Smoky Whole Chicken (Instant Pot)

Smoky Whole Chicken (Instant Pot)

Cooking a whole chicken in your electric pressure cooker is almost as easy as buying a precooked rotisserie chicken!

Course Main Course, Poultry
Cuisine American
Keyword instant pot chicken, whole chicken
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 21 minutes
Pressure Up/Down 35 minutes
Total Time 41 minutes
Servings 6
Calories 215 kcal


  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon herbes de Provence
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 (3 1/2-pound) chicken rinsed and patted dry, giblets removed
  • 1 large lemon halved
  • 6 garlic cloves peeled and crushed with the flat side of a knife
  • 1 large onion cut into 8 wedges, divided
  • 1 cup Chicken Bone Broth or low-sodium store-bought chicken broth, or water
  • 2 large carrots each cut into 4 pieces
  • 2 celery stalks each cut into 4 pieces


  1. In a small bowl, combine the olive oil, salt, paprika, pepper, herbes de Provence, and cayenne.

  2. Place the chicken on a cutting board and rub the olive oil mixture under the skin and all over the outside. Stuff the cavity with the lemon halves, garlic cloves, and 3 to 4 wedges of onion.

  3. Pour the broth into the electric pressure cooker. Add the remaining onion wedges, carrots, and celery. Insert a wire rack or trivet on top of the vegetables.

  4. Place the chicken, breast-side-up, on the rack.

  5. Close and lock the lid of the pressure cooker. Set the valve to sealing.

  6. Cook on high pressure for 21 minutes.

  7. When the cooking is complete, hit Cancel and allow the pressure to release naturally for 15 minutes, then quick release any remaining pressure.

  8. Once the pin drops, unlock and remove the lid.

  9. Carefully remove the chicken to a clean cutting board. Remove the skin and cut the chicken into pieces or shred/chop the meat, and serve.

Recipe Video

Recipe Notes

The rule of thumb for cooking whole chickens is 6 minutes per pound: a 3-pound chicken will take 18 minutes and a 4-pound chicken will take 24 minutes.

Repurpose tip: Save the bones to make Chicken Bone Broth and strain the liquid remaining in the pot to replace some of the water in the bone broth recipe for even more flavor.