Yummy Shredded Chicken – INSTANT POT

Instant Pot Shredded Chicken Shredded chicken is one of my “go tos’ when it comes to fixing dinner. You can use it in so many recipes. I found a way to make up a batch of yummy, savory shredded chicken in a SNAP using the INSTANT POT. I get so excited about this little gadget, (I use it everyday), that I have to share with you all these fun ways to use it.

This method of cooking chicken breast has won me over. It always comes out moist, tender and so flavorful. It is so easy and quick to make, that I occasionally make up a batch for lunch. I steam some veggies to go with it and I am good to go. Just as quick as getting in the car and driving to a fast food joint, and MUCH healthier.


  • 4 lbs chicken breasts or 18 chicken tenders (approximately 6 breasts)
  • 1/2 c water or chicken broth
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper

Instant Pot Poultry SettingInstructions:

  1. Add all of the ingredients to the Instant Pot.
  2. Press the “poultry” button then using the plus symbol add 5 minutes for a total of 20 minutes. If you are using frozen meat, add another 5 minutes for tenders and 10 minutes for breasts.
  3. Once the pressure cooking time has finished, carefully turn the valve from “sealing” to “venting” to quick pressure release. (This will allow the steam to escape and you’ll be able to open the lid sooner than waiting for natural release).
  4. Place the chicken onto a plate or cutting board and let it cool for a few minutes.
  5. Use two forks to shred.
  6. Store the chicken in an air-tight container with some of the liquid to help keep the meat moist.


img_8764I like to freeze the chicken in quart size freezer bags for those crazy nights when I don’t have a lot of time.

This shredded chicken is so good, that you can just eat it plain, or use it in one of your favorite recipes. Here are some of my favorite ways to shredded chicken.

What I love about the Instant Pot vs. a regular pressure cooker is that I can just program it for what I need it to do, and walk away. I don’t have to stick around in the kitchen waiting for it to get up to pressure. Oh, I am learning how to do so much with this thing. Last week I made homemade vanilla yogurt. It was so delicious! It was the best yogurt I have ever had. I will post about that the next time I make some.

jan3Instant Pot Shredded Chicken youmakeitsimple.com



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  • […] Instant Pot Shredded Chicken  […]ReplyCancel

  • Erin RuffDecember 14, 2016 - 1:05 pm

    Is it okay to use frozen chicken or best to use thawed? If frozen is okay, do you adjust cooking time?ReplyCancel

    • JanDecember 14, 2016 - 2:46 pm

      Hi Erin,
      Yes it is ok to use frozen chicken. That is what I have always used and it comes out fabulous. One time I did add a little more chicken than usual, and I should have adjusted the time for that. It wasn’t quite cooked all the way, so I just cooked it another 2 minutes and it was fine. So frozen is great. Let me know if you have any further questions.
      Enjoy your day,

      • LisaAugust 12, 2018 - 10:16 am

        I found I needed to cook frozen chicken quite a bit more than noted in the recipe. I had about two pounds of frozen tenders and originally set the timer for 30 minutes. There were still some raw spots so I did them for another seven minutes. Next time I’ll try 35 total.ReplyCancel

  • Kathy FowlerDecember 25, 2016 - 3:00 pm

    Use your Kitchenaid mixer with dough hook to shred the chicken. Really fast and easy, takes about 30 seconds.ReplyCancel

    • JanDecember 25, 2016 - 5:24 pm

      Great idea! ThanksReplyCancel

    • JessicaDecember 26, 2016 - 12:13 pm

      That’s a fabulous idea! ThanksReplyCancel

  • LaurenDecember 26, 2016 - 2:27 pm

    Do you put the chicken on the little steamer rack that came with the instant pot?ReplyCancel

    • JanDecember 27, 2016 - 1:47 pm

      Hi Lauren, No you don’t need to use the steamer rack. Just place the chicken in the pot.ReplyCancel

  • RachelDecember 30, 2016 - 9:17 pm

    If I’m only making 2lbs of chicken do I still do the same amount of time? I just got my Instant Pot for Christmas so I’m still trying to figure it out. Thanks!😊ReplyCancel

    • JanDecember 31, 2016 - 10:29 am

      Hi Rachel, I would take the time down to 15 minutes. I have not made it with only 2lbs of chicken, so I am not certain. If you are using frozen chicken, I would do about 18 minutes.
      Let me know how it goes! I am so excited for you with a new Instant Pot. You are going to love this thing!
      Happy New Year’s,

  • TraciJanuary 4, 2017 - 3:27 pm

    Thanks for the recipe! What would you suggest for time for thick frozen breasts from Costco or Sam’s? Mine was dry and tough to shred today, and I’m not sure if it’s because it needed more time or less. I did 20 minutes, then npr because my baby needed to eat.ReplyCancel

    • JanJanuary 4, 2017 - 4:09 pm

      Hi Traci, if using frozen chicken breasts, it is best to up the time 5 minutes and use quick release. When I use Costco frozen chicken breasts I set the time for 25 minutes and it works great. If the chicken is tough, it is usually a sign that it needs to cook a little longer. I have turned it back on and pressured it a few minutes longer, with good results. I hope this was helpful. 🙂ReplyCancel

  • AmyJanuary 4, 2017 - 7:54 pm

    Hello is an instance pot the same thing as a pressure cookerReplyCancel

    • JanJanuary 4, 2017 - 9:02 pm

      Hello. The Instant Pot is a pressure cooker and 6 other things all in ONE! It is a Multi-Functional Cooker–Pressure Cooker, Slow Cooker, Rice Cooker, Saute/Browning, Yogurt Maker, Steamer & Warmer. I love this thing and use it almost every day! More info here http://amzn.to/2hSHve1ReplyCancel

  • MarciJanuary 13, 2017 - 6:52 pm

    Hello! I have chicken thighs I need to cook up, would the time be the same? I just got mine because a friend of mine just raves about hers. This will be the first time I use it.ReplyCancel

    • JanJanuary 13, 2017 - 9:08 pm

      Hi Marci,
      Congratulations! You are going to love your Instant Pot!
      To cook chicken thighs, add 1 cup water and push the poultry button and set timer for 15 minutes. If frozen, set for 20 minutes for boneless and 25 minutes for bones in. Use a quick-release of the pressure, testing the chicken with a thermometer to ensure it has reached 165F.
      I cook chicken thighs in this all the time and love it. I throw some spices on top before cooking and they turn out great.
      Let me know if you have further questions.ReplyCancel

  • KatrinaFebruary 2, 2017 - 3:35 pm

    My instapot does not have the poultry setting. What other setting might you suggest to get the same result?ReplyCancel

    • JanFebruary 2, 2017 - 8:08 pm

      Does it have a manual button? If so, just use that and make sure the pressure level is at high. If it doesn’t have a manual button, set to pressure cook on HIGH for the same amount of time. I hope this was helpful.ReplyCancel

  • RondaFebruary 17, 2017 - 5:19 pm

    About how many cups of shredded chicken does this recipe yield?ReplyCancel

    • JanFebruary 17, 2017 - 5:31 pm

      You will get approximately 5-6 cups of shredded chicken. It depends on big the chicken breasts are.ReplyCancel

  • […] Shredded Chicken from You Make it Simple […]ReplyCancel

  • BrentMarch 7, 2017 - 11:08 pm

    for the costco frozen chicken, do you separate the chicken breasts (they come 2 to a pack and are really difficult to separate).ReplyCancel

    • JanMarch 10, 2017 - 5:19 pm

      You can leave them together. I do and it is just fine.ReplyCancel

  • BrentMarch 7, 2017 - 11:10 pm

    do you separate the frozen chicken breast from costco before putting in instant pot? they usually come practically glued together and are very difficult to separate.ReplyCancel

    • JanMarch 10, 2017 - 5:26 pm

      I don’t separate them and they do just fine.ReplyCancel

  • […] that chicken, why not try an Instant Pot? I absolutely love mine! Super  quick and tasty meals. Here is a great way to cook that chicken in an Instant […]ReplyCancel

  • […] View the recipe at You Make It Simple […]ReplyCancel

  • SherryJune 23, 2017 - 2:53 pm

    The easiest way to “shred” chicken is to use a mixer. If the chicken is very warm, it works better. I know it sounds crazy, but it really works and is a snap.ReplyCancel

    • JanJune 26, 2017 - 1:49 pm

      Love this idea!!! Can’t wait to try it. Thanks for sharing this awesome tip Sherry!ReplyCancel

  • […] Ok, so shredded chicken isn’t dinner, but making shredded chicken quickly can help put dinner on the table quicker.  Plus you can shred a lot of chicken and freeze it for later.  You can find the instructions on how to make Yummy Shredded Chicken here. […]ReplyCancel

  • DebbieNovember 29, 2017 - 4:32 pm

    Your recipe calls for 1/2 cup of liquid but my manual says to always use at least 1 cup. Does that mean we have different Instant Pots?ReplyCancel

    • JanNovember 30, 2017 - 10:10 am

      I know in the Instant Pot manual it says to use at least one cup for veggies, but not for meat. In the recipe section of the book it has recipes for meat and they only use 1/2 cup.When pressurizing meat, the meat releases plenty of moisture on its own. I hope this was helpful. What model do you have? Check out the meat recipes in your manual and see what they recommend. I would love to know, so we can pass on this information. Thanks for inquiring. Enjoy your day!ReplyCancel

  • StacyJanuary 1, 2018 - 3:46 pm

    Hi! Thank you so much for your post! I just got a Crock Pot Express Pot for Christmas and tried some chicken in it tonight following your instructions, turned out perfect! Thanks sgain!ReplyCancel

    • JanJanuary 1, 2018 - 5:49 pm

      That is good to know. Thanks for sharing!ReplyCancel

  • LynneFebruary 13, 2018 - 12:29 pm

    Saw one comment about using dough hook. I saw a video where a lady placed chicken in a bowl and used her hand mixer. Worked great and so fast!ReplyCancel

    • JanFebruary 16, 2018 - 8:16 pm

      What a great tip. I am going to have to give that a whirl!ReplyCancel

  • PatriciaFebruary 25, 2018 - 6:34 pm

    What about beef? Stew? Roast?ReplyCancel

    • JanFebruary 25, 2018 - 6:40 pm

      The Instant Pot is great to cook beef, stew and a yummy roast.

      I will get a post out soon. 🙂ReplyCancel

  • RebeccaMarch 18, 2018 - 6:26 pm

    Hello I have a question about the shredded chicken. I would like to freeze a bunch of cooked shredded chicken & I was wondering if you dethaw it before you put it into a recipe or place it on frozen?ReplyCancel

    • JanMarch 18, 2018 - 8:44 pm

      It depends what recipe I am adding it to. You will not have to thaw it before adding it to soups. Tacos, casseroles, and salads, you will want to thaw first. It doesn’t take long in microwave or in the fridge overnight. I usually freeze in quart size containers. That way you can thaw a little at a time for salads, snacks and other things.ReplyCancel

  • PattyJuly 12, 2018 - 7:44 pm

    Can you do this with bone in chicken? I accidently bought a box of chicken with bones in and want to cook them so the meat falls off the bones.ReplyCancel

    • JanJuly 12, 2018 - 8:50 pm

      Hi Patty, I have instructions for cooking a “whole” chicken here https://youmakeitsimple.com/2017/02/roasted-chicken/
      But if it is not whole chicken, and just pieces with bones in them, I would cook with 1/2 cup water or broth for 25 minutes, 30 if chicken is frozen. I have never done it this way, but this should work just fine. Let me know how it goes.ReplyCancel

  • Erica Martin GonzalezJuly 25, 2018 - 9:49 pm

    Second attempt at chicken in my Instant Pot and it was PERFECTION. I made it JUST as the recipe instructed with broth. SO good. Thank you!!!ReplyCancel

  • KevinJuly 30, 2018 - 7:48 pm

    I did it. I love it. Thanks for sharingReplyCancel

  • BethNovember 18, 2018 - 1:12 pm

    I did not have a poultry button so I use the manual. I did thighs and legs for 25 minutes and they we’re not thawed completely. It came out perfect.ReplyCancel

    • JanNovember 18, 2018 - 1:30 pm

      Awesome, thanks for sharing!ReplyCancel

  • […] Shredded Chicken from You Make it Simple […]ReplyCancel

  • […] Shredded Chicken from You Make it Simple […]ReplyCancel

  • […] You can find the instructions on how to make Yummy Shredded Chicken here. […]ReplyCancel

  • AdamJanuary 19, 2019 - 7:50 am


    I realize this was posted in 2016 but i just got a new IP duo 6qt and have had numerous bad experiences over cooking chicken. Thought maybe you could share your thoughts on how not to overcook???ReplyCancel

    • JanJanuary 19, 2019 - 10:09 am

      Hi Adam, are you saying you have had a bad experience with this posted method, or in general? I have found this method to produce nice moist chicken. I don’t think the new Instant Pot will be any different. If you find your chicken is overcooked, take note, and lesson the cooking time next go.
      Other than that, I don’t have any great ideas. Perhaps someone out there will. 🙂ReplyCancel

  • Elizabeth RuygtJanuary 24, 2019 - 1:28 pm

    I don’t have a poultry setting on my 8 qt. Instant Pot Ultra but I do have among others Pressure Cooker and Soup/Broth, Meat/Stew would either of them work or do you have another suggestion?ReplyCancel

    • JanJanuary 24, 2019 - 7:57 pm

      Hi Elizabeth,
      No worries. The “poultry setting” is just high pressure and it defaults to a certain suggested time for poultry. So just use “Manual” and make sure it is at “high pressure” and set o the according time.ReplyCancel

  • […] Shredded Chicken from You Make it Simple […]ReplyCancel

  • […] Shredded Chicken from You Make it Simple […]ReplyCancel

  • […] Shredded Chicken From You Make it Simple […]ReplyCancel

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