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Cayenne Rosemary Instant Pot Chicken Legs Recipe

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This Cayenne Rosemary Instant Pot Chicken Legs are just the right amount of spice and rosemary flavor. Honey, rosemary, cayenne all work together in a delicious marinade for this Instant Pot bone-in chicken.

chicken legs over rice in oval cookware

Need for chicken recipes? Try out our Instant Pot Chicken Tacos Walking Taco Style or our Lemon Butter Chicken Recipe. Both are amazing and perfect in every way.

Cayenne Rosemary Instant Pot Chicken Legs Recipe

Cooking chicken legs in the Instant Pot is really, really simple. Like crazy simple. So simple that you really can’t do anything to “mess” this recipe up.

And since this pressure cooker rosemary chicken recipe takes just a few moments to make. You have no excuse to not give it a try. I love using this recipe to kick start my meal prep for the week!

(Don’t let the added cayenne fool you. It’s just a slight heat – nothing overpowering at all!)

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How to Make This Cayenne Rosemary Instant Pot Chicken Legs Recipe

chicken legs and marinade ingredients

Step 1: Mix together the cayenne pepper, salt, honey, olive oil, and crushed garlic in a small bowl.

Pat your chicken legs with a paper towel to dry them. Take a knife and cut small slits into the surface.

chicken legs in marinade

Step 2: Put the marinade mix into a ziplock bag and add in the chicken. Put it in the fridge and let it marinate for 2 hours.

Take your onion and cut it into strips. Do the same with the lemon.

Step 3: Put your Instant Pot on saute mode. Once you’ve done that, add in the butter. Let it get hot before you place the chicken in the IP.

Take the chicken out of the fridge and out of the ziplock bag but be certain to keep the marinade that is in the bag for later.

searing chicken legs in instant pot

Step 4: Put the chicken in the Instant Pot and fry up each side for 2-3 minutes. The skin should be light gold.

Once golden, remove the chicken from the Instant Pot.

Step 5: Use the rest of the butter and add it to the Instant Pot with the onion. Cook for 1-2 minutes until onions are translucent.

ingredients for rosemary chicken

Step 6: Put the chicken back into the Instant pot right on top of the onion. Then, take the marinade from the bag and pour it over the top.

Put in lemon slices and sprigs of rosemary.

Step 7: Next, put the lid on your Instant Pot, turn to manual mode, and cook for 7 minutes.

You will then quickly release the pressure and take off the lid. Turn your Instant Pot to saute mode to let the juices inside thicken.

Once done, serve up with your favorite sides. This honey cayenne chicken is delicious!

Full directions and recipe is in the printable recipe card below. 

Can you stack chicken legs in the Instant Pot?

You bet. You can easily stack the chicken legs if you need to. Just make sure to toss the chicken in the marinade for an even coating.

When you saute, do in batches that way all the chicken gets an even sear.

chicken in a serving platter

Can I Use Other Cuts of Chicken

If you are wanting to use chicken thighs or even wings you are more than welcome to swap them out instead of chicken legs.

Just know if the chicken pieces are large you might need to add a few extra minutes to the cooking time. Make sure the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 165 to ensure your meat is fully cooked.

Here Are A Few More Instant Pot Recipes

chicken in a serving platter

Cayenne Rosemary Instant Pot Chicken Legs

Yield: 6
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes

Honey Cayenne Rosemary Instant Pot Chicken Legs are a sweet and spicy chicken leg made in the Instant Pot. The perfect weeknight dinner full of flavor.


  • 1 package chicken legs 5-6
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper (can do 1/2 teaspoon if you want milder)
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 4 gloves garlic, minced
  • 3 tablespoons oil
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 large onion
  • 2 sprigs rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch and 1 teaspoon water (cornstarch slurry)


  1. Start by mixing your minced garlic, cayenne pepper, salt, honey and oil in a bag. This is going to be your chicken marinade.
  2. Now you will pat down to dry chicken. Then with a knife add slits in the chicken. This will help soak in the marinade.
  3. Add chicken legs and marinade together in a bag and seal and place in the fridge for 2 hours. Or you can marinade for up to 12 hours.
  4. When ready to cook you will want to thinly slice the onion into strips, and cut lemon slices. Then turn your pressure cooker to saute and add half the butter to the pot.
  5. Remove chicken from the marinade, reserve marinade for later. Place chicken into pressure cooker and saute to sear the outside of the chicken legs. Once done remove chicken and place on a plate.
  6. Now add in the rest of your butter and onion, and saute until they are tender and transclucent. This takes just a few minutes.
  7. Now you will turn the saute off, and add in your marinade and chicken stock. Scrape the bottom of the Instant Pot with a wooden spoon to remove any stuck on bits. Then place chicken, rosemary, and lemon slices on top of chicken.
  8. Place lid on Instant Pot and do a manual/high pressure for 7 minutes, followed by a quick release of pressure when time is done.
  9. Remove the chicken and then you can turn your saute mode on, and allow the sauce to thicken. Do 1 teaspoon cornstarch and 1 teaspoon cold water, stir well then pour into the hot Instant pot and stir. This will thicken the sauce.
  10. Pour the sauce over the chicken, and serve. This honey rosemary cayenne chicken thigh recipe is so delicious!
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 468Total Fat: 42gSaturated Fat: 21gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 18gCholesterol: 137mgSodium: 697mgCarbohydrates: 12gFiber: 1gSugar: 8gProtein: 12g

This information is automatically calculated by third-party software, including but not limited to the Create or Bake Me Some Sugar. For accurate nutrition, I suggest running the ingredients in your own system to get a more accurate reading. Nutritional information is approximate and automatically calculated, and should only be viewed as an indication.

instant pot chicken legs

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