How Long To Cook A Chicken In The Instant Pot
For every pound of chicken, cook 6 mins. A 3lb whole chicken would need to cook for 18 mins, 4lbs for 24 minutes and 5lbs for 30 minutes. Each will require a 15 minute natural release.
Pro Tip: Whole Chickens can vary in size and weight so naturally the cooking time will also vary but use this easy to follow tip to determine the perfect pressure cooking time.
As long as you can follow along with that simple rule of thumb, you can have a perfectly cooked chicken every time.
I mean, you keep reading about all of these great reasons to cook a chicken in the Instant Pot. Why not get started as soon as possible and put Instant Pot Whole Chicken on the menu this week?
Fun Fact: A Whole Chicken costs less per pound than individual parts of a chicken. Save yourself a few dollars and cut it up yourself. Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts can cost upwards of $5 per pound where a whole chicken often costs less than $1 per pound.
Of course, making this recipe tonight could still be a possibility. Especially if youre waiting until the last minute to cook dinner. So many of us, myself included do this!
Thankfully with a whole cooked chicken, it always looks like you have it together. No one will suspect that dinner was a last minute thought.
You really dont need much to make an easy Instant Pot Whole Chicken. Once you check out the recipe card below youll see for yourself. As long as you have an Instant Pot and a raw whole chicken youre golden!
Here Are Some Tips And Tricks For Cooking Frozen Chicken Breasts In The Instant Pot:
- The exact cook time will depend on how large the chicken breasts are, although for me 10-12 minutes has always been plenty. This means that when I open up the pot they are well over the safe 165 degrees F. But Id rather be safe than have to go through the hassle of sealing it back up and letting it build the pressure back up.
- If youre in a rush, you can simply add water or chicken broth and season with salt and pepper, but feel free to get a little crazy with your seasonings here. Barbecue sauce, soy sauce, honey, different herbs and spices will all be fantastic
- All of my Instant Pot recipes are tested in the 6 quart Instant Pot with Bluetooth. The bluetooth is an unnecessary but handy tool because I can control the pot from my phone while Im out of the kitchen.
- If you want to jazz up your Instant Pot chicken breasts, try these Creamy Italian Instant Pot Chicken Breasts and serve them with the sauce over pasta you wont regret it! You can also use frozen chicken to make this Instant Pot Teriyaki Chicken and Rice.
- Looking for an easy side dish to go along with it? Try my Instant Pot Mac and Cheese so easy and so quick!
Instant Pot Whole Chicken And Gravy
Instant Pot Whole Chicken is the fastest way to cook a rotisserie chicken. Cooking Whole Chicken in the Instant Pot is so juicy and youll love the easy 3-ingredient chicken gravy made from the drippings.
We love the instant pot not just for the speed of making dinner, but because it comes together in one pot. One and done just like our Instant Pot White Chicken Chili and Instant Pot Chicken and Rice. Explore our best Instant Pot Recipes Here.
This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy.
Also Check: How To Convert Slow Cooker Recipe To Instant Pot
Seasoning The Chicken Thighs
Dark meat has more flavor than white meat, but seasoning is a must. You can simply season it with salt and pepper, but I recommend adding more flavors. In this recipe here Ive used paprika, oregano, garlic powder, salt, and pepper.
But feel free to use your favorite seasonings, I love this homemade fajita seasoning, Italian seasoning is also great, and if youre feeling adventurous then go for Middle Eastern flavors with this easy shawarma seasoning recipe.
For Sliceable Chicken Breast
We don’t recommend making more than 2 pounds of frozen chicken breast if you’d like your chicken breast to be sliceable. We found that over 2 pounds, the chicken cooks unevenly. You’ll wind up with raw chicken breast in the center and sliceable breast on the outside, and if you continue cooking the outside will shred while the inside is more of a sliceable consistency. So, if you have over 2 pounds of chicken, just cook it to a shreddable consistency, or defrost and bake it!
As with shreddable chicken, youll simply place the frozen chicken in the Instant Pot along with a cup of water, and set it to cook for a set amount of time. Easy peasy!
Read Also: Why Does My Instant Pot Say Burn
How To Cook A Whole Chicken In An Instant Pot
See my guide on how to use an Instant Pot.
How to cook a whole chicken in an Instant Pot. This rotisserie-style Instant Pot whole chicken recipe is easy to make, even if you are a beginner with using your pressure cooker. Its perfect for Sunday dinner or to make ahead for quick meals throughout the week! Cook from fresh or frozen.
Out of all of the recipes that Ive cooked in my Instant Pot, this whole roast chicken might be my favorite. Its become a part of my weekly routine to make an Instant Pot whole chicken for dinner. Then I use the leftover chicken to make the best quick meals throughout the week! You can use your leftover chicken in salads, pastas, casseroles or sandwiches.
Cooking a whole chicken in the Instant Pot is fast, simple and budget-friendly. Instead of buying a pre-cooked rotisserie chicken at the store, you can make this Instant Pot whole chicken recipe with just minutes of prep time. Your homemade chicken will taste so much better than store-bought, and you can control the ingredients that you use.
This pressure cooker chicken recipe makes the best tender, moist and juicy chicken. Cooking the whole bird gives you both white and dark meat, so everyone in the family can have what they enjoy. Just wait until you try the homemade rotisserie rub in this recipe it is the best!
How Long To Cook Frozen Chicken In The Instant Pot
There are a few different variables that can affect how long frozen chicken takes in an Instant Pot. It depends on the size of your Instant Pot, the cut of meat, the size of your chicken pieces, and the recipe youre using.
Chicken pieces like breasts, thighs, and wings will take considerably less time to cook, says Summer Yule, MS, RDN.
You can use Instant Pots cooking time tables as a guideline. Frozen meat requires a few extra minutes of cooking and may also prolong the time it takes to pressurize before the actual cooking time begins.
That means the actual time from freezer to table will be a bit longer than the cook time but dont worry, its worth the wait.
Yule recommends the following cooking times as a starting point. Your mileage may vary, so always check the internal temperature of your chicken to make sure it reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
Here are a few guidelines that can help you figure out how long you need to cook frozen chicken in the Instant Pot.
Can You Put Frozen Meat In The Instant Pot
Yes, definitely you can! I do this with all kinds of meat and guess what? Its safe! Why? Because the Instant Pot warms the meat fast enough so that it doesnt start to develop bacteria growth on it. Of course, youll want to add cook time if youre using a regular recipe that doesnt call for frozen meat. Typically I add about 5 minutes per pound of meat. If youd like to see how you can do this with Frozen Ground Beef, watch this video here.
How Much Instant Pot Chicken Can You Make
In general, I recommend making no more than four pounds at once, and definitely no more than five.
Five pounds of pressure cooker chicken breast was really pushing it, as it fills up the Instant Pot and it takes a long time to reach pressure. Besides, the chicken starts to cook unevenly if you put in too much, since the pieces sit on top of each other.
Stick with one to four pounds if possible, but if you really want to make five, that will still work just consider it the limit.
When you arrange the chicken in the Instant Pot, try to do so in one layer if possible. If youre making a lot of pressure cooker shredded chicken and cant get the raw chicken in one layer, just disperse it as evenly as you can. This will help it cook more evenly.
Recommended Reading: How Long To Hard Boil Eggs In Instant Pot
Tools Youll Need To Make This Instant Pot Chicken Recipe:
- My recipes are tested in my 6 quart Instant Pot its an older version and for this reason the manual lists 1 cup of liquid as the minimum. I know that the 8 quarts and some of the newer ones list different requirements. For this recipe, you can easily change the liquid to match your manuals suggestion.
- Theres really not much else youll need! I know everyone has different thoughts on cooking meat on or off the trivet, but with chicken breasts I usually place them on the bottom in the liquid.
Pin this recipe to save for later
How To Use Instant Pot Chicken Breast
Congratulations! You’ve got tender, juicy chicken breast that’s ready to use in this week’s meals. Rub a little butter and salt on your whole chicken breasts and reheat for an easy weeknight meal . Use cubed chicken in Chef John’s top-rated Spicy Chicken Noodles. Shredded chicken makes Mexican night a breeze when used in this Slow-Cooker Chicken Tortilla Soup or Baked Chicken and Rice Chimichanga. Browse our entire collection of chicken recipes for more inspiration.
Read Also: Artichokes In Instant Pot
Keeping Chicken Breasts Whole Will Help Prevent Overcooking
Even if a recipe uses chunks or cubes of chicken breast, its best to cook the meat whole and then cut it up after cooking since small chunks of meat cook through much faster than the whole breast. We do this with our butter chicken recipe, and consider it added insurance that the chicken breast wont be overcooked or dry.
How Long To Cook Instant Pot Chicken Breast:
- Dont overcook overcooked chicken breast is not anyones favorite thing, but is somewhat difficult to do in the Instant Pot because the steam provides such a moist environment for the chicken to cook in.
- Dont undercook undercooked chicken breast is just plain dangerous! Be sure to check the internal temperature of the chicken to ensure its at least 165 degrees F.
- The exact cook time is going to depend on a variety of things, including the size and shape , and also the model of Instant Pot you have, as some run hotter or cooler. My recipes are tested in the 6 quart model with Bluetooth. Its important to take these these factors into consideration but I find a cook time of 8-10 minutes is always perfect and juicy for the chicken
Don’t Miss: How To Cook Tuna Steak In Instant Pot
How Long To Cook A Whole Chicken In The Instant Pot Pressure Cooker
- Cook a fresh chicken for 6 minutes per pound. This means that a 4 pound chicken will take 24 minutes to cook, a 4.5 pound chicken will take 27 minutes, and a 5 pound bird will take 30 minutes, at high pressure.
- Follow the cook time with a 15 minute natural release. This means just leave your Instant Pot alone for 15 minutes and then quick release any remaining pressure by turning the steam release valve to the venting position before opening the lid.
- Always use an instant read thermometer to check that your chicken has reached a safe internal temperature of at least 165 degrees F. You want to insert the thermometer into the thickest part of the leg, not touching the bone. Using the Instant Pot to cook a whole chicken is pretty foolproof, and mine has always been perfectly cooked and juicy after pressure cooking for 6 minutes per pound.
Why Is My Cooked Chicken Tough
The rubbery, tough, and dry texture is a result of overcooking the poultry. Usually, chicken is cooked quickly at high temperatures, and since the meat on a whole bird doesnt have the same thickness, some parts may become easier overcooked. Unfortunately, this is harder to control when cooking it in the instant pot.
However, following the recipe guidelines for cooking time per pound and making sure to pay close attention to how the meat turned our, will help you figure out the best cooking time.
Also Check: How To Cook Ground Turkey In Instant Pot
What To Serve With Drumsticks
Cant make up your mind? Check out this list of 10 great summer salads that all pair well with chicken.
Other Instant Pot Recipes to Try
Like this recipe? Wed love for you to share it on your Pinterest board! Click to so you can find all our recipes!
Instagram it! If you try this recipe please tag#AFoodLoversKitchenon Instagram or Twitter. We love to see your photos of our recipes! Also follow us on , andto keep up on what were cooking up.
Is It Safe To Cook Frozen Chicken In The Instant Pot
Yes, as long as you do it correctly.
If you use the pressure cooking function not slow cooker and ensure that the chicken reaches the minimum safe internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit, it should be safe, Yule says.
Frozen chicken naturally takes longer to cook, because it first has to thaw out before the actual cooking process starts. Thats why the FDA warns against putting frozen chicken in a slow cooker, because it keeps the chicken in the bacterial danger zone for too long.
Pressure cooking, however, takes approximately 30 percent less time than traditional methods because it traps the moisture that would normally evaporate while cooking on the stovetop or in the oven.
This speeds up the chemical processes that happen during cooking, so your food reaches safe temperatures faster.
Recommended Reading: How To Cook Tuna Steak In Instant Pot
Instant Pot Chicken Breast Recipe
How many times have you come home and realized youve forgotten to pull the chicken from the freezer for tonights dinner? If youre like me, its way too many.
But since I discovered how to cook both frozen chicken breasts and/or fresh chicken breasts in the Instant Pot, those days are over.
It seems like all too often us recipe creators, aka food bloggers, get caught up in creating that totally unique recipe.
The recipe that intrigues.
The recipe that nobodys ever thought of before.
But the reality is, while those recipes are fun to bookmark and make every so often, its the basics for daily cooking that we really need. Like how to cook the basic boneless chicken breast, and how to cook it fast.
And once I started cooking chicken breasts STRAIGHT FROM THE FREEZER in my Instant Pot, I realized I needed to share with you how you can do the same.
So lets talk basics.
How To Cook Fresh Chicken Breast In Instant Pot
- Add 1 cup water and place trivet on top.
- Lay chicken breasts in a single layer, sprinkle with spices and rub onto each other.
- Press Pressure Cook on High or Manual for 10 minutes under 2 thickness and 15 minutes over 2 thick breasts.
- Do Natural Release for 5 minutes and then turn pressure valve to Venting.
Don’t Miss: Which Instant Pot To Get
Can I Stack Chicken Breasts In The Instant Pot
I tend to cook the most common boneless, skinless breasts just for simplicity. And my method is so simple its scary: Take the chicken breast out of the fridge or freezer and put it in the Instant Pot insert. To cook more chicken breasts at once, place the chicken side by side when frozen or stack them on top of each other when fresh.
Ways To Use Cooked Chicken
The cooked chicken can be used in any recipe that calls for precooked chicken. Shred, slice, or cube it as needed, then use it however you like!
Tuck a few slices of chicken into a sourdough sandwich, or top a salad to make a light lunch. Toss cubed chicken into a soup or pasta dish. Mix shredded chicken with BBQ sauce or hot sauce for sliders or tacos.
Recommended Reading: Crock Pot To Instant Pot Conversion Times