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Why does chicken get rubbery in instant pot?

Pressure cookers have been around for over a century, but in recent years the Instant Pot has become a staple in many kitchens. It’s no surprise; the Instant Pot is versatile and makes cooking meals quick and simple. However, some home cooks have reported that their chicken often turns out rubbery when using the Instant Pot. In this blog post, we will explore why this happens and what you can do to avoid it.

The Science Behind Chicken and the Instant Pot

First, let’s dive into the science of how pressure cooking works. Pressure cookers use steam and high pressure to cook food quickly. As the heat and pressure build up inside the Instant Pot, the temperature can rise above the boiling point of water, which helps to tenderize the meat. Pressure cooking also forces the collagen in the meat to break down and turn into gelatin, which gives the chicken a tender texture.

So, why does chicken sometimes turn out rubbery when cooked in the Instant Pot? The answer lies in the protein in the chicken. When chicken is cooked at high temperatures, the protein in the meat can contract and turn rubbery. This can happen when the chicken is overcooked, undercooked, or cooked at too high of a temperature.

Tips to Avoid Rubber Chicken

1. Don’t Overcook the Chicken: One of the main causes of rubbery chicken is overcooking it. Most Instant Pot chicken recipes call for a cooking time of 6-8 minutes, depending on the thickness of the chicken. Make sure that you are using a meat thermometer to check the temperature of the chicken before serving. The internal temperature of the chicken should be 165°F.

2. Use a Marinade: Another way to avoid rubbery chicken is to use a marinade. A marinade can help to tenderize the meat and infuse it with flavor. Some good marinade options for chicken include lemon juice, vinegar, and yogurt-based marinades.

3. Add Liquid: When cooking chicken in the Instant Pot, it’s important to add enough liquid to the pot. Without enough liquid, the chicken can dry out and become rubbery. Most recipes call for at least 1 cup of liquid to be added to the Instant Pot, but you may need to adjust this amount depending on the recipe.

4. Use a Natural Release: When cooking chicken in the Instant Pot, it’s important to let the pressure release naturally before opening the pot. This can take anywhere from 5-20 minutes, depending on the recipe. If you release the pressure manually, the chicken could become tough and rubbery.


In conclusion, rubbery chicken in the Instant Pot can be avoided by following some simple tips. Don’t overcook the chicken, use a marinade, add enough liquid to the pot, and use a natural release. By following these tips, you can ensure that your Instant Pot chicken turns out juicy and delicious every time.


Why does my chicken have a rubbery texture?

Rubbery chicken is a common issue that many people encounter while cooking their favorite poultry dish. It is not only unpleasant to eat but also ruins the entire meal experience. The texture of rubbery chicken can be described as tough, chewy, and dry. The primary reason why chicken ends up with a rubbery texture is due to overcooking. Chicken requires careful cooking to avoid losing its flavor and moisture content. The longer the chicken cooks, the more moisture it loses, and without moisture, the protein fibers become elastic, AKA rubbery.

When chicken is overcooked, the proteins in the meat tighten up. Normally, muscle fibers in the chicken have a relaxed texture when the meat is raw or lightly cooked, allowing it to be tender and juicy. Once it’s overcooked, the protein begins to coagulate, causing the meat to contract, resulting in a rubbery texture. The heat breaks down the connective tissues in the meat, causing it to dehydrate and lose its natural juices. As a result, the chicken becomes dry and tough.

Another reason why chicken may have a rubbery texture is cooking it at high temperature. When chicken is cooked at excessive heat, the outside may end up being burnt while the inside remains raw. The extreme heat can also cause the chicken to cook unevenly, leading to the rubbery texture.

Rubbery chicken is an undesirable state that can ruin an otherwise lovely meal. To avoid rubbery chicken, cook it at the right temperature and timing. Undercooked chicken can lead to food poisoning, and overcooking result in tough and rubbery meat. A simple solution to chicken’s elastic texture is to use a meat thermometer to measure the internal temperature and remove the chicken from heat once it reaches the recommended temperature. It is advisable to let the chicken sit for a few minutes before cutting, as that will help to retain its juices and keep it from becoming rubbery.

Why is my cooked chicken breast chewy?

Chewy and tough chicken is one of the most frustrating things that can happen to a chicken breast, whether grilled, baked, or sautéed. There are a few reasons why cooked chicken breast might turn out to be chewy, and fortunately, most of them can be easily avoided.

One common reason why chicken breasts may turn chewy is overcooking. When chicken is overcooked, it loses its natural moisture and becomes dry and tough. Overcooked chicken will take on a stringy and rubbery texture, and it can be challenging to chew. The best way to avoid overcooking chicken is to use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature. Chicken breasts should be cooked to an internal temperature of 165°F (75°C), which ensures that the chicken is fully cooked and safe to eat, without being dry and tough.

Undercooking is another reason why chicken may end up chewy. If the chicken does not reach the minimum internal temperature, it can be difficult to chew, and it may also be unsafe to eat as it can still contain harmful bacteria. Therefore, it is crucial to ensure that the chicken is cooked thoroughly, and the internal temperature is checked using a meat thermometer to prevent any food-borne illnesses.

Another factor that can cause chewy chicken breasts is the way it is stored before cooking. If the chicken is frozen, it should be thawed correctly before being cooked. If the chicken is thawed improperly, it can affect the texture of the meat, and the chicken may not cook evenly. To avoid this, it is best to thaw chicken in the fridge or by using a microwave, following the recommended guidelines provided for safe thawing.

Furthermore, the way the chicken is cooked may also affect whether it will be chewy or not. Cooking chicken incorrectly, such as cooking it at too high of a temperature or leaving it in the pan for too long, can result in overcooking, which will cause the chicken to be tough and hard to chew. Therefore, the chicken should be cooked at the right temperature and for the right amount of time to get tender and juicy meat.

Chewy chicken can be caused by a variety of factors, including overcooking, undercooking, improper thawing, and incorrect cooking techniques. The best way to ensure that chicken breasts are cooked correctly is to use a meat thermometer, follow thawing recommendations, cook at the right temperature, and for the right amount of time. By following these tips, you can enjoy a delicious chicken breast that is tender and juicy and avoid the frustration of chewing on tough, rubbery meat.