How Long To Cook Boneless Chicken Thighs In Instant Pot

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Can You Cook Boneless Chicken Thighs From Frozen

Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs in the Instant Pot

According to the USDA, yes, you can safely cook your frozen chicken, as long as you follow a couple general guidelines. In order to skip the thawing step and turn your frozen chicken into a fully-cooked, safe-to-eat dinner, use your oven or stove top and simply increase your cooking time by at least 50%.

What To Serve With

Serve with rice! I love serving juicy chicken with rice and gravy and its also great for meal prep. You can make white rice in the Instant Pot, or serve with Instant Pot brown rice.

Love potatoes? These Instant Pot buttered potatoes are absolutely amazing and go so well with chicken! And its also a great idea to add more vegetables such as Instant Pot steamed broccoli, Instant Pot green beans, and even Instant Pot corn on the cob!

Instant Pot Frozen Chicken Thighs Vs Chicken Breast

If you’ve been following along, you know I love boneless, skinless chicken thighs for quick meals. Don’t get me wrong, bone-in chicken thighs are great for slow cooking, but if you need a fast meal you can’t beat boneless chicken thighs.

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I’ve tested this recipe with both frozen chicken breast and frozen chicken thighs and chicken thighs are definitely the way to go. They turn out juicier than chicken breast and really hold up to cooking straight from the freezer. In fact, they are so deliciously moist and tender you can’t tell that they were cooked from frozen.

So if you have your freezer stocked and you keep some basic paleo and keto staples in your pantry. You can whip up this tasty chicken anytime, without having to make a trip to the grocery store.

While this Instant Pot recipe will work with fresh or frozen chicken thighs, the beauty of it is being able to cook frozen chicken thighs—and having an emergency meal in your back pocket.

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Instant Pot Honey Garlic Chicken Thighs Recipe

Instant Pot Honey Garlic Chicken Thighs Sweet, savory, tender and juicy chicken thighs prepared with the most amazing honey garlic sauce and cooked in an Instant Pot. Dinner, from start to finish, will be ready in 30 minutes!

My #1 recipe for Honey Garlic Chicken revisited AND updated with a new twist because, an Instant Pot is all the rage these days.

I know, its so hard to choose crock pot honey garlic chicken or instant pot honey garlic chicken. I mean, one takes hours of cooking, and the other makes it all in minutes. But the instant pot is possibly my new favorite way to cook. I do really love my crock pot, but this pressure cooker/instant pot thingamajig is a game-changer.

How Long Does It Take To Cook Chicken Thighs

Garlic Paprika Instant Pot Chicken Thighs

The cook time for chicken thighs in an Instant Pot will vary depending on whether you are using bone-in chicken thighs or boneless chicken thighs. Bone in thighs will take longer to cook, but with the bone remaining in the chicken thigh you may have a more tender cut of meat. Bone in chicken thighs are also a lot more cost-effective because it requires less work for the butcher to process out the bones. The choice is yours!

If you choose bone-in thighs, you will be pressure cooking the chicken thighs for 15 minutes. If you choose to use boneless chicken thighs, you will be pressure cooking the chicken for 10 minutes.

Read Also: What To Do When Instant Pot Says Food Burn

How To Make Instant Pot Chicken Thighs Recipe

Detailed measurements andinstructions can be found on the printable recipe card at thebottom of this page.

Prepare the chicken: removeany excess skin and visible fat. You may choose to wash the chicken if you want.If you do, ensure that you pat the chicken dry with kitchen towel before cooking.

Make the spice rub: add thesmoked paprika, coriander, thyme, garlic granules, onion powder and salttogether to combine.

Season the chicken: Sprinkle the spice rub on the chicken on both sides and rub in a little to combine

Sauté the chicken: turn on the instant pot and set to the sauté mode, add olive oil and leave till hot, working in batches, add the chicken thighs skin side down and cook for 3 minutes then flip sides and cook for another 2 to 3 minutes. This is to seal in all the flavours from the amazing simple spice rub.

Cook the chicken: remove the chicken from the IP add the chicken broth then place a trivet in the pot. Carefully add the seared chicken on top of the trivet. Set the instant pot to cook on high pressure for 6 minutes.

Once the chicken has finished cooking, leave to natural pressure release for 5 minutes then carefully quick release. Open the lid, serve immediately and enjoy.

Alternatively, if you would prefer crispy skin, broil or grill for another 2 to 5 minutes. Use the instant pot sauce as desired.

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How To Make Easy Instant Pot Chicken Thighs

  • Season the chicken with salt, pepper, and taco seasoning . See below for ideas of how to customize the seasoning.
  • Press the SAUTE function on the Instant Pot. Wait until it shows Hot and then add a tablespoon of olive oil or avocado oil and then add the chicken thighs. Cook about 3 minutes. Then turn the chicken and cook for about another 3 minutes on the other side.
  • Remove the chicken from the Instant Pot and pour in 1 cup water or chicken brother
  • Add the trivet into the Instant Pot and place the chicken thighs on the trivet.
  • Close the lid and move the seal into the sealing position. Press Pressure cook and change the time to 5 minutes. The Instant pot will take about 8 minutes to come up to pressure and then cook for 5 minutes.
  • Let the Instant Pot naturally release for 10 minutes, then do a quick release. After the pressure valve has dropped, open the lid, and carefully remove the chicken thighs.
  • Serve with your favorite side dish, such as fresh broccoli or rice.
  • Read Also: Which Instant Pot To Get

    How To Cook Frozen Chicken Thighs In An Instant Pot

    To cook frozen chicken thighs in your Instant Pot, first make sure that the chicken thigh pieces are separate and not frozen together. This will ensure that the chicken cooks evenly.

    Skip the step of browning the chicken on sauté mode. Add 1 cup of water to the inner pot and place the metal trivet in the inner pot. Put the chicken thighs on top of the trivet.

    Since the spice rub wont stick well to frozen chicken, I recommend sprinkling half of it on the top of the chicken thighs after you place them on the trivet. After cooking you can add a little more seasoning and then brown the meat if you wish.

    Cook frozen chicken thighs on high pressure for 15 minutes and then do 5 minutes of natural pressure release. You may want to brown the cooked chicken thighs under the broiler in the oven for a few minutes. Or, you can pour the water out of the Instant Pot and brown the cooked chicken thighs on sauté mode for a few minutes.

    What To Serve With Chicken Thighs

    Frozen Chicken Thighs in the Instant Pot Ultra 60

    My favorite side dish to serve with these chicken thighs, is a classic: mashed potatoes! We also love my Garlic Parmesan Roasted Brussels Sprouts on the side. Perfect dinner for Sunday or even a special occasion. You can also make my Sweet Potato Casserole , German Potato Salad with Bacon, Loaded Mashed Potato Casserole or my Instant Pot Scalloped Potatoes. There are so many options!

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    Can I Reheat Cooked Chicken Thighs

    Of course. You could put them into an air fryer at 380 F for 4-6 minutes flipping halfway through. Spray with olive oil on the top at the beginning and when turning over.

    In a microwave reheat in 45 second increments flipping every time you add additional heat.

    • If they arent frozen you can follow our:
  • Smoked chicken thighs recipe
  • This Ninja Foodi chicken breast recipe works great every time too. The nice thing about this machine is you can pressure cook and air fry right in the same basket.

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    What Kind Of Chicken Thighs Should I Use For Instant Pot Chicken Thighs

    The good news for you is that we tested this recipe many times and with all different kinds of chicken thighs! Love skin-on chicken thighs? Or boneless chicken thighs? Both work! So feel free to use around 2 lbs. of the following:

    • Bone-In
    • Skin-On
    • Skinless

    If youre wondering what kind of thighs we prefer, its hands-down bone-in with the skin on. However, boneless skinless chicken thighs are also pretty dang delish.

    Also Check: Instant Pot Reads Burn

    How To Use Instant Pot Chicken Thighs

    Now that you’ve got the basic technique down, get inspired with all different kinds of Instant Pot chicken thigh recipes. A little teriyaki sauce goes a long way in this Instant Pot Teriyaki Chicken Thighs recipe. Experiment with flavors like barbeque or bacon-ranch. Keep things simple with this Instant Pot Pepper Chicken Recipe. Or for a dish that will really impress, chicken cacciatore is made easier with the Instant Pot. Browse our best Instant Pot chicken recipes today.


    Cooking Time For Chicken Thighs In The Instant Pot

    BBQ Instant Pot Chicken Thighs: from FRESH or FROZEN

    Depending on what type of chicken thighs youre using, heres how long you need to pressure cook the chicken thighs for:

    • Bone-in skin-on: 10 minutes high pressure, then 5 minutes natural release.
    • Bone-in skinless: 10 minutes high pressure, then 5 minutes natural release.
    • Boneless skinless: 8 minutes high pressure, then 5 minutes natural release.
    • Frozen chicken thighs, frozen individually: 14 minutes high pressure, then 5 minutes natural release.

    Also Check: How To Make Sushi Rice Instant Pot

    What Makes These Instant Pot Chicken Thighs So Good

    • Cooking your chicken thighs in the Instant Pot with just a couple ingredients makes dinner so incredibly easy, yet still SO tasty. This recipe is also perfect for meal prep or cooking your chicken to use in another recipe.
    • I literally gasped when I tried these chicken thighs for the first time and said out loud , Oh, mama! You know its good when you cant stop yourself from shouting for joy!
    • Forgot to thaw chicken for dinner? No problem! This recipe is meant for frozen chicken thighs.No more long waits or accidentally nuking your chicken in the microwave!

    Option 2 Air Fryer Lid

    Place the air fryer basket with the tray on the middle rack in the Instant Pot .

    Now, layer the chicken thighs on the air fryer tray in Instant Pot.

    Then, place the air fryer lid on the Instant Pot.

    • Air Frying Method: Press the Air Fry or Broil button, set the temperature to 400°F, and cooking time to 20 minutes.

    *Pro Tip: Itll take roughly 7 11 minutes + preheat time. You can open the lid to check the progress.

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    How Long Do Thighs Take To Cook

    Using this method it is only about 20 minutes including the time the pot will take to come to pressure.

    Here are the steps you should follow, printable directions with nutritional information is below too:

    Time needed: 15 minutes.

    Instant Pot Frozen Chicken Thighs

  • Prepare

    Pour broth or cup of water into electric pressure cooker, then mix in all spices and onion. Put frozen bone in chicken inside bottom of the pot. Put the bone side facing down.

  • Cook

    Close lid and steam valve and set to high pressure for 15 minutes.Allow for a 3 minute natural pressure release, then do a quick release. Carefully remove chicken.

  • Saute

    Then select saute function. In a small bowl whisk together some of the chicken broth from the pot and your cornstarch until it is smooth.Once boiling add this mixture to thicken the sauce. Serve chicken with some of this sauce on top.

  • Total time from start to finish including prep is about 30 minutes when pressure cooking. Always check internal temperature before consuming.

    Tip : If Possible Dont Stack Your Chicken

    The Best Instant Pot Chicken Thighs

    We have learned this the hard way. Because the Instant Pot cooks so fast, if meat is stacked, its really hard for it all to cook evenly. The outside gets done and the inside remains pink as a pig. If its impossible to not stack your chicken, just be sure to check for doneness throughout. If its not done, move it around with some tongs and cook on high pressure for 1-2 more minutes and check again.

    Also Check: How To Cook Fish In Instant Pot

    How To Cook Frozen Chicken Thighs

    • Skip the browning step. We cant brown frozen meat. So, if you are OK with non-browned chicken thighs then you can cook them this way:
    • Make sure chicken thighs are separated. Otherwise, meat wont get cooked through.
    • Rinse it. I would recommend to rinse meat under cold water to remove the frost and help seasonings stick better.
    • Season. Coat them in oil, garlic, salt and pepper in a large bowl tossing with tongs.
    • Cook. In Instant Pot, add 1 cup water, trivet, thighs and pressure cook on high pressure for 15 minutes bone in or boneless.
    • Optional broiling: Brown after under the ovens broiler in the baking dish, if you wish.

    Can You Stack Chicken Thighs In An Instant Pot

    You can absolutely stack chicken thighs in your Instant Pot, however, we only recommend doing this if you plan to shred the chicken.

    Stacking your thighs is going to reduce the crunchiness of the skin, which makes it perfect for shredding. However, if you want each thigh to have an amazing texture, make sure you do NOT stack them.

    Also Check: Instant Pot White Fish

    Chicken Thigh Instant Pot Cook Times


    Fresh Boneless, Skinless Chicken Thighs

    • 6 minutes, vent immediately to release any remaining pressure
    • Based on 3-ounce boneless chicken thighs

    Frozen Boneless, Skinless Chicken Thighs

    • 12 minutes, vent immediately to release any remaining pressure
    • Based on 3-ounce boneless chicken thighs


    Fresh Bone-In Chicken Thighs

    • 10 minutes, vent immediately to release any remaining pressure
    • Based on 6-ounce bone-in chicken thighs

    Frozen Bone-In Chicken Thighs

    • 15 minutes, vent immediately to release any remaining pressure
    • Based on 6-ounce bone-in chicken thighs

    What To Serve With Bbq Chicken Thighs

    Instant Pot Chicken Thighs (Fresh or Frozen)

    BBQ chicken thighs are a delicious staple for the summer months. Bring them to your next BBQ, potluck or outdoor picnic! The best part about BBQ chicken thighs is that they pair great with basically everything.

    If youre looking for side dish inspiration for your BBQ chicken thighs, Ive got you covered:

    • Potatoes in any form: mashed potatoes, potato salad, fries, etc.
    • Roasted or steamed vegetables
    • A leafy green salad or coleslaw
    • Other salads: quinoa salad, pasta salad or bean salad
    • Pasta dishes
    • Etc.

    Read Also: Turkey Tenderloin Pressure Cooker Recipe

    Slow Cooker Chicken Thighs

    Since youre adding raw chicken into the mix there will be a little more liquid added / emitted from the meat as it cooks. You should add a bit of water or broth to begin with though so it isnt quite as thick and will be soaked up better.

    We have a printable recipe card at the bottom of this post but I have a quick step by step set of instructions here so you can get the drift as youre looking at these photos.

    Time needed: 5 hours and 30 minutes.

    Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs Crockpot

  • Prepare

    Place thighs into crock, season with salt, cayenne and poultry seasoning on top.In a small bowl whisk together bbq sauce and your jam, then add chicken broth and Worchestershire sauce. Pour this over the chicken.

  • Cook

    Close lid and heat on high for 3 hours. Could use low for 5-6 until thickest part of chicken is 165 degrees F. Longer you cook the more it will fall apart and become shredded chicken.

  • I didnt find this necessary but at the end if you really wanted to thicken the sauce you could whisk some cornstarch to thicken into the liquid. Set a pot on the stovetop and boil it all until it is the consistency you want.

    Yes you could do the same with bone in chicken thighs but I would increase the cooking time by 30 minutes to 1 hour. Want to make it look wow when serving these cooked chicken thighs? Sprinkle with a few sesame seeds and diced green onions if you want. Served with green beans my family loved this recipe last week.

    Does Cook Time Change If I Have A Smaller Or Larger Instant Pot

    • No matter which size model Instant Pot you have, the number of minutes you select on the Instant Pot remains the same.

    The capacity of each Instant Pot and the amount of time the differently sized pots take to come to pressure will vary, but youll always set it for the same number of minutes, regardless of its size.

    If you have a different brand other than Instant Pot and are wondering how long to cook chicken in a pressure cooker, the times listed above should still be accurate for other electric pressure cooker models.

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