Instant Pot Frozen Chicken Breast is one of the best features of an electric pressure cooker. Easy, healthy and juicy chicken breast in 25 minutes.
Every Instant Pot owner needs to have this frozen chicken breast recipe in their back pocket. Got fresh ones? See our Instant Pot fresh chicken breast recipe.
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How to Cook Frozen Chicken Breast in Instant Pot
I hate to sound like a broken record but if you have been cooking my recipes for a while, you know I am obsessed with my Instant Pot. And Instant Pot frozen chicken tops the list. Heck, I even thaw ground meat in Instant Pot. And who am I kidding – I cook with frozen ground turkey – just see my taco soup video.
I also decided to dedicate my entire Youtube cooking channel to healthy Instant Pot recipes and tips. My goal is to help you become confident with your Instant Pot. So make sure to subscribe and hit the Bell icon not to miss new videos.
More Instant Pot Resources
- Instant Pot guide
- Which Instant Pot to buy?
- How to avoid Burn
- How to do Natural Release
- How to do Quick Release
Make Sure Breasts Are Separated
I can’t stress enough how important it is to make sure your frozen chicken breasts are separated. Just like pictured below. If you add a blob of frozen breasts stuck together, they will not cook inside and overcook outside.
- Tray with fresh breasts: Do not stick entire tray with fresh chicken breasts from the store in the freezer. Take a few minutes and line each breast with parchment paper and then freeze in a bag. To quickly remove paper, run under hot water before cooking.
- Freeze on a baking sheet: If you have room in the freezer, lay chicken breasts on a baking sheet. Once frozen, add to a Ziploc bag.
- Buy frozen: Frozen chicken breasts are already separated and are cheaper than fresh.
Do I Have to Add Seasonings?
Very often chicken breasts are used for meal prep and to be added to other dishes. For example, I use it for healthy chicken pot pie or healthy chicken alfredo. I know meat will get mixed with sauce and veggies, and absorb the flavors.
You can sprinkle breasts with garlic powder, dried herbs, salt and pepper. But seasonings will not stick to frozen meat well and end up at the bottom of the pot. Making a flavorful broth.:)
Tips for Cooking
- Make sure to place meat on a trivet. It just comes out better this way.
- You can fit as many chicken breasts as you can in a single layer. Do not double stack them. Usually it is 2-3 lbs depending on your pot’s size.
- Make sure pressure release valve is turned to Sealing.
- It is OK to see a bit of steam coming out from pressure valve in the beginning. It might have moved from Sealing a bit. Move it slightly back with a long spoon.
- If you are going to make shredded chicken after, then add a bit of cooking liquid to rehydrate when shredding.
- I think it is OK to freeze cooked chicken breasts in portions for easy meals again.
- Do not discard broth. Use it to make soup.
How Long to Cook Frozen Chicken Breast?
I would say chicken breasts under 2.5″ thick in the thickest part need 15 minutes as stated in the recipe. Over 2.5″ add 3 minutes totalling 18 minutes of cooking time.
Contrary to popular belief, cooking frozen meat in Instant Pot does not need longer cooking time. Electric pressure cooker just takes longer to come to pressure because inside temperature is lower.
What to Do If Chicken Is Not Cooked?
Sometimes it happens. Instant Pot is a computer, basically. So, it is not perfect. Altitude, pressure cooker size and type could be the factors. The best way to check is to poke the thickest part of the breast with a fork. If juices are a bit pink, cook 2 more minutes.
Place lid back on, close and cook for 2 more minutes. This time Instant Pot will come to pressure much faster because its contents are hot. Also make sure valve is set to Sealing.
More Instant Pot Chicken Recipes
- Instant Pot butter chicken
- Instant Pot chicken noodle soup
- Instant Pot chicken tacos
- Instant Pot chicken burritos
Instant Pot Frozen Chicken Breast
- 2-3 lbs boneless chicken breasts fresh or frozen*
- 1 cup water
- To the Instant Pot, add water and place trivet inside.
- Lay frozen chicken breasts in a single layer. Make sure they are separated.
- Sprinkle with spices if using any. Toss to coat evenly with tongs or hands.
- Close the lid, set pressure vent to Sealing and press Pressure Cooking on High (Duo model) or Manual (LUX) for 15-18 minutes.*
- Display will say ON, Instant Pot will take about 10-15 minutes to come to pressure, you will see a bit of steam coming out from a valve, then float valve will rise and countdown will begin.
- After 15 minutes your chicken is ready, Instant Pot will beep and display will say OFF.
- Wait 5 minutes and do Quick Release by turning sealing valve to Venting position.
- Open the lid and your chicken breasts are ready for meal prep, casseroles, salads etc.
- Shred or cube, and save the stock at the bottom for soup.
Store: Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 5 days.
Freeze: Fully cook, cool completely and freeze in an airtight container or resealable freezer bags for up to 3 months. Thaw in a fridge or on a counter.
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