Can You Cook A Whole Chicken In An Instant Pot
Yes, you sure can. Its one of those genius things that an instant pot pressure cooker can do and also what many other brands of electric pressure cookers can do also.
I have cooked a whole chicken for years in the instant pot and also do so regularly via the Ninja with my Ninja Foodi whole chicken recipe.
Tips For The Perfect Chicken
- Make sure the butter is very soft so that it will easily spread onto the chicken. Work quickly as you coat the chicken in butter, as the butter will solidify on the cold chicken and can flake off if you disturb it too much.
- Serve your chicken with a side of mashed or roasted potatoes, and a green vegetable such as broccoli or brussels sprouts.
- Leftover chicken will stay fresh in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
- If youd like, you can soak your chicken in my chicken brine recipe before you cook it for extra flavor. If you use a brine, reduce the salt in the butter mixture to 1/2 teaspoon.
- You can eat this chicken as is, or shred or dice it for other recipes such as soups, casseroles, pasta or sandwiches.
What To Serve With Drumsticks
I am a huge fan of serving salads with chicken drumsticks. I think this Classic Wedge Salad is perfect. You might also try this crunchy Broccoli Salad.
If youd rather add some carbs, try our creamy Stovetop Mac & Cheese, or this easy Black Bean & Corn Pasta Salad.
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
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Tips For The Best Instant Pot Rotisserie Chicken:
- Cook the chicken for 6 minutes per pound and allow a 15-minute natural pressure release. Releasing the pressure gradually will ensure your chicken is fully cooked through and rested for the juiciest chicken. It also prevents foam from shooting out of the valve.
- Weigh the chicken to ensure the proper cooking time . Overcooking the bird will cause it to fall apart and will make it difficult to transfer.
- Make sure your chicken fits your instant pot size. Our 6 qt instant pot fits up to a 5 lb chicken. An 8 qt pressure cooker is better for the larger sized chickens.
- Use a Trivet for even cooking and to help remove the chicken from the instant pot.
- Broil the chicken for a crisp salty skin
- Do not discard the drippings they make the best gravy to pour over your chicken.
- Keep the carcass and bones for Instant Pot Chicken Broth.
How To Cook A Whole Chicken In The Instant Pot
- Sauté. Add your onion to the instant pot and sauté with some extra virgin olive oil until the onion starts to soften along with the garlic.
- Deglaze. Add some white wine and deglaze the instant pot.
- Prepare. Add the trivet to the instant pot. Add extra virgin olive oil and seasoning to your chicken. Tie up your chicken legs with string.
- Cook. Place the chicken on the trivet and place the lid on the instant pot pressure cooker. Cook for the recommended time for your weight and then do a 15 minute natural pressure release before releasing pressure.
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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 To Cook Chicken Breasts In The Instant Pot
Cooking times are based on 1-2 pounds of medium-sized boneless, skinless chicken breasts.
We found that chicken breast is at a safe cooking temperature after about 7 minutes using a quick release method. We always use the manual function . If the chicken breast is a bit on the larger size, add another minute or two. If its on the smaller size, subtract a minute.
Tip: These 7 Chicken Marinade Recipes all have Instant Pot cooking instructions. Try them out!
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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!
How To Cook Instant Pot Chicken Breasts
Oddly enough, it can be really challenging to get the right texture when cooking boneless chicken breasts. They cook quickly in the Instant Pot, but if you dont cook them long enough they get a weird, rubber-like texture thats nearly impossible to chew, and if you cook them too long, their texture gets dry.
Here are some of the cook times I tried while perfecting this method:
- 8 minutes High Pressure, 10 minutes Natural Pressure Release: Chicken was cooked through, but a little dry.
- 20 minutes high pressure, 10 minutes Natural Pressure Release: Chicken was cooked through, but dry.
- 1 minute High Pressure, 10 minutes Natural Release: Chicken was under-cooked and still pink in the middle.
- 4 minutes High Pressure, 10 minutes Natural Release: This works when you need to cook the chicken directly in a sauce on the bottom of the pot. I use this timing for pot-in-pot cooking, and it works well when you need to cook two items at once, but its not quite as perfect texture-wise as the method below.
Some things to keep in mind when cooking chicken:
- If your boneless chicken breast winds up with a weird, rubbery texture, it probably means that you need to cook it longer. In general, the Instant Pot does better with longer cook times for meat.
- With other meats youll want to let the pressure naturally release, but Ive found that I get juicier chicken breasts when I quickly release the pressure.
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Frozen Chicken Instant Pot
Cook Time> High Pressure > 18-20 minutes > Quick Release
Preparing frozen chicken breast in the Instant Pot is similar to cooking unfrozen chicken breast, but there are some differences!
- If you are cooking more than one chicken breast at a time be sure the chicken breasts are not frozen together. They will not cook evenly.
- To separate the chicken breasts, run the chicken under water to remove any frost or to separate chicken breasts from each other.
- Dont skip using the metal trivet and water. If you skip these steps you will most likely end up with a burn notice!
- Cook time for frozen chicken takes a little bit longer than thawed chicken, remember to be patient!
- Be sure to check the internal temperature of the chicken breast before eating it. If its not done, cook it for a few more minutes in the Instant Pot.
- Seriously, frozen chicken Instant Pot is so easy.
Instant Pot Whole Chicken Recipe:
The ingredients here are so simple and you probably have everything you need in your refrigerator and pantry. We used 1 whole chicken , chicken broth, fresh garlic, thyme, rosemary and lemon juice, butter and a few dried spices .
The combination of seasonings makes for the best taking gravy made from the pan drippings and prepared right in the instant pot. The gravy is amazing poured over mashed potatoes and the sliced chicken.
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Chicken Breast Instant Pot Cook Times
BONELESS, SKINLESS CHICKEN BREASTS
Fresh Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts
- 8 minutes, vent immediately to release any remaining pressure
- Based on 10-ounce boneless chicken breasts
Frozen Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts
- 12 minutes, vent immediately to release any remaining pressure
- Based on 10-ounce boneless chicken breasts
BONE-IN CHICKEN BREASTS
Fresh Bone-In Chicken Breasts
- 10 minutes, natural release for 5 minutes
- Based on 12-ounce bone-in chicken breasts
Frozen Bone-In Chicken Breasts
- 25 minutes, vent immediately to release any remaining pressure
- Based on 12-ounce bone-in chicken breasts
Do Not Throw Away Golden Liquid At The Bottom
Make soup! Refrigerate IP chicken broth until ready to cook, save bones and do it at your pace throughout the day. This is basically how I cook Instant Pot chicken noodle soup.
- Combine broth, bones and water: Keep that flavorful broth at the bottom of the pot, throw back the bones and add desired amount of water. And even some leftover chicken meat.
- Pressure cook on High for 1-2 hours.
- Then add frozen vegetables and sprinkle pasta .
- Close the lid, dont press anything and let soup cook for 5-10 minutes.
- Season to taste with spices and fresh herbs.
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Instant Pot Pork Loin Cooking Time
2 ½ 3 pounds Pork Loin
Fresh: Cook whole. Lock and seal the lid. Cook at high pressure for 27 minutes with 10 a minute natural release.
Frozen: Cut the pork loin into 3 equal parts. Turn on the Saute Function. Saute frozen meal for 5 minutes to release some liquid. Press Cancel. The frozen meat will cook the same amount of time as from fresh.
Substitutions For This Instant Pot Pulled Chicken:
This shredded chicken recipe is pretty versatile here are some of the ways you can customize it.
Broth You can use any kind of broth in this recipe or you can just use water.
Salt/Pepper You dont have to add salt/pepper to this. You can leave the chicken plain and season as you eat, or you can add other spices to it! We have done this with Italian seasoning and it was delicious!
Meat Chicken breasts, thighs, or tenders will all work in this recipe!
2 lbs Increase your cook time by 1 minutes. For 3 lbs, increase your cook time by 2 minutes
Seasoning You can use any seasonings on this. We like to use our Healthy Taco Seasoning on it, but any spice mix will do!
Tomatoes I like to add 1/4 salsa or crushed tomatoes to the pot for flavor.
Crockpot You can cook chicken in the crockpot on high for 4-6 hours or low for 6-8 hours.
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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.
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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.
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How Long Does It Take To Cook A Whole Chicken In The Instant Pot
Thanks to the Miracle Pot , you can enjoy fall-off-the-bone-tender chicken with only 20-30 minutes of pressure cooking. Amazing isnt it!?
Yesss! Instant Pot Whole Chicken is pretty fabulous!
The length of cooking time for whole chickens will vary based on size of your chicken. The rule of thumb for whole chicken in the Instant Pot is that each pound of chicken requires 6 minutes of pressure cooking. And therefore, for each half-pound of chicken you need 3 minutes of pressure cooking.
Heres a quick reference for you when figuring out cook times
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.
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Can You Cook Frozen Chicken Breasts In The Instant Pot
While this tutorial focuses on cooking fresh chicken breasts in the Instant Pot, you can easily achieve the same results with frozen chicken breasts using this technique. Just make sure to add 5 additional minutes of cooking time when using frozen chicken breasts. And be sure the breasts are separated before cooking. For more details, learn step-by-step how to cook frozen chicken in the Instant Pot.
How Do You Cook Fresh Chicken Breasts In The Instant Pot
If your chicken is not frozen, you will use the same cook times and method described above. The only difference is that you will do a quick pressure release instead of a 10 minute natural release. The quick pressure release will stop the cooking process faster than a natural release.
To do a quick pressure release, as soon as the cook time ends, use the handle of a long spoon to carefully turn the steam release valve to the venting position. Once steam stops coming out and the float valve drops down, open the Instant Pot lid. Use an instant read thermometer to check that the chicken is cooked through to a safe 165 degrees F.
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Step Two: Prep The Instant Pot
The Instant Pot comes with a metal trivet that you can place at the bottom of the metal pot to raise the food up off the bottom. This is an occasion where you will want to use the trivet. Place it in the bottom of the pot.
Pour one cup of water into the bottom of the pot. You may need to use 1.5 or 2 cups if you have an 8-quart pot. The water should just come up to the top of the trivet.
Place the seasoned chicken on top of the trivet and close the lid of the Instant Pot. Make sure the valve is on seal. Set the pressure cooker to the appropriate number of minutes needed for your size of chicken.
- 1 lb = 6 minutes
- 5 lb = 30 minutes
Why This Instant Pot Chicken Breast Works
This Instant Pot chicken breast recipe is easy, simple and forgiving. Dont you always have a pack of chicken breasts in your freezer?! Now you can make chicken breast in Instant Pot from fresh or frozen in 30 minutes.
I just love Instant Pot! It makes the best Instant Pot rice and beans with no soaking, lasagna with no need for a springform pan, the most tender Instant Pot beef stew with no need to saute, easy Instant Pot steamed vegetables and even cobbler!
If you are new to pressure cooking, check out my Instant Pot guide. It explains what happens, why and how to avoid failures and how to clean your Instant Pot after cooking in it. Another great place to start learning how to cook the basics in your new appliance, is my best of Instant Pot beginner recipes. If you dont have an Instant Pot yet but are thinking about buying one, I explain which Instant Pot to buy in my humble opinion and how it is different than a slow cooker.
Also if you are not a blessed electric pressure cooker owner just yet, check out my baked chicken breast recipe or air fryer chicken breast. Same easy and simple. Also this honey garlic chicken would be good pan fried in case you dont have an oven.
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