These Instant Pot lemon garlic chicken thighs are tender and infused with lemon garlic flavor. Spoon the sauce over the chicken, rice and vegetables! Low carb and freezer friendly.
Chicken thighs are one of my favorite things to cook in the Instant Pot as they come out tender, juicy, and so flavorful! While we love honey garlic chicken thighs as well as caprese chicken thighs, these lemon garlic chicken thighs are our new favorite!
This recipe is all about the lemon garlic sauce: made with chicken stock, butter, white wine, garlic and plenty of lemon, it is flavorful and bright, but not sour the way lemon can sometimes be.
Reasons you’ll ♡ Instant Pot lemon garlic chicken thighs
- no sautéing means you can get the ingredients into the Instant Pot quickly
- the chicken is tender, juicy, and infused with lemon garlic flavor
- the sauce is perfect for spooning over rice and veggies
Watch the video below to see how simple it is to throw this recipe together. It’s so easy! You can find more of my recipe videos on my YouTube channel.
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- chicken thighs- feel free to swap for boneless skinless chicken breasts, and reduce the cook time to 8 minutes high pressure with a quick pressure release
- white wine- is optional; feel free to omit it from the recipe
- bouillon- this adds an extra boost of flavor. I recommend using Better than Bouillon, which is a chicken stock concentrate and adds just the right amount of chicken flavor without being too salty. I have not tried with powdered bouillon, and would advise to leave out the salt until you taste after cooking through, then add more as needed.
Making this recipe
- In the stainless steel insert of your Instant Pot, stir together the garlic, salt, basil, lemon zest, chicken stock, bouillon, and white wine. Add chicken thighs and stir to coat. Scatter butter cubes over top.
- Pressure cook for 10 minutes, then do a quick pressure release: : carefully turn the steam release handle from the 'sealing' position into the 'venting' position.
- Add in the juice of ½ a lemon.
Quick pressure release
For this recipe, we are using a quick pressure release. This means that as soon as the cooking cycle is complete, we will immediately release the pressure from the Instant Pot. This ensures that your chicken will be tender and juicy rather than tough and overcooked.
If you'd like to learn more about quick versus natural pressure release, check out Instant Pot 101.
As you can see from the photos, these lemon chicken thighs do not have a lot of color on them (don't worry, they still have a ton of flavor!). If you'd like to add some color to your chicken, you can transfer them to a baking sheet and broil for 3-5 minutes, or until golden.
After broiling, toss them back up in the sauce, then serve.
This recipe works amazingly well for meal prep and you can do it in one of two ways:
1. Cook ahead and reheat
Cook chicken according to the directions on the recipe card, and portion out into meal prep containers (we like serving with steamed broccoli and rice). Store in the fridge for up to 4 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
Microwave until steaming hot, and do not reheat more than once.
Find my favorite meal prep containers here!
2. Freezer packs
You can prepare freezer to Instant Pot packs by combining all ingredients except for the lemon juice in a gallon-sized freezer bag, meal prep container, or reusable silicone bag. Squeeze out the air, then freeze for up to 3 months.
Thaw completely and cook as directed in the recipe card.
Can I make the sauce creamy?
As written, this sauce is not creamy. Check out Instant Pot creamy lemon chicken breasts, and increase the cook time to 10 minutes at high pressure if you are using boneless skinless chicken thighs.
Can I freeze Instant Pot lemon chicken?
Yes, you can freeze before cooking (as freezer packs) or after cooking. I advise eating within 3 months.
Can I add potatoes or other vegetables?
I have not tested this recipe with potatoes, but think it could work cooked in the pot with the chicken (halved baby potatoes or red potatoes cut into 1.5 inch cubes). If you plan to cook other vegetables in the sauce, I'd advise removing the chicken after cooking through, set the pot to 'saute' and simmer the vegetables until softened to your liking.
Can I cook this in the slow cooker?
Yes, check out these slow cooker lemon garlic chicken thighs!
What goes well with Instant Pot lemon chicken?
- Fluffy Mashed Cauliflower
- Parmesan Cauliflower Rice
- Balsamic Roasted Brussels Sprouts
- Our Staple Kale Salad
- Crispy Air Fryer Cauliflower
More Instant Pot Chicken Recipes
- 7 Instant Pot Chicken Breast Recipes
- Instant Pot Chicken Tikka Masala
- Instant Pot Chicken Breast with Sun Dried Tomato Sauce
- Instant Pot Honey Sesame Chicken
- Instant Pot Soy Ginger Chicken Breast
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- ½ lemon zested; roughly 2 teaspoons
- ½ cup chicken stock
- 1 teaspoon chicken bouillion see note 1
- 2 tablespoons white wine
- 2 lbs boneless skinless chicken thighs
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter cut into small cubes
30 Minutes Before Serving
- ½ lemon juiced
- parsley garnish
- lemon slices garnish
- In the stainless steel insert of your Instant Pot, mix together the garlic, salt, basil, lemon zest, chicken stock, chicken bouillon and white wine.
- Add the chicken thighs and turn to coat in the sauce.
- Scatter the butter cubes over top, then place the lid on the Instant Pot.
- Set the steam release handle to the 'sealing' position, and select 'pressure cook' ('manual' on older models) for 10 minutes at high pressure.
- Once the cook cycle has completed, release the pressure immediately (quick pressure release) by carefully setting the steam release handle into the 'venting' position.
- Stir in lemon juice and enjoy. See note 2
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