How to Make Instant Pot Buffalo Chicken Wings (Secret Step Included)

Making chicken wings in the Instant Pot is an easy and super flavorful way to cook them.  If you love hot wings, this will be your new go-to recipe for buffalo chicken wings. They will be juicy, flavorful, and addicting.  This electric pressure cooker chicken wing recipe is to die for.  Just a few steps and set the Instant Pot.

Instant Pot chicken wings are a one-in-a-million recipe. That is – there are about a million recipes out on the internet for these spicy little numbers.  I won’t convince you that mine is completely different than the rest but I have a secret step that most recipes skip   And what I will convince you is that these wings are easy and you can adjust the spice so you make one big batch in the instant pot that all the adults and kids will love to eat.  This Instant Pot recipe works great on drummettes, wings, drumsticks, and even boneless chicken strips.

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Full of flavor, spicy, tender, & crispy perfection


Secret Step

The key to this recipe is the liquid that the chicken is cooked in. Most instant pot recipes call for the chicken to be cooked on a trivet above water. Yes with just water. Now, how much flavor does water add to anything? NONE!  Then, in the end, the other recipes add some sauce after the chicken has all of its cooking.  The bulk of the flavoring is an afterthought.  My recipe layers the flavors in every step of the cooking process.

To make the chicken more distinct, these wings are cooked in a vinegary buffalo liquid that helps infuse flavor deep into the meat.  In the end, they will all taste as every buffalo wing should even just straight from the Instant Pot.  They do not even need to be sauced but ideally, you will do that to get the extra buffalo kick that most of us want. I prefer Franks RedHot Original Buffalo sauce for this easy and delicious chicken wing recipe for your Instant Pot or electric pressure cooker.   For me, the original buffalo wing recipe or flavor needs Franks RedHot.

How to Make Buffalo Wings in the Instant Pot

It is as easy as 1 -2 – 3, to make chicken wings in the Instant Pot. The pressure cooker makes it fast & easy to have tender chicken wings. 

  1. Cook in Instant Pot in Amazing Cooking Liquid
  2. Brown Chicken Wings under the Broiler to Crisp
  3. Toss in Additional Sauce

I will warn you, if you do not like your chicken meat to fall right off the bone when you eat wings, this recipe is not for you.  These wings will be so very tender, there is no effort to eat these and they will be messy good.  This is another reason these are great for kids. If your kids are anything like mine are, they like to eat things that do not need a lot of fork and knife skills or can be eaten easily. These are a hit for them. They can use their hands and not get in trouble; yes, please.


Instant Pot chicken wing
Ingredients for Instant Pot Chicken Wings cooking liquid


Seasoning the Chicken Wings

To begin, mix together in a pourable bowl or pyrex measuring cup the melted butter, apple cider vinegar, cayenne pepper, hot sauce, and water.   Pat dry your chicken pieces and season liberally with salt and pepper.

Instant pot chicken wings seasoned
Seasoned chicken wings


Best Liquid to Pressure Cook Chicken Wings

Add the liquid and the chicken to the Instant Pot.  Secure and lock the lid.  Make sure the valve is set to sealing and is closed.  Set the Instant Pot to Manual and for 5 minutes.  The Instant Pot will say ON until it reaches pressure. Once it comes to pressure the 5 minutes will count down.

Once it beeps at 5 minutes, let the Instant Pot release pressure naturally for 10 minutes.  After the clock reaches 10 minutes, move the valve carefully open using a wooden spoon or long utensil to release any remaining pressure.


How to Make Instant Pot Chicken Wings from Frozen

If you forgot to defrost your chicken wings, you can still make this recipe in a pressure cooker.  Even though they are not defrosted you can still add the frozen wings to the Instant Pot insert and sprinkle them with the seasonings.  Still pour the cooking liquid over them and seal the pressure cooker closed.  When cooking the wings from frozen, you will need to set them for a longer time on the Instant Pot. So instead of 5 minutes on Manual, set it for 15 minutes on Manual.  Still, let it release pressure naturally for 10 minutes after.


Instant Pot buffalo wings
Wings complete with the pressure cooker stage


How to Make Instant Pot Wings Crispy

There is one more step to perfect these wings.  Remove the chicken wings from the Instant Pot and place them on a baking sheet. Crisp up under the broiler on low, rotating as you cook to ensure all sides get golden.  The skin will crisp up and caramelize the sauce that has been absorbed into every piece of chicken.


Chicken wings
Crispy wings ready for sauce


Time to Heat Things Up!

The final step is to melt the additional butter in a microwave-safe bowl, add the hot sauce and wings then toss with a set of tongs.  You can also serve without the additional sauce for a mild version that even my kids like.  I also sometimes take them at this point and toss them in melted butter and parmesan cheese.

I recently had these with the pickled vegetables that Miley helped me make.  This recipe is a favorite and was our first Pinterest hit as it had 8K impressions in one day. You must try the recipe here –

I also suggest serving these with my homemade ranch dressing. I make it without mayonnaise and it is the perfect cool creamy accompaniment for these spicy wings.  Try that here –


Instant Pot Buffalo Chicken Wings with Homemade Ranch & Quick Pickled Vegetables – all recipes on the blog



This recipe is so popular it has been featured on many other websites, including:





Instant Pot Buffalo Chicken wings PIN
Instant Pot Buffalo Chicken wings PIN


Product Recommendations for this Recipe:



Perfect Instant Pot Buffalo Chicken Wings with Pickled Vegetable and Homemade Ranch Dressing

How to Make Instant Pot Buffalo Chicken Wings (Secret Step Included)

Fall off the bone buffalo chicken wings will please any crowd. The cooking liquid secret adds so much flavor.
4.89 from 9 votes
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Course Appetizer
Cuisine American
Servings 6


  • pressure cooker


  • 3 pounds chicken wings / drummettes
  • ¾ cup water
  • ¼ cup hot sauce
  • 2 TB apple cider vinegar
  • 4 TB salted butter melted
  • ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
  • salt & pepper
  • ¼ cup additional hot sauce


  • Combine cooking liquid ingredients together – water, hot sauce, AC vinegar, 2 TB melted butter and the cayenne pepper. Pour into the insert of your Instant Pot or Pressure Cooker.
  • Season chicken thoroughly with salt and pepper. Add to the pot.
  • Lock and seal the lid. Close the steam valve on the lid. Select Manual and press the up or down arrows to set the Instant Pot to 5.
  • It will take about 10 minutes to come to pressure. Once it does it will count down the 5 minutes. After it counts down the Instant Pot will beep. At this point let the pressure release naturally by keeping the lid locked and the valve sealed until the clock counts back up to 10 minutes.
  • After 10 minutes, open the steam valve carefully with a wooden spoon or long utensil. Remove the chicken wings with tongs and place on a baking sheet.
  • Place under a low broiler and rotate to brown and crisp up all sides.
  • While crisping, in a large bowl combine the other 2 TB of melted butter and more hot sauce – to your taste. I use usually about another 1/4-1/2 cup at this point for all the wings.
  • Once crispy toss wings in the butter and hot sauce mixture.
  • Serve with ranch or blue cheese dressing, raw vegetable sticks or coleslaw.
Keyword chicken, easy, gluten-free, grain-free, instant pot, keto, low carb, paleo, poultry, pressure cooker, spicy


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