So here’s a question for you: Have you cooked a whole chicken, a turkey, a beef roast? I’m always surprised at how many people I talk to have never done any of these things, when they are seriously the easiest things in the world to cook!
Each one involves very few steps, mainly adding herbs and spices, a little liquid, maybe some veggies and sides, (with an occasional sear of the meat first) and then the oven does all the work. It cooks while you focus on the rest of your life. And now we’ve made it even easier…HOW TO COOK A WHOLE CHICKEN IN THE INSTANT POT!
It’s so nice to have cooked chicken on hand at all times. We like to freeze it in individual portions and use for recipes when needed. (Like in our Freezer BBQ Chicken Taquitos, Chicken Couscous Salad with Basil Dressing, and 20-minute BBQ Chicken Pita Pizzas!)
We’ve included step-by-step simple directions of how to cook a whole chicken in the Instant Pot … the results will be a beautiful herb-roasted chicken in one pot in about an hour. Julia Child would be so proud. Now, should we take on the turkey? Thanksgiving is only seven months away, after all.
- 4-lb. whole chicken (organic if possible)
- 3 Tbsp. olive or avocado oil, divided
- 2 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
- 1 tsp. freshly ground pepper
- 1 tsp. dried oregano
- 2 tsp. smoked paprika
- 1 tsp. garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp. onion powder
- 1/2 large onion
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1 lemon
- 1 cup chicken broth
- In a small bowl, combine the salt, pepper, oregano, paprika, garlic powder, and onion powder. Mix well and set aside.
- Gently loosen the skin from the chicken breast with your hands (or carefully slide a dull knife under skin) and rub 1 Tbsp. oil and about a third of the spice mix underneath the skin. *If the skin starts to break, don't stress. Just do the best you can!
- Rub another Tbsp. of oil and the rest of the seasonings over the entire chicken.
- Place the half onion, peeled garlic cloves and lemon inside the cavity of the chicken. This will seal in the moisture and add flavor.
- Turn the instant pot to sauté and make sure it's on "high." When the word "hot" appears, add remaining Tbsp. oil to the pot.
- Place the chicken - breast side down, in pot for 5-7 minutes, or until golden brown. Using tongs and a spatula, carefully flip the chicken over and sear for another 5 minutes, or until brown.
- Remove chicken and place on some parchment paper or tin foil.
- Pour chicken broth in pot and use a wooden spoon to de-glaze the bottom of the pot. Make sure there are no brown bits stuck to the bottom of the instant pot, or your chicken won't cook properly.
- Place the trivet insert (the one that came with the Instant Pot) inside the Instant Pot. Place chicken on top of the trivet, breast side up.
- Secure the instant pot lid on the pot and turn the valve to "sealing."
- Press the "manual" or "high pressure" button and set to 24 minutes (for a 4-lb. chicken). *See notes for adjusting cook time for smaller or larger chicken.
- Allow the Instant Pot to come to pressure (this may take about 10-15 minutes).
- Once the 24 minutes is up and the Instant Pot beeps indicating the chicken is done, allow to naturally release for at least 15 minutes and then quick release.
- Make sure inside of chicken reads 165º F. Transfer the chicken to a large cutting board. Optional: Broil in the oven for 4-5 minutes to crisp up the skin.
- Let chicken cool for 5-10 minutes before slicing.
*If chicken is smaller or larger than 4 lbs., multiply the number of pounds by 6 minutes. For example, a 3-lb. chicken would need to cook for 18 min. (3 x 6 = 18) and a 5-lb. chicken would cook for 30 minutes. For a FROZEN 4-lb. chicken, set to 42 minutes on high pressure.