Instant Pot Ginger Chicken Soup

A cozy, Asian-style chicken soup spiked with ginger and fish sauce.  Ginger Chicken Soup, made easier in the Instant Pot, will become your new winter favorite. 

bowl of chicken broth with cilantro, held by two hands

One of the reasons I heart my Instant Pot is that it makes cooking soup soooo much simpler. 

On the stovetop, soup usually requires an hour or two of simmering.  And skimming off the surface scum from time to time.  All of this work, although minimal to some degree, results in great-tasting soup.  But it can leave you feeling chained to the stove and somewhat harassed for a portion of the day.    

In the Instant Pot, there’s no “soup tending” to be had.  For this recipe, you only need 18 minutes to get a deeply flavoured stock from minimal ingredients.  Simply dump everything into the Instant Pot. Then go about your day.  When the timer goes off, strain the stock and season with fish sauce.    

bowl of ginger chicken soup with hands and spoon
small bowls of ginger chicken soup on a napkin and cutting board

Hands down, this is the easiest and tastiest way to make a rich, clean-tasting, Asian-style chicken soup with very little effort.  

This recipe makes a great chicken stock with warming ginger and punch of flavor from fish sauce.  But shred the chicken, add some rice noodles and herbs, throw in a soft-boiled egg and you’ve got a legit meal that will take the chill off winter.  

ginger chicken soup with rice noodles, shredded chicken, and chili oil on the side
ginger chicken soup in bowl with hand

Ginger Chicken Soup has become my family’s new favorite winter soup.  And it couldn’t be easier.  Now, it can be yours, too.  

Some Notes:


For a long time, I didn’t properly store ginger.  As a result, my ginger routinely molded, turned black, rotted, shrivelled up.  

The secret to storing fresh ginger is to keep it dry and cold with the papery skin intact.  Do not peel it or freeze it.  Do not wrap it or cover it in plastic.  Do not keep it in the plastic produce bag from the grocery store or in your vegetable crisper, either.

Instead, designate a small shallow bowl in your fridge for ginger and garlic.  Bring ginger home from the store, remove the plastic bag, and put it straight away into this open-air container in the fridge. 

ginger and garlic in a bowl with green onions on the side

Water is the enemy of ginger.  Even a tiny bit of condensation will contribute to mold growth.  Keeping ginger in an open dish will keep it dry and fresh for a long time, about a month.  Once the ginger starts shrivelling, it’s time to make some Ginger Scallion sauce.

When a recipe calls for ginger, cut off the desired amount with a clean knife.  Then return the rest to the fridge.  The fresh cut will “scab” over in a few days.  

If possible, I recommend organic ginger.  It’s not that much more expensive but wow, the flavour!  Organic ginger is more intense so if you’re not crazy about ginger, I recommend using only a 1-inch portion (vs 3-inch) in this recipe.         

Chicken Bones + Skin

The best chicken stock comes from chicken with bones and skin.  Something magical happens when the odds and ends of meat bones are simmered together with aromatics. 

That being said, if you make this soup with boneless, skinless chicken breast, the flavour will be remarkably different.  I do not recommend it.  If you must insist on chicken breast, opt for skin-on, bone-in chicken breast.  That extra bit of collagen and skin will be a vast improvement compared to its naked counterpart.

ingredients for Ginger Chicken Soup in Instant Pot

Serving Ginger Chicken Soup

The simplest way to serve Ginger Chicken Soup is as a basic soup stock.  Reserve the chicken for another dish (like Chicken Salad), and serve the soup as is. This becomes a nice, light soup that can be served alongside a full meal.  

If you’re looking for a main course meal, I suggest adding rice noodles, cooked vegetables, and even a soft boiled egg to the shredded chicken meat.  Drizzle with plenty of spicy chili oil.

Just make sure to add more fish sauce to taste, as the additional rice noodles will dilute the flavour of the broth.  Enjoy!

IP Ginger Chicken Soup

A cozy, warming chicken soup spiked with ginger and fish sauce.
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time18 mins
Total Time23 mins
Course: Soup
Cuisine: Asian
Keyword: Instant Pot Ginger Chicken Soup
Servings: 4
Author: The Subversive Table


In the Instant Pot

  • 4 chicken thighs with skin + bones
  • 1 onion peeled + cut in half
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 3 inch knob ginger cut into think slices
  • 10 peppercorns
  • 7 cups water cold


  • 1-2 Tbsp fish sauce (according to taste)
  • handful chopped cilanto or green onion optional garnish


  • 4 soft boiled eggs
  • 1 cup cooked vegetable of choice
  • 4 ounces rice vermicelli


  • Dump all ingredients (except the fish sauce) into the Instant Pot
    ingredients for Ginger Chicken Soup in Instant Pot
  • Set the manual mode to 18 minutes, high pressure.  Turn off the “Keep Warm” function.
  • When the Instant Pot is finished cooking, manually release the steam.  Open the Instant Pot and remove the chicken thighs onto a plate and set aside. 
    Strain the rest of the stock with a fine-mesh sieve into a large pot. Season with fish sauce. Cover and set aside.  
  • Remove the chicken skin from the chicken thighs.  Using two forks, shred the chicken meat.  Set aside.
    Shredded Chicken Meat | The Subversive Table

Conventional Stovetop directions:

  • Put all ingredients (except the fish sauce) into a large stock pot.  Bring to a a boil.  Lower heat and simmer for 1 -1.5 hours.  
  • Remove chicken thighs onto a plate and set aside.  Strain the rest of the stock with a fine-mesh sieve.  Season with fish sauce.  Cover and set aside.
  • Remove the chicken skin from the chicken thighs.  Using two forks, shred the chicken meat.  Set aside.  

To serve as chicken stock:

  • Garnish soup with chopped cilantro or green onion.  Serve hot.  
    Use reserved, shredded chicken meat for another dish.  
    bowl of ginger chicken soup with hands and spoon

To serve as a more substantial meal:

  • Add shredded chicken back into large pot.  Add an additonal  1 – 2 Tbsp of fish sauce.  Cover and keep warm.   
  • Soak rice vemicelli in hot water for 10 minutes.  Drain and rinse in cold water.  Set aside. 
  • Assemble:  Add rice vermicelli, cooked vegetables of choice, and soft boiled egg (optional) into serving bowls.  Add hot chicken stock, making sure to include shredded chicken.  Serve with chopped cilantro or green onion and spicy chili oil.  
    ginger chicken soup in bowl with hand


*The cook time does not include the time it takes for the IP to pressurize.  
**The amount of fish sauce to add depends on personal preference and the amount of salt that’s already included in your chicken stock.  I suggest tasting and adjusting the seasoning according to personal preference.  

More Soup Inspiration:

Kimchi Stew aka Kimchi Jjigae

kimchi stew (kimchi jjigae) in a white bowl with spoon

Basic Chili

chili in bowl with cheese, cilantro, sour cream and grey napkin underneath

Budae Jjigae

budae jjigae ingredients in hot pot on table with plate of vegetables on the side
All Recipes, Asian Inspired, Chicken, Instant Pot, Soup, Weeknight Meals


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