Instant Pot Zesty Lemon Chicken

When I’m looking for an easy, fast and light weeknight dinner, I look no further than this delicious lemon chicken recipe. In my Instant Pot (get yours here:, it comes together in only 30 minutes!

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This easy lemon chicken recipe is your ticket to an easy weeknight dinner! Fork-tender chicken made zesty with both lemon juice and lemon zest is grounded by sweet rosemary and a light sauce. This is the absolute best quick and easy lemon chicken recipe with simple ingredients and TONS of lemon flavor.

Enjoy a tasty and delicious meal with your loved ones. They will adore this delicious lemon chicken and will appreciate how low the carb count is. Serve with some steamed green beans for a light meal. Or pair with our Loaded Mashed Cauliflower for something more hearty, but still carb-friendly.

Pro Tip: For the prettiest end results, brown the tops of the thighs really well and remove carefully so as not to disturb the pretty brown crust.

This easy lemon chicken recipe is your ticket to an easy weeknight dinner!


  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1 1/2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1+2 tbsp butter, divided
  • 1/2 small onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp dried rosemary, lightly crushed
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • Zest of one lemon
  • 3 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
  • Lemon slices, for garnish


  1. Mix paprika, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Coat tops (smooth side) of chicken thighs in seasoning mixture.
  2. Add olive oil and 1 tbsp butter to the Instant Pot. Using the display panel select the SAUTE function.
  3. When oil gets hot, brown the chicken on both sides, 3-4 minutes per side. Meat will not be cooked through. Do not crowd the pot–you may have to work in batches. Transfer browned meat to a shallow dish and cover loosely with foil.
  4. Add onion and remaining 2 tbsp butter to the pot and saute until soft, 3-4 minutes. Add garlic and crushed rosemary and cook for 1-2 minutes more.
  5. Add lemon juice and zest to the pot and deglaze by using a wooden spoon to scrape the brown bits from the bottom of the pot.
  6. Put the chicken back into to the pot in one even layer, seasoned side up.
  7. Turn the pot off by selecting CANCEL, then secure the lid, making sure the vent is closed.
  8. Using the display panel select the MANUAL function*. Use the +/- keys and program the Instant Pot for 7 minutes.
  9. When the time is up, let the pressure naturally release for 5 minutes, then quick-release the remaining pressure.
  10. Serve chicken topped with fresh parsley and lemon slices.

*The MANUAL and PRESSURE COOK buttons are interchangeable.