Instant Pot Pesto Ranch Chicken

Simple and speedy this Pesto Ranch Chicken is a great meal to throw in your Instant Pot pressure cooker for an easy dinner. Chicken thighs are cooked in a ranch seasoned pesto to flavorful, juicy perfection.
4 Servings Recipe By Pin Print
Instant Pot Pesto Ranch Chicken


  • 2 pounds Chicken, Thighs, Boneless/Skinless
  • ¾ cups Pesto
  • 2 tablespoons Ranch Dressing Mix
  • ½ cups Chicken Broth/Stock

Freezer Containers


  • Labels

Nutritional Information

  • Not available.

Make It Now Cooking Directions

These directions are for cooking this recipe to serve immediately and NOT to freeze for later.

  1. **Due to the nature of pressure cooking there is always room for inconsistency. The times given here are based on 4 servings fresh. If you are using more servings you may need to increase your cooking time.**
  2. Combine pesto, ranch dressing mix and chicken broth in a bowl.
  3. Place chicken inside Instant Pot and spoon pesto sauce on top, covering chicken.
  4. Lock lid into place and seal steam nozzle.
  5. Cook on high pressure for 9 minutes.
  6. Let pressure release naturally for 5 minutes, then release any remaining pressure.

Freeze For Later Cooking Directions

These directions help you cook or prepare this meal PRIOR to being frozen for serving later (see Serving Day Directions when you are ready to prepare it to eat).

Why would I want to freeze this?

  1. Divide all ingredients into indicated number of freezer bags.
  2. Label and freeze.

Make From Frozen Serving Day Directions

These directions help you cook or reheat this meal AFTER it's been frozen for when you are ready to eat it.

  1. **Depending on your container size/shape and your serving size, you may need to adjust cooking times given as it is based on 4 servings frozen in a 64 ounce container.**
  2. Place frozen contents in Instant Pot. Saute for 5 minutes.
  3. Lock lid into place and seal steam nozzle.
  4. Cook on high pressure for 9 minutes.
  5. Let pressure release naturally for 5 minutes, then release any remaining pressure.


Join the discussion
  1. I made my own pesto and ranch, it was very good but I would cut back on the stock (too much liquid). According to directions, I used the round containers, sautéed the frozen hunk for 5 minutes and cooked in the instant pot for 9 minutes. The chicken was still frozen! I cooked it for an additional 9 minutes.

    FYI, I’m new to this. You don’t need to defrost, right?

    1. Welcome, Lisa! You are correct that you don’t have to defrost items before they go into your Instant Pot. I’m sorry to hear it was still frozen for you. Did you by chance use chicken breasts instead of thighs? I ask in part because I like to change up the cuts of meat sometimes myself. 🙂 If that isn’t the case, we have a couple posts that are pretty helpful when it comes to learning the ways of the Instant Pot. You can check those out here and here. If you run into any other bumps, feel free to jump on a chat with us between 10am and 2pm EST on weekdays or between 2pm and 5pm EST on weekends and we’d be happy to help in any way we can.

  2. Hello!

    Just wanted to share that I made this recipe using frozen chicken thighs…I did half the portion…set the IP to Poultry for 20 minutes and let it slow release. Paired it with Trader Joe’s Zucchini Fries. So delicious! Thanks for sharing!

  3. I can’t find a place to make notes, so just for my future reference…this didn’t fully cook in my 8 qt in the time listed from frozen. I stirred it and set it for an additional 2 minutes, and it was fine. In the future I’ll just do 12 minutes to start and think that’ll be fine. 🙂 Tastes wonderful though, thanks!!! This was using boneless, skinless thighs.

    1. Thanks for your feedback. There are a variety of things that can affect the cook time in the Instant Pot, including using an 8 versus 6 quart pot, so we always recommend doing exactly what you did – adding a few extra minutes at the end if you find a dish isn’t cooked through. We’re glad you enjoyed it!

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