Instant Pot Chicken Breast Recipe [video]

Catalina Castravet
By Catalina Castravet
4.92 from 12 reviews

Instant Pot Chicken Breast is juicy, moist, and flavorful easily made using the pressure cooker. This dish comes handy whenever additional protein is needed for your diet!

I like to pair this simple but tasty treat with my other dishes like the Quinoa Salad, Mexican Black Bean Salad, and Cheesy Potatoes!

Photo of instant pot chicken breast.

Perfect Instant Pot Chicken Breast

Instant Pot Chicken Breast is something I prepare when I just want to have a simple meal or when I need to have cooked white meat to add in my other recipes. What comes out of this easy recipe is a tender and juicy meat that is packed in flavor in health benefits.

If you want to elevate your salad or pasta, you can simply add bits of this dish. Another great thing about using the pressure cooker is that I can prepare this while I use my stove and oven for other dishes. Not only will I have perfectly done white meat with little effort, but I can also make a whole lineup of dishes in no time!

How to cook chicken breast in an instant pot?

For a quick and easy tutorial, watch the recipe video attached above. But the general steps are as follows:

  • Season – Season the meat first with spices and herbs for a savory flavor that compliments the meat.
  • Sauté – Turn on the sauté function of the IP and add oil in the pot. Brown each side of the breasts then, remove from the pot.
  • Pressure-Cook – Put the trivet and liquid in the bottom of the pot. Place the meat on the trivet and cook on high heat.
  • Pressure Release – Naturally release the pressure for five minutes and then, do a quick pressure release.
  • Rest – Let the meat rest for another five minutes before serving with lemons.

Picture of chicken breasts cooked in the instant pot garnished with chopped parsley on a white plate.

How to cook frozen chicken breast in the instant pot?

This recipe is for fresh or thawed white meat. If you want to know how to use the IP for frozen once, check out the recipe here. This makes it easy to prepare frozen meat when you forgot to remove it from the freezer!

How long do you cook Instant Pot Chicken Breasts?

The meat must reach up to 165 degrees Fahrenheit and in the IP, it will need 5 minutes on HIGH for whole breasts of about 6 to 8 ounces. This set time will be different for halved ones.

For frozen breasts:

Cooking frozen ones will add another 5 minutes at the very least to build up the pressure and another 3 to 5 minutes to cook. Therefore, you should add about 10 minutes of extra cooking time for frozen once.

Also, once cooked, you can check the internal temperature of the meat. If it did not reach the desired temperature of 165 degrees F, then feel free to cook it for a few extra minutes. 

Instant pot chicken breast photo.

How to make juicy and moist chicken breast in the pressure cooker?

This recipe ensures that the meat will be tender and juicy. Sautéing it first locks in as much flavor and juices and the high pressure tenderizes the meat without drying out because of the liquid added.

In addition, cooking it under pressure, it will almost automatically make it juicier and more flavorful. 

How much liquid do you need to add to the instant pot?

To generate enough steam to build pressure. For best results, we suggest going with about 1 1/2 cup of water or 375 mL. 

Can you stack chicken in the instant pot?

Yes, you can, but is not recommended. This will work with fresh meat, but for frozen ones, you should only put all the pieces in one layer. The frozen pieces need space and air to thaw out quickly when under pressure, therefore it is best to arrange the pieces in one layer.

Image of sliced chicken breast cooked in the pressure cooker.

How do you instantly release an instant pot?

Unlike the NPR which will require additional waiting time, you can do the Quick Pressure Release (QPR). In QPR, you open the valve and turn it to vent. At once, steam will escape along with some hot liquid if the pot is full. Hence, this mode is not advisable to use when dealing with a lot of liquid in your IP as in soups.

What is Natural Pressure Release?

Natural Pressure Release (NPR) is what you let the pressure inside the IP dissipate on its own. The IP turns to Keep Warm mode and eventually, the valve will naturally float or become easy to open. You may unplug the IP to do NPR. The more liquid there is inside the pot, the longer it will take to release all the pressure.

Recipe Tips:

  • For the liquid, you can use water or something flavorful like chicken broth or pineapple juice.
  • Once done, do not discard the liquid at the bottom of the pot just yet. You can make a gravy out of it! Remove the trivet and the breasts, then, turn the mode of the IP to SAUTÉ. Let the liquid boil some more and add slurry made with cornstarch and water. Let it thicken then, serve.
  • This dish is highly versatile. You can use this to add in our other recipes like Chicken A La King, Waldorf Chicken Salad, and Chicken Divan.

Save Recipe
4.92 from 12 reviews
Instant Pot Chicken Breast
Author: Catalina Castravet Serves: 4 servings
Prep time: 10 minutes Cook time: 10 minutes Total time: 20 mins





Calories: 355 Carbohydrates: 1 Protein: 48 Fat: 16 Saturated Fat: 2 Cholesterol: 144 Sodium: 557 Potassium: 845 Fiber: 0 Sugar: 0 Vitamin A: 130 Vitamin C: 2.7 Calcium: 11 Iron: 0.9
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Picture of juicy instant pot chicken breasts.

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Does the chicken end up tasting way too soft, like when you slow cook food? I'm always afraid of the texture!


No, its not too soft.


Brianne Tursi Manz

I've had a couple of chicken recipes in my instant pot that weren't the best. The biggest thing was dried chicken. I look forward to making this soon! This looks so juicy!


robin rue

Mmmm that sounds so good! I am going to have to try this chicken recipe!


Jamie Yonash

I always have trouble when I bake chicken breasts in the oven with them being too dry. I can't believe how moist and delicious these chicken breasts look! They will work great for so many recipes!


Amy Desrosiers

I love chicken breast so much! I really need to get cooking with my new instant pot machine!!



Chicken breasts are one of my favorites. I love that you did this in the instant pot. I will have to give this a try soon. It looks so good!



This makes me wish I had an instant pot! It looks like such a delicious recipe!



I love my instant pot. It saves dinner for me many a night. I am going to have to try my chicken with pineapple juice.



Well I know what I’m making for dinner tomorrow! Thanks for sharing! 


Shelley R Zurek

The chicken looks well seasoned and so tender. Definitely a recipe I need to pin.


Celebrate Woman Today

Oh, Instant Pot. How many dinners have you made a reality!


Stefani Tolson

Yum! Chicken is one of the things I cook most in my Instant Pot. I will have to try your recipe.



I seriously need to give this a try! Perfect for weeknights!



That looks so easy and delicious! Pinning for later 



This recipe looks super delicious and super simple. Can't wait to give it a try!


Jocelyn @ Hip Mama's Place

I have not used my IP in a while. I love this recipe! Very thorough and your tips and guide are very helpful.



This looks like a delicious way to enjoy chicken! Thank you!


Ruth I

This is one beautiful meal you got here. I think this is going to be perfectly paired with wine. I love this so much I want to get a bite already.



In the Instapot right now! Was wondering if you think putting hot water into the unit makes it switch to pressure faster? Looking forward to my moist and tasty chicken! Thanks for the recipe.


Using hot liquid in a recipe that calls for a cold liquid shortens the overall cooking time, and since the cooking time is shortened, the food may come out undercooked.



I made this this evening and it turned out great but a little chewy on the inside, any idea why? The pieces are pretty thick but it reaches beyond proper temperature.


Try marinating the chicken like I did in this recipe



When I make mine in the oven I put them in 30-35 minutes on 375. Mine generally stay moist. Haven't tried instant pot yet



This chicken was amazing!!! I always have to pound chicken breasts out or cut them in half because the texture is weird. But the texture was perfect. Great seasoning blend too! Strictly followed the recipe.My kids (5, 3.5 and 1.5) loved it! Going to be a staple in my house.



This was delicious! Super moist and flavorful. Will definitely be adding this to the dinner rotation.


Happy you enjoyed it, Michelle!



This was really good! I had to use chicken thighs, but I kept the seasonings and cooking method the same. (I did use chicken broth instead of water.) The chicken came out juicy and tender, and it had good flavor. My kids were disappointed there wasn’t more. :) I also made a gravy from the leftover liquid. Yum!



Do I leave the “keep warm” function ON after the pressure cooking part is done (while it is doing the “natural release”)?


not necessarily



I made this recipe tonight and followed it to a T. It was my first meal in my instant pot with some chicken ricearoni on the stove and gravy poured on top. This is absolutely phenominal!! My son and husband devoured it!! Chicken was not dry one bit it was nice and juicy and the gravy was really good as well. Dont sleep on this one!!



Followed the recipe to a T except when I took the chicken out of the IP after searing, I poured the water in the pot and used a wooden spoon to deglaze it. The chicken was perfectly cooked, and the flavour was AMAZING. This will be the new way I make chicken breasts


I am so happy! Thank you for the feedback!



Delicious! I took my time with this the first time around, and followed the recipe and instructions exactly. I had about 8 large skinless breasts so adjusted the spices and had to cook it in 3 batches. Have enough to serve 15+ people. A few sides and a ready meal for a crowd. It was slightly dryer than I hoped. Could have been the chicken; had to know. Next time I’m going to try marinade first. And now that I have it down, the next time should be super easy. Thanks for the recipe!


I am so happy you love it!


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