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.
How Long Do You Pressure Cook A Whole Chicken
A 4lb chicken can be pressure cooked cooked in about 24-26 minutes, and a 7lb chicken will take a little longer at around 42-44 minutes. I have a table below with average cook times.
I do not recommend pressure cooking a frozen whole chicken as you risk having the center still frozen even if you increase the cook time. You can cook chicken pieces such as chicken breast and chicken thighs from frozen in a pressure cooker but a whole frozen chicken is more tricky to safely cook because of its size.
Cook times are approximate and can vary depending on the thickness of the meat, they also assume a fully defrosted chicken.
If its not properly cooked simply put the lid back on and cook for a further 6 minutes
Do You Put Water In The Pressure Cooker
Yes, most Instant Pot chicken recipes will call for water. This is what helps create a tender and juicy piece of meat and helps to get the IP up to pressure!
For this instant pot whole chicken recipe, youll just need a cup of water or broth in the bottom of the pot.
I also like to use the wire rack that comes with the IP so the chicken isnt sitting in water and skin can stay crispy.
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Cooking Tips For The Best Instant Pot Roast Chicken
- Use a dry rub to season the chicken before cooking, and try to get some of the rub under the skin on the chicken breasts. The spice rub in this whole chicken recipe is a simple blend of seasonings and it is so good! My kids cannot get enough of it! You can easily use your favorite seasonings if you prefer.
- Sear the chicken before pressure cooking. You can do this right in your Instant Pot using sauté mode! Browning the chicken adds so much flavor!
- The easiest way to flip the chicken. Turning the chicken over in the Instant Pot after browning it on the first side can be a little tricky. Heres what Ive found works best: stick a long handled spoon or tongs into the cavity and then use another long spoon to turn the chicken first onto its side and then flip it over. The smaller your chicken, the easier it will be to flip over in the pot. The chicken in the photos in this post was 5.5 pounds and it just barely fit in my Instant Pot. Flipping it was not easy but I got it done!
- Flavor from the inside out. After searing the chicken, fill the cavity with half of a fresh lemon, half an onion, and fresh herbs such as rosemary or thyme. While this is optional, it will infuse your chicken with extra flavor as it cooks!
- Broil for crispy skin. You can put your chicken under the broiler in your oven for 4-5 minutes after it is done cooking to crisp up the skin. Honestly, I dont bother with this because we dont eat the skin but it is up to you!
Why Youll Love This Recipe
- This Instant Pot whole chicken is so tender and flavorful.
- It is the quickest and easiest way to roast an entire chicken.
- The pan drippings create the most delicious 3 ingredient gravy.
- This recipe is easy to follow and straightforward.
- For the oven version, check out this Dutch Oven Roasted Chicken.
- The chicken is versatile and great as leftovers.
- This recipe is Keto, low carb, nut free, gluten free and sugar free.
- For Whole30 and Paleo, substitute gluten free flour for 1 tablespoon tapioca flour.
- Check out these Instant Pot Chicken Thighs and Potatoes for another great recipe.
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Why Make A Roast Chicken In The Instant Pot
- It is faster than cooking a whole chicken in the oven. You can make roast chicken for dinner on a weeknight!
- Pressure cooking makes the chicken so juicy, tender and flavorful!
- You can safely cook a frozen whole chicken in your Instant Pot no thawing required!
For all of you Instant Pot fans, I have more delicious recipes and resources to help you get quick and healthy meals on your table! If you are just getting started with your pressure cooker, read my Instant Pot manual. Then check out these easy Instant Pot recipes to help you meal plan:
Roast Potatoes In Instant Pot Duo Crisp
- Briefly rinse the inner pot and place it back inside the Instant Pot cooking base.
- Brush the pre-cooked potatoes with the remaining garlic herb butter. You can use a small knife to cut a cross in the potatoes for the butter to soak in better. Set aside.
- Place the potatoes inside the air fryer basket and season with some salt. Place the basket on the basket base and insert it inside the inner pot. Place the air fryer lid back on top and set to Roast for 10 minutes at 204 C / 399 F. The tops of the potatoes facing up will brown and crisp up as will the bottoms of those touching the base.
- Serve roasted chicken whole with the potatoes on a large platter or carve the meat first. Perfect with a simple gravy or any other delicious sauce of choice.
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Why You Will Love This Recipe
- Easy: It takes minutes to prep the chicken before cooking and then just let your pressure cooker do its thing!
- Simple ingredients: Theres nothing fancy you need to cook the most perfect whole chicken, and you will have most of the ingredients to hand.
- Quick: This Instant Pot whole chicken recipe means that you get a cooked chicken in a fraction of the time and it results in the most flavorful and juicy meat.
Pressure Cooker Whole Chicken
My life has seriously changed since I started using my pressure cooker. Everything cooks up so fast and the flavors are unbeatable! This recipe for pressure cooker whole chicken is something Ive been testing and working on to master. Ive finally figured out the magical formula and am so excited to share this recipe with you all.
I kept this recipe nice and basic with a compound butter massaged and spread under the skin of my chicken. Its the little things that will take your cooking to the next level! This will be a meal you and your family will always look forward to.
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How Long To Cook Pioneer Woman Instant Pot Whole Chicken
Pioneer Woman Instant Pot Whole Chicken takes about 30 minutes to cook. A general rule of thumb is to weigh the chicken before cooking and stuffing it and to cook it for 6 minutes per pound of chicken. It will take 30 minutes to pressure cook a 5 lb chicken, whereas it will take 24 minutes to pressure cook a 4 lb chicken.
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.
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Recipe Tips And Tricks
- Pressure cooker tips: As a general rule of thumb, cook your chicken on high pressure for 6 minutes per extra pound, then do a natural pressure release for 15 minutes before manually releasing remaining pressure.
- How to store: Store leftover chicken in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3-4 days.
- How to reheat: Preheat oven to 325F. Place chicken on a casserole dish or quarter sheet baking pan and cover the bottom with some chicken broth or water . Loosely wrap the chicken in aluminum foil which helps hot, humid air circulate around the chicken, resulting in evenly heated, juicy leftover chicken. Bake for 10-20 minutes, depending on the size of the chicken. You can also break it apart and reheat leftovers in the air fryer at 350F for 5-10 minutes until warmed through.
- How to use leftovers: You can reheat leftovers an enjoy this as is, or shred the meat and use in to make Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup or White Chicken Chili, add it to sandwiches and salads, or stuff it in Chicken Enchiladas. If you are planning to use leftovers in this way, I would recommend separating the meat from the bone before refrigerating. That way, its easier to use when you want it.
How Do I Crisp The Skin Without An Air Fryer
If you dont have an air fryer, you can use the broil function on your oven. Prepare a baking sheet with a wire rack. Carefully place the chicken on the rack and broil for around 5 minutes, keeping a close eye on the chicken, until the skin has browned to your liking. This may take more or less time depending on your oven.
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How To Cook A Frozen Whole Chicken In The Instant Pot
We raise our own organic and pasture raised chickens here on the homestead so when it comes to cooking a whole bird, they’re always frozen solid straight from the deep freezer. Here’s how to cook chicken in a pressure cooker when it’s frozen.
I’ve discovered that for frozen meat, by adding 15 minutes to regular pressure cooking times tends to be the magic number. The first few times I only added 10 minutes and because our birds weigh in at about 6 to 7 pounds, the center of the breasts was still raw.
Here is my guideline for instant pot frozen chicken recipes
If the frozen chicken is 5 pounds or under, add an additional 10 minutes to the cooking time for a total of 35 minutes at high pressure
If the frozen chicken is 6+ pounds, add an additional 15 minutes to the cooking time for a total of 40 minutes at high pressure
What if my whole chicken is still raw after cooking in the Instant pot
If you slice into it to find it’s pink, just slap it back into the pot and pressure cook for an additional 7 minutes and she be done!
But to avoid all that extra work, follow the adjusted cooking times listed above.
Instant Pot Whole Chicken with Vegetables
Roasted Whole Chicken in Instant Pot
1 whole chicken
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
Dried herbs of choice
3 fresh sprigs of rosemary in cavity of chicken
Instant Pot Whole Chicken Leftover Ideas:
The chicken is perfect to use in other recipes. We look forward to having leftovers so we make new meals out of the chicken.
- chicken noodle soup Shred the chicken and use it for soup.
- Jalapeño Popper Chicken Casserole Make this easy casserole with leftover chicken
- Chicken Salad Add it to your salads for a delicious chicken salad.
- Make chicken and cheese quesadillas
- Make chicken burritos
- Add it to make a quick chicken tortilla soup
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How Long To Cook A Frozen Whole Chicken In The Instant Pot
If cooking a frozen whole chicken in the Instant Pot the cooking time will increase to 12 minutes per pound. It is important to remember the steps for cooking a whole frozen chicken will differ because a whole frozen chicken, you will not use the butter mixture, because you cannot do this with frozen chicken, and you will not sear the meat. To cook a frozen whole chicken in the Instant Pot follow these directions:
- Add 1 cup of water to the bottom of the pressure cooker. Place the trivet in the bottom of the Instant Pot.
- Rub the outside of the whole chicken with olive oil and spices. Place the chicken breast side up and cook for 12 minutes per pound.
- Allow the chicken to manually release pressure at least 15 minutes.
Ingredients For Instant Pot Whole Chicken
- Chicken: Use the best chicken you can for this recipe. I prefer to use organic and air-chilled chicken. I wouldnt recommend using frozen chicken for this recipe.
- Lemon, garlic and onion: Used to stuff the chicken to give it more flavor.
- Seasonings and spices: Salt, black pepper, two teaspoons garlic powder & onion powder , paprika and thyme to rub the chicken. You can also add oregano or Italian herb seasonings.
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How Does Pressure Cooking Keep The Meat Moist
The pressure cooker completely encloses the chicken in an airtight container to steam the meat. Poultry will have no problem cooking all the way through. The pressure elevates the temperature, cooking it in a fraction of the time compared to roasting in the oven. Its similar to a French moist-heat cooking method called en cocotte, developing tender meat and a built-in savory sauce.
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Prepare Chicken & Potatoes For Roasting
- Open the pot and let off the steam for a couple of minutes. Using gloves or two towels, remove the trivet with the chicken on it and place it on a plate.
- Remove the potatoes to a plate or a bowl and pour out most of the cooking broth. Leave about 1/2 cup in the pot for roasting as it will help to keep the meat moist.
- Duo Crisp + Air Fryer method: Place the trivet back in the pot with the leftover broth and the chicken on top of the trivet . Handles still facing up.
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Will The Chicken Have Crispy Skin
When you take the chicken out of the Instant Pot, it wont have crispy skin. The skin will be thin and translucent. If you really want a crispy exterior, you should roast the chicken in the oven instead of the Instant Pot.
However, you can add a bit of crispiness and color to the top of the chicken by putting it in the oven on broil for around 8 minutes. Watch it closely so you dont over do it. Take it out as soon as color begins to form.
Why Use The Instant Pot
So, what specifically is so great about making a whole chicken in the Instant Pot? Well, there are actually quite a few great reasons to love this method. Here are just a few:
- Convenience: Using the Instant Pot allows you to cook the chicken without babysitting it. That means theres no need to peek into the oven and make sure its not getting overdone, no basting, no worrying that the meat will dry out. Because the Instant Pot does all the work, you can just set the timer and walk away. Perfection!
- Cost-Effectiveness: Per pound, whole chickens are one of the most economical protein options out there. Its not uncommon to pay twice as much for thighs, wings, or breasts! This recipe makes it easy to take advantage of those savings.
- Quality: Pressure cooking allows you to fully cook both the dark meat and white meat, without losing moisture. Thats because pressure cookers actually trap steam and moisture inside, rather than letting it evaporate. As a result, you get tenderized food without losing any of the juices.
- Time: Of course, this is the main attraction of the Instant Potits in the name! For this recipe, youll only need a short time for the IP to heat up, and then about 8 minutes per pound or 13 minutes per pound .
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