This Instant Pot Salsa Verde Chicken is an easy recipe for Mexican-style shredded chicken breasts! The sweet and tangy chicken is perfect to use in salads, tacos, enchiladas, or wraps!
Instead of being made with red salsa like Instant Pot Chicken Tacos, this recipe is made with fresh, bright, and slightly acidic green salsa verde. It is perfectly seasoned, perfectly moist, and super easy to make!
There is nothing better than an easy Mexican recipe. But an easy VERSATILE Mexican Recipe is a keeper for sure.
And that is EXACTLY what Instant Pot Salsa Verde Chicken is--an easy, versatile recipe for Shredded Mexican Chicken. This slightly spicy, slightly sweet, and slightly tangy shredded chicken is juicy and full of flavor and is perfect atop salads, stuffed in burritos, served in soups, or made into Salsa Verde enchiladas.
It comes together effortlessly in the instant pot and is filled with incredible flavor.
If you want a plain shredded chicken, please refer to my Perfect Instant Pot Chicken Breast Recipe. But if you are looking for a delicious Instant Pot Mexican Style Chicken, this Salsa Verde Chicken is for you!
How To Make Salsa Verde Chicken in the Instant Pot
Step One: Saute Onions and Garlic
- Turn your Instant Pot to the Saute function and let heat up.
- Add in a bit of olive oil and then add in your onions.
- Saute lightly and then add in the garlic.
- Saute another minute longer.
If you are really in a hurry you can skip the step of sauteeing your onions and garlic, but the extra few minutes it takes is well worth the flavor that develops.
Step Two: Add in Remaining Ingredients
- Pour in the chicken stock, salsa verde, and honey into the instant pot.
- Scrape the bottom of the instant pot, being sure to remove any browned bits of onions or garlic from the bottom of the pan. This is one reason that can cause your Instant Pot to not come to pressure or get a burn warning. Read more about why your Instant Pot may not seal here.
- Submerge the chicken into the liquid and secure the lid on the pressure cooker.
Step Three: Cook
You do not need to cook your chicken on the Poultry setting on your pressure cooker. It is just a fancy pre-set for cooking on high pressure (read more about Instant Pot Functions here). Instead, you will set cook time yourself and cook on HIGH PRESSURE.
How long you cook your chicken breasts will depend on how thick they are and if they are frozen or not.
- Fresh Chicken: Cook on high pressure for 6 minutes for small (6 ounces) chicken breasts and cook on high pressure for 8 minutes for large (8-10 ounce) chicken breasts.
- Frozen Chicken Breasts: Cook on high pressure for 10 minutes for small (6 ounces) chicken breasts and cook on high pressure for 12 minutes for large (8-10 ounce) chicken breasts.
Step Four: Shred Chicken
- Once cook time has elapsed, allow pressure to release naturally for 10 minutes. You can do a quick release after 5 minutes, but I find that after 10 minutes the chicken will shred easier, and be juicier.
- Shred the chicken right in the salsa liquid to keep these chicken breasts moist and juicy.
- Finish this Shredded Salsa Chicken with a squeeze of fresh lime juice.
What is the best way to shred cooked chicken?
Most people shred cooked chicken with 2 forks. And that works. However, my favorite way to shred chicken is with my hand-held kitchen mixer.
To shred chicken with a hand-held mixer, just place the mixer (with attachments) right into your instant pot and turn to low. Increase speed to medium, and watch your chicken shred into perfect pieces.
Note: If you have a lot of liquid inside your instant pot, you may want to drain some off before shredding. It won't necessarily shred easier, BUT it will protect you from having hot cooking liquid splash up at you.
Instant Pot Salsa Verde Chicken is flavorful enough to eat on its own. But it also makes a great base in many recipes.
- Serve on top of a baked sweet potato.
- Add the meat to a salad for a hearty entree--try it on this Mexican Cobb Salad.
- Use this salsa verde meat to stuff burritos, serve on tacos, or as a filling for Chicken Verde Enchiladas.
- Serve on top of Pineapple Cilantro Rice.
More Instant Pot Chicken Recipes
- Instant Pot Chicken Wings
- Instant Pot Chicken Chili
- Instant Pot Chicken Thighs
- Instant Pot Chicken Marsala
- Instant Pot Chicken Noodle Soup
Instant Pot Salsa Verde Chicken
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 small onion diced
- 1 tablespoon garlic minced
- ⅓ cup chicken stock or pineapple juice
- 1 cup salsa verde
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 2 pounds chicken breasts
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 lime juiced (optional)
- Turn your Instant Pot to the Saute function and let heat up. Add in a bit of olive oil and then add in your onions. Saute lightly and then add in the garlic. Saute another minute longer.
- Pour in the chicken stock, salsa verde, and honey into the instant pot and scrape the bottom of the instant pot, being sure remove any browned bits of onions or garlic from bottom of the pan.
- Submerge the chicken breasts into the liquid, season with salt and secure the lid on the pressure cooker.
- To make salsa verde chicken with fresh chicken: Cook on high pressure for 6 minutes for small (6 ounce) chicken breasts, 8 minutes for large (8-10 ounce) chicken breasts.
- To make salsa verde chicken with frozen chicken breasts: Cook on high pressure for 10 minutes for small (6 ounce) chicken breasts, 12 minutes for large (8-10 ounce) chicken breasts.
- Once cook time has elapsed, allow pressure to release naturally for 10 minutes. You can do a quick release after 5 minutes, but I find that after 10 minutes the chicken will shred easier.
- Shred the chicken right in the salsa verde liquid to keep these chicken breasts moist and juicy.
- Mix in the juice of a fresh lime to brighten this Instant Pot Salsa Chicken.
- I prefer to use boneless, skinless chicken breasts for this recipe, but boneless, skinless chicken thighs will work the same (with no change in timing.)
- Because this is Salsa Verde Chicken, you want to use the BEST Salsa Verde. I prefer homemade, but a good quality jarred salsa will work as well.
- If you need this shredded chicken recipe to be Paleo, omit the honey and add in another sweetener of your choice, like maple syrup. You need that bit of sweetness to balance this recipe.
- If you use pineapple juice, you can omit the honey, as the pineapple juice will provide the sweetness Salsa Verde Chicken needs.
- If you have leftover Salsa Verde Chicken, freeze for up to 3 months. Defrost in the fridge and use as desired.
- To reheat Frozen Salsa Verde Chicken, remove frozen chicken from freezer bag or container (you may need to run under hot water before you can remove from bar or container). Place in Instant Pot on saute function for 5 minutes, breaking up lightly. Close Instant Pot lid and turn Instant Pot to high pressure for 5 -8 minutes to reheat meat perfectly.
Going to make this now. Do you think this will freeze well? Wanting to make for some friends and do smaller freezer bags of it for them to use for taco/etc on the go when busy. Thank you this recipe sounds full off flavor and healthy!
That is such a kind gesture Erin! And yes, this chicken would freeze really well after cooled. Just store in freezer-safe bags or containers.
Hi! I’m new to Instant Pot. Do I set it to “Manual” and then adjust the time? I don’t have a “High” setting, I think I can push “Adjust” to switch between “Less“, “Normal”, and “More”. Thank you for helping!
Hi Kristina! Yes, you will want to hit "manual" and then adjust the cook time. The default should be for high pressure (this is not a setting there should only be low and high pressure). This explanation of instant pot settings that may help. If that does not make sense, let me know what model you have and I can further explain for you!.
Cheri A Magistro
I made this last night and it was delicious!! I used pineapple juice instead of honey. Thank you for the tip about using a handheld mixer to shred the chicken right in the pot. My mixer is extremely high power even on low, so I only used one of the beaters. Chicken was shredded in no time. I think it also made the sauce a little thicker! I served my hubbys over rice topped with sour cream and mine with cauliflower rice. Very good!!!
Hi Cheri! If you have read many of my recipes, you know how much I love using pineapple juice with chicken! I am so glad you used that as a substitute and that you enjoyed so much! The tip for shredding chicken is a game changer and I am glad you have that trick up your sleeve now. 🙂
I didn’t have an onion so I substituted onion salt and even with that, this was amazing. The honey is an absolute game changer. Thanks for the recipe!
I am so glad you enjoyed Jordan 🙂 Thank you for taking the time to review 🙂
So confused. At one point in recipe story. You mention lime juice. But then in the actual recipe you mention Pineapple juice....
I am sorry for the confusion Jennifer! I will update the post to be more clear. The lime juice is optional to be added to the cooked shredded chicken to brighten the flavor. Thanks for pointing that out! I hope you enjoy!
This chicken was so tender and tasty! My husband who usually dislikes chicken even said it was excellent! This is a quick, easy and delicious IP recipe.
I am so glad you and your husband both enjoyed!
What is the serving size? I'm trying to put this in my fitbit food log. Thanks!
Hi Angelin, this recipe makes 8 four ounce servings. Four ounces of cooked shredded chicken with sauce is a little less than 1 cup, loosely packed. Hope that helps.