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Frozen Chicken Thighs Instant Pot Recipe

Frozen chicken thighs in Instant Pot are so easy to make! From rock hard to tender fall off the bone in your pressure cooker in just minutes. Game Changer! 

Frozen Chicken Thighs Instant Pot

Frozen chicken thighs Instant Pot directions are here! Forgot to defrost meat for dinner? NO problem because you can make tender chicken in a pressure cooker in no time. Find this and over 100 other easy Instant Pot recipes here. (affiliate links present)

I know I can’t be the only one who forgets to defrost dinner in time. But now cooking chicken has never been easier! Now you can make a variety of quick chicken thigh recipes even if they start off rock solid.

Ninja Foodi Frozen Chicken Thighs

Earlier I shared how to cook frozen chicken in the Instant Pot, but boneless and skinless chicken breasts were used that time. You can use the same timing if you have a Ninja Foodi or Crockpot Express too. Those pots work the same.

Let’s start with a few basic tips:

For reference, this is the pressure cooker I have and use for all recipe creations.

star wars instant pot

We’re talking all about cooking frozen chicken thighs this time! Ours were skinless bone-in style but if you love chicken skin leave those babies on.

We have also shared frozen chicken thighs in air fryer timing. If you have that machine too you’ll have 2 methods to choose from.

Let’s say you planned on cooking sheet pan chicken thighs but realized at 4pm that your meat was still in the freezer. Yep, I’ve done that too. Don’t fret.

frozen chicken thighs

Here are a few questions you might have to start with:

Can you cook frozen chicken thighs from frozen?

First off, do not cook frozen chicken in the microwave or in a slow cooker. BUT, chicken can be cooked from a frozen state in a pressure cooker, in the oven, or on the stove.

The cooking time may be about 50% longer for the last two methods but in an Instant Pot is fast!

Can you cook chicken from frozen?

Absolutely. Of course it is better if you have time to defrost it but life happens. You can even cook Instant Pot frozen turkey breast from rock hard to tender and tastes amazing.

Air fryer frozen chicken and pressure cooking frozen meat is the way to go. OR make Instant Pot frozen chicken legs this way.

instant pot frozen chicken thighs

Many times if there is a great sale at the grocery store I will stock up! I have bought meat in bulk before too and portioned it out into gallon bags. Freeze, pull out when ready and cook. Saves money and drive time.

How long does it take to bake frozen chicken thighs?

If you’re using an oven you’re looking at almost an hour! NO bueno in this house. Just to give you an idea, this is what you’d need to do:

  1. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F
  2. Lay frozen chicken thighs on a lined baking pan, parchment paper is best.
  3. Coat chicken with things like a bit of butter, thyme and a squeeze of fresh lemon juice.

Bake in an oven at 375 for 50 to 60 minutes.

frozen chicken in instant pot

Frozen chicken thighs

This is the easiest and most tender way to make them quick!!

  1. Chicken – we used bone in skinless style
    1. cheapest is bone in chicken thighs with the skin on
    2. if using boneless chicken thighs I would take 1 minute off the cook time
  2. Chicken broth
  3. Italian seasonings
  4. Salt and pepper
  5. Lemon
  6. Cornstarch if you want to thicken sauce at the end
  7. Onion is optional but I add some to just about every recipe I make

How long do thighs take to cook?

Using this method it is only about 20 minutes including the time the pot will take to come to pressure.

chicken thigh recipe

Here are the steps you should follow, printable directions with nutritional information is below too:

Time needed: 15 minutes.

Instant Pot Frozen Chicken Thighs

  1. Prepare

    Pour broth or cup of water into electric pressure cooker, then mix in all spices and onion. Put frozen bone in chicken inside bottom of the pot. Put the bone side facing down.

  2. Cook

    Close lid and steam valve and set to high pressure for 15 minutes.
    Allow for a 3 minute natural pressure release, then do a quick release. Carefully remove chicken.

  3. Saute

    Then select saute function. In a small bowl whisk together some of the chicken broth from the pot and your cornstarch until it is smooth.

    Once boiling add this mixture to thicken the sauce. Serve chicken with some of this sauce on top.

Total time from start to finish including prep is about 30 minutes when pressure cooking. Always check internal temperature before consuming.

how to cook frozen chicken

How long does it take to thaw frozen chicken thighs?

It will take about 24 hours to thaw one pound of frozen boneless chicken breasts or other chicken pieces.

If you’re thawing a whole frozen chicken, it will take bout 4 to 6 hours per pound of chicken being thawed. BUT if you forget, this is handy to have.

Want to crisp the skins at the end? Use your air fryer or Ninja Foodi at 400 F for about 4 minutes or until tops are golden brown. Spray basket and top of meat with olive oil spray.

instant pot frozen chicken thighs

How do you store cooked chicken thighs?

First make sure they reach room temperature first. If you aren’t going to eat them all place inside airtight containers or freezer bags. Seal closed without air and store in fridge. They’ll stay good for 3-4 days.

Can I reheat cooked chicken thighs?

Of course. You could put them into an air fryer at 380 F for 4-6 minutes flipping halfway through. Spray with olive oil on the top at the beginning and when turning over.

In a microwave reheat in 45 second increments flipping every time you add additional heat.

This Ninja Foodi chicken breast recipe works great every time too. The nice thing about this machine is you can pressure cook and air fry right in the same basket.

Instant Pot Chicken Thighs Bone In

Printable recipe is posted below with all ingredients necessary. Print it out and keep it handy or just come back time after time so we can “see you”.

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the typical mom

Ninja Foodi Frozen Chicken Thighs

instant pot frozen chicken thighs
Print Pin
4.6 from 5 votes

Frozen Chicken Thighs Instant Pot

Frozen chicken thighs in Instant Pot are so easy to make! From rock hard to tender fall off the bone in your pressure cooker in just minutes. Game Changer! #chicken
Course Entree, Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword chicken thighs, instant pot, pressure cooker
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Servings 6
Calories 269kcal
Author The Typical Mom

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Pour broth into pressure cooker, then mix in all spices and onion. Put frozen chicken inside pot with the bone side facing down.
  • Close lid and steam valve and set to high pressure for 15 minutes.
  • Allow for a 3 minute natural pressure release, then do a quick release. Carefully remove chicken. Then select saute function.
  • In a small bowl whisk together some of the hot liquid from the pot and your cornstarch until it is smooth.
  • Once boiling add this mixture to thicken the sauce. Serve chicken with some of this sauce on top…..or air fry your thighs to crisp skin and then pour sauce on top.
  • To crisp skin in air fryer set to 400 F. Spray basket with non stick spray, put thighs in and spray top with olive oil spray or brush teriyaki or bbq sauce on top.
  • Cook for about 4 minutes or until crisp as you want on top.

Video

Nutrition Facts
Frozen Chicken Thighs Instant Pot
Amount Per Serving (3 oz)
Calories 269 Calories from Fat 171
% Daily Value*
Fat 19g29%
Saturated Fat 5g31%
Cholesterol 111mg37%
Sodium 232mg10%
Potassium 319mg9%
Carbohydrates 5g2%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 1g1%
Protein 19g38%
Vitamin A 110IU2%
Vitamin C 9mg11%
Calcium 38mg4%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Recipe Rating




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Barb

Monday 15th of February 2021

I'd like to try this, but for the initial test of a recipe I try to stick to the ingredients and instructions. The recipe says 1/2 of a lemon...is this squeezed, sliced with skin, no skin, full half just into the pot? If you would please let me, likely others as well, know? Thanks!

Gina

Tuesday 12th of January 2021

I never thought to cook from frozen but man, does this make life easier! Thanks so much for sharing this easy recipe!

The Typical Mom

Wednesday 13th of January 2021

Yay!

Lisalia

Tuesday 12th of January 2021

LOVE trying new recipes in my new instant pot! This was so easy to make and delicious! Thanks for a new favorite recipe!

Tracey

Friday 8th of January 2021

The gravy was amazing and my family loved this dish. I had 4 frozen bone in with skin but the were not all the same size. Based on comments, I increased the time to 30 mins. Two smaller thighs were cooked but the larger ones had spots that were not done. I think part of the issue is that I put them in frozen stuck together. Next time I will separate. I served with rice and it was amazing dish! Other then adding time, I followed the recipe but I did not have a lemon so I used lemon juice and used thighs with skin on. This recipe is a keeper!

Tracey

Friday 8th of January 2021

Forgot to rate! 5 stars!!

Brenda

Tuesday 16th of June 2020

Whew! Glad I found you! My chicken isn't thawed and the troops are getting restless. 🤣😆

The Typical Mom

Tuesday 16th of June 2020

yay

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