Cook it…Fast or slow!
Do you prefer Slow Cooker or Instant Pot? Get my secrets for meals that bring your family to the table!

How to Cook Frozen Chicken Breasts in the Instant Pot

Prep Time 2 mins
Total Time 22 mins
Servings 4 servings

Jump to Recipe

This is the BEST way to cook frozen chicken breasts in the Instant Pot! It is so easy and they turn out so well, I almost never take the time to thaw chicken before cooking it. Add seasonings, sauces, broth, or just water, salt and pepper and the result is always amazing.

If you’re wondering how to cook frozen chicken breasts in the Instant Pot or pressure cooker, you’re in luck. Because you’ll never be stuck at 5:00 with nothing to make for dinner again!

Cooking frozen chicken has never been quicker, easier, or more delicious! The Instant Pot has definitely saved my butt a time or two (or ten) 😉

If you’ve got pork tenderloin instead of chicken breasts? Check out my Instant Pot Pork Tenderloin from fresh or frozen!

PIN THIS RECIPE FOR LATER

frozen chicken breasts in instant pot ready to cook

We are back on the Instant Pot bandwagon today with one of my favourites, although, again, I’m not sure this actually qualifies as a “recipe” considering there are two ingredients and one is water or broth. But I promise you, if you learn how to cook frozen chicken breasts in the Instant Pot you may never go back!

I will be totally honest and say that I am not utterly obsessed with the Instant Pot like millions of other people. I haven’t moved on to cheesecake and egg bites and other things that make more sense to bake in the oven (though, yes, I will try them yet and see if they’re worth all the hype!).

cooked chicken breasts in instant pot with seasonings and fresh herbs on top

But there are a few things that I actually prefer to do in the Instant Pot, and chicken breasts is one of those things (these Instant Pot Baked Potatoes and this Instant Pot Chicken Noodle Soup are two more!)

And if you’re looking for more Instant Pot chicken recipes, try this Instant Pot Whole Chicken from fresh or frozen!).

There really is no match for how well boneless chicken breasts come out of that magic pot — especially straight from the freezer! I will even confess that I rarely take chicken out of the freezer to thaw before cooking, because why?!?

We cook chicken in the Instant Pot for tacos, sandwiches, salads, quesadillas, or just for dinner with some barbecue or other sauce, or a simple seasoning. Any way you want to do it up it turns out fabulously (you should see how crazy I get when I start dumping in random ingredients from the fridge!).

chicken breasts on cutting board being sliced in front of the instant pot

I know they don’t look that special, but they are SO moist, and not overcooked and weird like chicken can get in the slow cooker after a long period of time. This is one thing I definitely prefer to cook in the Instant Pot over the crock pot!

Here are some Tips and Tricks for Cooking Frozen Chicken Breasts in the Instant Pot:

  • The exact cook time will depend on how large the chicken breasts are, although for me 10-12 minutes has always been plenty. This means that when I open up the pot they are well over the safe 165 degrees F. But I’d rather be safe than have to go through the hassle of sealing it back up and letting it build the pressure back up.
  • If you’re in a rush, you can simply add water or chicken broth and season with salt and pepper, but feel free to get a little crazy with your seasonings here. Barbecue sauce, soy sauce, honey, different herbs and spices will all be fantastic (I mean, as long as they taste good together 😉 )
  • All of my Instant Pot recipes are tested in the 6 quart Instant Pot with Bluetooth. The bluetooth is an unnecessary but handy tool because I can control the pot from my phone while I’m out of the kitchen.
  • If you want to jazz up your Instant Pot chicken breasts, try these Creamy Italian Instant Pot Chicken Breasts and serve them with the sauce over pasta — you won’t regret it! You can also use frozen chicken to make this Instant Pot Teriyaki Chicken and Rice.
  • Looking for an easy side dish to go along with it? Try my Instant Pot Mac and Cheese — so easy and so quick!

How to make Instant Pot Shredded Chicken Breasts:

I’ve just added a new post on my favorite all purpose Instant Pot Shredded Chicken! You can find all my tips on seasoning, ratios, cook time and uses over there 🙂

ashley avatar

Pin this recipe to save for later

Pin this recipe to your favorite board

How to Cook Frozen Chicken Breasts in the Instant Pot (pressure cooker)

4.77 from 43 votes
This is the BEST way to cook frozen chicken breasts in the Instant Pot! It is so easy and they turn out so well, I almost never take the time to thaw chicken before cooking it. Add seasonings, sauces, broth, or just water, salt and pepper and the result is always amazing.
Prep Time 2 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Total Time 22 mins
Cuisine American
Course Main Course
Servings 4 servings
Calories 128cal

Ingredients

  • 4 frozen boneless skinless chicken breasts (mine were about 7-8 ounces or 200g each frozen)
  • 1 cup water or chicken broth
  • salt and pepper

Instructions

  • Place chicken breasts in the bottom of the Instant Pot (no need to use the trivet!) — it’s okay if they’re stacked, just make sure none are stuck together.
  • Pour in the water or chicken broth (or use another liquid like pineapple juice, apple juice, etc.) and season with salt and pepper.
  • Put the lid on and move the valve to sealing. Press Manual pressure and set the timer to 10-12 minutes (I’ve found 10 is just right, and at the 12 minute mark they are 180 degrees F or more). The Instant Pot will take about 10 minutes to come to pressure and start counting down from 10.
  • When the cook time is up, let pressure release naturally for 5-10 minutes before releasing the remaining pressure. Check that the internal temperature of the chicken is 165 degrees F — mine is always at least or higher.
  • Serve as is, chop, or add sauces as desired.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 128cal | Protein: 23g | Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 72mg | Sodium: 134mg | Potassium: 418mg | Vitamin A: 35IU | Vitamin C: 1.3mg | Calcium: 6mg | Iron: 0.4mg

Want to save this recipe?

Create an account easily save your favorite content, so you never forget a recipe again.

Register Now

Tried this recipe?

Tag @thereciperebel or hashtag #thereciperebel —
I love to see what you’re making!

Tag @thereciperebel

Meet Ashley

My name is Ashley Fehr and I love creating easy meals my family loves. I also like to do things my way, which means improvising and breaking the rules when necessary. Here you will find creative twists on old favorites and some of my favorite family recipes, passed down from generations!

Read More

You May Also Like

Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. Robert Heatley says

    I just tried this with four different sized pieces of frozen, boneless skinless chicken breast and followed your instructions with the addition of adding fresh thyme , and it came out amazing! So juicy and full of flavor, I then used the instant pot with a lil of the juice and sautéed some asparagus with butter and garlic and made a delicious meal. Thank you!!

  2. Stacey says

    I did this tonight. 3 breast all different sizes it was the end of a bag. Cooked them for 10 minutes and natural released for 10. They were perfect and fork tender. My family loved them.

  3. Randy says

    I tried today on 12 minutes with 3 frozen breasts. Came out like rubber. I didn’t let my instant read thermometer go all the way but it was on its way past 208 when I pulled it. I think I’m gonna go 8 minutes next time.

    • Mag says

      Hello,
      Natural release pressure is KEY for the texture of any meat with the instant pot. At least half of the time you cooked with high pressure but if i cook for 10 min, i will let it naturally the pressure for 10 too.

  4. Marcia says

    I tried this for the first time today and it turned out perfect. 3
    frozen chicken breasts, 12 minutes high pressure and 12 minutes NR. Thank you.

  5. Marya says

    Thank you for including the weight of your chicken. I’ve tried this before and always ended up w/pink. Now I know it’s because I’m using a recipe for 8 oz chicken, and mine is 15! Gotta extend it. Thanks!

  6. MS says

    I have the frozen chicken breasts all ready to cook. Wondering if it’s ok to use more than 1 cup of broth? I’d like to make some gravy. Also, my husband really likes baked breasts in Italian seasoning. Is it ok to add that to the broth? I’ll leave another comment after we have this, but I know it will be delicious!

  7. Christy says

    I followed the recipe exactly with two chicken breasts for 12 minutes and they came out pink in the middle. Ended up throwing them on the frying pan to finish cooking them. I don’t see how 10 minutes would be enough time for 4 of them!

    • Ashley Fehr says

      I have made this recipe over and over and at 10 minutes my chicken breasts are well over 165 degrees F. It will depend on the size of your chicken breasts slightly, and if they are frozen together they will need a considerable amount more time

  8. Joan says

    Just tried this, using frozen chicken, water, salt pepper, italian seasoning and garlic powder.

    After 12minutes they were falling apart tender and amazing. I’ll be making them again soon

  9. Eva Adams says

    Would this work with 6 chicken breasts? Each one is about half a pound. I would love to be able to cook more so we have leftovers!

  10. Ruth says

    I had one 12 oz and one 15 oz. breast. Cooked for 11 minutes with correct release. Took out the smaller breast and cooked the bigger one another 2 min. with quick release. It was so tough, I could hardly chew the meat! Help!

    • Ashley Fehr says

      Quick release is generally not recommended with meat in the Instant Pot, so if in doubt I would add a few extra minutes to the cook time to start, and avoid opening and restarting later.

  11. Clay Truitt says

    I had 3 large frozen breast and set them for 12 min. When it was done they were only half way done. I set them for another 6 min and they were still not done. They are on for another 6 min cook. Quick last minute lazy Sunday lunch is becoming as long as the oven method.

    • Ashley Fehr says

      Did you let the pressure naturally release? The chicken will continue cooking as the pressure releases, so if you did a quick release you would need to add more time. Also, if they are frozen together, you’d have to add additional cook time.

  12. Matt says

    Can you throw in vegetables on top? Will that impact cook time? Anything to avoid?

    I’d love to simply throw in vegetables, like broccoli or Brussels sprouts.

    • Ashley Fehr says

      You can, but they likely won’t be very appetizing. Broccoli would be overcooked in the amount of time it takes to cook the chicken. Carrots or potatoes would work much better, as they require a longer cook time

  13. Julie says

    I made it tonight and after 11 minutes it was still raw so had to cook it for another 9 mins and then still had a little pink in it! I don’t know what I did wrong.

  14. Ann says

    So, so delicious and quick. I used chicken broth for the liquid and sprinkled the frozen breasts with fajita mix. Loved it. Thanks for publishing your method. I will definitely try this again.

  15. Lexi says

    Tried this twice now and both times they came out rubbery and hard to chew. Am I doing something wrong?? They didn’t even pick up any of the flavor from my seasoning.

  16. Corrie says

    Thank you! This worked perfectly with 2 large boneless chicken breasts from Trader Joe’s. (10 minutes on high with a 10 minute natural pressure release.)

    • CarlyP says

      I’m new to instant pot and this is my second time using it. Did the same with 2 large boneless breasts. Wonder when you all say “natural pressure release” this means you do not touch the steam release handle to venting? Just a newbie here 🙂

        • Melissa says

          Yes, “natural pressure release” just means leaving the vent sealed; it will gradually cool off until the “float” drops, and some recipes count on leaving the vent sealed for a period of time after the cooking time, then venting the rest. 🙂

          • SmokeyBoB says

            I dont have an Instant Pot, but I do have the Breville equivalent. I have had some confusion when trying to decipher these recipes to work with what I have. When you say you are cooking for 12 minutes is that including the pressurizing time it takes? or is that the entire cooking time minus natural release

  17. Kayey says

    Hi, my chicken breasts are frozen solid and stuck together. do you have any recommendations for this? Can I put them in the pot in a chunk?

  18. Heather says

    Tried this recipe tonight. Added some seasoning and Are it with some homemade Mac n cheese. Delicious dinner. Thank you. I cooked it for 11 minutes with 5 minute natural release then quick release and the largest one was still a little pink but it was huge. The two smaller ones were completely cooked. Put it back in for 5 minutes with quick release turned out perfect.

  19. Colleen says

    We did 5 frozen chicken breasts for 12 mins with 12 mins natural release. Perfect! Cut them up and added them to butter curry bow tie pasta (already made & in the fridge) Delicious. Thank you for a wonderful & simple recipe! Butter curry pasta is delicious but I REALLY wanted the chicken and only had frozen. So happy I found your recipe & it was an easy successful solution

  20. Sammie says

    I followed this for two chicken breasts, putting them in for 10 minutes on high pressure, and did 10 minutes of natural pressure release. They still came out pink in the middle. 🙁

  21. Ann says

    I’m brand new to this. 6Qt InstantPot arrived last night and we tried white rice which turned out great and was super easy. Thank you for these directions on the chicken breasts. Gonna try it, but have you ever tried using the saute function at the end to get a little bit of a brown to the chicken breasts for eating just like that without any sauces or shredding involved?

Leave A Reply

Have you tried this recipe? Leave a rating