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I’m so glad that I finally got this Instant Pot pressure cooker chicken breast recipe right. One of my favorite staples to make ahead is a large batch of shredded chicken. I used to make it in the slow cooker, but last fall I discovered that it’s so much faster in my Instant Pot.
I totally adore this method now. The prep is as care-free as a slow cooker, but the whole thing is done in 15 minutes flat, from start to finish. And, that even includes five minutes of natural release time. This creates optimal texture.
So, are you ready to learn how to make pressure cooker chicken breast in your Instant Pot? Here, I’ll show you.
How To Make Shredded Chicken in a Pressure Cooker
If you’re on the fence about pressure cooking chicken, now is the time to try it. This Instant Pot chicken breast recipe is probably the easiest and most versatile one to start with. It requires just three ingredients, plus salt and pepper to your liking. It doesn’t get any easier than that! It’s the fastest, best way to make shredded chicken.
Place all the ingredients in your pressure cooker, push a couple buttons, and you’re all set. Ten minutes later, you’ll have perfectly juicy chicken breast. Shred it with two forks, or one of the other methods below. Voila! Quick and easy pressure cooker chicken breast.
Feel free to customize the spices in this Instant Pot shredded chicken recipe to your liking. There are really two main ingredients – chicken and chicken broth. But, I find that adding Italian seasoning as the third ingredient makes it so much better.
You can get as creative as you like with the spices. I like to keep it simple, so that the chicken can be used in a variety of recipes later. Italian seasoning works with pretty much anything.
One thing I do recommend is to make sure you use chicken broth and not water. Some people make shredded chicken with water, but you get a lot more flavor using chicken broth. This makes the biggest difference when the chicken itself is white meat, like chicken breast.
This is also the reason that this pressure cooker chicken breast recipe doesn’t call for much salt. The chicken broth already adds most of the sodium needed.
How To Shred Chicken Breast
Once you’ve made your Instant Pot chicken breast, it should already be very tender. If the cooking time is right, it will be pretty easy to shred it. This is similar to a slow cooker method.
Of course, how long to cook chicken breast in a pressure cooker will vary depending on how big your chicken breasts are. This recipe is based on a typical 6-8 ounce size. If yours are larger, you will need to increase the time by a few minutes.
Getting the cook time right is important to be able to make shred chicken breast easily. If it’s too dry, it will be hard to shred. Obviously, you don’t want to under cook it, either. To remove the guesswork for you, I’ve repeatedly tested the pressure cooking times below for fresh and frozen chicken.
Other than the cook time, the pressure release mechanism will impact how easy it will be to shred your Instant Pot chicken. Natural release results in the most tender meat and the most effortless shredding, so use that if you can. At the very least, use the natural release for five minutes prior to using the quick release option.
After cooking, you can shred the chicken breast directly in the pressure cooker using two forks. Hold the piece of chicken steady with one fork, while pulling and tearing away the shredded pieces with the other fork. Repeat the process until all your chicken is shredded.
Alternatively, you can shred chicken breast with a hand mixer. You may need to drain some of the liquid temporarily, to prevent splattering. If your hand mixer has a slow start feature, like this one, that is helpful to have. I’ve heard that a stand mixer also works well for shredding chicken breast, but don’t have one to try it.
Instant Pot Chicken Breast For Convenience
The convenience of having shredded chicken on hand has had me making it at least once a month for a couple years now, previously in my slow cooker. I still use my Crock Pot all the time, but since I discovered this method, the only way I make pulled chicken is using this Instant Pot shredded chicken recipe.
I picked up my Instant Pot pressure cooker on a whim over the holidays last year. It sounded like such a great idea! I have a confession to make, though. For most of that year, it sat stored away without seeing the light of day. Learning to use a new appliance kept getting moved down on the priority list, considering I had plenty of other kitchen appliances I already knew how to use. This turned out to be a mistake.
Once I started using my Instant Pot more often, I fell in love with it. I wish I hadn’t waited so long! It saves so much time. Dishes that take hours in the oven or slow cooker can be done in minutes using a pressure cooker.
This pressure cooker shredded chicken recipe has been no exception. I love that it takes me ten minutes to make all the shredded chicken I need for a whole month. I keep a couple cups at a time in the fridge, and freeze the rest in small batches using a vacuum sealer.
If you prefer to make a whole chicken, try this Instant Pot Whole Chicken recipe from Gluten-Free Pressure Cooker instead.
So, have you tried Instant Pot chicken breast yet? Having shredded chicken on hand, ready to go, can be a huge time saver. It’s versatile in tons of recipes, including my easy chicken salad and low carb nachos. What are your favorite uses for shredded chicken?
Instant Pot Pressure Cooker Chicken Breast Recipe (Shredded Chicken):
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