Make chicken tacos in the Instant Pot tonight! Seasoned chicken is cooked with salsa to juicy perfection in this easy chicken taco recipe.
Table of Contents
Why use the Instant Pot
It’s not exactly a secret that I’m borderline obsessed with Instant Pot recipes. Today, I’m showing you how to make the best ever chicken for tacos in your Instant Pot.
- Set it and forget it!
- Chicken comes out juicy and tender in minutes.
- Frees up your stove top and oven.
With a few ingredients and your pressure cooker, you’ll have perfect chicken tacos on the table in under an hour–and most of that cooking time is hands off.
The chicken taco meat is delicious on both corn and flour tortillas. It’s also phenomenal in salads, taco bowls, burritos, nachos. . . you name it!
- Chicken. Fresh or frozen chicken breasts work best in this Instant Pot recipe. Chicken thighs make a good substitute, especially if doing the slow cooker method.
- Taco Seasoning. Mix together a batch of my Homemade Taco Seasoning or grab your favorite store bought mix.
- Chicken broth. This is the primary liquid used to cook the chicken in the Instant Pot.
- Salsa. Jarred red salsa combines with the broth to create a flavorful tomato sauce for the chicken.
Start by pouring the chicken broth into your Instant Pot. Arrange the chicken breasts in the Instant Pot in a single layer. Cover with taco seasoning and salsa.
Pressure cook on high for 15 minutes. After releasing pressure, shred the chicken with two forks. Add it back to the pot with a squeeze of lime juice and zest.
Serve on tortillas with any taco toppings you desire. Feel free to drain off any excess liquid.
Slow Cooker Instructions
No Instant Pot? No problem!
Add your chicken, taco seasoning, and salsa to the crockpot. DO NOT ADD BROTH.
Cook on low for 6 hours. Shred and enjoy.
Tips and Tricks
- Make sure to arrange the chicken in an even single layer. Especially if they’re frozen, they won’t cook fully if they are stuck together.
- Pour the salsa on top of the chicken before cooking. If it’s on the bottom of the pot it can cause a burn notice.
- Store leftovers in the fridge for 3-4 days.
- Cooked chicken taco meat can be frozen for up to 3 months. Let thaw in the fridge before reheating.
- Top your tacos or taco bowls with fixings like lettuce, pico de gallo, and guacamole. Sour cream or plain Greek yogurt is also delicious!
- This taco chicken tastes delicious in taco salads too. Toss with greens, tortilla strips and avocado dressing.
- Add leftover chicken to chicken taco soup!
Save the pico de gallo and other uncooked salsas for topping your tacos! You need the juices of jarred salsa to create the delicious sauce that marinates the chicken as it cooks.
No extra cooking time is needed for frozen chicken. Your Instant Pot will just take longer to come to pressure.
We tested this recipe in a 6 quart instant pot.
More Easy Dinner Recipes
- Instant Pot Macaroni and Cheese
- Broccoli and Cheese Soup
- Instant Pot Chicken and Dumplings
- Pigs in a Blanket
- Instant Pot Shredded Chicken
- Mississippi Pot Roast
Instant Pot Chicken Tacos
- 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts (about 2 pounds)
- ¼ cup chicken broth
- 1 Tablespoon taco seasoning mix
- ¾ cup salsa
- 1 lime juiced and zested
- Pour chicken broth into the Instant Pot. Add chicken breasts in a single layer. Sprinkle taco seasoning over the chicken breasts. Top with salsa.
- Secure the lid and make sure the pressure valve is set to SEALING. Select the HIGH PRESSURE (or manual cook mode) and set the timer for 15 minutes.
- When the timer is done, let the pressure naturally release for 10 minutes and then manually release the rest of the pressure.
- Remove chicken breast and place them on a cutting board or plate. Shred the chicken with two forks.
- Drain about ¼ cup of liquid from the Instant Pot into a measuring cup. I like to reserve this incase the tacos need a little additional liquid after mixing.
- Put the shredded chicken breast back into the Instant Pot. Add lime juice and zest. Stir to combine. Serve on flour or corn tortillas.
- Boneless, skinless chicken thighs may be used instead of chicken breasts.
- Try my homemade taco seasoning for today’s recipe!
- If you use frozen chicken breasts, you don’t need to change the temperature or cook time. Your Instant Pot will just take longer to build up to pressure. You do need to make sure they are positioned in a single layer and not stuck together. The chicken will not cook.
- Use jarred salsa for this recipe – it combines with the chicken broth to create a taco flavored tomato sauce for the taco meat. Save the fresh pico de gallo for serving. Make sure to place the salsa on top of the chicken breasts. If the salsa is on the bottom of the pot, it can cause the burn notice warning to go off.
- Tested in a 6-quart Instant Pot.
- Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days.
- Cooked chicken taco meat can be frozen in an airtight container and stored for up to 3 months in the freezer.
Instant Pot Chicken Tacos are easy, flavorful and versatile. Fire up the pressure cooker and grab a tortilla!