The Instant Pot has taken the world by storm, revolutionizing how people cook by promising convenience and an explosion of flavors without the time-consuming processes of traditional cooking. If you've recently joined the legions of Instant Pot aficionados or are just looking for a quick, delicious recipe to add to your repertoire, you're in the right place.

instant pot chicken thighs

This piece'll provide you with an unbeatable guide to creating succulent Instant Pot chicken thighs, packed with step-by-step instructions, nutrition insights, and even some chef-inspired tips to elevate your home cooking game. Whether you’re a novice looking for guidance or an experienced Instant Potter seeking culinary inspiration, this article has something for you.

Ingredients and Preparation

What You'll Need

To prepare this sensational dish, you’ll need the following:

  • 4 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon of your preferred seasoning blend (salt, pepper, garlic powder, paprika, etc.)
  • 1 cup of chicken broth
  • Optional aromatic vegetables (onion, garlic, celery, etc.)

How to Prepare

  1. Start by patting the chicken thighs dry with a paper towel. Season both sides with your chosen mix of spices.
  2. Turn your Instant Pot to the ‘Saute’ function and add the olive oil once heated.
  3. Sear the chicken thighs until they're golden brown on both sides, usually about 3 minutes per side. Remove and set them aside.
  4. If you choose to use aromatic vegetables, sauté them for a couple of minutes in the remaining oil.
  5. Add the chicken broth and deglaze the pot, scraping up any stuck-on bits from the bottom for added flavor.

Now that you’ve prepped your ingredients and set the stage, it’s time to move on to the Instant Pot cooking process.

Instant Pot Cooking Process

The Setup

First things first, ensure the sealing ring is in its place, and the vent is set to the 'Sealing' position. Now, return the chicken thighs to the pot, nestling them in the liquid carefully.

Cook Time and Pressure Release

Close the Instant Pot and set it to 'Manual' or 'Pressure Cook' on high for 8 minutes. Once the time is up, allow for a natural pressure release for at least 5 minutes before performing a quick pressure release to dispel any remaining steam. Carefully open the lid away from your face, and your chicken should be beautifully cooked and ready to serve.

Benefits of Instant Pot Cooking


Traditional methods of cooking chicken thighs require upwards of 45 minutes in the oven. With the Instant Pot, you’re looking at just a fraction of the time — 8 minutes of actual cooking, with the benefit of the pressure build-up while the Pot gets to work. Its ability to cook under pressure means the process is accelerated without compromising on flavor or tenderness.

Retaining Flavors and Nutrients

By cooking at a consistent temperature under pressure, the Instant Pot can retain more nutrients in your food. It also ensures that all the flavors and juices are locked in, providing a depth of taste that is unparalleled.

Nutritional Value

Protein Content

Each serving of the Instant Pot chicken thighs contains about 23 grams of protein, making it a great source for those keeping an eye on their macronutrients.

Calorie Information

A single serving is approximately 280 calories, making it a reasonable and filling choice for various dietary needs.

Final Touches

Serving Suggestions

The chicken thighs are excellent served with a side of mashed potatoes, steamed vegetables, or a fresh salad. You can even ladle the juices over the chicken for an added burst of flavor.

Tips for Variation and Customization

  • For a deeper flavor, marinate the chicken thighs for a few hours before cooking.
  • If you prefer a thicker sauce, remove the chicken and set the Instant Pot to 'Saute' to reduce the liquid to your desired consistency.

If you own an Instant Pot, you've got to try this recipe. It's a game-changer for weeknight dinners, meal prepping, or those days when you need comfort food fast. The convenience, speed, and incredible taste ensure that Instant Pot chicken thighs become a staple in your home cooking routine. Make it your own by experimenting with different spice blends and sides. There's no question that once you try this quick and easy dish, you'll be an Instant Pot convert for life.

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