This Instant Pot Chicken Fried Rice is a healthy, delicious one pot rice idea with no clean up – it uses frozen veggies for a faster cook time too!
Chicken fried rice is a quick and easy meal that I make pretty often – it’s one of those hearty, staple meals that never gets old. I make it so often, in fact, that I could probably make it in my sleep. Especially Instant Pot fried rice – you guys, it’s beyond simple to make!
Can you use frozen chicken for Instant Pot Chicken Fried Rice?
Yes, you can use frozen chicken to make this recipe. However, you’ll want to make sure that the chicken is cut into bite-sized pieces first.
If you cook whole frozen chicken breasts with the Instant Pot rice, you may have problems cooking everything perfectly. Whole chicken breasts may not cook through in such a short time. If you add cooking time, the rice may become mushy as a result. For this reason, I recommend using fresh chicken instead of frozen.
What kind of rice for Instant Pot fried rice?
When I make Instant Pot chicken fried rice, I like to use white rice. Number one, because you almost always already have it on hand in your pantry but number two, because it allows you to really taste the flavours of all the ingredients at once. White rice also takes less time to cook than brown rice. If you’d like to use brown rice for this recipe, you will want to add an additional 15 minutes. I’m hoping you don’t want to wait that long for fried rice though!
You can use other types of rice for this recipe, such as jasmine rice or basmati rice but the liquid to rice ratios will vary. In this case, you will want to use 3/4 cup of chicken broth if using jasmine or basmati rice instead of 1 1/4 cups broth for white rice. Always use 1 cup of dry rice no matter which kind you are using. Brown rice should be fine with the same liquid ratios as white rice, there will just be a difference in cooking time as noted above.
How long does it take to make fried rice in a pressure cooker?
This is such a great recipe for busy weeknights because it cooks in 25 minutes. Yes, that is including the time to bring the Instant Pot to pressure!
Because we use frozen vegetables and the chicken is cut into pieces, the actual cooking time under pressure is 3 minutes! You will do a quick release of pressure, so you don’t even have to wait long after cooking. Instant Pot recipes are just so amazing, aren’t they?
I promise, the chicken does get cooked through in time as well. Most people are skeptical when I list a cook time of just 3 minutes for the chicken but the Instant Pot takes about 10-15 minutes to come to pressure and the chicken is starting to cook during that time. When it’s cut up into small pieces it doesn’t take long. Even on the stovetop chicken cut into 1-inch pieces should only take about 15 minutes so you can rest assured it’s cooking fully in this recipe.
The best part about Instant Pot recipes is that the cooking process is hands off in one pot for easy clean up. All you have to do is microwave your frozen veggies while you’re waiting, then boom – dinner is done!
I’ve written a few quick comments about this chicken fried rice recipe below. You will find the topics organized by heading for easy reading. I will be sure to update this post to address any questions as they come in!
Adding Scrambled Eggs
If you want to add scrambled eggs to your Instant Pot chicken fried rice, just scramble a couple of eggs on the stove top while everything is pressure cooking. Just mix them into the dish right before serving it. You could also turn the pot onto saute mode and scramble them with the rice but I find the texture of the egg doesn’t hold up as much and the egg becomes too minced up in the rice to the point where you don’t taste it as much.
Frying it separately on the stove does create a bit more clean up, but you should still be able to scramble your eggs and wash your frying pan in the time it takes your Instant Pot to cook up the chicken and rice!
Meal Prepping Instant Pot Fried Rice
Because it freezes well, this is a great meal prep recipe. You can take it for lunches during the week, or use it as a side dish with other Asian dinners.
Before you freeze the fried rice, be sure that it completely cool first. Then, transfer it into glass meal prep containers or freezable containers with a tight fitting lid. I prefer to use glass containers because you can pack it up into individual servings and then microwave straight from the bowl.
In this case, if refrigerating, reheat for 2-3 minutes in the microwave, stirring halfway through. You can also reheat this fried rice on the stovetop. They say rice actually tastes better the next day so to completely revive it like new, I recommend the stovetop method but I know some people only have access to a microwave at work so the microwave will work fine.
If freezing and defrosting to eat later, be sure to microwave on high for 6 to 7 minutes, stirring halfway through. These times will depend on the wattage of your microwave but they are a good guideline for reheating.
“Eat by” Dates
If you have any leftovers of this fried rice, refrigerate them in a well-covered container, and eat them within 4 to 5 days. Any frozen Instant Pot chicken fried rice will keep well for up to 3 months so you have a ton of flexibility.
Fried Rice Variations
This recipe is so versatile that you can pretty much add in whatever veggies you want. I choose a bag of frozen veggies to keep it simple but there are a variety of different stir fry blends you can use. If using fresh carrots, you will want to make sure you cook them under pressure with the chicken and rice, and you can also add mushrooms in this fashion. For other tender veggies like broccoli and bell peppers (assuming you are using fresh), you will want to make sure you chop them into small pieces then let them sit with the hot rice for 10 minutes after so that they don’t get overcooked.
You can also add in some different sauces – sambal oelek and chili sauces like sriracha make amazing additions, and you can also add in hoisin or oyster sauce for a bit of a sweeter flavour. I find that soy sauce works just fine, but sometimes it’s fun to switch it up.
Meal Prep Tools for this Recipe
- Grab some glass meal prep bowls if you plan on turning this Chicken Fried Rice into your weekly lunches.
- I get all my free-range chicken from Butcher Box,conveniently delivered to me frozen.
More Asian Instant Pot Recipes
Instant Pot Chicken Fried Rice
- 1 tbsp olive or sesame oil
- 2 tbsp butter
- 1 onion, diced
- 2 chicken breasts, diced into 1-inch pieces
- 6 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce
- 1 1/4 cups chicken broth
- 1 cup dry white rice
- 1 (750g) bag frozen mixed vegetables
- 1 bunch green onions, sliced
- Add oil, butter, onion, chicken, garlic, soy sauce, chicken broth and rice to Instant Pot in that order. Place lid on Instant Pot and make sure valve is set to seal.
- Press the pressure cook button and set to high, then cook for 3 minutes. Instant Pot will take about 10-15 minutes to come to pressure then pressure cook the 3 minutes. Meanwhile, microwave frozen vegetables in a large bowl for 3-5 minutes until de-frosted, stirring midway through.
- Do a quick release of the pressure on the Instant Pot by flicking the switch at the top with a spoon. Open the lid when pressure gauge has dropped and the lid opens easily.
- Stir veggies and green onions into rice in Instant Pot, stirring well to combine. Serve and enjoy!