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Big Batch Instant Pot Shredded Chicken

by Amy D

Big Batch Instant Pot Shredded Chicken is such a time saver! Easily make a big batch of juicy and tender shredded chicken to use now or freeze for later.A white bowl full of shredded chicken with 2 freezer bags of chicken next to it.

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I don’t know about you, but I love shortcuts and this instant pot shredded chicken is a great shortcut for anyone with a big family or with a busy schedule! It’s also great for people on a budget because usually you can get a better price when you’re buying in bulk. This recipe makes 5 pounds of shredded chicken. 

There are lots of multi-step instant pot recipes out there, but I’m a big fan of dump and cook recipes. When it comes to the instant pot, I just want to be able to dump my ingredients in, turn it on, and have it done. Well, this shredded chicken is the epitome of easy cooking!A white bowl full of shredded chicken with 2 freezer bags beside it.

1. It’s a money and time saver.
2. The chicken is perfectly seasoned, tender, and juicy.
3. Shredding the chicken is so easy with this method. Just dump out the excess broth, and use your hand mixer to shred the chicken right in the instant pot! No need to dirty another dish!
4. It’s easy to package and freeze so it’s ready to go for your favorite recipes!

Almost every shredded chicken recipe I’ve seen for the instant pot makes around 2-3 pounds of chicken. I have 4 kids with adult sized appetites in my house. So my version makes 5 pounds of shredded chicken.

Here’s my trick, if you turn the chicken breasts on their sides, you can fit so much more chicken in! (You need at least a 6 Quart Instant Pot)The chicken is placed on it's side in the instant pot to maximize space.

What do you need to make shredded chicken in the instant pot:

  • 5 pounds fresh boneless and skinless chicken breasts, trimmed of any fat
  • 1 1/2 -2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Can you use frozen chicken?

No. Not with this big batch method. Frozen chicken takes up more space and you just can’t fit as many frozen breasts in the instant pot. Also: 

  • You can’t trim the fat off before cooking and I’m picky about things like that.
  • If you’re using frozen chicken, you have to make sure the pieces aren’t frozen together! If the pieces are frozen together the chicken won’t cook evenly.

If you’re looking for an instant pot recipe specifically for frozen chicken breasts, I recommend this one!

Step by step how to make big batch shredded chicken.

  1. To make shredded chicken in the instant pot, first trim away any fat from the chicken breasts. This will save you time later as there won’t be any fat to pick out of the shredded chicken.A plate of trimmed fresh chicken breasts.
  2. Next place the chicken breasts in an even layer in the bottom of the instant pot. Tip: To make 5 pounds of chicken breasts fit you must lay the breasts on their sides to maximize space.The chicken is placed on it's side in the instant pot to maximize space.
  3. Evenly season the breasts with seasoned salt, black pepper, onion powder, and garlic powder. This blend of seasonings gives the chicken a nice roast chicken flavor without being over-powering. Pour 1 1/2- 2 cups of chicken broth over the chicken. 
    Chicken broth is poured over the seasoned chicken breasts.
  4. Seal the instant pot and cook on the manual setting for 15 minutes. Let the instant pot naturally steam release for 10 minutes. Release any remaining steam pressure and open instant pot.
  5. You’ll notice there will be quite a bit of broth remaining with the chicken. Pour the broth into a container and reserve it for later use. (we’ll add some back to the shredded chicken to help keep it moist, but it also makes an excellent base for chicken soup or any recipes that call for chicken broth. )A image of the chicken in the instant pot after cooking.
  6. Using a hand mixer or two forks, shred the chicken to the desired consistency. Add a small amount of broth back to the chicken.A hand mixer is used to shred the cooked chicken breasts inside the instant pot insert.
  7. Now the chicken is ready to go into your favorite recipe! Chicken Zucchini Casserole is one of my favorites. 

To package and freeze the chicken for later use.

First let the chicken first cool enough to be able to easily handle.

Divide into 5 portions and place in freezer bags. Add 1/4 cup of broth to each bag and press to remove as much air as possible. Label the bags with the date so you can easily keep track of when it needs used by!

This chicken will stay good in the refrigerator for about 4-5 days or will keep in the freezer for up to 3 months. To use your frozen shredded chicken let it thaw completely in the refrigerator and drain off any excess broth before adding it to any recipes.

A white bowl full of shredded chicken with 2 freezer bags of chicken next to it.

Big Batch Instant Pot Shredded Chicken

Yield: 5 pounds
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Additional Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes

This easy Instant Pot recipe yields 5 pounds of juicy seasoned shredded chicken.

Ingredients

  • 5 pounds fresh chicken breasts, trimmed of fat
  • 1 1/2- 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Instructions

Preparing the Instant Pot Shredded Chicken

  1. Place the trimmed chicken breasts in an even layer the bottom of a 6 quart of larger Instant Pot. Placing the chicken breasts on their sides maximizes space. See photos for reference on arranging the chicken.
  1. Evenly sprinkle the spices over the chicken breasts. Pour the broth over the chicken.
  2. Seal the Instant Pot and cook on the Manual setting for 15 minutes.
  3. After the timer goes off, let the Instant Pot naturally release the steam for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes flip the valve to open to release any remaining steam. (The stainless steel insert will still be very hot. If you are preparing the chicken to freeze you may wait until the insert has cooled before moving on to the next step.)
  4. Carefully remove the Instant Pot insert and pour the excess broth off into separate bowl and reserve for later.
  5. Using a hand mixer or two forks, shred or chunk the chicken to your desired consistency, adding a small amount of broth to moisten the chicken as needed.

Freezing Instructions

    To package and freeze the chicken for later use, make sure the shredded chicken first cool enough to be able to easily handle.

    Divide into 5 portions and place in freezer bags. Add 1/4 cup of broth to each bag and press to remove as much air as possible. Label the bags with the date so you can easily keep track of when it needs used by!

    This chicken will stay good in the refrigerator for about 4-5 days or will keep in the freezer for up to 3 months. To use your frozen shredded chicken let it thaw completely in the refrigerator and drain off any excess broth before adding it to any recipes.

Notes

Preparation times are approximate as it takes time for the pressure cooker to come to full pressure before the timer set for the cooking time begins to count down.

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This Instant Pot Shredded Chicken recipe is such a time saver! Easily make a big batch, 5 pounds, of juicy and tender shredded chicken to use now or freeze for later.

 

 

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