How to Cook Chicken Breasts in the Instant Pot Step-by-Step
The Instant Pot makes our lives easier — and not just because it can make a meal from start to finish in one pot (although that's nothing to turn your nose up at). My favorite thing about the Instant Pot is how easy it makes cooking staples, like rice, beans, hard boiled eggs, and chicken breasts.
You can easily cook fresh or frozen chicken breast in your Instant Pot, helping to free up oven space and save time. Enjoy your Instant Pot chicken breast as is, or use it to hack meal prep like a pro. Tender and juicy Instant Pot chicken breasts can be cubed or shredded to add to a variety of dishes all week long.
So, if we haven't convinced you the Instant Pot is the way to go when it comes to cooking chicken breast, this easy, step-by-step tutorial certainly will. But first, get the answers to some Instant Pot chicken breast FAQs.
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.
Can You Cook a Whole Chicken in the Instant Pot?
Again, thanks to the magic of the Instant Pot, the answer is yes. If you want to achieve supermarket-style rotisserie chicken at home, it takes less than an hour using the Instant Pot. Learn how to season, sear, and cook a whole chicken in the Instant Pot using our step-by-step tutorial.
Can You Cook Chicken Breasts with Bones in the Instant Pot?
Yup. You can use the method below to cook boneless skinless chicken breast, bone-in chicken breast, and even chicken breast with the skin on all at the same cooking time.
How to Cook Chicken Breast in the Instant Pot Step-by-Step
Here's What You'll Need
- Place ingredients in the Instant Pot. Set the Instant Pot trivet or any other pressure cooker rack (like this $7 Amazon best seller) inside the insert of the Instant Pot. Season the chicken with salt and place on the trivet. Pour chicken broth or water over the chicken. Close the lid.
- Cook the chicken on HIGH pressure. Turn the pressure valve to the sealing position. Set to HIGH pressure. For a juicy chicken breast perfect for eating whole or cubing, set the timer to 10 minutes and quick release the pressure once the time is up. For shredded or frozen chicken, set the timer for 15 minutes and natural release for 5 minutes once the time is up.
- Release any remaining pressure and let the chicken rest. Quickly and carefully release any remaining pressure by turning the pressure valve to the venting position. Open the lid and carefully remove the chicken. Let it rest on the cutting board for five minutes before shredding or slicing, in order for the juices to distribute throughout the chicken. You may use a digital thermometer to check that the internal temperature is at least 165 degrees F.
- Prepare the chicken and reserve the broth. If you're saving the cooked chicken for meals throughout the week, store them whole to keep the moisture in. For immediate use, chop or shred chicken as desired for use in other recipes. And don't forget to reserve the broth for soups and cooking grains!
How to Store Cooked Chicken Breast
Cooked chicken should be kept in an airtight container or wrapped tightly with plastic or aluminum foil and stored in the refrigerator. It will keep this way for three to four days.
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 (like in this Three-Ingredient Baked Chicken Breast recipe). 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.