Instant Pot Crack Chicken: Creamy ranch chicken with smoky bacon and tons of cheese. Cooks in 15 minutes!
One bite and you’ll find out why this recipe is called Crack Chicken. It is made with crunchy bacon, gooey cheese, and creamy ranch flavors, yum! So addicting!
Instant Pot Crack Chicken is perfect for game day with friends. The instant pot makes the prep and clean up a breeze!
More Chicken Instant Pot Recipes
Crack Chicken Recipe
This crack chicken recipe has 3 simple steps we’re going to do all in our Instant pot. First we’re going to fry our bacon by using the saute mode. Cook until crisp, drain, and set aside.
Next, it is time to cook our chicken. I love how fast the Instant Pot cooks up boneless skinless breasts. You can always cook them for 10-15 minutes on high pressure in 1 cup of water or broth. I like to always have some on hand for a quick salad ,or casserole.
For this recipe, we just want to add our cream cheese chicken, broth, and ranch powder for the cooking process.
After the 15 minutes are up, allow the pressure cooker to release pressure naturally for 5 minutes. You don’t have to do anything here. I usually grab a book, or play a game on my mobile.Cool feature: The Instant Pot will start counting up, so no need to set a timer.
Can you believe the creamy sauce is made in the same pot as the chicken? After your chicken is done shred your chicken.
Then whisk the cream cheese and mayonnaise together.
If your sauce is too thin: Try adding a little bit of cornstarch and stirring until thickened.
If your sauce is too thick: Whisk in a little bit of water or chicken broth.
Finally, serve with cheese, bacon, and green onions.
I also like to serve it right out of the Instant Pot on the keep warm function.
This recipe also makes fabulous leftovers. For dinner we love Crack Chicken Spaghetti the next day. I’ve also been known to grab a crack chicken sandwich
(or three) for lunch.
Crack Chicken Instant Pot Tips:
- Always be sure to line up the Triangles on the left hand side, and then turn the lid clockwise to lock it in place.
- Don’t be alarmed if steam exits the pressure valve while the pot is coming up to pressure, this is normal.
- Natural release means to let the pot sit for 5 minutes after the timer goes off. Don’t worry about setting a timer, the Instant Pot will automatically begin to count up.
Instant Pot Manual Release vs. Quick Release
Instant Pot jargon can take a little time to get used to. Let’s break down one of the most frequently asked questions here.
a. Manual Release: With manual release we allow the pressure to naturally release for a period of time (5 minutes in this recipe), before turning the pressure release valve. This will allow the chicken to continue cooking. Also, when we do release pressure it will take less time and produce less steam than if we released it right away.. Finally, I think this method leads to moister, juicier meats.
b. Quick Release (also called Instant Release):With quick release we turn the valve to release pressure as soon as the timer goes off. Usually when doing an instant release: it will take longer to complete ,and produce more steam. This can help prevent overcooking of ingredients like fish or shrimp. Also, this method is suggested for things like soup which may come out of the valve if pressure changes too quickly.
Be sure to follow whichever method the recipe you are making suggests to ensure your dish is perfectly cooked.
Crockpot or Slow Cooker Crack Chicken
I love using my Instant Pot for this recipe, but it can also easily be made in the crockpot.
Crack Chicken Crockpot Tip: It is important to remember the crockpot crack chicken is going to cook the chicken and sauce at the same time. Because of this we need to use less liquid than with the instant pot version.
Crockpot Crack Chicken Recipe: If making in the slow cooker ,place 4 chicken breasts in the bottom of the crockpot. Sprinkle with 1 envelope of ranch powder, and (8 Ounces) of cubed cream cheese. Cook on low for 6-8 hours, or high for 3-4 hours. Shred, and then stir in 1 cup of Mayonnaise.
You can stir in the bacon/cheese before serving, or top individual servings with it if you’d prefer.
Love crockpot cooking? Also check out my Crockpot Chicken Pot Pie.
How To Shred Chicken
No matter what cooking method we use, you will want to shred the chicken before serving. There a number of different ways to do this.
- Two Forks Method (Baking Beauty preferred): This is easy and uses something we all have in our kitchen: utensils! Use one fork to hold your chicken in place, and use the other to pull the meat apart. I find this works best with warm vs. out the fridge chicken.
- Mixer:A hand (or stand) mixer also works great for shredding. Just be sure to use the lowest speed, as we still want some texture. It should only take a few minutes per breast.Not everyone owns a mixer, but this does make it go faster.
- Food Processor: Pulsing chicken a few times in the food processor will give you perfect shreds in seconds. While this is the most expensive way, it may also be the quickest!
- Your hands: Use your impeccably clean hands and go to town like a cave man! This gives you more control, but also takes the longest.
Instant Pot Crack Chicken Shopping Tips:
- You can also make this with frozen chicken breasts. When making with frozen chicken you may need to increase the cook time a bit. Chicken is done when the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees or more.
- I like using Hormel Black Label bacon. It cooks quickly in the microwave ,and it comes individual packages of 4 slices each.
- Grab your chicken breasts at the meat counter at your super market or butcher shop. Most prepackaged meat will only have 3 vs. the 4 breasts you need.
- I love using full fat cream cheese and mayo in this recipe. It makes it so darn decadently delicious. However, if you’re looking for a healthier version I’m sure light versions would work just fine.
Can You Freeze Crack Chicken?
Absolutely! I love to freeze it individual freezer baggies. It is perfect to pull out for a quick lunch, or easy supper. Just be sure to thaw fully before nuking it in the microwave.
What To Serve With This Crack Chicken Recipe
This dish goes great inside a bun, over pasta, or mixed with rice.Crack chicken tends to be on the heavy side so I like to serve it with something lighter. A salad with vinegar and oil, fresh green beans, or cauliflower rice are always great options.
Instant Pot Crack Chicken
- 8 Slices Bacon Cooked Crisp
- 4 Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast
- ½ Cup Chicken Broth
- 1 Package Ranch Dressing Mix
- 8 Ounces Cream Cheese
- 1 Cup Mayonnaise
- 2 Cups Cheddar Cheese Shredded
- Green Onions For Garnish If Desired
- Place chicken and cream cheese into Instant Pot.
- Pour in chicken broth and sprinkle with ranch powder.
- Seal lid,and cook on manual mode (also called Pressure Cook) for 15 minutes.
- Allow pressure to release for 5 minutes naturally, and then do a quick release(Open the valve).
- Remove chicken from Instant Pot, and shred.
- Switch Instant Pot to saute mode. Whisk cream cheese, and mayonnaise until thickened.Add in shredded chicken, and stir until combined.
- Serve with shredded cheese, bacon, and green onions.
- We served ours in sandwiches, but it also tastes amazing over pasta or rice!
Crack Chicken adapted via Aunt Bee’s Recipes
Craving more easy chicken recipes?
Winner Winner Chicken Dinners From Blogs I Heart:
Bourbon Pecan Chicken via Spicy Southern Kitchen
Instant Pot Chicken Pot Pie via Adventures of a Nurse
40 Cloves Roasted Garlic Chicken via Chunky Chef
What do you think of this Instant Pot Crack Chicken? What is your go to game day dish?