We love making this easy Instant Pot Chicken Fried Rice recipe. It’s affordable, healthy, and made with real-food ingredients! Plus, it’s a one-pan meal that’s ready in 20 minutes and leftovers make for an easy lunch.

Hand holding a pink plate with a pile of fried rice and a gold spoon.
A complete chicken fried rice meal, made in one-pot, with pantry ingredients.

This recipe isn’t authentic. The first fried rice recipe is believed to have originated in the Sui Dynasty (A.D. 589–618).

This recipe is definitely an Americanized version. If you’re looking for a truly authentic recipe, this isn’t your dish. I don’t have the knowledge to share such a recipe with you.

If you’re looking for a variation of fried rice that’s made quickly in the Instant Pot, with real-food ingredients, then this has become a go-to weeknight meal that I’d love to share with you. It’s a homemade, quick-fix version of my favorite takeout meal, without the MSG.

To make fried rice, you typically need to make the rice ahead of time (like 15-minute vegetarian fried rice or veggie fried rice). Leftover, day-old rice is usually best for making a fried rice recipe.

With the Instant Pot, you don’t need to prep rice in advance. Instead, you can cook rice, chicken, veggies, and even the egg in one pot!

That’s what I love about this appliance: it make healthy meals fast and easy!

Ingredients and Tools Needed

To make Instant Pot Chicken Fried Rice, you’ll need a handful of pantry ingredients. This makes the recipe easy to prepare and super affordable. (Here’s what I stock in my real-food pantry.)

We’re all looking for ways to save on groceries these days. Rice, chicken, eggs, and carrots are all budget-friendly ingredients. I tend to stock up on rice and chicken when they go on sale, and freeze the chicken for meals.

Ingredients and Tools

  • 6 or 8 Quart Instant Pot
  • Fine mesh colander for rice
  • Bowl for whisking eggs
  • Extra virgin olive oil or sesame oil
  • 1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 2-3 carrots
  • 1/2 white onion
  • 1/2 cup red bell pepper
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 2 cups long grain white rice (uncooked)
  • 1 2/3 cups chicken broth
  • 1/3 cup tamari sauce or coconut aminos
  • 1 cup frozen peas (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter (optional)
  • 2 eggs (optional)

What kind of rice is best to use?

The best rice to use for this recipe is uncooked white rice. White rice only takes 4 minutes to cook in the Instant Pot. Brown rice takes 20 minutes! The chicken only needs about 8 minutes to cook, so using brown rice would dry out the chicken.

This is why in recipes like Instant Pot Chicken and Yellow Rice and Instant Pot Chicken and Rice Soup, we use white rice. It cooks quickly, keeping the chicken moist.

I use long grain white rice, but I think jasmine or basmati white rice may also be used, with no time adjustments.

If you want to use brown rice in this recipe (long or short brown rice), use chicken thighs as the fat content will help compensate for the extra cooking time needed. I haven’t tested this recipe using brown rice or a 20 minute cooking time.

Learn how to cook rice in the Instant Pot, with cooking times and water to rice ratios.

How to Make

With just pot (an electric pressure cooker), you can quickly make this lunch or dinner meal. This recipe moves fast! Arrange all the ingredients on the counter, chopping the veggies and uncooked chicken, and rinsing the rice before getting started.

First, rinse the rice under fresh water for 1-2 minutes to remove starch.

Step 1: Rinse the Rice

Rice is very starchy, and there is excess starch on the outside of the grains, particularly white rice. If the starch is left on the rice, the result will be wet, mushy fried rice.

One key to fluffy Instant Pot rice is to rinse the rice in a fine-mesh colander. To do this, add the rice to the colander, then run it under water for about 1 minute until the water streaming out of the colander goes from milky to clear.

Adding 2 tablespoons olive oil to the Instant Pot to cook the chicken.
Second, add oil to the Instant Pot and cook chopped chicken for a few minutes.

Step 2: Saute Chicken

Turn on the Saute mode on the Instant Pot by pressing the Saute Button. Cut the chicken breasts into smaller pieces and salt and pepper the chicken.

Heat oil in the Instant Pot and use the saute function to quickly cook the chicken on each side (about 2-3 minutes on each side).

Adding chopped carrots from cutting board to the Instant Pot.
Third, remove chicken and add chopped veggies and garlic to the Instant Pot. Cook for about 3 minutes.

Step 3: Add Vegetables

Remove the chicken from the Instant Pot to a plate or bowl. Add chopped carrots, onion, and red bell pepper to the hot Instant Pot. Saute for a couple of minutes, then add minced garlic. Turn off the Saute Button.

Pouring chicken broth from a carton into the Instant Pot.
Fourth, add chicken broth, tamari sauce, uncooked and rinsed rice, and chicken to the Instant Pot.

Step 4: Add a Splash of Chicken Broth

You don’t want any food stuck to the bottom of the Instant Pot. This can cause a burn notice.

Add a splash of chicken broth to the pot, using a wooden spoon to scrape up any bits stuck to the bottom. Then add the remaining chicken broth, tamari sauce (or coconut aminos) and uncooked and rinsed rice. Give everything a stir. Then add the chicken.

All ingredients should be submerged in the liquid, with chicken popping out.

All fried rice ingredients in the Instant Pot ready to cooked.
All ingredients should be submerged under the liquid, with some chicken popping out.

Step 5: Pressure Cook

Make sure the clear silicone ring that sits inside the Instant Pot lid is secure (if it’s not secure, the Instant Pot will not work properly), then place the lid on the Instant Pot base and turn to lock. 

Place the lid on the Instant Pot and turn to lock in place. Move the knob on top (venting seal) from Venting to Sealed. This will trap all the steam in the pot, allowing the meal to pressure cook properly.

Select the Manual Button, then use the minus button to adjust the time on the screen to 8 minutes.

Step 6: Natural Release for 10 Minutes

Once the cooking time is complete, the Instant Pot will beep. This means the pressure cooking time of 8 minutes is complete.

Now it’s time for the pressure to release from the pot. There are two ways for this to happen: natural release or quick release. I explain the difference in How to Cook Instant Pot Rice.

For this recipe, you’re going to let the Instant Pot release pressure naturally for 10 minutes. The timer on the front screen will slowly begin to count up from 0:00 to 10:00. Once the timer reads L10:00 (10 minutes), use a towel or hot pad holder to turn the knob/valve on top from Sealed to Venting.

Steam will shoot out from the top of the Instant Pot. Make sure the pot isn’t under any cabinets. Once the pressure is fully released (steam no longer is coming out of the top), you can safely open the lid.

Pouring scrambled eggs into the Instant Pot to make scrambled eggs and egg fried rice.
Make a well in the center of the fried rice. Add whisked eggs and cook to make fried rice with eggs.

Step 7: Scramble Eggs

If you want to make Instant Pot fried rice with eggs, make a well in the center of the fried rice by pushing the rice to the perimeter of the pot.

Melt 1 tablespoon unsalted butter. Crack 2 eggs in a medium-size bowl.

Remember when we talked about how to make scrambled eggs fluffy and without milk? One key to fluffy eggs is to whisk the eggs vigorously.

Whisk for 20-30 seconds with a fork. Then add the eggs to the melted butter.

Let the eggs set for a few seconds, and once you see some setting on the sides, use a rubber spatula to begin moving the eggs around. Allow to set again for a few seconds, then move. Repeat this until the eggs are fully cooked (about 3 minutes).

How long does it take to cook this recipe?

This recipe is quick and easy to make, promise! Here’s what to expect…

15 Minutes: Prep Ingredients

Rinse the rice, chop the veggies and chicken, saute the chicken and vegetables.

18 Minutes+: Cooking Fried Rice

Once the lid is on the pot, it will take the Instant Pot several minutes to begin pressure cooking. The pressure has to build up and this takes time. This could take anywhere from 5-10 minutes. This is one aspect of Instant Pot cooking that people don’t talk about.

Once pressure is reached, the Instant Pot will take 8 minutes to cook and then need 10 minutes to release the pressure naturally.

5 Minutes: Cooking Egg

If you want to add eggs to the fried rice, factor in about 5 minutes for melting the butter and cooking the scrambled eggs.

You can make Instant Pot Fried Rice in under 20 minutes of cooking time. But also factor in some prep time and a few extra minutes that it will take to patiently wait for the Instant Pot to reach pressure and cook the food.

Adding chopped chicken to the Instant Pot.
Tips for success: Use a 6 or 8 quart Instant Pot, rinse rice, and avoid the burn notice by loosening bits on the bottom on the pot.

Tips for Success

There are a few things to consider when making fried rice in the Instant Pot. Stick with these tips for recipe success.

  • Use a 6 or 8 Quart Instant Pot: There’s a fill line inside every Instant Pot liner. You never want to go over this line. For this reason, I don’t recommend using a 3-Quart Instant Pot. The 6 or 8 Quart models are best for the amount this recipe makes. This is the Instant Pot I use.
  • Rinse Rice: Rinsing the rice first, before cooking, under water in a fine-mesh colander will prevent mushy fried rice.
  • Avoid the Burn Notice: Add a bit of chicken broth after sautéing the chicken and veggies. Use a wooden spoon to scrape up any bits left on the bottom of the pot. These bits will trigger a burn notice if left on the bottom before pressure cooking.
Fried rice on pink plates on a turquoise table.
Enjoy the fried rice immeadiately or store in the fridge and reheat for lunch.

Storage and Reheating Tips

This recipe makes the best leftovers so it’s a great meal to make for dinner and serve for lunch the next day. Meal prepping at its finest!

  • How to Store: Store leftover rice in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.
  • How to Reheat: Reheat the rice on the stove-top with a splash of water (to keep things moist), or in the microwave.
  • School Lunch: Place reheated fried rice in a thermos for a hot school lunch. See 8 more hot school lunch ideas.
  • Work Lunch: If you have a microwave at work, I love glass meal prep containers for taking the fried rice to work and reheating.
Hand holding a pink plate with a pile of fried rice and a gold spoon.
5 from 8 votes

Better Than Takeout Instant Pot Chicken Fried Rice Recipe

We love making this easy Instant Pot Chicken Fried Rice recipe. It's so much better than takeout Ready in 20 minutes. Everything from the rice, chicken, and even eggs are cooked in the Instant Pot.
Kristin Marr
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time23 mins
Course dinner, lunch
Cuisine American, Chinese
Servings 6 servings
Calories 439 kcal
Cost: $20

Equipment

Ingredients

  • 2 cups long grain white rice
  • 1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts about 3 chicken breasts, cut into smaller pieces
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil or seasame oil
  • 2-3 medium carrots chopped (1 1/2 cups)
  • 1/2 medium white onion chopped (1 cup)
  • 1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
  • 3 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 2/3 cups chicken broth or chicken stock, or veggie broth
  • 1/3 cup tamari sauce or soy sauce or coconut aminos
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter optional
  • 2 eggs optional
  • 1 cup frozen peas optional

Garnish:

  • chopped green onions
  • chopped cilantro
  • sesame seeds

Instructions

Step 1: Rinse the Rice

  • Rice is very starchy, and there is excess starch on the outside of the grains, particularly white rice. If the starch is left on the rice, the result will be wet, mushy fried rice. To do this, add the rice to a colander, then run it under water for about 1 minute until the water streaming out of the colander goes from milky to clear.
    Rinse rice in a fine mesh colander before cooking

Step 2: Cook the Chicken

  • Cut the chicken breasts into smaller pieces. Sprinkle salt and pepper over the chicken (just a couple of pinches).
  • Turn on the Saute mode on the Instant Pot by pressing the Saute Button. Heat the oil in the Instant Pot and use the saute function to quickly cook the chicken on each side (about 2-3 minutes on each side). Remove the chicken from the Instant Pot to a plate or bowl. The chicken won't be fully cooked right now.

Step 3: Saute the Veggies

  • Add the chopped carrots, onion, and red bell pepper to the hot Instant Pot. Saute for 2-3 minutes, then add minced garlic and saute for another minute. Turn off the Saute Button.

Step 4: Add Liquid Ingredients

  • You don't want any food stuck to the bottom of the Instant Pot. This can cause a burn notice. Add a splash of chicken broth to the pot, using a wooden spoon to scrape up any bits stuck to the bottom.
  • Then add the remaining chicken broth, tamari sauce (or coconut aminos) and uncooked and rinsed rice. Give everything a stir. Then add the chicken. All ingredients should be submerged in the liquid, with chicken popping out. It's important that all the rice is submerged under the liquid.

Step 5: Pressure Cook for 8 Minutes

  • Make sure the clear silicone ring that sits inside the Instant Pot lid is secure (if it's not secure, the Instant Pot will not work properly), then place the lid on the Instant Pot base and turn to lock. 
  • Move the knob on top (venting seal) from Venting to Sealed.
  • Select the Manual Button, then use the minus button to adjust the time. Cook for 8 minutes (high pressure).

Step 6: Natural Release for 10 Minutes

  • Once the cooking time is complete, the Instant Pot will beep. Allow the pressure to release naturally for 10 minutes.
  • Then, use a towel or hot pad holder to release remaining pressure by turning the valve on top from Sealed to Venting. Once all the pressure has been released, open the lid.
  • Fluff the fried rice with a fork. If you're not adding eggs or peas, serve immeadiately.

Step 7: Scramble the Eggs (Optional)

  • If you want to make Instant Pot fried rice with eggs, make a well in the center of the fried rice by pushing the rice to the perimeter of the pot.
    Push rice to the perimeter of the pot to make egg fried rice..
  • Melt 1 tablespoon unsalted butter. Crack 2 eggs in a medium-size bowl. Whisk for 20-30 seconds with a fork. Then add the eggs to the melted butter.
  • Let the eggs set for a few seconds, and once you see some setting on the sides, use a rubber spatula to begin moving the eggs around. Allow to set again for a few seconds, then move. Repeat this until the eggs are fully cooked (about 3 minutes).
    use a rubber spatula to move the eggs around in the Instant Pot

Step 8: Fluff and Add Peas

  • Stir the scramble eggs into the fried rice, then add 1 cup of frozen peas. Stir everything together and serve.

Notes

  • How to Store: Store leftover rice in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.
  • How to Reheat: Reheat the rice on the stove-top with a splash of water (to keep things moist), or in the microwave.
  • School Lunch: Place reheated fried rice in a thermos for a hot school lunch. See 8 more hot school lunch ideas.
  • Work Lunch: If you have a microwave at work, I love glass meal prep containers for taking the fried rice to work and reheating.
Brown Rice: If you want to use brown rice in this recipe (long or short brown rice), use chicken thighs as the fat content will help compensate for the extra cooking time needed. I haven’t tested this recipe using brown rice or a 20 minute cooking time.

Nutrition

Calories: 439kcalCarbohydrates: 58gProtein: 26gFat: 11gSaturated Fat: 3gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 109mgSodium: 1090mgPotassium: 580mgFiber: 3gSugar: 4gVitamin A: 4132IUVitamin C: 29mgCalcium: 54mgIron: 2mg
Tried this recipe?Let me know how it was!

FAQs

The key to making Instant Pot chicken fried rice that’s not mushy is to use the proper liquid to rice ratio and rinse rice before cooking. For 2 cups of rice, you need 2 cups liquid. In this recipe, we’re using 1 2/3 cups broth and 1/3 cup tamari sauce.

Add a bit of chicken broth after browning the chicken and sautéing the veggies. Use a wooden spoon to scrape up any bits left on the bottom of the pot. These bits will trigger a burn notice if left on the bottom of the pot before pressure cooking.

Yes!

Rice is very starchy, and there is generally excess starch on the outside of the grains, particularly white rice. If the starch is left on the outside of the rice, the result is mushy cooked rice.

One key to fluffy Instant Pot rice is to rinse the rice in a fine-mesh colander before cooking. Add the rice to the colander, then run it under water for about 1 minute. The water the comes out of the colander should go from milky to clear.

To make this recipe vegetarian or vegan, skip the chicken and eggs. This will also cut down on the prep time since you don’t need to saute the chicken first. Just skip straight to the sautéing of veggies. Cook for the same amount of time, with the same 10 minute natural release.

I don’t recommend using frozen chicken. I haven’t tested this recipe with frozen chicken. It’s best to unthaw the chicken in advance.

Yes, you can. Add the veggies, saute, and cook just as you would fresh vegetables. If you want to save time and money, using pre-chopped frozen veggies is a great way to do this.

Yes, you can. Adding eggs is a great way to increase the protein and healthy fats in this recipe. But if you want to save time or not use eggs, feel free to skip this step.

3 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Our family loves to make this fried rice for weekday dinners. It’s so easy and makes great leftovers! Let me know what you think.

  2. 5 stars
    I love this recipe!!! Have made it twice so far and it will definitely become a staple weeknight dinner for us. Kristin- how much is a serving size in this recipe?

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