Get tender chicken with ease with this Instant Pot Chicken Leg Quarters recipe. It’s a flavorful, budget-friendly cut.
Bone-in, skin-on chicken leg quarters are cooked in the instant pot for this easy recipe. They end up flavorful, tender, and juicy. Plus, the drippings can be turned into a gravy or saved for other recipes, likes soups or casseroles.
What Cut Of Chicken To Use
For this recipe, we’re specifically talking about chicken leg quarters. This is a cut of meat that is the drumsticks and thighs still together. Sometimes the drumsticks are referred to as chicken legs, so but you’ll want the whole leg for the timing in this pressure cooker recipe. Read more about this cut of chicken in our oven baked chicken leg quarters recipe.
Should I Use a Rack?
Often times, dark meat chicken cooked in the Instant Pot can become fall-off-the-bone tender when cooked in liquid. While the tender part is what we’re after, the meat should still be intact and easy to cut at the dinner table. To achieve this, the chicken cooks on top of the Instant Pot trivet instead of in the liquid at the bottom of the pot.
To make the best Instant Pot chicken legs, begin by placing the rack inside the Instant Pot and then add the chicken stock.
Seasoning Chicken Legs
Although the pressure from the Instant Pot can push flavor into the chicken, it’s not enough to make a difference, so It’s important to season the chicken well.
You want to get the seasoning under the skin and then all around. To do this, I use a combination of salted butter under the skin and a sprinkling of salt and seasonings around the chicken legs, tops and bottoms before cooking. I like to use granulated garlic for mine, but garlic powder will work as well. I also like to add a little smoked paprika for color.
How Long To Cook Chicken Leg Quarters
We looked at other recipes and tested multiple times to try to get the best results. Though we tried pressure cooking for less time, 20 minutes of cook time on high pressure and a 10 minute natural release was what produced perfectly cooked chicken.
How To Make Instant Pot Chicken Legs
In a small bowl stir together one-quarter teaspoon of the salt, the black pepper, garlic, and paprika until well mixed. Set that aside, and in another small bowl, stir together the remaining one-quarter teaspoon of salt and the butter until well mixed.
Rub 1 tablespoon of the butter under the skin and on top of the skin of one of the chicken legs. Repeat with the remaining chicken leg. Sprinkle the spice mixture evenly over the tops and bottoms of the chicken legs.
Place chicken legs in a single layer on the Instant Pot rack. Place the lid on pot and lock it in place. Set the valve to Sealing and select the Stew/Meat button. Set the timer for 20 minutes. After cook time is complete, let this stand for 10 minutes to allow the pressure to naturally release. Switch the valve to Venting to release any remaining pressure, and remove the lid. Press the Cancel button.
Optional step: If you prefer crispy skin on your chicken, you’ll need to put it under the broiler or in the air fryer for a few minutes. The Instant Pot is great at many things, but it’s a wet cooking method that won’t give you skin that is crisp.
Transfer the chicken to a serving platter or plates. Try serving with baked potatoes and roasted broccoli.
The liquid at the bottom of the instant pot can be used to make a gravy or can be saved in the refrigerator up to five days, or in the freezer up to three months for other recipes.Print
- 1 cup chicken stock
- 1/2 tsp. salt, divided
- ¼ tsp. ground black pepper
- ¼ tsp. granulated garlic
- ¼ tsp. smoked paprika
- 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
- 2 bone-in, skin-on chicken leg quarters
- In the Instant Pot insert place rack. Add chicken stock.
- In a small bowl stir together ¼ teaspoon of the salt, the black pepper, garlic, and paprika until well mixed; set aside.
- In another small bowl stir together remaining ¼ teaspoon of salt and the butter until well mixed.
- Rub 1 tablespoon of the butter under skin and on top of skin of one of the chicken legs. Repeat with remaining chicken leg. Sprinkle spice mixture evenly over the tops and bottoms of the chicken legs.
- Place chicken legs in a single layer on the Instant Pot rack.
- Place lid on pot, lock in place. Set valve to Sealing. Select the Stew/Meat button and set timer for 20 minutes. After cook time is complete, let stand 10 minutes. Switch valve to Venting to release any remaining pressure. Remove lid. Press the Cancel button.
- Transfer chicken to a serving platter or plates. Serve warm.