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Instant Pot Shredded Chicken

Prep Time 5 mins
Total Time 15 mins
Servings 8 servings

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This Instant Pot Shredded Chicken is perfectly moist, perfectly seasoned, and it freezes perfectly for your weekly meal prep! The easy way to cook Instant Pot chicken breast for shredding, from fresh or frozen! It’s a healthy addition to soups, salads, pastas or sandwiches throughout the week. 

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raw chicken breasts in instant pot with chicken broth and seasoning ready to cook

I know. Instant Pot Shredded Chicken? We hardly need a recipe for that!

It’s not even really a recipe.

But since this here is not just a food blog full of delicious things for you — it’s also a collection of some of my favorite things — I get to say what goes here.

And today? I’m all about non-recipe recipes.

I mean, it’s kind of a recipe. The seasoning on this Instant Pot Shredded Chicken is mild but so, so flavorful. It’s not too spicy or too salty or too peppery or too herby. It’s just right.

And we all know that Instant Pot chicken breasts are one of my favorite things this year (check out these Creamy Italian Instant Pot Chicken Breasts, Instant Pot Pineapple Chicken Breasts, How to Cook Frozen Chicken Breasts in the Instant Pot if you were unsure!), so I’m keeping it.

shredded chicken in instant pot with two forks suck into chicken

I came up with this recipe when I was testing a few grilled chicken recipes, and I ended up taking out 4 extra chicken breasts that I no longer needed to grill. We are preparing to leave on holidays, and so I didn’t really want any extra food hanging around in the fridge that might spoil while we’re away.

I decided to dream up the ultimate Instant Pot Shredded Chicken and stash it in the freezer for our return — best idea ever!

We now don’t have to worry about what we are going to eat the day after we get home when we’re still feeling like two zombies who “vacationed” with 3 kids 6 and under.

I can guarantee you we will not regret it!

How to Make Instant Pot Shredded Chicken:

I know that this is such an easy recipe that most of you probably don’t need tips on how to make shredded chicken, but there are a few things that I think are key so I’m going to drop some hints anyway!

Do with them what you will 😉

  • Make sure you add enough liquid. The liquid is what makes for a tender, flavorful shredded or “pulled” chicken. Broth adds so much more flavor than water, and more liquid = more moisture in your chicken!
  • Season well. You don’t want to go overboard, but keep in mind that meat is best seasoned during the cooking process and not after (as is pasta, grains, vegetables, the list goes on). You will drain most of the liquid afterward, so you will not be consuming the full amount of salt, etc. as is listed in the recipe.
  • Breasts or thighs? You can use either boneless chicken breasts or chicken thighs, or throw some of each in all together! Thighs have a richer flavor, and breasts are leaner. You choose.
instant pot shredded chicken in bowl with two forks in bowl and pressure cooker in the background

How to shred chicken:

There are a couple ways to shred the chicken once it is cooked. Chicken breasts coming out of your pressure cooker are pretty much falling apart without you having to do anything, so you don’t need to get fancy.

I prefer to use two forks, because I’m lazy and I’m not into extra dishes. They do a fine job!

A lot of people will use a hand mixer or stand mixer to shred chicken, but I think it’s overkill. Who wants a huge stand mixer bowl to wash just for a few chicken breasts? Maybe if you’re doing a few pounds at once, it would be worth it.

Be sure to shred the chicken breast in the liquid (or at least some of it!) as it the chicken will reabsorb some of the broth and seasoning as you are pulling it, and it will give you the best results by far!

Staring with frozen chicken breasts?

I recommend adding 3-4 minutes to the cook time.

See my post here on cooking frozen chicken breasts in the Instant Pot.

Looking for more Instant Pot recipes?

Don’t have an Instant Pot or Pressure Cooker? Check out my Crockpot Shredded Chicken!

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JUICY Instant Pot Shredded Chicken

4.81 from 36 votes
This Instant Pot Shredded Chicken is perfectly moist, perfectly seasoned, and it freezes perfectly for your weekly meal prep! The easy way to cook Instant Pot chicken breast for shredding, from fresh or frozen! It’s a healthy addition to soups, salads, pastas or sandwiches throughout the week. #chicken #dinner #recipes #instantpot #pressurecooker
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Total Time 15 mins
Cuisine American
Course Main Course
Servings 8 servings
Calories 69cal

Ingredients

  • 1 cup low sodium chicken broth
  • 3/4 teaspoon seasoning salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

Instructions

  • Place broth, seasoning salt, Italian seasoning and pepper into the Instant Pot inner pot. Stir.
  • Add the chicken breasts (no trivet necessary!) and put the lid on.
  • Turn valve to sealing, and select Manual (or Pressure Cook), high pressure for 10 minutes (they will be cooked at 7-8 minutes, but a couple extra minutes makes them fall apart tender). It will take about 10 minutes to come to pressure and start counting down. 
  • Once the cook time is over, turn the Instant Pot off and let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes (i.e., don’t touch it!). 
  • Open the lid and drain about half of the liquid. Shred the chicken breasts with the remaining liquid in the pot, and serve as desired. To freeze, let cool to room temperature before placing in freezer bags.

Notes

*This recipe was tested in a 6 quart Instant Pot. Different models may have different suggestions for minimum liquid requirements.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 69cal | Protein: 12g | Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 36mg | Sodium: 292mg | Potassium: 234mg | Vitamin A: 15IU | Vitamin C: 0.7mg | Calcium: 5mg | Iron: 0.3mg
Keywords instant pot chicken breast, pressure cooker, pressure cooker chicken breast, pressure cooker shredded chicken

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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!

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Comments

  1. kmt says

    I was making chicken for pot pie. I used chicken flavor bouillion, and added some celery, onion and carrot like I would have if I had stewed it. Just used salt and pepper. 2 boneless breasts were perfect at 10 min. and 10 min. natural release. Went ahead and tasted the carrots, my husband asked if we can have them that way from now on.

  2. Kathy says

    Loved this recipe, used frozen chicken breast, added an extra 4 minutes and wala, perfectly moist, seasoned chicken. I shredded mine and made chicken enchiladas. Thank you for sharing

  3. Deonne Couturier says

    So juicy and deeeelicious! Used 2 cups broth in my 8 qrt and doubled the seasoning with 6 medium breasts. Yum!! Thank you for this recipe

    • Ashley Fehr says

      I’m sorry to hear that! There are a lot of different factors that could result in tough chicken, but without more details it’s hard for me to say what might have gone wrong

  4. Cj says

    Thanks for sharing your recipe. I had 4 chicken breasts and put them in for 10 and let the ip natural release for 10 minutes..I felt like I was ripping the chicken apart instead of it coming apart easily. Does this mean it was undercooked? I can’t seem to get it right and it’s so frustrating!
    Thank you for your help.

    • Ashley Fehr says

      hi CJ! I’m sorry to hear that. It could mean a couple of things, and probably depends on the size of the chicken breasts you were using. Tough could mean overcooked or undercooked, so we’re trying to hit the sweet spot in the middle. If your chicken breasts are very large, adding 2-4 minutes to the cook time probably isn’t a bad idea.

  5. Bonnie says

    Hi does it matter how much chicken you have? I have 2.5 lbs chicken. Do I add more time for this amount of chicken?

  6. Loren says

    This is such a fantastic and simple recipe. Chicken was moist and flavorful and very easy to shred! Thanks for sharing:) I now put it on soups and salads 🙂

  7. Brandi says

    How is total time 13 minutes when prep is 5 and cook is 10? Also, does that include the natural release time?

  8. Ariel S. says

    I’m currently waiting the outcome of this dish but a thought popped in my head after I started the instant pot. Should the liquid come over the top of the chicken? Or does that not matter? I put in 2 cups of broth but it didn’t cover the chicken. I used more liquid because I have an 8 quart instant pot.

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