Tangy Pulled Barbecue Chicken Instant Pot™ Recipe Makes the Crowd Go Wild by Elisa Schmitz

Poultry Dinner
a year ago

Tangy Pulled Barbecue Chicken Instant Pot™ Recipe Makes the Crowd Go Wild

When you're feeding a family or any large group, the Instant Pot™ can be a lifesaver. That's because the Instant Pot™ makes easy, delicious meals that serve a crowd in no time at all.

I was a bit late to the Instant Pot™ party, preferring to stick with my tried-and-true Crock Pot™, but now that I have one, I am a believer. I'm finding that the meals I make in the Instant Pot™ are just as savory and satisfying as those I make in the Crock Pot™, but in a fraction of the time.

Take this tangy pulled barbecue chicken recipe. OMG, it's SO GOOD. And this mouth-watering dinner recipe was ready in less than one hour, compared to six hours in a Crock Pot™. Wow! Even more impressive than the convenience is the taste. This succulent pulled BBQ chicken recipe is meaty and moist. The chicken shreds so easily then soaks up the savory sauce.

This easy barbecue chicken recipe is delicious served on toasted buns, but you also could serve it over pasta or rice. Get creative and serve it on top of nachos, or roll it up in tortillas then dip it into sour cream or bleu cheese dressing or the sauce of your choice. And the crowd goes wild!

Inside scoop: You can use fresh or frozen chicken for this recipe, and the cook time should remain the same unless you're using very thick pieces of chicken (if so, you can add a couple of minutes to your cooking time).

Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 18 minutes, plus about 25 minutes of pressurizing/depressurizing time
Total Time: About 55 minutes
Servings: 8


  • 1 1/2 cups barbecue sauce, divided (I used Sweet Baby Ray's but you can make your own barbecue sauce)
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 2 pounds boneless/skinless chicken breasts or chicken thighs (I used a combination of both)
  • hamburger buns or pretzel buns, for serving

Here's how to make it:

  1. In the Instant Pot™, whisk together half (3/4 cup) of the barbecue sauce, the chicken broth, the apple cider vinegar, the minced garlic, the chili powder and salt and pepper, to taste.
  2. Place the chicken into the pot, ensuring it is covered by the sauce.
  3. Close the lid and engage the steam release valve so it's sealed. Set the pot to high pressure for 18 minutes cook time. It takes about 10 to 15 minutes for the Instant Pot to pressurize, at which point the cook time will begin. The Instant Pot™ should alert you when the cook time ends, and that's when you should allow the pot to depressurize for about 10 minutes on its own. After about 10 minutes, you can move the steam release valve to vent so the steam releases and the pin drops down. Carefully open the pot and, using a meat thermometer, check to make sure the chicken has reached 165 degrees F.
  4. Remove the chicken from the Instant Pot™ and put it into a large bowl. Using two forks, shred the chicken (you won't believe how easily it comes apart).
  5. Add the remaining 3/4 cup of barbecue sauce into the sauce in the pot and whisk to combine.
  6. Place the pulled chicken into the sauce in the pot and stir until it's thoroughly coated in the sauce.
  7. Serve chicken directly from the pot onto buns, rice or pasta, etc.

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Donna John
Looks amazing! Adding this to my ever-growing list of recipes to make. Elisa Schmitz, 30Seconds
I love pulled pork but haven’t tried pulled chicken. Making this recipe.
Elisa Schmitz
I was surprised by how easy it is to make such a delicious, crowd-pleasing meal. Hope you enjoy this savory recipe as much as we do, Donna John bepositive !

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