Get dinner on the table fast with this delicious recipe for Instant Pot Chicken and Rice! This all-in-one dinner recipe features tender chicken, fluffy rice, and a medley of vegetables that are flavored to perfection!
When it comes to quick and easy family meals, I love turning the Instant Pot.
With one-pot recipes like Instant Pot Hamburger Helper, Instant Pot Spaghetti, Instant Pot Beef Stroganoff, Instant Pot Tuna Noodle Casserole, and Instant Pot Chicken and Rice, dinner does not need to be complicated!
Reasons to Love Instant Pot Chicken & Rice
- One-Pot Meal. This recipe for Instant Pot Chicken and Rice is a complete meal all in one! Rice, chicken, and vegetables all cook together perfectly in the Instant Pot to deliver a wholesome meal with minimal clean-up!
- Fast. Instant Pot Chicken and Rice comes together in 30 minutes, making it the perfect meal for any night of the week. Even busy weeknights!
- Affordable. The most expensive ingredient in this recipe is chicken. But because the dish is bulked up with inexpensive ingredients, like rice, carrots, and peas, you can feed a large family without breaking the bank.
- Picky-Eater Approved. The flavors and vegetables in Instant Pot chicken and rice are both familiar and comforting. But if you have really picky eaters, omit the carrots and/or peas!
Notes On Ingredients
- Chicken: You can use either boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs for Instant Pot Chicken and Rice. And while the recipe calls for using a full pound of chicken, you can cut that amount in half and still have a delicious, hearty meal, and lessen the cost per serving.
- Butter/Oil: I use both butter and oil to make this recipe. The butter will give the dish richness, and the olive oil will help prevent the butter from burning.
- Rice: As much as I love whole grains and Instant Pot Brown Rice, this is one recipe in which it is crucial to use long-grain white rice or jasmine rice. Do NOT use brown rice. The chicken would be overcooked and become dried out in the time it takes brown rice to cook.
- White Wine: Adding in a bit of dry white wine, such as a Chardonnay or Pinot Grigio, adds an incredible depth of flavor to this simple recipe. However, if you don't care to cook with alcohol, replace the wine with additional chicken broth.
- Chicken Stock/Chicken Broth: Use low-sodium store-bought or homemade chicken broth to control the sodium in this recipe. This is a great time to use Instant Pot Chicken Stock if you have it on hand.
- Vegetables: This recipe for Instant Pot Chicken and Rice calls for adding onions, carrots, and peas. You certainly can omit one or all three of the vegetables to accommodate your family's palates.
- Cheese: To give this chicken and rice additional flavor, I love to finish it with freshly grated parmesan cheese. For a really cheesy version of Instant Pot Chicken and Rice, add up to 2 cups of shredded sharp cheddar cheese.
Tips for Making Instant Pot Chicken & Rice
Tip#1: Season the Chicken Well. The trick to making flavorful one-pot meals is to season every layer. Start this recipe by liberally sprinkling the diced chicken with kosher salt and pepper.
Tip #2: Saute the Chicken. To help develop the flavor in this recipe and help the chicken and carrots to fully cook through, I recommend sauteeing the chicken with the onions and carrots until the chicken is browned and the onion has softened.
Tip #2: Saute the Onion and Thyme. Another secret to developing flavor in this chicken and rice recipe is to lightly toast the garlic and thyme leaves. To do this, add in the minced garlic and dried thyme leaves after the chicken has browned, and saute for just 30-60 seconds. This will help develop the flavor of the garlic and thyme, but prevent the herbs from burning.
Tip #3. Deglaze with Wine. Any time you saute anything using the Instant Pot, you must deglaze the inner pot to prevent a burn notice. I love using dry white wine, which adds a depth of flavor to this recipe that is irresistibly good.
Tip #4: Rinse the Rice! When it comes to pressure-cooking rice, it is crucial to rinse the rice in a fine-mesh strainer so that it cooks properly. Once you add the rinsed rice to the inner pot, gently push the rice with a spoon down to fully submerge it into the liquid.
Tip #5: Let Pressure Release Naturally. Once the cooking time has elapsed let the pressure release naturally (leave the Instant Pot alone) for at least 10 minutes. That time will ensure your rice turns out fluffy and fully cooked and keep the chicken juicy and tender.
Tip #6: Finish with Flavor. At this point, you can serve the Instant Pot Chicken and Rice, but to take the flavor up a bit, add in frozen peas and cheese. The peas will add color and a bright flavor and the cheese will add a nice, rich finish.
Tip #7: Fluff with a Fork. Fluff the rice with a fork, as you gently stir in the peas and cheese. It is always best to use a fork, not a spoon, to fluff rice to keep the texture intact.
How to Store and Reheat Leftovers
Leftover Instant Pot Chicken and Rice? Use the following suggestions to refrigerate or freeze the leftovers to enjoy at another time.
- To Refrigerate: Allow the chicken and rice to cool slightly and then transfer it to an airtight container. Store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
- To Freeze: Allow the chicken and rice to cool fully. Transfer the cooled mixture to a freezer-safe airtight container. Store in the freezer for up to 3 months.
- To reheat: If needed, allow the chicken and rice to defrost overnight in the refrigerator. Transfer the mixture to a heat-safe container and cover it with a damp paper towel. Heat in the microwave in 1-minute intervals until warmed through, fluffing with a fork after each minute. If you find the rice to be dried out, add 1-2 tablespoons of chicken broth before reheating.
More Delicious Instant Pot Meals
- Instant Pot Meatloaf and Mashed Potatoes
- Instant Pot Chicken Chili
- Instant Pot Red Beans and Rice
- Instant Pot Burrito Bowl
- Instant Pot White Chicken Chili
- Instant Pot Jambalaya
- Instant Pot Taco Pasta
If you enjoyed this recipe for Instant Pot Chicken and Rice, I would love for you to leave a comment and review below.
Instant Pot Chicken and Rice
- 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs cut into 1-inch pieces
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1-½ teaspoons kosher salt divided
- 1 teaspoon black pepper divided
- 1 medium onion finely chopped
- 2 large carrots peeled and finely diced
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
- ½ cup dry white wine or additional chicken broth
- 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth/stock
- 2 cups long-grain white rice or jasmine rice
- 1 cup frozen peas optional
- ⅓ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese optional
- fresh parsley for serving
- Turn the Instant Pot to saute, add the oil and butter to the inner pot, and let heat until the butter has melted.
- While the inner pot is heating, dice the chicken into 1-inch cubes, trimming off any fat. Season evenly with ½ teaspoon each of salt and pepper.
- Add the seasoned chicken, onion, and carrots to the inner pot and saute, stirring occasionally, until the onion is softened and the chicken is just lightly browned.
- Add in the garlic and thyme leaves and saute for 30 seconds, just to toast the garlic and thyme.
- To the inner pot, add the wine (or ½ cup of additional chicken broth) and scrape up any browned bits off the bottom of the inner pot. Let the wine cook off for 1-2 minutes and then hit cancel on the Instant Pot to turn off the saute function.
- Add 2 cups of chicken broth, 1 teaspoon of salt, and ½ teaspoon of pepper to the inner pot and stir to combine.
- Place the rice into a fine mesh strainer and rinse well. Add the rinsed rice to the inner pot and gently push it down to fully submerge it into the liquid.
- Place the lid on the instant pot, be sure the vent knob is pointed towards sealed, and set to cook on HIGH PRESSURE for 3 minutes. (Hit manual or pressure cook and then use the +/- buttons to adjust the time to read 3.)
- Once the cooking time has elapsed let the pressure release naturally for at least 10 minutes.
- Open the lid, and add the frozen peas, parmesan cheese., and cheddar cheese if using. Fluff the rice with a fork, as you gently stir in the peas and cheese. Cover the instant pot and let sit for 2-3 minutes, or until the peas have warmed through and the cheese has melted.
- Garnish with fresh parsley and additional parmesan cheese if desired, and serve.