Instant Pot Shredded Chicken

The Instant Pot is the fastest and easiest way to cook chicken that is so tender you can shred it with your fork! Use fresh or frozen chicken thighs or breasts and then set it and forget it! 

We love this basic shredded chicken recipe, as well as our basic perfectly baked chicken breasts and oven-roasted rotisserie chicken! It is used in so many recipes and is the easiest way to get perfectly shredded chicken.

Instant Pot shredded chicken

Shredded Chicken in Instant Pot

I don’t know about you but I don’t love reheated chicken. It tastes so much better fresh and that is why I love my instant pot! I can make fresh, shredded chicken in under 45 minutes and it requires minimal thought or supervision.

Shredded chicken is great for tacos, soups, casseroles, sandwiches, pasta and more!

I love to make this shredded chicken and use it in my creamy chicken noodle soup, buffalo chicken stuffed shells, creamy chicken enchiladas or basically any recipe that calls for shredded chicken or a rotisserie chicken! 

Chicken in instant pot to shred

How to Make IP Shredded Chicken

Instant Pot Shredded is as easy as three simple steps:

  1. Add the chicken to the pot and sprinkle seasoning over top
  2.  Pressure cook on the MANUAL setting for 22 minutes.
  3. Manually release pressure and once the valve pops, remove the lid and shred the chicken in the pot with two forks.

That is it!! I mean it can’t get much easier than that! And I know you might be thinking, “but what about the liquid?” You don’t need liquid for this recipe because the chicken creates its own natural juices!

However, if you really want to put liquid in because you are concerned about dry chicken or the pot pressurizing, I  recommend 1/2 cup of chicken broth or water!

Cooking Tips

  • Cuts of meat: You can use chicken thighs or breasts for this recipe. I recommend thighs because they have more fat on them, which gives you more moisture and flavor!  
  • Frozen chicken: Basically add 3-4 minutes if using frozen chicken and if for some reason the chicken is still undercooked pop them back in at high pressure for another 3-4 minutes.
  • Seasonings: I like to be generous with my seasonings and my favorite ones to use are Herbes de Provence, Italian seasoning, or Trader Joe’s Onion Salt seasoning.
  • Slow cooker time: Season your chicken breasts and then cover them with chicken broth before cooking on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 3-4 hours. Shred with two large forks while having some of the liquid with the chicken while shredding.

Shredded chicken in instant pot

Variations + Additions

As I said, chicken is so versatile and this recipe gives you a basic starting point for all your shredded chicken recipes! Here are some easy variations: 

  • Tacos: You can season shredded chicken with minced onion, cumin, and chili powder. 
  • BBQ chicken: Do 2 parts of BBQ sauce to 1 part water and pour it over your chicken in the IP.
  • Fajitas: Season you chicken with a blend of cumin, chili pepper, paprika, salt, pepper, and lime juice. You can also add in some raw red, orange, and green bell pepper along with some sliced onion before cooking.
  • Spicy Mexican: Season you chicken with a blend of oregano, cumin, paprika, salt, pepper, garlic, lime juice, brown sugar, fire-roasted diced tomatoes, and 2-5 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
  • Buffalo: Shredded buffalo chicken requires your favorite buffalo sauce, ranch dressing, and butter.  

Storing Tips

Storing: Store leftover chicken in the fridge for 3-4 days in an airtight container

Freezing:  When storing the chicken in the freezer, let it cool before placing it in an airtight bag. The chicken will last for 2-3 months frozen.

Reheating: When reheating frozen chicken let it thaw in the fridge overnight and then microwave to rewarm, or use in these great recipes!

 Instant pot shredded chicken recipe

Now you are ready to pull out that Instant Pot, pop in some chicken and start making some delicious chicken dinners!! 

For recipes to make with shredded chicken, check out:

 

Instant Pot Shredded Chicken Recipe

The Instant Pot is the fastest and easiest way to cook chicken that is so tender you can shred it with your fork! Use fresh or frozen chicken thighs or breasts and then set it and forget it!
5 from 5 votes
Pin Rate
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 5 mins
Cook Time: 22 mins
Total Time: 40 mins
Servings: 8
Author: Natalie
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Ingredients

  • 1 lb chicken thighs - boneless, skinless
  • 1 tsp seasoning blend - I like to use Herbes de Provence, Italian seasoning, or Trader Joe's Onion Salt seasoning.
  • 1/2 tsp coarse sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper

Instructions

  • Add the chicken to the Instant Pot. Add seasonings over top.
  • Place the lid on the Instant Pot and pressure cook on the MANUAL setting for 22 minutes.
  • After the chicken has fully cooked, carefully turn the steam release vent (I always do this with a long oven mitt on) and let the pressure come down manually. Once the valve pops, remove the lid and shred the chicken in the pot with two forks.