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+ servings
shredded chicken in a bowl with taco fixing around

Instant Pot Shredded Chicken Tacos

An easy recipe for shredded chicken tacos made in the Instant Pot. These chicken tacos are super flavorful and make a great family friendly dinner.
Course Dinner
Cuisine Instant Pot, Mexican
Keyword family friendly tacos, Instant Pot Tacos, shredded chicken tacos
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 7 minutes
Natural Release 7 minutes
Total Time 24 minutes
Servings 5 people


  • 1/2 cup water
  • 4 fresh garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
  • 1 tsp vinegar apple cider or white vinegar
  • 2-3 boneless skinless chicken breasts (about 1.5-2.5 pounds) cut into 4 pieces each
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp each: onion powder & garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 cup jarred salsa
  • 1 fresh lime


  • Add the 1/2 water, 4 crushed garlic cloves, and 1 tsp vinegar to the bottom of the Instant Pot.
    Place the metal trivet that came with your pot over the liquid.
  • In a small bowl mix the chili powder, oregano, cumin, onion powder, garlic powder, salt, and smoked paprika together.
  • Sprinkle ALL the seasoning over your cut chicken breasts, on all sides, pressing it in to make sure it sticks.
  • Place the seasoned chicken pieces in the Instant Pot on the metal trivet (note: As you pick up the chicken mop up any extra seasoning with the chicken pieces. Don't miss out on that flavor!)
  • Pour 1 cup of jarred salsa over the chicken, trying to keep it on top of the chicken and not in the bottom of the pot.
  • Pop the lid on the pot and lock the pressure valve to "seal". Set it to cook on Meat/Stew mode, on hight, for 7 minutes.
    Do a 7 minute natural release, then finish the rest of the pressure with a quick release.
  • Place the chicken in a mixing bowl and add 1/2 cup of liquid from the bottom of the Instant Pot. (optional: add the garlic cloves too). Squeeze a little fresh lime juice over the chicken.
    Shred the chicken using a hand mixer (or stand mixer with a paddle attachment). You will want to do this while the chicken is still hot/warm.
  • Taste for additional seasonings (salt, pepper, or heat- cayenne or red pepper flakes), and serve in hard or soft taco shells with your favorite taco toppings!


Storing Shredded Chicken Taco Meat: Keep in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 4 days.
Freezer Friendly: This recipe is freezer friendly! Make the recipe completely and then once it is cooled you can store in the freezer, in an air tight container or freezer bag, for up to 3 months. 
To thaw for use simply place the frozen taco meat in a skillet over medium low heat. Add a few tablespoons of water and pop the lid on. Stir once in a while and keep checking until it is warmed through.