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Instant Pot Lemon Garlic Chicken Thighs


These Instant Pot lemon garlic chicken thighs are tender and infused with lemon garlic flavor. Spoon the sauce over the chicken, rice and vegetables! Low carb and freezer friendly.

Chicken thighs are one of my favorite things to cook in the Instant Pot as they arrive out tender, juicy, and so flavorful! While we love Instant Pot honey garlic chicken thighs as well as caprese Instant Pot chicken thighs, these Instant Pot lemon garlic chicken thighs are our modern favorite!

spooning sauce over lemon chicken thighs

This recipe is all about the lemon garlic sauce: made with chicken stock, butter, white wine, garlic and plenty of lemon, it is flavorful and bright, but not sour the way lemon can sometimes be.

It’s savory and the sauce is great for spooning over the chicken as well as a batch of great, fluffy rice, or Instant Pot broccoli.

Reasons you’ll ♡ Instant Pot lemon garlic chicken thighs

  • no sautéing means you can obtain the ingredients into the Instant Pot quickly
  • the chicken is tender, juicy, and infused with lemon garlic flavor
  • the sauce is great for spooning over rice and veggies

Recipe video

Watch the video below to see how simple it is to cast this recipe together. It’s so simple! You can find more of my recipe videos on my YouTube channel.

(embed)https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n1vatzLxjdI(/embed)

ingredients required to make instant pot lemon garlic chicken thighs

Ingredient notes

  • chicken thighs– feel free to swap for boneless skinless chicken breasts, and reduce the cook time to 8 minutes high pressure with a fast pressure release
  • white wine– is optional; feel free to omit it from the recipe
  • bouillon– this adds an extra boost of flavor. I recommend using Better than Bouillon, which is a chicken stock concentrate and adds just the right amount of chicken flavor without being too salty. I have not tried with powdered bouillon, and would advise to abandon out the salt until you taste after cooking through, then add more as needed.

 

collage image showing how to make instant pot lemon garlic chicken thighs

Making this recipe

  1. To prepare Instant Pot lemon garlic chicken thighs- stir together the garlic, salt, basil, lemon zest, chicken stock, bouillon, and white wine. Add chicken thighs and stir to coat. Scatter butter cubes over top.
  2. Pressure cook for 10 minutes, then do a fast pressure release: : carefully turn the steam release cope with from the ‘sealing’ position into the ‘venting’ position.
  3. Add in the juice of 1/2 a lemon.
  4. Enjoy!

Quick pressure release

For this recipe, we are using a fast pressure release. This means that as soon as the cooking cycle is complete, we will immediately release the pressure from the Instant Pot. This ensures that your chicken will be tender and juicy rather than tough and overcooked.

If you’d like to learn more about fast versus natural pressure release, check out Instant Pot 101.

Broiling (optional)

As you can see from the photos, these Instant Pot lemon chicken thighs do not have a lot of color on them (don’t worry, they still have a ton of flavor!). If you’d like to add some color to your chicken, you can transfer them to a baking sheet and broil for 3-5 minutes, or until golden.

After broiling, toss them back up in the sauce, then serve.

collage image showing before and after broiling chicken thighs

Meal prep

This recipe works amazingly well for meal prep and you can do it in one of two ways:

1. Cook ahead and reheat

Cook chicken according to the directions on the recipe card, and portion out into meal prep containers (we like serving with steamed broccoli and rice). Store in the fridge for up to 4 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Microwave until steaming hot, and do not reheat more than once.

Find my favorite meal prep containers here!

2. Freezer packs

You can prepare freezer to Instant Pot packs by combining all ingredients except for the lemon juice in a gallon-sized freezer bag, meal prep container, or reusable silicone bag. Squeeze out the air, then freeze for up to 3 months.

Thaw completely and cook as directed in the recipe card.

Find my favorite freezer containers here!

lemon garlic chicken on plate with mashed potatoes and broccoli


Can I make the sauce creamy?

As written, this sauce is not creamy. Check out Instant Pot creamy lemon chicken breasts, and increase the cook time to 10 minutes at high pressure if you are using boneless skinless chicken thighs.

Can I freeze Instant Pot lemon chicken?

Yes, you can freeze before cooking (as freezer packs) or after cooking. I advise eating within 3 months.

Can I add potatoes or other vegetables?

I have not tested this recipe with potatoes, but think it could work cooked in the pot with the chicken (halved baby potatoes or red potatoes cut into 1.5 inch cubes). If you plan to cook other vegetables in the sauce, I’d advise removing the chicken after cooking through, set the pot to ‘saute’ and simmer the vegetables until softened to your liking.

Can I cook this in the slow cooker?

Yes, check out these slow cooker lemon garlic chicken thighs!

What goes well with Instant Pot lemon chicken?

lemon garlic chicken in the Instant Pot after cooking

More Instant Pot Chicken Recipes

Instant Pot Lemon Garlic Chicken Thighs

Course: Dinner

Cuisine: American

Keyword: freezer, gluten-free, Instant Pot Chicken, low carb, meal prep

Calories: 171kcal

Author: Denise Bustard

Servings: 8

These Instant Pot lemon garlic chicken thighs are tender and infused with lemon garlic flavor. Spoon the sauce over the chicken, rice and vegetables! Low carb and freezer friendly.

(embed)https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n1vatzLxjdI(/embed)

Prep Time10 mins

Cook Time10 mins

Time to arrive to pressure10 mins

Total Time30 mins

Ingredients

30 Minutes Before Serving

Instructions

  • In the stainless steel insert of your Instant Pot, mix together the garlic, salt, basil, lemon zest, chicken stock, chicken bouillon and white wine.

  • Add the chicken thighs and turn to coat in the sauce.

  • Scatter the butter cubes over top, then place the lid on the Instant Pot.

  • Set the steam release cope with to the ‘sealing’ position, and select ‘pressure cook’ (‘manual’ on older models) for 10 minutes at high pressure.

  • Once the cook cycle has completed, release the pressure immediately (fast pressure release) by carefully setting the steam release cope with into the ‘venting’ position.

  • Stir in lemon juice and enjoy. See note 2

Notes

1- I recommend Better than Bouillon; if you swap for powdered bouillon omit the salt and add it to taste after cooking the chicken through.
2- At this point, you may transfer the chicken thighs to a baking sheet and broil for 3-5 minutes, or until golden brown all over. This is completely optional but gives the chicken a kind golden color.
Storage
Once cooked, chicken may be stored in an air tight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.
You may also portion out with rice and steamed vegetables in meal prep containers and freeze for up to 3 months.
Freezer packs
To make Instant Pot ‘dump’ meals, assemble all ingredients except for the lemon juice in a gallon sized freezer bag, meal prep container or reusable silicone bag.
Squeeze out as much air as possible, and freeze for up to 3 months.
Thaw completely before cooking as directed above.
 

Nutrition

Serving: 1/8 of recipe | Calories: 171kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 22g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 116mg | Sodium: 198mg | Potassium: 300mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 115IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 16mg | Iron: 1mg

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