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Instant Pot Lemon Garlic Chicken

Instant Pot Lemon Garlic Chicken is simple and easy to make in the pressure cooker and perfect for busy weeknights. The chicken is in a buttery lemon garlic sauce. Serve with pasta, rice, mashed potatoes, or veggies.
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time25 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: instant pot lemon chicken, instant pot lemon garlic chicken
Servings: 4 people
Calories: 216kcal
Author: Quynh


  • 6 skinless, boneless chicken thighs
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground paprika
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 3 sprigs thyme (or 1 teaspoon dry thyme)
  • 2 lemons, juiced and zested
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch (optional for thickening the sauce)
  • 1 lemon, cut into 5 slices (optional)


  • Finely dice garlic; zest and juice 2 lemons, slice the other lemon into 5 slices. In a small bowl, combine salt, pepper, garlic powder, and paprika. Coat both sides of the chicken thighs with seasoning.
  • Turn the instant pot on [SAUTE] mode for 30 minutes. Wait until it displays “hot”, then add olive oil. Sear each side of the chicken thighs for 3-5 minutes until brown, work in 2 batches and add more olive oil, if needed. Transfer seared chicken onto another plate. Press [CANCEL].
  • To the instant pot, add butter and garlic, give a quick stir. Then, add chicken broth, lemon juice, and thyme. Place chicken back into the pot.
  • Place the lid back on and make sure the knob is turned to “sealing”. Press [PRESSURE COOK] (or “manual” for older models), set for 10 minutes on HIGH pressure. Once done, carefully quick release by turning the steam release handle to the “venting” position and let the steam fully escape.
  • If you wish to thicken up the sauce, in a separate small bowl, mix 1 tablespoon of cornstarch with 1 tablespoon of cold water. It’s best to scoop chicken out so that only the sauce is in the pot. Press “saute” for 1 minute and add cornstarch mixture to the sauce. Once the sauce is thickened, add the chicken back in. Add lemon zest and lemon slices. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  • Serve with pasta, rice, mashed potatoes, or vegetables.


This recipe was tested with a 6 Quart Instant Pot DUO. Additional liquid may be needed for an 8 quart or 10 quart Instant Pot.


Calories: 216kcal