This is the BEST shredded chicken you will ever eat! SO GOOD! Making shredded chicken for tacos in the Instant Pot requires only FOUR ingredients. The meat turns out flavorful, tender and juicy every single time. Perfect for taco night!
I love those kinds of food that are so popular they have their own night of the week designated for them. There is nothing better than TACO NIGHT. Everyone loves tacos! They are the perfect easy dinner and also the best party food because everyone can pick and choose toppings. Plus, there are so many dang options for taco toppings!
I have made lots and lots of tacos in my life. Beef, pork, chicken, bean, you name it. But friends, hear me out. I have NEVER made a more delicious, juicy meat for tacos than this Instant Pot Shredded Chicken. I could hardly believe it when I took my first bite. We had guests over to share my first batch with and they swooned. I love how an electric pressure can transform FOUR ingredients into such a memorable and delicious meal.
HOW TO MAKE THE BEST INSTANT POT CHICKEN TACOS!
Ahhh, you are going to LOVE this recipe! My first attempt at this recipe was total perfection and I have made it three times since. Best ever!
Rub a packet of taco seasoning over the surfaces of 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts. Set the Instant Pot to saute. Heat the olive oil and add the chicken to the pot. Cook for 3 minutes per side. Do this in batches, if needed, and transfer chicken to a cutting board while the other breasts cook.
Pour a can of chicken stock or chicken broth into the Instant Pot and deglaze the pot (scrape the bottom with a spoon). Place a trivet into Instant Pot and Place the chicken breasts in a single layer on top of the trivet.
Place the cover on the pot and set the timer to 5 minutes on high pressure (use the pressure cook setting). It will take the Instant Pot around 10 to 12 minutes to build up pressure before it begins cooking.
When the cooking time is done, let the pressure release naturally for 5 minutes then set to Quick Release. Let the float valve drop and remove the cover. Transfer the chicken breasts to a cutting board. Using two forks, shred the chicken and add it back to the pot. Mix well.
Divide the meat between 8 flour or corn tortillas and top with cheese and toppings of your choice!
RECIPE TIPS: MAKE THESE THE BEST CHICKEN TACOS EVER! (SERIOUSLY.)
Consider making your own taco seasoning! It’s super affordable (you probably have all of the ingredients sitting in your spice cupboard!) and a little bit really does go a long, long way. Plus you have control over exactly what you are seasoning your meat with. No more store bought taco seasoning, people!
Swap out the olive oil for vegetable or canola oil, if desired.
I highly recommend using broth over water for this recipe. It adds a flavor that water could never achieve. In a pinch, though, water works!
Cook the tortillas in a bit of olive oil in a hot skillet for a few minutes per side for a deliciously crispy taco!
If you only have frozen chicken breasts on hand (and no time to thaw them), add 5 minutes to the cooking time.
Try using the slow cooker feature on your pressure cooker to see how the meat compares to cooking chicken on the pressure cook setting! Cook on “normal” setting for 6 hours.
For darker, juicier meat, replace the chicken breasts with chicken thighs. Go boneless!
Consider making your own flour tortillas from scratch (recipe from Nourish and Fete)!
USES FOR TACO MEAT
I love that there are so many different recipes to put taco meat into and so many ways to use it to make food tastier. Here are a few ideas for you!
Make Taco Cups! This is one of my favorite finger foods to serve at parties. Enjoy a taco in just a few bites!
Traditional tacos, burritos, quesadillas, tostadas or enchiladas were made for taco meat.
Add it to chili for an extra kick!
TACO SALAD! Or throw some into your next batch of Taco Ranch Pasta Salad for a meatier party food.
Add it to your next batch of Mac & Cheese!
Throw it on top of a plate of nachos.
HOW TO MAKE HOMEMADE TACO SEASONING
In a small bowl, combine the following:
3 Tbsp chili powder
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp paprika (use smoked paprika for a smoky flavor)
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1/8 tsp – 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (depending on how spicy you want it to be)
1/2 tsp oregano
USES FOR TACO SEASONING
If you grow tired of taco meat, we need to have a chat. Kidding, but here are a few other ideas for ways to use taco seasoning.
Stir it into any creamy dip (yum).
Use it as a rub on your next Rotisserie chicken or batch of ribs!
Add it to salad dressing for an extra zing.
FAVORITE CINCO DE MAYO RECIPES
Here are a few of my favorite recipes to make for your next Cinco de Mayo gathering!
Ground Pork Tacos from Hot Pan Kitchen
SELECTING A RIPE AVOCADO
If avocados go on sale, it’s great to pick up a handful and let them ripen at home. There are so many ways to enjoy them that they’ll never go to waste. Selecting an avocado that is ready to enjoy takes a little more knowledge, however. Try these simple tests to select your next avocado batch:
TEST 1 – A good test to check ripeness is to use your fingers and push gently into the avocado to see if it yields to pressure near the top where it was connected to the tree. If it gives freely and feels mushy, the avocado is past its prime. If the avocado is rock-solid and there is no give to touch, the avocado needs a few more days to ripen.
TEST 2 – Pop off the stem of the avocado where the avocado separated from the tree (see step 1 below for a visual). If a dark brown color is revealed, the avocado is past its prime. If it’s impossible to remove the stem nub, the avocado is not ripe enough to eat. If a green color is revealed, perfectly delicious avocado flesh is ready to be enjoyed!
WHY DOES IT TAKE MY INSTANT POT SO LONG TO HEAT UP?
The time leading up to actual cook time may seem long and even confusing (“What is going ON in there?!”), but it’s an important part of the process! The Instant Pot is working on building up the appropriate amount of pressure that it will be cooking the food at. It handles liquids and solids differently and also fresh and frozen differently, so the time can vary. Most recipes take between 10 and 25 minutes to build up pressure.
Instant Pot Chicken Tacos
- 1.25 oz package taco seasoning or 2 tablespoons Homemade Taco Seasoning
- 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts fat removed
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 14.5 oz can chicken broth or stock, or 2 cups water
- 8 flour or corn tortillas
- 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- Shredded lettuce, tomatoes, avocados and taco sauce for topping
- Rub the taco seasoning over the surfaces of the chicken breasts. Set Instant Pot to saute. Heat the olive oil and add the chicken to the pot. Cook for 3 minutes/side. Do this in batches, if needed, and transfer chicken to a cutting board.
- Pour the chicken broth into the Instant Pot and deglaze the pot (scrape the bottom with a spoon). Place a trivet into Instant Pot and Place the chicken breasts in a single layer on top of the trivet.
- Place the cover on the pot and set timer to 5 minutes on high pressure (pressure cook setting). It will take the IP around 10 minutes to build up pressure before it begins cooking.
- When cooking time is done, let the pressure release naturally for 5 minutes then set to Quick Release. Let the float valve drop and remove the cover. Transfer the chicken breasts to a cutting board. Using two forks, shred the chicken and add it back to the pot. Mix well.
- Divide the meat between the tortillas and top with cheese and toppings of your choice!