Instant pot shredded chicken made Mexican style are great for meal prep or to use in any of your favorite Mexican dishes like tacos, fajitas, quesadillas, burritos and more. This is shredded chicken taken a notch up with all wonderful Mexican flavors!
This ain’t your ordinary shredded chicken recipe. This is Mexican style shredded chicken in instant pot. Instant pot shredded chicken breasts are so easy to make and the flavors are completely customizable.
We haven’t even mentioned the best part yet! You’ll only need 4 basic ingredients (jalapenos and seasoning with salt and pepper are optional, remember!) to make this easy chicken taco filling.
Why Should You Make Instant Pot Shredded Chicken
- One of the easiest way to cook chicken is in instant pot. Pre cooked chicken helps with your meal prep if you plan to eat healthy throughout the week. If you have pre cooked chicken in hand, making a healthy meal even if it is at the last minute of meal time, is easy.
- Shredded chicken are great options for meal prep. You can simply cook chicken in instant pot and shred it. Divide into small portions and freeze. Each portion can be made into a different dish each day. Depending on your mood, make sandwiches, tacos, stir-fries, stuff it in baked potatoes or even over salad!
- This is not your ordinary ‘blah’ chicken. Mexican style shredded chicken gives you super flavorful chicken by using very minimal ingredients.
- It takes less than 30 minutes to cook perfect shredded chicken in your instant pot, conveniently.
- You can easily customize the flavors and spices used in the recipe. If you aren’t a fan of Mexican flavors (say whaat) use simple salt and pepper seasoning or use Italian seasoning if that’s right for your palate and if you are feeling adventurous, you can choose curry flavor seasonings. Choice is yours!
Which Cut Of Chicken is Best For This Recipe
If you are making shredded chicken, boneless and skinless chicken cuts should be your choice. I prefer to use chicken breasts without chicken. Chicken thighs can also be used, make sure you use skinless and boneless chicken thighs.
Frozen chicken breasts can be cooked directly. No need to thaw. Depending on the size of chicken breasts used, the cooking time in instant pot will vary.
How Long To Cook Chicken Breasts In The Instant Pot
Please note the mentioned time below does not count time taken by instant pot to come up to temperature and build pressure. It will take approximately 12 minutes for instant pot to build the pressure before it starts cooking. Please keep this extra time in mind if you are cooking chicken in instant pot.
Depending on the size of chicken breasts and whether you are using fresh or frozen, cooking time may vary from 8 to 30 minutes. If you want to cook chicken breasts to firm salad-ready consistency your cooking time will be different (slightly lesser) than tender shred quality consistency. Depending on how you want chicken to be cooked, select the time appropriately.
Please note below mentioned time is based on experiment done in my 7 Qt instant pot. There may be slightly variation in time required to cook the chicken in your instant pot depending on the weight and size of chicken breast! Use below mentioned time as guideline.
Small Chicken Breasts –
Fresh– about 6 minutes followed by 10 minutes natural pressure release (chicken will be cooked but firm, for your salad ready chicken breasts)
Frozen – about 9 minutes and 10 minutes natural pressure release.
To cook chicken to tender shred quality, use 13 minutes cook time and 10 minutes natural pressure release.
Medium Chicken Breasts –
Fresh – about 13 minutes with 10 minutes natural pressure release(chicken cooked firm).
Frozen – about 18 minutes with 10 minutes natural pressure release (chicken cooked firm).
To cook chicken to tender shred quality, select 20 minutes cooking time with 10 minutes natural pressure release.
Large Chicken Breasts –
Fresh- about 15 minutes with 10 minutes natural pressure release(or 20 minutes cooking time with quick pressure release without waiting).
Frozen – About 23 minutes with 10 minutes natural pressure release.
To cook chicken to tender shred quality, select 30 minutes cooking time with 10 minutes natural pressure release.
What You Need To Make Instant Pot Shredded Chicken Breast
4 basic ingredients and 6 total ingredients in total. The must use ingredients to make Mexican style chicken breasts is – chicken breasts, taco seasoning, chunky salsa (best to use fire roasted tomato chunky salsa) and chicken stock.
To add a bit more oomph to the dish I added half jalapenos chopped to add extra heat and flavor. And also a pinch of salt and pepper (add only if needed, taste first and add).
- Chicken Breasts
- Taco Seasoning
- Chunky Salsa
- Chicken Stock
- Jalapenos (optional)
- Pinch of salt and pepper (add as needed)
This Mexican style shredded chicken is great with tacos, quesadillas, burritos, fajitas, even over salad.
How To Cook Shredded Chicken In Instant Pot
You can use fresh or frozen chicken. If using frozen chicken, no need to thaw, place in the instant pot directly. Best to use skinless, boneless chicken. Chicken thighs can be used.
If using with bones, make sure you remove all the bones (including the small bits of any broken bones from cooked chicken). Without bones is usually easy to handle and so is shredding chicken.
Clean and wipe chicken breasts in kitchen towel.
Step 1 – Place chicken breasts inside instant pot.
Step 2 – Add taco seasoning over chicken breasts. Make the seasoning spread all over chicken evenly.
Step 3 – Pour in the chunky salsa. If using jalapenos add it at this stage. I like to leave the seeds on for extra kick, de seed if you can’t handle spice. As per taste, my dish needed a bit of salt. So I added a pinch of salt and freshly crushed pepper. Taste test and add salt and pepper if needed.
Step 4 – Pour chicken stock.
Step 5 – Put the lid on with pressure knob is SEALING position.
Step 6 – Select HIGH PRESSURE and set timer to 20 minutes (time will vary depending on the size of chicken breasts. For frozen chicken adjust time, will need more than).
Step 7 – Once cooking time is complete. Release pressure from the pot instantly by turning the knob to VENTING position.
Step 8 – Open lid. Shred chicken breasts with two sturdy fork. Shred it as thin or as chunky as you like.
Step 9 – That’s it! Ready! Use shredded chicken immediately in tacos, sandwiches, salads or any other dish!
You can divide shredded chicken in small batches and freeze it. Thaw smaller portions in refrigerator and use in different dishes of your choice.
Shredded chicken taco instant pot is our favorite dish to make with shredded chicken. It’s so full of flavors and totally delicious!
Different Seasoning For Shredded Chicken In Instant Pot
- Taco seasoning
- Fajita seasoning
- Italian seasoning
- Curry seasoning
- Simple salt and pepper seasoning
- BBQ chicken seasoning
So many options.
How To Use Shredded Chicken Made in Instant Pot
There are so many ways to use this Mexican style shredded chicken. Use it in –
- Over salad
- Use in to stuff baked potatoes
- In sandwiches and wraps
- And our very favorite – TACOS!
To serve shredded chicken in tacos – tear few pieces of fresh iceberg lettuce leaves and place it at the bottom of taco shells (either soft or crispy taco shells can be used), spread couple of spoons on shredded chicken made in instant pot, sprinkle fresh diced tomatoes, few jalapenos pieces, some fresh cilantro leaves, sprinkle cheddar cheese and finally top it with a good dollop of sour cream and avocados (mash it and spread it or chop into pieces and spread).
LOVE USING YOUR INSTANT POT FOR EVERYTHING? GOOD, BECAUSE I LOVE IT TOO. CHECK OUT THESE OTHER FAVORITE INSTANT POT RECIPES-
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Mexican Style Instant Pot Shredded Chicken
- 3 chicken breasts we used large chicken breasts, skinless, boneless
- 1 oz packet taco seasoning
- 1 cup salsa best fire roasted chunky salsa
- ½ jalapenos diced
- Pinch of salt & pepper add if needed
- ¾ cup chicken stock
To serve – For tacos
- Taco shells
- Iceberg lettuce
- Avocado sliced
- Fresh ripe roma tomatoes
- Cheddar cheese grated
- Sour cream
- Clean and wipe chicken breasts in kitchen towel.
- Place chicken breasts inside instant pot.
- Add taco seasoning over chicken breasts. Make the seasoning spread all over chicken evenly.
- Add chunky salsa.
- If using jalapenos add it at this stage. I like to leave the seeds on for extra kick, de seed if you can’t handle spice.
- As per taste, my dish needed a bit of salt. So added a pinch of salt and freshly crushed pepper. Taste test and add salt and pepper if needed.
- Pour chicken stock.
- Put the lid on with pressure knob is SEALING position.
- Select HIGH PRESSURE and set timer to 20 minutes (time will vary depending on the size of chicken breasts. For frozen chicken adjust time, will need more than).
- Once cooking time is complete. Release pressure from the pot instantly by turning the knob to VENTING position.
- Open lid. Shred chicken breasts with two sturdy fork. Shred it as thin or as chunky as you like.
- That’s it! Ready! Use shredded chicken immediately in tacos, sandwiches, salads or any other dish!
- You can divide shredded chicken in small batches and freeze it. Thaw smaller portions in refrigerator and use in different dishes of your choice.
- Shredded chicken taco instant pot is our favorite dish to make with shredded chicken. It’s so full of flavors and totally delicious!
- Depending on salsa consistency you have to adjust chicken stock measure. If using chunky (very chunky) salsa, use about 1 cup broth and if using thinned smooth salsa use 1/2 cup broth.
- Frozen chicken breasts can be used directly, no need to thaw. Follow the time measurements mentioned in the post for frozen chicken.
- Shred chicken as fine thread consistency you want, or keep it as chunky as you like.
- Taco seasoning can be replaced with fajita seasoning. It works good for Mexican dishes!