How To Cook Whole Chicken In An Instant Pot

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Cooking A Frozen Whole Chicken

How to Cook a Whole Chicken in the Instant Pot – The Right Way!

You CAN cook a whole frozen chicken in the Instant Pot if your frozen chicken already has the innards/gizzards removed and has no plastic ties around the feet. You will not be able to remove a plastic insert or bag of gizzards from a frozen chicken. Therefore, you can not put a frozen chicken with either of those items into your pressure cooker.

If you have a chicken that comes without the gizzards or plastic clamp around the legs, you would need to increase the time by 5 minutes per pound, for a total of 11 minutes per pound, and for frozen chicken, let the pressure release for at least 20 minutes.

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28 min whole rotisserie chicken? Yes! The chicken comes out perfectly tender, juicy + packed with flavor. And its SO EASY!

I love a good rotisserie chicken. I mean, I really love a good rotisserie chicken.

Its so versatile, and has so many uses. Its great on its own with a few roasted veggies and its great with pastas and soups as a fill in. But more importantly, they are so perfect with nachos and quesadillas during the wee hours of the night.

Or wait. Am I the only one making leftover rotisserie chicken nachos at 10PM?

I hope not.

But nonetheless, I am now sharing an effortless Instant Pot rotisserie chicken recipe! Its made in the IP completely from start to finish with a quick sear on both sides for that beautiful golden brown color before it sits in that IP for 28 minutes. Boom. Done.

Just let it release naturally as you prep your sides for dinner.

Oh and when I say dinner, I really mean nachos.

How To Pressure Cook A Whole Chicken In An Instant Pot

Here are some simple step by step by step directions for cooking a whole chicken in your Instant Pot or other electric pressure cooker, the full recipe is at the end of the post.

  • First, make sure your chicken is fully defrosted and that youâve removed the giblets so that it will cook through properly.
  • You do not need to rinse the chicken but you can carefully pat it dry with a paper towel.
  • Now you can apply the simple spice and herb rub which is made up of paprika, thyme, salt, pepper and oil. This adds a little flavor to the chicken and gives the skin a pop of color, otherwise the chicken looks very pale when its cooked.
  • If you want to add even more color to the finished chicken then you can carefully brown the chicken before you cook it under pressure. Youâre never going to get crispy skin like you will with an oven roasted chicken as we are using steam and pressure too cook it so the skin cannot crisp up in the same way.
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    How Long To Cook A Whole Chicken In The Instant Pot

    The easiest way to figure out how long to cook a chicken in the pressure cooker is to multiply the number of pounds of fresh chicken by 6 minutes.

    As with all pressure cookers, cooking times can vary slightly. Make sure the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit before consuming. Below is a cooking time table that will help you figure out the exact timing.

    I Decided To Lay This Out Tutorial Style For All Those Old Dogs Learning New Tricks Like I Wastake A Deep Breath This Is Not Much Different Than You Were Doing Before

    How to Cook a Whole Chicken in an Instant Pot

    Put the veggies and garlic into the bottom of your Instant Pot bowl, pour in the water, and set the rack for the chicken on top of the veggies.

    Gently lift the skin on the chicken breast and spread about a half palm-full of herbs and sea salt over the breast. This is optional but gives really good flavor to the meat. I dont even measure just sprinkle it into your palm and gently stuff your fist under the skin to rub the season on the meat.

    Set the chicken breast down in the Instant Pot right on top of the rack, and sprinkle sea salt, pepper, and herbs if you wish to the chicken as well as to the liquid in the pot as this will give the meat stock leftover great flavor for soups or other cooking.

    Turn the vent valve to closed, plug the Instant Pot in, push the Meat setting, and then bring the time down manually to 25 minutes. It will turn on automatically and will say On. while it comes to pressure for about 10 minutes.

    Once the pot comes to pressue, the 25 minute clock will count down. After your chicken pressure cooks 25 minutes, turn it off and let it sit in there to naturally release about 15-20 minutes. Turning that valve right away to release the pressure will pull all the moisture out of the meat you dont want that! Let it sit and release naturally and then release the valve and open the top.

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    Instant Pot Pressure Cooker Whole Chicken

    Heather Dessinger This post contains affiliate links.

    I adore a good slow-roasted chicken, but sometimes a mama just needs to get dinner on the table quickly. Unfortunately, Ive found that rushing the oven-roasting process with higher temperatures usually means drying out the chicken breast in order to get the dark meat fully cooked on time.

    Thats why I love this easy pressure cooker whole chicken recipe. It yields juicy, flavorful white meat, fully-cooked dark meat, and with just five minutes under the broiler you can still get the crispy, golden brown outside, too.

    Plus, it takes less time than actually roasting a chicken, and after your fall-off-the-bone tender meal is over, you can just toss the frame back in the pot to make Instant Pot chicken broth. Thats two tasty dishes with less cleanup.

    Cooking Times For Ip Whole Chicken:

    As a general rule of thumb, cook your chicken on high pressure for 6 minutes per pound, then do a natural pressure release for 15 minutes before manually releasing remaining pressure.

    • 3 lbs = 18 minutes on high pressure with 15-min natural release
    • 3 1/2 lbs = 21 minutes on high pressure with 15-min natural release
    • 4 lb = 24 minutes on high pressure with 15-min natural release
    • 4 1/2 lb = 27 minutes on high pressure with 15-min natural release
    • 5 lb = 30 minutes on high pressure with 15-min natural release

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    Recipe Tips And Tricks:

    • If you are cooking a frozen chicken and need to remove the giblets, just run that area under warm-hot water for 5-10 minutes, so you can remove and discard them.
    • Weighting the bird is very important, as pressure cooking it for too long will make it explode in the IP. Basically, the cartilage becomes too soft and the end result wont be as pretty but still delicious. Tieing together the drumsticks helps prevent that.
    • Also, make sure to use a relevant poultry size, so it fits the IP. If the chicken is larger than your pressure cooker, then it wont work. You could either follow the Oven Baked Recipe or use a larger sized 8 QT Pressure Cooker.
    • To make this recipe healthier, replace the butter in the Buttery Mixture with olive oil.
    • Keep the carcass and make the best homemade stock.
    • For super-crispy skin, brush the chicken with oil after it has been pressure cooked. Then, place it under the broiler for about 2-4 minutes, until the skin becomes golden brown.

    Why Is My Cooked Chicken Tough

    How to cook a whole “rotisserie” chicken in the Instant Pot

    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.

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    So Why Cook Your Own Whole Chicken

    Well, maybe youre like me and you live 30 minutes from the nearest major grocery store.

    Or, maybe if you have a family of six to feed? One store sized chicken doesnt feed a family of six. Trust me!

    Maybe youre stretching your dollars, and you want to buy the chicken on sale and cook the chicken yourself.

    My friends, those are just a few reasons why youll want to make an Instant Pot Whole Chicken. And then, make it the next week, too! Youll use this easy recipe all the time because why go somewhere else when you can make rotisserie chicken breast in your Instant Pot?

    You get to customize your chicken experience. YOU control the spices, the sodium content, etc. which is great for picky palates and health considerations alike.

    My recipe includes a basic blend of spices, but you could also make Cajun spiced chicken, Italian themed chicken and more.

    Add a few simple sides like Roasted Balsamic Brussels Sprouts and Creamy Mayo Free Potato Salad and you have dinner ready in no time.

    Or, use it for meal prepping lunches or in casseroles and recipes that call for cooked chicken like my Greek Chicken Salad Wraps .

    Have you seen casserole ideas and Instant Pot recipes using rotisserie chicken? Well this is your solution to having pre-cooked chicken for those recipes!

    When youre at the grocery store selecting your chicken to cook in the Instant Pot, keep this in mind.

    Why make a Whole Chicken in the Instant Pot?

    Tips On Making The Perfect Instant Pot Chicken

    • If you have time, season your whole raw chicken and refrigerate for an hour before cooking
    • Season the outside and inside of the chicken for maximum flavour
    • Do not quick release once the countdown is done, let it release the pressure naturally
    • Every pound of chicken should be cooked 6 minutes under pressure this chicken was 3.8lbs so to make it easy, I cooked the chicken in the Instant Pot for 24 minutes.

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    I Physically Dont Have The Time To Be In The Kitchen All Day Its That Simple

    So for years my kitchen routine specifically my chicken and bone broth routine has been on autopilotliterally. It was something I didnt have to think about.

    I made a whole chicken or two on a Sunday and use the meat for the next few days while freezing the rest. I would dump the bones back into the oven roaster or slow cooker and let it go overnight until the next evening when I would strain it off, cool it in the fridge overnight, and then pop it into the freezer. All in all it was a 2 day process though certainly not all hands on time. I honestly could do the routine without even thinking about it

    Do I Need To Use A Trivet When Roasting A Whole Chicken In An Instant Pot

    How to cook whole chicken in the Instant Pot.

    If you want to be able to carve and serve your chicken rotisserie-style, you will need to use a trivet in your Instant Pot.

    Essentially, you are ensuring that your chicken isnt sitting in the broth, other-wise it will fall completely apart and you risk having it stick to the bottom of your Instant Pot.

    Below is an example of how I set my whole chicken on the trivet to cook.

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    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.

    How To Cook A Whole Chicken In A Pressure Cooker

    I used a Ninja Foodi to cook this chicken. The instructions will be the exact same for any other type of pressure cooker, including Instant Pot. The difference is that the Ninja Foodi is also an air fryer so we could crisp the chicken up right in the same pot.

  • Make the compound butter: Mix the butter, garlic, herbs, lemon zest, salt, and pepper together in a bowl.
  • Season the chicken: Carefully create pockets between the chickens skin and meat with your hands. Spread the prepared butter under the skin. Make sure to get both breasts and legs.
  • Pressure cook the chicken: Pour the broth into the pressure cooker pot. Place the chicken on your pressure cookers wire rack inside the pot. Melt the remaining compound butter and brush half of it over the chicken. Cook on the pressure setting for 15 minutes. When the time is up, let the pressure release naturally for 5 minutes and then quick release the rest.
  • Air fry the chicken: Using the air crisp function, set the temperature to 400F. Brush the chicken with the remaining butter. Cook for 10-15 minutes, or until browned.
  • The chicken you use may be larger or smaller than mine. A good rule of thumb is to pressure cook your chicken for 5-6 minutes per pound. Ive tested the times for cooking chicken in a pressure cooker, and have found that many recipes call for too much time. My method will give you tender and perfectly cooked chicken without the bird completely falling apart.

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    Will The Whole Chicken Fall Apart When I Remove It From The Instant Pot

    If you are not using an Instant Pot Sling or a very large spatula to secure the bottom of the chicken, it will very likely begin falling apart when you remove it from the Instant Pot.

    Ive only recently discovered the sling and have had more than my fair share of chicken break in half or lose a leg or wing on its way out of the Instant Pot.

    How Long To Cook A Chicken In The Instant Pot

    How to Cook a Whole 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!

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    Ingredients In Pressure Cooker Whole Chicken

    This recipe is very easy to customize. Feel free to get creative and use your favorite herbs and seasonings! Try out a dry rub if you want to reduce calories. Keep scrolling for the full recipe and ingredient amounts.

    For this recipe youll need:

    • Whole chicken I used a 3 lb chicken and used some twine to tie the ends of the legs together.
    • Butter I always use unsalted butter to have more control over the amount of sodium in my chicken.
    • Herbs Use fresh herbs if possible! They make a wonderful difference. I used thyme and rosemary. If you use dried herbs, cut the amounts called for in half.
    • Garlic I love to use lots of garlic! You can use as much or as little as you like.
    • Lemon zest I have a microplane to get perfect and tiny lemon zest. It really brightens up the flavors.
    • Salt & pepper Season as per your own preference.
    • Chicken broth We need liquid to build up pressure. You can use any broth you have handy or even water.

    What Are The Benefits Of A Pressure Cooker Whole Chicken

    • You have a whole chicken ready in less than 30 minutes , which is just fantastic for a quick weeknight meal
    • The whole chicken is really very moist and infused with the most beautiful delicate flavors
    • Keep the bones and you have about 8 cups of homemade chicken broth at your hands with very little effort
    • You can use the shredded chicken in any number of other meals during the week
    • Not able to use all the chicken within a couple of days? Shred and freeze in smaller amounts and just pull some out when you need it!

    I hope you love this easy and nourishing meal as much as my family and I do. If you are looking for something to pair it with then check out these sides:

    If you don’t have a pressure cooker yet then check out the Instant Pot. I have had mine for about a year now and seriously use it every single day.

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