess with that pan again. I thought I'd ruined the pan.
Andie April 15, 2014
The way this is written, it sounds like all of the marinade should go in with the chicken. I thought the recipe turned out too strong tasting/heavy, too thick and my daughter said it was awful (she's an adventurous eater). I wish I would've read your comment about cooking only the marinade that sticks to the chicken. Nearly 20 bucks in organic chicken and a so-so meal that I will likely not make again. I guess that's the price when using a site with cooks that aren't tried and true. Fairly disappointed that the lack of clarity more or less ruined our dinner. Bummer.
QueenSashy April 15, 2014
Andy, I am sorry it happened and that the recipe was not clear enough. I updated the instructions to avoid any confusion in the future.
QueenSashy April 15, 2014
and I am sorry that I miss-spelled your name too... Cheers
V April 16, 2014
a die I had the same problem, see. my note above, but my husband and I found this to be a fantastic meal - just a mess yo deal with in the pan. I even doubled the amount of Srarachi to 2 tablespoons and gave it a real kick. I am a horribly intexperienced cook, and I found this easy to make. Sorry didn't work out for you.
cookiemo April 14, 2014
Not sure what I did wrong. The outside of the cooked chicken was covered in a "paste" like substance, even though I cooked it for over 15 minutes. My kids didn't like it. I thought the flavor was excellent, but the sauce did not produce a nice texture.
Ruth M. April 14, 2014
This is absolutely delicious!! I made what I thought was way too much last night for a family dinner and there is hardly any left for tonight. Pout!