These delicious Instant Pot Chicken Thighs can be made with bone-in or boneless chicken thighs, and are ready in under 30 minutes! They're crispy, and covered in a delicious gravy-like sauce, making them the perfect recipe to pair with your favorite side!
If you're a fan of pan-seared chicken thighs or even my air fryer chicken thighs, you will adore these Instant Pot chicken thighs just as much!
This Instant Pot chicken thighs recipe calls for bone-in skin on chicken, because that way the skin gets nice and crispy in the pressure cooker. However, I've included an option for boneless skinless chicken thighs if that's more your speed in the recipe notes below.
What I love most about this dish is that it feels fancy, but it's not! It's incredibly approachable, and the whole things comes together from start to finish in about 30 minutes. A total win!
- The chicken is perfectly seasoned, then pan-seared in the Instant Pot so it gets nice and crispy on the outside.
- Cooked in the Instant Pot so the chicken is tender and juicy.
- Finally, it's topped with a simple yet delicious gravy that's optional, but helps to seal in the flavor of the chicken.
- Chicken thighs - Bone-in, skin on for extra crispy chicken. However, see the "notes" section in the recipe card below for the option to use boneless, skinless chicken instead.
- Olive oil/butter - I love using a combination of both, but feel free to use one or the other if you prefer.
- Spices - A combination of garlic powder, paprika, salt, oregano, and black pepper.
- Garlic - Along with garlic powder, I love adding actual minced garlic to the pressure cooker, which makes the chicken even more flavorful.
- Chicken broth - Necessary so that the chicken doesn't burn, and it helps to keep the chicken moist as well.
- Cornstarch - For the gravy; can use arrowroot if you prefer.
Step 1: Make the marinade. In a small bowl, stir the garlic powder, paprika, salt, oregano, and black pepper together.
Step 2: Season the chicken. Place the chicken in a large bowl, then pour the seasoning overtop and use your hands to rub it all over the chicken, making sure it's completely coated.
Step 3: Pan-sear. Add the olive oil and butter to your Instant Pot, then press "sauté" and set it for 6 minutes. Allow 1-2 minutes for the butter to warm, then add the chicken skin-side down and saute undisturbed for 3 minutes, or until the skin is crispy. Then, flip it over, add the garlic and cook the chicken for 1 more minute.
Use kitchen tongs to remove the chicken and set it on a plate. Pour the chicken broth into the pressure cooker and use a wooden spoon to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom.
Step 4: Pressure cook. Place the trivet into your Instant Pot, then carefully place the chicken skin-side up onto the trivet (you should be able to perfectly fit 4 chicken thighs onto it). Close the lid, making sure the valve is in the "seal" position, then pressure cook the chicken for 12 minutes on high pressure, then natural pressure release for 10 minutes before releasing the remaining pressure manually.
Step 5: Make the gravy. In a small bowl, whisk the cornstarch and water together to create a smooth paste. Carefully pull the trivet/chicken thighs out of the Instant Pot and set them aside. Press "saute" and set it to 2 minutes, then add the cornstarch into the pot. Whisk occasionally until the sauce thickens to a gravy.
Expert tips and FAQs
- Don't forget to use the trivet!
- The cook time varies depending on the thickness of the chicken thighs. You’ll know the chicken is done once it reaches an internal temperature of 165°.
- Don't have cornstarch? You can use arrowroot or even all purpose flour instead. But, you need to use one of the above in order to create the gravy.
Can I use frozen chicken thighs? What about boneless chicken thighs?
Yep! Here are the cook times for how to cook chicken thighs in the Instant Pot (fresh or frozen):
- Bone-in, skin on: 12 minutes high pressure, then 10 minutes natural release
- Boneless, skinless: 8 minutes high pressure, 5 minutes natural release
- Frozen: 14 minutes high pressure, then 10 minutes natural release
What should I serve this with?
So many options! Since the chicken is topped with gravy, I think my savory mashed sweet potatoes would be delicious, as would my maple roasted carrots.
Without the gravy, this chicken would be delicious paired with this butternut squash farro salad and my brown butter sweet potatoes.
Do I have to make the gravy? Is there another sauce I could make instead?
Of course. If you're not a fan of gravy, I would recommend whipping up either this simple chimichurri to spoon over top, or my chipotle aioli, which I personally think goes well with everything.
- Refrigerator - Keep the leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. Store the gravy separately if possible to keep the chicken from getting soggy.
More easy Instant Pot recipes
If you made this recipe, be sure to leave a comment and star rating below. Thanks!
Instant Pot Chicken Thighs
- pressure cooker
- 4 chicken thighs bone-in, skin on
- 1 ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 ½ teaspoon paprika
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon oregano
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- ¼ cup chicken broth
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- Pat the chicken dry, then place it in a large bowl. In a small bowl, stir the garlic powder, paprika, salt, oregano, and black pepper together, then pour the spices over the chicken and use your hands to completely coat the chicken.
- Next, add the olive oil and butter to your Instant Pot, then press "saute" and set it for 6 minutes. Allow 2 minutes for the butter to melt; once the butter starts shimmering, place the chicken skin-side down into the pot and pan-sear it, undisturbed, for 3 minutes. Then, flip it over, add the minced garlic, and cook for 1 more minute.
- Use kitchen tongs to remove the chicken, then pour in the chicken broth and use a wooden spoon to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pot. Place the trivet into your Instant Pot, then lay the chicken skin side up onto the trivet (you should be able to perfectly fit 4 chicken thighs).
- Place the lid onto your Instant Pot, ensuring the valve on top is in the "seal" position. Pressure cook the chicken on high pressure for 10 minutes, then natural release the pressure for 10 minutes before manually releasing the rest.
- Carefully lift the trivet, along with the chicken, out of the pot. Next, whisk 1 tablespoon cornstarch and 1 ½ tablespoon water together in a bowl, then pour the paste-like mixture into the pot. Press "saute" and set it for 2 minutes, whisking occasionally to create the gravy.
- Spoon the gravy over the chicken, then sprinkle everything with a little salt and pepper. Enjoy!
- Bone-in, skin on: cook for 10 minutes high pressure, natural release 10 minutes
- Boneless, skinless: cook for 8 minutes high pressure, natural release 5 minutes
- Frozen: cook for 14 minutes high pressure, natural release 10 minutes
Chris Gibbs says
I followed this recipe to the t, but got a bur notice 1/4 cup of chicken broth is not enough. So I had to add more water and restart. Then I had to add additional cooking time because it wasn't to 160. But it was quite tasty.