This Instant Pot Italian Chicken Pasta is an easy Instant Pot recipe that is loaded with flavor — no mushy pasta in sight! A simple sauce made of Italian herbs, roasted red peppers, spinach and Parmesan.
Ever since I made these Creamy Italian Instant Pot Chicken Breasts and people went crazy for them, I’ve been asked over and over again how to cook this recipe and just add the pasta right in the Instant Pot.
It has taken me entirely too long, but here I am with a post dedicated to all of this Instant Pot pasta deliciousness.
This Italian Chicken Pasta is an easy Instant Pot dinner recipe that our whole family loves!
I love that I can make a delicious meal and only dirty one pot.
I love that my family will eat it, eagerly.
The family loves that it’s pasta (hey, we all have our favorites), and that creamy, delicious, flavorful sauce. It’s a hard one to beat!
How to make this Instant Pot Italian Chicken Pasta:
- Chop up your chicken — because pasta cooks so quickly, we need to minimize the cook time required for the chicken. The way to do this is to cut it up into bite-sized pieces.
- Searing — I’m not really searing the chicken, but cooking it just slightly on the outside ensures that you don’t end up with one big clump of chicken cooked together. It also ensures that the cook time for the chicken and the pasta will be the same.
- Stir together your broth and seasonings. Add your chicken, tomato, spinach, peppers and stir, then top with your pasta. It’s best not to stir your pasta as it will potentially stick to the bottom and cause a burn message. Simply press it down into the liquid — it doesn’t matter if it’s covered or not.
- Pressure cook — use the manual or pressure cook button on your Instant Pot, mine is a 6 quart and I know that they are all a little different.
- Quick release — pasta is so easily overcooked, so we want to do a controlled quick release once the cook time is up. This means that we will use a towel (or something that will prevent you from splattering yourself) and hold the valve open slightly so that the steam escapes gradually and not in one swoop.
- Stir in the remaining sauce ingredients, and heat on saute just until thickened.
Tips for making the best Instant Pot Pasta:
I understand the general rule of them is half of the cook time listed on the box.
I’m going to be bold enough here to say that I think this is, in fact, generally incorrect. That cook time is way too long.
Cook time for short cuts of pasta:
For most short cuts of pasta, 2 minutes is plenty, and if you like your pasta very al dente, even 1 minute is likely enough for some cuts.
- and anything roughly the same size
The cook time will really depend on your preference when it comes to pasta, but I would never ever go over 2 minutes for most short pasta cuts in the Instant Pot. Even with spaghetti, because it is so thin, 2 minutes is plenty and many people overdo it.
Cook times for white pasta v. whole grain:
I’ve used both, many times, and I’ve tested both in different recipes.
I haven’t found there to be a significant difference between whole grain and white pasta — I still always do 2 minutes.
I don’t generally use thicker long cuts like fettucine in the Instant Pot, because I’m worried it will end up in one big clump. Short cuts and spaghettti do the best for me.
Variations on this Italian Chicken Pasta:
- Add in different vegetables: mushrooms, tomatoes, peppers, green beans, broccoli (though I would steam the broccoli separately and add it in after the cook time) would all be great!
- Swap the chicken for Italian sausage for a spicy twist!
- Go vegetarian — skip the chicken, add extra veggies and use vegetable broth for a meatless meal. Optional: add canned white beans for a hit of protein!
More easy Instant Pot recipes you’ll love!
- Juicy Instant Pot Chicken Breast
- Instant Pot Chicken Tacos
- Creamy Garlic Instant Pot Chicken Thighs
- Instant Pot Honey Garlic Chicken
- Instant Pot Pork Tenderloin with Garlic Herb Rub
Instant Pot Italian Chicken Pasta
- 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts chopped into 1" pieces
- 1 teaspoon oil
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 3/4 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 3 cups low sodium chicken broth
- 1 large tomato diced
- 1/2 cup finely chopped spinach
- 1/3 cup roasted red peppers (from the jar, chopped)
- 3 cups whole grain fusili or other short cut pasta
- 1/3 cup heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons corn starch
- 1 tablespoon basil pesto
- 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
- Turn the Instant Pot to saute and add the chicken and drizzle with oil. Stir and cook for 2 minutes (it won't be browned, just slightly cooked on the outside).
- Add the salt, garlic, Italian seasoning and pepper. Cook and stir 1 minute.
- Add the chicken broth, and scrape the bottom well to remove any bits that may have stuck.
- Turn the Instant Pot off.
- Stir in the tomato, spinach and red peppers. Top with pasta, and gently press the pasta into the liquid but don't stir (it's best if it's not touching the bottom of the pot).
- Put the lid on, turn the valve to sealing, and select Pressure Cook or Manual for 2 minutes. It will take about 10 minutes to come to pressure and begin counting down.
- When the cook time is over, turn the Instant Pot off and let sit for 2-3 minutes.
- Gradually release the pressure by holding the valve open slightly, so that it releases gradually and not all at once.
- Stir together the cream, corn starch and pesto. Turn the Instant Pot to saute, and add in the cream mixture. Stir and cook for 2 minutes or until sauce is thickened.
- Stir in Parmesan cheese and serve.
Nutrition (this is an estimate)