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Instant Pot Fried Chicken

When it comes to fried chicken, the Instant Pot might not be the first appliance that comes to mind. There is a reason for that. Pressure cookers are not really built for deep frying. However, you can use the pot to precook your chicken and then fry in the conventional manner on the stove.

There are videos and recipes out there showing how to use the Instant pot to deep fry chicken inside the pot. I’m not going to tell you it won’t work. Apparently, it does for some, but you might void your pot warranty, and it is of questionable safety. See this article on pressure frying.

So, what I am going to do here is tell you how to precook chicken in the pot and then regular fry it, but I’ll clue you in on what some people do to fry it in the pressure cooker. But that doesn’t mean I recommend that. I actually don’t!

Instant Pot Fried Chicken

About Precooking Chicken for Frying in the Instant Pot or Other Pressure Cooker

To make fried chicken in the Instant Pot or to make other fried foods in a pressure cooker, you basically are using the pressure cooker to precook the meat and drive the flavor or marinade into it.

The key is marinate your meat and then pressure cook it. Allow it to cool.

Next, remove the meat, let it cool. coat it in breading, and fry on teh stove top (or air fry). Do conventional frying in a pot on your stove or a dedicated deep fat fryer. DO NOT PRESUURE COOK OIL!

Let me repeat that: DO NOT PRESSURE COOK OIL!  You do not want to put hot oil under pressure. 

Making Instant Pot Fried Chicken 

The recipe below uses a marinade. By pressure cooking the chicken first, you basically use the pressure cooker to force the marinade into the meat. Plus, it speeds things up. Otherwise, you might have to marinate the meat overnight.

Mix up the marinade and coat the chicken. Put a trivet in the post and add water. Place the chicken on the rivet and pressure cook.

Next, remove the chicken, let it cool a bit and coat in the breading. Then fry in a standard manner, not in the Instant Pot.

To do this, heat a couple inches of oil in a deep pot or skillet to 375 degrees and fry the chicken in batches until the chicken is 165 internal temperature.  I recommend using peanut oil or Avocado oil if you want to be healthier. Olive oil tends to not handle heat for deep frying as well, so I don’t recommend that. Vegetable oil will often also work.

Now, yes, some people use the sauté or soup function of a pressure cooker to heat oil and fry the chicken in that. There are some recipes and videos of this. But it can be hard to get the oil hot enough and the manufactures will tell you not to do it. Again, DO NOT PRESSURE COOK OIL! 

I really think you are best off frying on the stove. If you want to air fry (which is what I often do with wings), try this recipe: Instant Pot Duo Crisp Chicken Wings.

 Serving Pressure Cooker Fried Chicken

Fried Chicken goes great with these recipes:

Instant Pot Basmati Rice

Instant Pot Baked Beans

Instant Pot Corn on the Cob 

Instant Pot Meshed Potatoes 

Below is the recipe.

Instant Pot Fried Chicken

Instant Pot Fried Chicken

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Additional Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 35 minutes

Instant Pot fried chicken is precooked in the pressure cooker and then fried on the stove top. This article also explains why you should not pressure fry chicken


  • 8 chicken drumsticks, or other pieces for frying
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 2 cups All-purpose flour
  • ½ cup fine or medium gound corn meal
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp dried sage
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tbsp turmeric powder
  • ½ tbsp paprika
  • 2 egg whites
  • 3 tbsp yogurt
  • Salt to taste
  • Cooking oil


  • Clean the chicken and pat dry.

  • Add spices (onion powder, garlic powder, pepper, sage, thyme, paprika, and turmeric, salt, to taste) to yogurt and mix well.

    • Rub the marinade into the chicken
    • Add water to the Instant Pot
    • Place a trivet in the pot and place the chicken on top
    • Pressure cook on manual high pressure for 15 minutes
    • Quick release pressure and remove the chicken
    • Let the chicken cool and dry for 30-40 minutes
  • Beat 2 egg whites and mix in all-purpose flour and corn meal on a plate. Add 1/2 tbsp black pepper and salt to taste.

  • Dip chicken pieces in the egg white then coat all sides with the flour mixture.

  • Heat 2-4 inches of cooking oil in a large deep skillet or pot to a temperature of 375°F.

  • Working in batches, place chicken pieces in the hot oil and cook 8-10 minutes per side, or until golden brown. Internal temperature should be 165 degrees.

  • Place chicken on paper towels to remove excess oil.




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