Instant Pot Frozen Chicken Breast

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One of the fastest dinners I’ve found is an Instant Pot Frozen Chicken Breast. It only takes about 15 minutes to cook and can make many dinners.

Parsley covered chicken.Pin

You can use the chicken sliced, cut in chunks or if you cook a few more minutes you can even pull the chicken.

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Your instant pot will produce the most juicy chicken breast you have ever eaten, even from frozen.

What you need

  • frozen chicken breast
  • water or chicken stock
  • salt and pepper
  • spices (optional)

Optional spices and flavorings

Depending on what you are in the mood for, you can tweak the flavor of your chicken in a hundred different ways.

  • For a Mexican flair – use garlic powder, onion powder, cumin, chili powder.
  • For an island flair – use garlic powder, onion powder pineapple juice or chunks of pineapples and five spice powder.
  • Mediterranean flair – use thyme, rosemary, basil, and tomatoes.
Ingredients - frozen chicken, chicken stock, salt and pepper.Pin

How to make it

  • Place frozen breast in pressure cooker.
  • Salt and pepper both sides.
  • Add water or broth.
  • Affix lid to instant pot. Turn lever to sealing position. Press the pressure cook button on high pressure for specified time. Time will depend on the size of your breasts. See chart below.
Frozen chicken pot seasoned with salt and pepper and chicken stock in instant pot.Pin

Size matters when pressure cooking

The size of your breasts is important. Larger breasts will take longer to cook through than smaller ones.

Weigh them with a kitchen scale or approximate on the size by taking the weight from your package and dividing by the number of breasts in your package.

I buy halal breasts from our local restaurant store. They weigh 15-19 oz. each and take 25-30 minutes to cook. So if yours are larger than 12 oz. add some time.

These are the estimated times for cooking boneless skinless breasts.

Cooking times for frozen chicken breasts according to weight. See details in recipe below.Pin
Cooking times for Instant Pot Frozen Chicken Breasts according to weight.

For pulled chicken, after the cycle is done let it naturally release (leave it alone) for about 10 minutes before releasing the remaining pressure.

The chicken will continue to cook while the pressure is releasing. Manually release the remaining pressure. Carefully remove lid.

Check the internal temperature of the chicken, in the thickest part of the meat to make sure it is above 165°F.

Let chicken rest about 5 minutes before pulling.

To shred chicken use two forks to pull the meat with the grain.

When using the chicken for pulled, mix a bit of the cooking liquid with the meat so that it is ultra moist.

Sliced chicken breast on wooden board.Pin

Why should you try this instant pot frozen chicken breast?

  • Instant pot frozen chicken breasts are juicy and tender every time.
  • So quick and easy.
  • Totally customizable to what you need them for.
  • It’s great for a quick dinner but it’s also perfect for meal prep so that you can cook once and make several different meals throughout the week.
  • No need to brown chicken first.
Slices of chicken with decorative towel.Pin

What dishes to use them in?

Use this easy delicious chicken for;

What if your chicken is thawed?

If you remembered to thaw your chicken in the morning, you will use the same times specified. Just use a quick release to release the pressure in the pot.

To do a quick release carefully press the quick release button down until it clicks. Use the handle of a wooden spoon so there is no danger of burning yourself with the hot steam.

Wait until float valve drops into lid before attempting to release the remaining pressure manually by pressing the release button. When opening, always remove lid away from you so that the remaining steam will not go in your face or on your hands.

Chicken on wooden board.Pin

Pro tips for your success

  • Always add water or broth when pressure cooking. The liquid is what builds up pressure in the pot.
  • Season with just salt and pepper if you are short on time. Or add your favorite spices.
  • Feel free to add your favorite sauces or salsa in place of, or in addition to the liquid.
  • If using frozen chicken breasts allow a ten minute natural pressure release before manually releasing the additional pressure.
  • When you are freezing your chicken breasts, be sure that you freeze them separately on a parchment lined baking sheet for a couple hours. Then add as many as you need for a meal to your freezers bag or containers and then place them back into the freezer. This way you won’t have huge block of breasts that you can’t get apart. These will take much longer to pressure cook, if they are not separated.
  • Cook them according to size using the chart above for cooking times.
  • When using the chicken for pulled, mix a bit of the cooking liquid with the meat so that it is ultra moist.

How to store leftovers

Store leftover chicken in airtight container. It will last 3-4 days in the refrigerator. Refreezing meats is not recommended.

Two chicken breasts on wooden board.Pin

Other easy Instant pot recipes

Tools I use

Slices of chicken on wooden board.Pin

Instant pot Frozen Chicken Breasts

One of the fastest dinners I've found is an Instant Pot Frozen Chicken Breast. It only takes about 15 minutes to cook and can make many dinners.
See Step by Step Photos Above!Most of our recipes have step by step photos and videos! Also helpful tips so that you can make it perfectly the first time and every time! Scroll up to see them!
5 from 6 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: entree, Main Course
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 1 minute
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Time to pressurize and depressurize: 20 minutes
Total Time: 33 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 150kcal
Author: Beth Neels
Cost: $2


  • 2 chicken breasts
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 cup chicken stock or water


  • Place frozen chicken breasts in your instant pot.
    2 chicken breasts
  • Salt and pepper chicken. Then add one cup of water or chicken broth to pot.
    salt and pepper to taste, 1 cup chicken stock or water
  • Set pot to manual/ pressure cook on high. Set timer for allotted amount of time. (See infograph in notes below.)
    Cooking times for frozen chicken breasts according to weight. See details in recipe below.Pin
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Customize with your favorite herbs and spices.
If cooking chicken from thawed, cook for the same amount of time as from frozen but do a quick release.
Press the quick release button down until it clicks. Wait until the float valve drops back into cooker. Then manually release the remaining pressure and carefully open lid. Refer to your owners manual.

Recommended cooking times by size of chicken breast

Cooking times for frozen chicken breasts according to weight. See details in recipe below.Pin


Calories: 150kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 26g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 74mg | Sodium: 217mg | Potassium: 481mg | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 36IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 7mg | Iron: 1mg
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  1. 5 stars
    Good morning Beth, I made this last night and they were by far the best, moist, flavorful chicken breasts ever! I never made anything frozen in my IP, which is my go-to favorite appliance and have made many of your recipes—THANK YOU!
    I seasoned the breasts first with salt/pepper and Italian seasonings and had the chicken stock already in the pot. I did high pressure for 10 minutes and let natural release for 11 minutes since the float valve hadn’t dropped yet.
    This is such a great, easy, quick meal—you won’t be disappointed if you try it! I served them with roasted Brussel sprouts.
    Thank you again for a great recipe!

    1. Thank you so much Susan! I’m so glad you liked them. We’ve made them a bunch of times and are never disappointed!

  2. 5 stars
    Thank you for the helpful cooking times guide! There is so much misinformation and ranging cooking times out there but this worked for me!

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