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Easy Shredded Chicken {Slow Cooker & Instant Pot Directions}

This Easy Shredded Chicken will be your weeknight meal saver!  This is a quick way to cook one protein and use it for a variety of meals. With spring sports about to kick in our weeknights will start to get nutty and having this shredded chicken in the rotation will be super helpful. All you need is 5 ingredients (mostly staples) and you can use it for any recipe that calls for diced or shredded chicken. 

I have directions for how to make it in your slow cooker or if you have an instant pot this is great last minute protein for when you forget to take your meat out of the freezer.  You can pop it in your instant pot straight from your freezer!

How to Make Easy Shredded Chicken

Place chicken in your slow cooker or instant pot.  Note is better to use thawed chicken in a slow cooker but in a pinch you can use frozen.  When using frozen in the slow cooker it will take a little longer and make sure to keep the lid on to ensure through cooking.  I like to make a lot at a time to use it for a variety of meals!

Next add all of the ingredients.

Then set to low and go about your day.  In the slow cooker if the chicken is thawed it will be ready in about 5-6 hours if it is frozen it will take at least 7.  In the instant pot it will cook for 10 minutes on high pressure with a 5 minute natural release or 12 minutes if it is frozen.  This is how it looks when it is done.

Lastly shred the chicken using 2 forks or an electric hand mixer makes this so easy and fast!  You can use it right away here are some of our favorite recipes to use it in.

Recipes to use Easy Shredded Chicken

Afraid your kids won’t want 2x in one week – use half this week and freeze the rest for future week or make into a casserole or enchiladas for a future week! 

How to Store Extra for Future Use

  1. Store in the refridgerator for up to 3 days in a bag or sealed container with the broth.  
  2. Store in the freezer in a sealed bag or Tupperware with a little broth for up to 3 months. 
  3. To thaw the chicken place in the fridge for 24 hours before you need it, make sure to heat thoroughly before serving.
  4. Depending on what you are using it for you may want to strain the broth.  (If I am making a stir fry or casserole I use the broth for extra moisture but for tacos, quesadillas or salads I like to strain it. 
Easy Shredded Chicken - Photo

Easy Shredded Chicken

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Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 7 hours
Instant Pot Cook Time: 20 minutes
Servings:6
Course:Main Course
Keyword:5 Ingredients, 5 Ingredients or less, Chicken, Dairy Free, Easy Recipe, Gluten Free, instant pot, meal prep, quick and easy, Slow Cooker, weeknight meal

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs chicken
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 garlic powder
  • 1/8 tsp pepper
  • 3/4 cup broth or water

Instructions

Slow Cooker Directions - adapted from the Magical Slow Cooker

  • Place chicken breasts in slow cooker, sprinkle on the seasonings and pour over chicken broth.
  • Set to low for 4-6 hours or 8 hours if you are cooking from frozen (note: if cooking from frozen keep the lid on the entire time to ensure it cooks properly.
  • When it is finished cooking shred the chicken with 2 forks or a hand mixer.
  • Use immediately or store for future use
  • Store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days in a bag or sealed container with the broth.
  • Store in the freezer in a sealed bag or Tupperware with a little broth for up to 3 months.
  • Depending on what you are using it for you may want to strain the broth. (If I am making a stir fry or casserole I use the broth for extra moisture but for tacos, quesadillas or salads I like to strain it.

Instant Pot Directions - adapted from Gimme Some Oven Blog

  • Place chicken breasts in slow cooker, sprinkle on the seasonings and pour over the chicken broth.
  • Cover and set the pressure cooker lid valve to “sealing.”  Pressure cook on high for 10 minutes, followed by a 5 minute natural release, followed by a quick release (carefully flip the valve to “venting”) to release whatever pressure remains. If cooking from frozen add 2 additional minutes.
  • Remove the lid and use two forks or a hand mixer to shred the chicken.
  • Use immediately or store for future use
  • Store in the refridgerator for up to 3 days in a bag or sealed container with the broth.
  • Store in the freezer in a sealed bag or Tupperware with a little broth for up to 3 months.
  • Depending on what you are using it for you may want to strain the broth. (If I am making a stir fry or casserole I use the broth for extra moisture but for tacos, quesadillas or salads I like to strain it.
Did you make this recipe?I would love to see your creations! Snap a picture and tag @FoodPlayGo or #foodplaygo on Social Media!

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