A delicious 15-minute Instant Pot Lemon Chicken the whole family will love! Crispy chicken thighs with potatoes and asparagus and a lemony sauce.
People on Instagram went absolutely nuts over the Slow-Cooker Lemon Chicken I posted a couple weeks ago. It’s an incredibly delicious recipe and I’ve had several requests to convert it to an Instant Pot recipe.
Turns out it’s actually super easy to make Instant Pot Lemon Chicken. The best part: it only needs 15 minutes + natural pressure release. Then another 2 minutes of steaming with a quick release during which you will have enough time to put those chicken thighs under the broiler so the skin crisps up and gets nice and brown.
How to Make Instant Pot Lemon Garlic Chicken
So the one “issue” I had with converting the slow-cooker version into this Instant Pot version was the liquid situation. The slow-cooker can pretty much cook with like close to no liquid. The pressure cooker, however, needs to be filled with the minimum required liquid so it can come to pressure.
For my 6-quart this happens to be 1 cup of liquid. From what I’ve been told, for the 8-quart it’s even 2 cups. If you are making this in an 8 quart I actually recommend doubling the whole recipe.
In order to not “water down” the delicious lemon sauce, I opted for chicken broth and only as little as possible. For that, I recommend adding your oil and lemon juice to a measuring cup and only then pour in some chicken broth until you just reach 1 cup (see video).
Remember the chicken will also release quite some liquid during the cooking process.
Be generous with your garlic to make it a real Instant Pot Lemon Garlic Chicken and the smell drool-worthy.
How to Thicken the Instant Pot Lemon Chicken Sauce
Something I didn’t show in the video is how I ended up thickening the sauce so it’s like a nice gravy.
I keep going back and forth with wanting to and not wanting to add corn starch to gravies. It’s not a clean ingredient. Corn starch is highly processed.
However, I just haven’t found any alternative that works as well as a corn starch slurry.
In some recipes, I opt to simply leave sauces liquid and in others, I choose to not care that corn starch isn’t a clean and unprocessed ingredient.
One thing is for sure, if you want a creamy gravy that sticks to your food, remove all food from the pot, leaving the juices behind, add a tablespoon corn starch and a tablespoon of cold water to a small bowl and whisk until completely smooth and then pour the slurry into the juices and bring everything to a boil while constantly stirring or whisking.
After about 3 minutes of boiling your gravy will be amazing!
Instant Pot Lemon Chicken
- 1 lemon
- 4 chopped cloves garlic
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 Tbsp honey
- sea salt
- 1/2 Tbsp fresh thyme leaves (optional but recommended)
- 3/4 cup chicken broth
- 1 sliced red onion
- 1-1.5 lbs halved baby potatoes (or new potatoes) - important! NO OTHER potatoes
- 4 large bone-in skin-on chicken thighs
- 1 bunch asparagus
- 1 Tbsp corn starch
- Add the zest of the lemon, lemon juice, olive oil, honey, garlic, and thyme (if using) to a measuring cup and add sea salt and pepper to taste.
- Then add just enough chicken broth to the measuring cup until you reach exactly 1 cup (if using a 6 quart). (If using an 8-quart I recommend doubling the recipe or using the pot in pot method).
- Add sauce to the bottom of your Instant Pot, then add sliced onion and halved baby potatoes and then place chicken thighs on top in one layer.
- Put on the lid and turn the valve to the sealing position and set the Instant Pot to 15 minutes on high pressure.
- After the 15 minutes let pressure release naturally.
- Once the safety pin dropped, open the pot and remove the chicken thighs and put them on a baking sheet under the broiler for 3-5 minutes or until the skin is nice and brown and crisp.
- In the meantime, add asparagus to the instant pot, put on the lid and seal it, and depending on the thickness of the asparagus "steam" it for 1-2 minutes and manually release the pressure.
- You can now serve everything with the liquid sauce OR you can create a more gravy-like sauce by adding 1 Tbsp corn starch and 1 Tbsp cold water to a small bowl and whisk until smooth. Then add slurry to the sauce in the instant pot, hit the soup or saute button and bring the sauce to a boil while constantly stirring or whisking. Within a couple of minutes, the sauce will thicken up. Serve over chicken and potatoes.