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Instant Pot Buffalo Chicken

Instant Pot Buffalo Chicken is one of the easiest meals to make in your pressure cooker! Made with chicken breast, Frank’s Red Hot and some pantry spices, you can have buffalo chicken tonight, with less than 20 minutes of active cooking time!

The spiciness of buffalo chicken pairs so well with the cooling, creamy texture of my healthy Greek Yogurt Ranch Dip. Whip it up in just 5 minutes as the chicken is cooking in the Instant Pot!

ranch dip being spooned onto buffalo chicken slider on a marble serving tray

Instant Pot Buffalo Chicken

Buffalo chicken was always one of those meals I would only order at a restaurant. I love the salty, spicy, cooling combo of buffalo chicken and ranch dip. For some reason, I felt like it would be too much work to make it at home. Well, I was wrong. Thanks to the Instant Pot, buffalo chicken couldn’t be easier.

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If you’re looking for more easy chicken recipes for your Instant Pot, be sure to check out my chicken “fried” rice!

Ingredients

  • Chicken breast – select larger chicken breasts. You’ll be good to go if you find a package of two chicken breasts that weighs at least 1 lb (454 grams).
  • Frank’s Red Hot sauce – be sure to use this hot sauce in the Original variety. Results not guaranteed if you swap out this ingredient!
  • Lemon juice 
  • Olive oil
  • Soy sauce – use wheat-free tamari if you require a gluten-free option
  • Paprika
  • Onion powder
  • Garlic powder
  • White sugar
  • Arrowroot powder and water – I use this to thicken the sauce at the end of cooking, but you can absolutely make the recipe without it. The sauce will just be a bit runnier!

How to make it

1. Whisk together the Frank’s Red Hot, lemon juice, olive oil, soy sauce, paprika, onion powder, garlic powder and white sugar (see picture 1).

2. Place the chicken breasts on top of the sauce (see picture 2).

3. Close the lid, set to sealing and cook on the manual setting at high pressure for 10 minutes.

4. At the end of cooking time, natural release for 5 minutes, then quick release the remaining pressure.

collage illustrating steps to make Instant Pot Buffalo Chicken

5. Whisk the arrowroot powder and water until a slurry is formed (a mixture with no clumps) (see picture 3).

6. Carefully open the lid and transfer the chicken to a large plate (see picture 4).

7. While the chicken is on the plate, press the sauté button and whisk the arrowroot slurry into the sauce. Let the sauce simmer for 30-60 seconds, whisking continuously as the sauce thickens (see picture 5). Turn off the sauté function.

8. Shred the chicken and return it to the Instant Pot (see pictures 6 and 7).

9. Stir in the chicken until well combined with the sauce and serve immediately (picture 8).

collage illustrating steps to make Instant Pot Buffalo Chicken

Tips for Success

  • As I mentioned above, you can absolutely leave out the arrowroot slurry and it will still taste great. It may have a slightly runnier consistency, so I recommend letting the shredded chicken sit in the sauce a few minutes before serving to soak up the sauce a bit.
  • Use the time while the chicken is cooking to prep your garnishes, like shredded lettuce and ranch dip.

HOw to serve Buffalo Chicken

My favourite way to eat buffalo chicken is on top of mini brioche buns. There’s something about mini food that makes it taste better, right? Hubby eats three sliders and I’ll have two and we always pair it with a simple salad or some other green vegetable. The kids have none and eat something else… #toospicy (to be fair, they’re only 4 and 2 years old ????).

three buffalo chicken sliders on a marble serving tray with a cut lemon behind them

Other ways to eat it are

  • on a regular burger bun
  • rolled up in small tortillas
  • on lettuce wraps
  • in a salad (serve it on a bed of salad greens, with some fresh chopped bell pepper, grated carrot and topped with my ranch dip….so good!)

How will you enjoy it?

two buffalo chicken sliders on a marble serving tray viewed from overhead

More great Instant Pot recipes

three buffalo chicken sliders on a marble serving tray with a cut lemon behind them

Instant Pot Buffalo Chicken

Laura Lawless, BASc
Instant Pot Buffalo Chicken is one of the easiest meals to make in your pressure cooker! Made with simple ingredients and only 20 minutes of active prep!
5 from 1 vote
Servings 4
Calories 168
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Inactive time 10 mins
Total Time 40 mins

Ingredients

For the Buffalo Chicken

  • 2/3 cup Frank’s Red Hot sauce (Original variety)
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon soy sauce (use wheat-free tamari if gluten free)
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon white sugar
  • 1 lb boneless skinless chicken breast (2 large breasts)
  • 1 teaspoon arrowroot powder
  • 2 teaspoons water

For Serving

  • slider buns or regular burger buns
  • shredded lettuce
  • ranch dip or dressing (use a dairy-free variety, if necessary)

Instructions
 

  • In the Instant Pot, whisk together the Frank's Red Hot, lemon juice, olive oil, soy sauce, paprika, onion powder, garlic powder and white sugar.
  • Place chicken breasts on top of the sauce.
  • Close the lid, set to sealing and use the manual setting to cook on high pressure for 10 minutes. It will take about 10 minutes to come to pressure.
  • At the end of cooking time, let the pressure release naturally (NPR) for 5-10 minutes, then quick release the remaining pressure. While you're waiting for pressure to release, whisk the arrowroot powder and water until a slurry is formed (mixture with no clumps).
  • Carefully open the lid and transfer the chicken to a large plate and shred.
  • While chicken is on the plate, press the sauté button and whisk the arrowroot slurry into the sauce. Let the sauce simmer for 30 seconds to a minute, whisking continuously as the sauce thickens.
  • Turn off the sauté function and return the shredded chicken to the Instant Pot. Stir in the chicken until well combined with the sauce. Serve immediately.

Notes

1. If burger buns aren’t your thing, you can serve this in lettuce wraps (Boston lettuce works great), rolled up in a tortilla or on a bed of greens.
2. I tend not to use cornstarch in my recipes, so this recipe uses arrowroot to thicken the sauce. Arrowroot also tends to do better than cornstarch in recipes that use acid (like vinegar or lemon juice, as I do in this recipe). I prefer the thickened sauce, but it still tastes great if you omit this step.
3. Inactive time is the time it takes for the Instant Pot to get up to pressure.
4. If you need to keep this meal dairy free, you can use a dairy-free ranch dressing for garnish. The Daiya brand has an option and I’m sure there are others! 
5. Nutrition estimate reflects only the buffalo chicken, without the buns or garnishes.
6. This recipe was tested in the 6-quart Instant Pot model.

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Equipment

6-qt Instant Pot
Juicer
Measuring Spoons
Silicone Tongs

Nutrition Estimate

Calories: 168kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 73mg | Sodium: 1401mg | Potassium: 420mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 157IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 6mg | Iron: 1mg
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head shot of Laura

Hey, I’m Laura!

Creator of The Recipe Well


I love food and cooking, but hate doing the dishes. I use my nutrition degree to create easy, approachable recipes that will help you find your happy place in the kitchen.

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Recipe Rating




One Comment

  1. 5 stars
    Mmm, I adore Frank’s hot sauce! Going on my list to make 🙂