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ooked three cup chicken drumsticks with basil in a white plate on top of gray cloth.
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4.41 from 5 votes

Instant Pot Three Cup Chicken (San Bei Ji)

Learn how to make this classic Taiwanese three cup chicken in your instant pot with professional tips.
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Total Time30 mins
Course: Main
Cuisine: Asian, Taiwanese
Servings: 3 people
Calories: 412kcal
Author: Edwina


  • Instant Pot


  • 6 chicken drumsticks 1½ lb
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • teaspoon white pepper powder optional
  • 2 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 8 thinly sliced ginger
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • tablespoon soy sauce replace ½ tablespoon with dark soy sauce if available
  • 1 tablespoon oyster sauce can be replace with soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp rock sugar can be replaced with regular sugar
  • 2 tbsp rice cooking wine (mijiu)
  • a big handful of basil thick stem removed
  • warm white rice


Marinate the chicken

  • Rub salt and white pepper on the chicken, set it aside for 15 minutes. It will be even better if you can do it for a few hours or overnight.


  • Turn on "saute" function, add sesame oil, vegetable oil and ginger. Cook for 2 minutes before adding garlic glove. Continue to cook until ginger becomes wrinkly and golden brown, stirring occasionally. If the temperature becomes too high, turn off the saute function for about 30 seconds before turning it on again. Adding vegetable oil will prevent the sesame oil from turning bitter from cooking with high heat.
  • Meanwhile, mix soy sauce, oyster sauce, sugar and rice cooking wine together and set it aside.
  • Add chicken along and the seasoning mix. Stir to allow the seasoning to distribute evenly.
  • Cancel the saute function, cover the the lid and select "poultry" to start cooking.
  • When it's done cooking, let the pressure release naturally or manually after 10 minutes.
  • Open the lid, flip the chicken so the top side can touch the sauce. Choose saute function and cook until the sauce is thickened like glaze and able to coat the chicken. Rotate a few times so the chicken can be coated with sauce evenly.
  • Cancel the saute function, stir in basil and serve with warm rice.


Calories: 412kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 29g | Fat: 28g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 139mg | Sodium: 1354mg | Potassium: 386mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 70IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 22mg | Iron: 1mg