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The One Cooking Guide You Need To Make Dinnertime Simple

Whether you want to use your Instant Pot to cook up a fresh, whole chicken or a few frozen chicken breasts, this handy guide will tell you everything you need to know!

While you certainly can use your Instant Pot to cook up delicious, table-ready meals in a hurry, that’s far from the only way you can use it! Personally, I find myself using my Instant Pot more frequently to cook just part of a meal.

For instance, I often cook rice in my Instant Pot to serve as a side for something I cooked on the grill or in the oven. It saves me time and counter space, and the rice turns out perfectly every time!

And nowhere is this tactic more useful than for cooking chicken! Whether you’re going to use it in a casserole, salad, or enchiladas, cooking chicken in your Instant Pot is a great way to save yourself time and effort in the kitchen.

In order to help make that process even easier, today I’ll be sharing a guide to cooking Instant Pot chicken! Below you’ll find clear and concise instructions – including info on Instant Pot pressure release methods – that will enable to cook all kinds of chicken in the Instant Pot, from whole birds to breasts, and from thawed to frozen.

Bon appetit! 🙂

The Ultimate Guide To Instant Pot Chicken

1. Whole Chicken

Before Cooking: Remove any parts from the chicken cavity. Pat the interior and exterior of the bird dry with a paper towel, then season well with salt and pepper. Add fresh herbs and a few lemon slices to the cavity, if desired.

Cooking Instructions:

  1. Use the Sauté function to sear the chicken for 2-3 minutes, breast-side down.
  2. Flip the bird over, turn off the pot, and add 1 cup of chicken stock.
  3. Lock the lid in place, then pressure cook on High for 6 minutes per pound.

Pressure Release: Use Natural Release, then let the chicken rest for 10 minutes before slicing or cutting.

2. Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breast

Before Cooking: Pat the chicken breasts dry with a paper towel, then season well on both sides with your preferred seasonings.

Cooking Instructions:

  1. Use the Sauté function to sear the breasts for 3 minutes on each side.
  2. Turn off the pot and set the seared breasts aside.
  3. Place the metal trivet in the bottom of the pot, pour in 1 cup of water, and set the seared breasts on the trivet.
  4. Lock the lid in place, then pressure cook on High for 5 minutes.

Pressure Release: Use Natural Release for 5 minutes, then Quick Release to depressurize.

3. Bone-In, Skin-On Chicken Breast

Follow the same process for cooking boneless, skinless chicken breast, but increase the cook time to 8 minutes.

4. Frozen Chicken Breast

Cooking Instructions:

  1. Pour 4 cups of cold water into the pot and add 1 tablespoon of salt and 2 bay leaves.
  2. Add up to 3 frozen chicken breasts to the pot.
  3. Lock the lid in place, then pressure cook on High for 6 minutes.

Pressure Release: Use Natural Release.

For more useful tips about cooking frozen chicken in your Instant Pot, read my post on the topic here.

5. Boneless Chicken Thighs

Follow the same process for cooking boneless, skinless chicken breast, but with the following adjustments:

  • Increase cook time to 10 minutes
  • Increase Natural Release to 10 minutes

6. Bone-In Chicken Thighs

Follow the same process for cooking boneless, skinless chicken breast, but with the following adjustments:

  • Increase cook time to 12 minutes
  • Increase Natural Release to 10 minutes

7. Bonus: “Dump Chicken”

Before Cooking: Choose a cooking liquid to flavor your chicken, like barbecue sauce, salsa, honey mustard, Italian dressing, teriyaki sauce, etc.

Cooking Instructions:

  1. Add boneless, skinless chicken breasts to the pot with 1 cup of your chosen cooking liquid.
  2. Lock the lid in place, and pressure cook on High for 10 minutes.

Pressure Release: Use Natural Release for 5 minutes, then Quick Release to depressurize. Shred chicken before serving.

If cooking from frozen, increase cook time to 12 minutes and use Natural Release for 10 minutes.

Craving More Instant Pot Tips?

For more practical information and useful tips for cooking up delicious Instant Pot creations, be sure to check out my eBook Everything Instant Pot! You can buy it in my shop, or download it for free if you’re an OGT Plus member!

Share your favorite chicken recipe with us in the comments below!

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    Hi, I’m Jillee!

    I believe we should all love the place we call home and the life we live there. Since 2011, I’ve been dedicated to making One Good Thing by Jillee a reliable and trustworthy resource for modern homemakers navigating the everyday challenges of running a household. Join me as I share homemaking and lifestyle solutions that make life easier so you can enjoy it more!

    Every day I share creative homemaking and lifestyle solutions that make your life easier and more enjoyable!

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