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Sprinkle the chicken with the salt, pepper, garlic powder, and paprika.
In an Instant Pot or other pressure cooker, heat the vegetable oil over Sauté mode set to high (medium-high heat on a stovetop) until the oil starts to shimmer. Set half of the chicken thighs in the pot, smooth side down, and let them cook, without moving, until browned on the bottom, about 4 minutes. Move the browned pieces to a plate, then add the rest of the thighs to the pot to brown, about 4 more minutes.
Pour 1 cup of water into the pot, and add the browned chicken and any juices on the plate.
Lock the lid on the cooker. Pressure cook at high pressure for 10 minutes (“Manual” or “Pressure cook” mode in an Instant Pot), then the pressure come down naturally, about 15 more minutes.
Remove the chicken to a platter with tongs or a slotted spoon. Serve whole as chicken cutlets, slice thin for chicken strips, or shred. Enjoy!