How Long To Cook Chicken In An Instant Pot

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Easy Instant Pot Whole Chicken Recipe

How to Cook a Whole Chicken in the Instant Pot

Did you know you can cook a whole chicken in the Instant Pot in a fraction of the time it takes in the oven? This Instant Pot Whole Chicken recipe makes for an incredibly easy and quick dinner.

»You might also like this Instant Pot Oxtail Ragu, Instant Pot Caramelized Carrot Soup or The Best Instant Pot Brisket Recipe.

One of the things I make the most in the oven is a whole roasted chicken. But it takes quite a while to cook a whole chicken in the oven. So when I got my Instant Pot, a whole chicken was one of the first things I made.

Whole chicken not only provides a delicious meal, it also ensures we have left over chicken for sandwiches and salads throughout the week.

You will likely be very surprised by how little time it takes to make a whole chicken in the Instant Pot. The first time I did it, I was more than a little skeptical that it would actually get cooked all the way through in such a short time. But it worked a charm.

You can also cook chicken drumsticks and leg quarters in the Instant Pot in a fraction of the time.

For a fresh chicken that is not frozen, it takes approximately 6 minutes per pound to cook. I usually cook a 3 pound chicken, so its a total of 18 minutes. Be sure to check the weight of your chicken before setting the timer.

18 minutes! Thats a HUGE time savings over roasting a chicken in the oven, which takes at least 45 minutes.


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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.


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.

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Instant Pot Chicken Drumsticks

Cooking chicken drumsticks in the Instant Pot is an incredibly fast and efficient way to get dinner on the table and theyre so tender!

I love cooking in the Instant Pot. Its so much faster than the oven and it doesnt require heating up the house to do it. This recipe is so simple, but it results in the most tender chicken drumsticks.

> > Learn more about the Instant Pot and decide if you should get one

Chicken drumsticks are inexpensive and easy to make. If you have an Instant Pot, you know how quick the process is. If you dont yet have an Instant Pot, look over this post to see the benefits and reasons I think its the best tool in my kitchen.

Drumsticks need to cook for at least 45 minutes in the oven at 400 degrees. During the summer thats just not something Im prepared to do. It heats up the house so much. No thanks.

In the Instant Pot, it takes just 10 minutes, plus the pressurizing time. In just 25 minutes, dinner is ready and the house is still nice and cool.


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Ingredients For Pressure Cooker Chicken Breast

Instant Pot Chicken Thighs

You really need only chicken breasts and water. Everything else is up to your taste and what meal idea you are planning to use with your cooked Instant Pot chicken breast recipe.

If you are adding cooked chicken breast to salads, quesadillas and tostadas, I would not worry about seasonings much.

If you are planning to eat cooked chicken breast alongside quinoa or brown rice and salad , I would pay attention to spices.

  • Chicken breasts You can use fresh or frozen.
  • Salt and pepper Simple seasonings so your chicken is a blank slate for recipes.
  • Garlic powder If you wish, but not required.
  • Dried herbs If you like, really it will depend on how you plan to use the chicken once it is ready.

Use one of these 5 chicken marinades to really ramp up the flavor of the chicken breast.

Read Also: How Long To Cook Pre Cooked Ribs In Instant Pot

Should I Add Seasoning To My Chicken

Chicken breasts in the instant pot can be customized to whatever dish you are planning to put them in. Mexican food? Sprinkle with taco seasoning. Italian dish? Add some Italian seasoning or garlic.

For simple, versatile, chicken breast that can be used in meal prep, salad, etc, just add some salt and pepper along with your chicken broth or water. You can also use different juices for your liquid for some added sweetness to the chicken.

Can I Crisp My Whole Chicken Using The Air Fryer Lid On My Instant Pot

The answer to this question is yes. If you have an instant pot duo crisp then simply drain any liquid from your pot and air fry your chicken for 5 minutes to crisp the skin.

If you dont have an air fryer lid you can broil in the over perfectly fine. If youd like to purchase the air fryer lid, here is a budget friendly option!

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Can I Use Frozen Chicken Breasts

You can absolutely use frozen chicken breasts, but there are a couple things to keep in mind. In this recipe I first sear the chicken breast for extra flavor, if using frozen chicken you wont be able to do that, so just skip that step.

The second thing to keep in mind is that for frozen chicken, while the cooking time will be the same, it will take longer to come to pressure, and it will take longer for the pressure to naturally release.

Aways Pair Like Cuts Together

How to cook frozen chicken in the Instant Pot–Instant Pot Tips

My motto for cooking chicken in the Instant Pot is to pair like things together. For the best results and evenly cooked chicken, avoid mixing white and dark meat, or bone-in and boneless cuts. Meaty thighs and drumsticks, as well as bone-in cuts, require a little more cook time than their lean and boneless counterparts.

Read Also: Instant Pot Tamales Chicken

How Long To Cook Frozen Whole Chicken

The time it takes to cook a whole frozen bird in the Instant Pot depends on its weight, according to Yule.

But a good rule of thumb is to cook a frozen whole chicken for 10 minutes per pound. For example, a 4-pound frozen chicken will take 40 minutes in the Instant Pot on high pressure.

Allow for natural pressure release once cooking is done dont turn the steam release valve.

What To Do If The Chicken Isnt Done

  • If your chicken doesnt read 165 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer when you open up the Instant Pot but is pretty close , close the lid and let it rest for another 5 minutes before checking the temperature again. Often this rest is enough to get the chicken up to a safe temperature.
  • If its still not done, you can recover the Instant Pot and set for an additional 2 minutes of pressure cook time.
  • Last, if you prefer, you can finish cooking the chicken in a 350 degree F oven.

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Prep Ahead And Storage

Folks, cooking up these is just the thing for meal prep and prepping ahead.

Prep Ahead The fillets can be seasoned and marinated a day before hand.

Store Store the cooked meat in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.

Freeze Follow the handy tips below for how to freeze this.

  • Let the meat cool down then, wrap them in plastic wrap and transfer into these very handy Ziploc freezer bags.
  • Squeeze out all the extra air and seal the bags.
  • Label the bags and then lay them flat in the freezer.
  • Store in the freezer for up to 3 months.
  • Thaw overnight in the refrigerator.

How To Cook Chicken From Frozen In The Instant Pot

How to Cook a Whole Chicken in an Instant Pot

Cooking times are based on 1-2 pounds of frozen medium-sized boneless, skinless chicken breasts.

We found frozen chicken breasts are at a safe cooking temperature at 15-20 minutes using a quick release method. We always use the manual function . When cooking food from frozen in the Instant Pot, we recommend starting at the shorter end of the time range and then adding more minutes if its not done.

The only variation to this cooking time is when chicken is in a soup. We found that because it takes so much longer for the Instant Pot to come to pressure, the chicken takes LESS time to cook. Likely 5-6 minutes. It feels a bit counter intuitive since there is more in the pot when cooking a soup recipe but we consistently found that chicken was done quicker this way.

Read Also: Pre Smoked Ribs

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 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.

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    Benefits Of Cooking Rotisserie Chicken In The Instant Pot

    • One of the best things about cooking in an Instant Pot is that you can cook meats like chicken from fresh or frozen. If you like me, tend to forget to thaw out meat for dinner, the Instant Pot is going to be the solution to many of your meals!
    • This pressure cooker whole chicken recipe is so versatile! The simple homemade spice rub can be adjusted to your taste or simply use your favorite seasoning mix.
    • Making Instant Pot Whole Chicken requires minimal effort and always turns out juicy, tender and full of flavor!
    • Chicken is a budget friendly meal and when cooking a whole chicken, there are usually leftovers to prepare a second meal.
    • Homemade Rotisserie chicken is so much healthier and flavorful than store bought. You can control the quality of the ingredients and the amount of sodium and fats!

    How To Make Juicy Boneless Chicken Breasts In The Instant Pot

    How To Cook Frozen Chicken In An Instant Pot (Instapot)

    The key to getting perfectly juicy boneless chicken breasts is to cook them on a trivet, above the liquid. I find that this results in a better texture than cooking them on the bottom of the pot.

    I also think their texture is best when you quickly release the pressure, rather than letting it naturally release.

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    Instant Pot Chicken Is So Easy

    Cooking chicken in the pressure cooker or Instant Pot works similarly to poaching. The biggest difference is that you use less liquid and you can press a button and step away while the pot is doing its thing.

    The chicken cooks in water, seasoned with salt, bay leaves, and garlic for a little bit of extra flavor. You can add any aromatic spices or vegetables to the water, really, depending on how you want to flavor the meat. Ginger and green onion would be nice if you plan to use the chicken on top of an Asian-style salad, for instance.

    Cooking Times For Instant Pot Whole Chicken Using Fresh Chicken

    • A 3 pound chicken will need 18 minutes of High Pressure Cooking Time with a 15 minutes Natural Pressure Release.
    • A 3.5 pound chicken will need 22 minutes of High Pressure Cooking Time with a 15 minutes Natural Pressure Release.
    • A 4 pound chicken will need 24 minutes of High Pressure Cooking Time with a 15 minutes Natural Pressure Release.
    • A 4.5 pound chicken will need 27 minutes of High Pressure Cooking Time with a 15 minutes Natural Pressure Release.
    • A 5 pound chicken will need 32 minutes of High Pressure Cooking Time with a 15 minutes Natural Pressure Release.

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    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.

    Reasons To Love This Instant Pot Chicken Breast:

  • Its easy to make just dump, start and go! Let the pressure release naturally, pop open the lid and you have an amazing dinner or perfectly cooked chicken for salads and sandwiches throughout the week.
  • Its versatile like I mentioned above, its great cold in sandwiches and salads, but its also awesome tossed into soup, pasta, or any casserole, and can be easily reheated with a sauce of your choosing to make it something new
  • Its healthy dont get all worked up over the one dab of butter or margarine our bodies need a little fat and this Instant Pot Chicken Breast is a high protein, relatively low fat and low calorie addition to any meal
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    How Long To Cook Whole Chicken In Instant Pot

    How Long To Cook Whole Chicken In The Instant Pot? Introducing you to the best instant pot recipe for whole chicken and exactly what cook times to use at home in your instant pot pressure cooker.

    Here at Recipe This we ran an instant pot whole chicken experiment to see how the cook times vary, when you cook different sized whole chickens in the instant pot pressure cooker. From small chickens to extra-large chickens, we have tested them all.

    This instant pot whole chicken recipe and cooking time chart is an updated post. We originally shared with you how to cook a whole chicken in the instant pot back in 2017.

  • Cant make it now? Then pin it for later!
  • Instant Pot Whole Chicken In The Duo Crisp

    With the Instant Pot Duo Crisp or a Ninja Foodi, you get the best of both worlds because you can pressure cook and broil or air fry in the same pot. So, while most Instant Pot whole chicken recipes will have you either saute your chicken first or put it under the broiler after cooking, you can do it all in one device with the Duo Crisp. This is key because normally an Instant Pot rotisserie chicken recipe will not really have that crispy skin that you want unless you broil it in the oven.

    The result of using the Duo Crisp is that you really do get that truly wonderful crispy skin that you can only get from making an air fryer whole chicken.

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