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How to Cook Frozen Chicken In An Instant Pot (With Video)

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Never worry about forgetting to thaw the chicken again with this easy tutorial on how to cook frozen chicken in an Instant Pot. Whether you want to batch cook, meal prep, or make a casserole, this tutorial will walk you through cooking chicken breasts and chicken thighs from frozen using your Instant Pot.

How to cook frozen chicken in the instant pot.

Why Should You Cook Frozen Chicken In An Instant Pot

Using your Instant Pot to cook frozen chicken is such a time saver! Not only does it stretch the versatility of your Instant Pot, it gives you the ability to prepare a lot of meat at one time. You can then use your cooked chicken for casseroles, tacos, salads, lunches, or freeze it for later. If you are a bulk shopper, you may also save money.


What Kind Of Chicken Can Be Cooked From Frozen In An Instant Pot

This tutorial for cooking frozen chicken in an Instant Pot may be used on a variety of cuts. You may use this tutorial to cook frozen chicken breasts and chicken thighs, boneless, or bone-in, skin-on, or skinless.  It is not recommended to cook drumsticks or wings this way because the meat will fall off the bone.


How Long To Cook Frozen Chicken In An Instant Pot

A few ingredients and half an hour are all you need to take chicken from frozen to juicy and shredded. Even if your chicken is in a frozen brick, like mine in the video, 30 minutes will cook the chicken through perfectly. You can choose to quick release or manually release the steam.

I have put a video tutorial together to help guide you through the process but essentially, this is a “dump and cook” recipe.

How to Cook Frozen Chicken in an Instant Pot

  • Step 1: Put frozen chicken right into the instant pot. Breasts and thighs, both work.
  • Step 2: Add 5 to 6 cups of water, this will become chicken broth.
  • Step 3: Add an onion that has been cut into large pieces.
  • Step 4: Add spices (salt, pepper, garlic, thyme, celery salt).
  • Step 5: Close and lock then lid. Don;t forget to seal the vent.
  • Step 6: Cook for 30 mins on high pressure.
  • Step 7: Use tongs to transfer the chicken into a large bowl.
  • Step 8: Now you are left with a whole lot of chicken borth.
  • Step 9: Use a fine mesh to strain the broth.
  • Step 10: Put into glass jars or ice cube trays. It will keep in the freezer for a long time!
Cook frozen chicken thighs in the Instant Pot.

What Size Instant Pot Should Be Used To Cook Frozen Chicken

A minimum of a 6-quart capacity is needed to cook the chicken using this tutorial. An 8 quart may also be used without adjustment to the cooking time (because there is already sufficient liquid in the pot). It is not recommended to use the mini 3-quart Instant Pot as the chicken and liquid will not fit.

How Much Liquid Do I Put In My Instant Pot?

As a general rule, the liquid should just cover the top level of whatever it is you’re cooking — in this case, the chicken. But we are trying to make a tasty broth and at the same time keep the chicken tender and moist; 5 to 6 cups of water will be needed to achieve this.

How To Season Frozen Chicken

Since the chicken is added in a frozen brick to the Instant Pot, there is no special seasoning method required. Just add the onion and spices to the pot, close the lid, and cook. As the chicken cooks and breaks apart in the pot, the seasoned broth and pressure will adequately season the chicken. The result is tender, juicy, and savory cooked chicken.

Homemade chicken broth made in the instant pot with frozen chicken.

What To Do With The Leftover Broth

Cooking your chicken with this method gives the added bonus of incredibly flavorful homemade chicken broth. Strain the broth with a fine mesh sieve and store it in mason jars in the refrigerator or freezer. It should stay fresh in the refrigerator up to 10 days or freezer for 6 months or more. You can even pour the broth into ice cube trays, freeze, and then bag up the individual cubes for the next time you need a little bit of broth for a sauce, like my keto country gravy!

Is The Chicken Tough After Cooking

Not at all! The Instant Pot, which is a pressure cooker, cooks the chicken under just enough pressure to cook the chicken through without drying it out, thanks to the steam. Plus, all of the broth that the chicken is cooked in also keeps the chicken tender and juicy. If you increase the cooking time then you run the risk of having tough chicken.

Is Chicken Good On A Keto Diet?

Chicken is a staple when undergoing the keto diet. It’s a great source of protein, which will help you feel
full and help repair muscles. It’s also low in carbs, which you are trying to cut down on with your keto
journey. Chicken is also a versatile ingredient and can be cooked in myriad ways. The taste and fat content differs from part to part. You can use the breast for a leaner cut or the thighs for a tender and juicy part.

Recipes To Try Using Cooked Chicken 

You can use the chicken that you cooked from frozen in the instant pot in a variety of recipes. Here are few suggestions:


How To Cook Frozen Chicken In The Instant Pot

Anna Hunley | Keto In Pearls
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Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Course Chicken


  • 5 to 6 cups water
  • 1 onion quartered
  • 1.5 teaspoons salt
  • 1.5 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon celery salt or 1 rib of celery
  • 2.5 to 3 lbs frozen chicken breasts or thighs


  • Place the frozen chicken in the pot. Pour the water over the top and sprinkle with spices. Add the onion around the chicken.
  • Close the lid and seal the vent. Cook on high pressure for 30 minutes.
  • Quick release or manually release the steam.
  • Use tongs or a slotted spoon to transfer chicken to a bowl.
  • Place a fine mesh strainer over a large measuring cup and strain the broth. Transfer to glass jars.
  • Store the chicken and broth in the refigerator up to 1 week or freezer up to 6 months.
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