Instant Pot Crack Chicken

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Instant Pot Crack Chicken is an easy dinner recipe made with simple ingredients. It will become a family favorite meal the very first time you make it.

Bowl of crack chicken in front of the Instant Pot it was pressure cooked in.

Crack chicken is one of the most popular recipes to make in a slow cooker, but you can make it so much faster in an Instant Pot pressure cooker! It’s quickly become my new favorite way to make this addictive chicken recipe.

With smoky bacon, tons of cheese and lots of ranch flavor, this tender chicken dish is always a hit. It’s a great option for busy nights too because it comes together so quickly and easily.

Plus, can be served so many ways. From making pasta to serving it over rice or in baked potatoes, it’s a very versatile dish the whole family will love.

Ingredients

Ingredients to make crack chicken in an Instant Pot.
  • 12 ounces of chopped thick cut bacon
  • 2 pounds of cut up boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 8 ounces of cream cheese
  • ½ cup of chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons of ranch seasoning
  • 1 cup of cheddar cheese
  • 3 sliced green onions

Equipment

  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Knife
  • Cutting board
  • Mixing spoon
  • Instant Pot
  • Paper towel lined plate

By the Numbers: How to Make Instant Pot Crack Chicken

Follow these simple steps for the easiest way to make crack chicken in your Instant Pot.

Step 1: Cook Bacon.

Press the Saute function button on your Instant Pot. Once warm, add 12 ounces of chopped thick cut bacon and cook until crispy.

Bacon being cooked in Instant Pot inner pan.

Transfer the bacon to a paper towel lined plate to drain and pour most of the bacon grease out of the pot into a storage jar, leaving 1-2 tablespoons and all the tiny bacon bits for flavor.

Step 2: Deglaze Pot.

Deglaze the pot. You should be able to scrape everything off the bottom of the pot with your mixing spoon. If it’s not coming off easy, you can pour about ¼ cup chicken stock into the pot to help you loosen it.

Instant Pot being deglazed with chicken stock.

Step 3: Add Broth, Chicken, Cream Cheese and Seasoning.

Once it’s deglazed, add the remaining chicken broth and 2 pounds of chicken breast chunks. Place an 8-ounce block of cream cheese and 2 tablespoons of ranch seasoning on top of the chicken in the Instant Pot.

Chicken breast chunks, chicken stock, cream cheese and ranch seasoning in Instant Pot.

Step 4: Pressure Cook.

Cook on High Pressure for 5 minutes. Allow for a natural pressure release for 5-10 minutes, then use a quick pressure release to let out the remaining pressure and open the lid. If you open the pot and see the cream cheese is curdled, don’t worry, just keep stirring. The curdled look will go away as you stir.

Cooked chicken and cream cheese mixture in Instant Pot.

Step 5: Shred Chicken.

Once the liquid is smooth, shred the chicken if desired (or you can leave it chunky if you prefer).

Crack chicken after chicken is shredded in Instant Pot.

Step 6: Add Cheese, Bacon and Onions.

Add 1 cup of shredded cheddar cheese, the drained crispy bacon and 3 sliced green onions to the shredded chicken mixture.

Cheddar cheese, crispy bacon and green onions on top of cheesy chicken mixture in Instant Pot.

Stir until everything is really well combined.

Bacon, cheddar cheese and green onions stirred into Crack Chicken mixture in Instant Pot.

Step 7: Serve Crack Chicken.

Serve your creamy crack chicken in your favorite way. See the tips section for ideas.

Instant Pot Crack Chicken garnished with fresh green onions in white serving bowl.

Tips for Making Instant Pot Crack Chicken

Answers to all of your questions about making the best crack chicken in a Instant Pot electric pressure cooker.

1. Do you have to cut up the chicken breasts?

You can cook the chicken breasts whole instead of cut into chunks. Whole breasts need a longer cook time than cubed, so you’ll need to increase the cooking time to 12 minutes (time may vary depending on the size of the breasts).

2. Best ranch seasoning mix?

I typically use my Homemade Ranch Seasoning in this recipe since I make a pint or quart of it at a time.

However, if you have the store bought packets, there are 2 tablespoons in one Hidden Valley ranch dressing mix packet. So you only need to use one ranch packet in this recipe.

3. Variations and substitutions.

Here are a few ideas to help you change up this recipe for your tastes or ingredients you may have on hand:

  • Substitute parmesan cheese for all or part of the cheddar and use Italian seasoning instead of ranch.
  • Add your favorite hot sauce to add some heat to this creamy dish.
  • Substitute sour cream for cream cheese for a tangy flavor.

4. What to do about burn notices?

I’ve never gotten a burn notice making this recipe in my Instant Pot, but I know some models can be more finicky than others. If you find that your pot is prone to burn, you can use the pot in pot method.

Basically, you would put all of the ingredients into a safe dish that fits on a rack in your Instant Pot. That way it can’t burn to the bottom. Just make sure to add a cup of water to the bottom of the pot if you go that route.

5. Is this recipe low carb?

If you’re hoping for a keto crack chicken recipe, you’ve found it. It’s best if you can choose lactose free cream cheese, but either way, the carb count is under 20.

6. Ways to serve crack chicken?

The best thing about crack chicken is there are so many different ways to serve it. You could make it every week and serve it a new way.

  • Make a sandwich on hamburger buns or gluten free sandwich bread.
Crack chicken served on gluten free bread.
  • Make crack chicken pasta with regular noodles, egg noodles or even zucchini noodles (to keep it low carb).
  • Stuff baked potatoes with it for a flavorful meal.
Baked potato stuffed with crack chicken.
  • Wrap it up in homemade blue corn tortillas.
  • Serve over rice for a simple one bowl meal.
  • Make lettuce wraps for another low carb option.
  • Use it as an appetizer dip with tortilla chips or crackers.

7. How to store crack chicken?

Once it’s completely cooled to room temperature, it can be kept in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

8. Can you freeze crack chicken?

Yes, after it’s been completely cooled down or refrigerated, you can put it into a freezer safe container and freeze for 2-3 months. To save space, put it in a freezer bag and press it flat before freezing. It will defrost quicker this way too.

9. More Instant Pot Chicken Recipes

If you’re looking for more ways to cook chicken breasts in your Instant Pot, try these popular recipes:

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Instant Pot Crack Chicken served in white ceramic bowl.

Instant Pot Crack Chicken Recipe

Learn how to make my easy recipe for the best crack chicken in your Instant Pot. It’s a great recipe for busy nights and it’s very versatile too.
5 from 1 vote
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Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Pressurizing Time: 17 minutes
Total Time: 52 minutes
Recipe Servings: 6

Ingredients

  • 12 ounces thick cut bacon
  • 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts - cut into big chunks
  • 8 ounces cream cheese - room temperature
  • ½ cup chicken broth
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese
  • 2 tablespoons ranch seasoning mix
  • 3 green onions - sliced

Equipment

Instructions

  • Turn your Instant Pot onto Saute mode. Cook bacon until crispy, then transfer to a paper towel lined plate to drain. Pour most of the bacon grease out of the pot, leaving 1-2 tablespoons of grease and the bacon bits.
    Bacon being cooked in Instant Pot inner pan.
  • Deglaze the pot with your mixing spoon. If it’s really sticking, pour ¼ cup of chicken stock into the pot to help loosen it.
    Instant Pot being deglazed with chicken stock.
  • After it’s deglazed, add the remaining chicken broth, chicken chunks, cream cheese and ranch seasoning, in that order.
    Chicken breast chunks, chicken stock, cream cheese and ranch seasoning in Instant Pot.
  • Cook on High Pressure for 5 minutes. Allow the pressure to release naturally for 5-10 minutes, then quick release the rest of the pressure and open the lid.
    If the cream cheese is curdled, just keep stirring and it will re-combine.
    Cooked chicken and cream cheese mixture in Instant Pot.
  • Once the liquid is smooth, shred the chicken.
    Crack chicken after chicken is shredded in Instant Pot.
  • Add the cheddar cheese, cooked bacon and green onions, then stir until well combined.
    Bacon, cheddar cheese and green onions stirred into Crack Chicken mixture in Instant Pot.
  • Serve your delicious crack chicken over rice, on bread or over baked potatoes for a flavorful meal.
    Instant Pot Crack Chicken garnished with fresh green onions in white serving bowl.

Nutrition Information Per Serving

Calories: 635kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 46g | Fat: 46g | Saturated Fat: 20g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 16g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 192mg | Sodium: 1241mg | Potassium: 756mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 823IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 185mg | Iron: 1mg

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