Instant Pot Chicken Pasta with parmesan will be your new weeknight favorite! This quick and tasty pasta dish with a simple homemade marinara sauce cooks in less than 30 minutes in your electric pressure cooker.

Comfort meets healthy are some of our favorite dinners around here and Instant Pot mac and cheese, Instant Pot spaghetti and Instant Pot minestrone all top the list!

Instant Pot chicken pasta

I created this Instant Pot chicken pasta last week out of exhaustion. Chicken and pasta are always in my kitchen and I know 100% kids will love dinner when it is healthy pasta recipes. Can you relate? 🙂

So, you know baked chicken parmesan? This is kind of that but in a form of a one pot meal – less than 30 minutes, easy and simple. Pasta in parmesan garlic tomato sauce, tender chicken pieces and gooey cheese on top.

This pasta makes a regular dinner idea in rotation with 10 minute easy spaghetti recipe year round!

Why Make Instant Pot Parmesan Chicken Pasta?

  • One pot meal: Less mess equals more time to relax and think about making a healthy dessert
  • Comfort food: Nothing satisfies better than a cheesy pasta dish!
  • Simple ingredients: That you probably have in your fridge or pantry right now! 
  • Perfect consistency: Just enough sauce, chicken, pasta and cheese in every bite. It’s perfection if I dare say so!
  • Family friendly: Kids love pasta and this is a great way to introduce a new dish with a familiar look and feel. 
  • Adaptable: Use gluten free pasta or dairy free cheese to accommodate whatever your family needs!  
Instant Pot Chicken Pasta coated in melted cheese and sauce and garnished with herbs

Ingredients for Instant Pot Chicken Pasta

  • Chicken: You will need 2-3 large boneless and skinless chicken breasts or about 1.5 lbs thighs. Avoid bone in chicken, it won’t have enough time to cook and pasta will overcook.
  • Pasta: Any pasta works! White, whole wheat or gluten free (shorter cook time). What matters is the shape – grooves and holes to scoop up the sauce. I love a tubular shape for Instant Pot penne pasta!
  • Tomato sauce: I am using simple affordable low sodium tomato sauce from a can. I always have it on hand – it’s just easy plus wholesome with minimal ingredients.
  • Italian herbs: The usual, garlic powder, dried basil and oregano, for both seasoning your chicken and jazzing up your homemade simple marinara sauce!
  • Chicken broth: Helps dilute the paste sauce so you avoid dreaded Burn. It also adds terrific flavor, especially when using homemade chicken stock.
  • Cheeses: Parmesan cheese adds flavor to the Instant Pot penne pasta sauce and mozzarella is more of a topping to entice children and husbands.
  • Fresh herbs and garlic: Parsley and basil are recommended, the Ukrainian in me always has fresh dill!

Veggie tip: You can always add veggies at the end like finely chopped broccoli, peas or edamame.

instant pot chicken pasta with parmesan ingredients

How to Make Instant Pot Chicken Pasta

  • Brown chicken: Sprinkle chicken breasts with spices and saute for 4-5 minutes per side. Please note it takes 4-5 mins for your pressure cooker to preheat and it is important to wait until display says Hot.
  • Add pasta, sauce and chicken: Deglaze pot only with 1 cup broth to save time and avoid Burn. Then add pasta, seasonings and stir to help pasta not stick. Return chicken to the pot and add tomato sauce on top. Now you do not stir to avoid the dreaded Burn.
  • Cook on high pressure for 5 minutes and release pressure immediately to avoid overcooked pasta. Super important!
  • Slice chicken, add cheeses and garlic: Remove chicken, slice it and return to the pot. Add Parmesan and half of mozzarella cheese, grated garlic and stir very gently. Sprinkle with more cheese and let it melt for a few minutes while Instant Pot is closed.

Meal plan accordingly: Please keep in mind, pasta dish doesn’t freeze well and recipe serves 6. I share how to cut recipe and adapt to 3 quart Instant Pot in the recipe notes.

Optional Add-In’s and Variations

  • Gluten free pasta: I would cook it for 3 minutes at first. If it comes out uncooked, close the lid and let it sit while you are slicing chicken. Pasta absorbs liquid fast!
  • Other pasta shapes: Macaroni, rigatoni, ditalini, medium shells, rotelle – really anything that has a good groove or hole will work!

Budget friendly tip! Check your pantry and see what small amounts of pasta you have; if it has similar cooking times, why not mix them together? Kids can have fun with different pasta shape guessing and you can save money/have less waste by not buying new box of pasta!

  • Your favorite sauce: You can use any jarred sauce and skip seasonings and salt, then adjust to taste at the end.
  • Different cheese: Instead of mozzarella feel free to use any cheese that melts like white cheddar, swiss, gouda etc.
  • Fresh herbs: Parsley, basil, rosemary. I was out and as a true Ukrainian I always have dill on hand (hence using it for photos!).
  • Heat it up: A few pinch of red pepper flakes.
  • Creamy: A splash of whole milk, cream cheese, half and half or any other ‘cream’ would taste great!
  • Sun dried tomatoes: Would add an amazing Tuscan pasta taste.
  • Veggies: Spinach or kale could be stirred in at the end. Try some chopped broccoli or cauliflower for even more sneaky veggies. Bell pepper would be lovely, too!
  • Dairy free: Use your favorite dairy free cheese, Violife or Miyokos both melt well!
  • Vegetarian: Skip chicken and use a heartier white bean such as white kidney or cannellini beans (add with pasta). Saute mushrooms instead in step 1, yum!
  • Splash of wine: For depth of flavor!

Tips for Best Chicken and Pasta Results

  • “Too runny” when you open: Do not worry if you see a lot of liquid when you open the pot. Pasta will soak it up like a sponge – trust me.
  • Grated garlic vs. minced: Grated garlic is way more flavorful than minced. Amount depends if you are a garlic loving family. And adding it after results in way more flavor than adding it before cooking.
  • For 3 quart Instant Pot: Cut ingredients in half and keep same cook time.
  • Double the recipe: You can do so only 8 quart because there is enough room, double ingredients and keep same cook time.
  • Fresh cheese: If I have said it once, I have said it again 🙂 Freshly grated cheese always tastes better and has less preservatives!

fresh grated parmesan cheese on cutting board

FAQs

Can I use frozen chicken for Instant Pot chicken parmesan pasta?

Normally, most healthy Instant Pot chicken recipes can easily swap between using fresh and frozen chicken. This recipe unfortunately, you will need thawed chicken as using frozen could cause your pasta to be very overcooked and mushy. A work around could be to do a quick thaw of your chicken, although I have not tested this. To quick thaw, place frozen chicken on a trivet, add 1 cup of water and cook for 1 minute on high pressure then quick release. Since your chicken is not cooked, only thawed you can now proceed with recipe as written.

Do I need to put chicken on trivet for Instant Pot penne pasta?

No, just follow my directions for how to place your order of ingredients.

Can I use my homemade marinara sauce?

Yes! Just ensure the liquid total amount is the same for what the recipe calls for and remember the tomato sauce last and don’t stir before pressure cooking.

Can I cut used cubed chicken for chicken pasta in Instant Pot?

While I have not tested this, readers have had success with this time saving hack. Cut your chicken into 1.5 inch pieces and then sauté. No cook time change for recipe.

Can I use cooked chicken?

Skip sauteing and add it to the bottom with spices and everything else. A great way to use leftover Instant Pot chicken or oven baked chicken breast.

Instant Pot Parmesan Chicken Pasta served in blue bowl

How to Serve Cheesy Chicken and Pasta?

This Instant Pot one pot meal doesn’t need much but here are a few ideas if you have an extra hungry crew!

How to Store Leftover Chicken Pasta?

Store: Refrigerate leftovers for up to 1 day. Unfortunately, pasta becomes mushy very fast. My kids don’t mind but if you are like me and do, you can cut recipe in half – tips on recipe notes.

Freeze? And please do not freeze. Pasta doesn’t freeze well. Cut recipe in half rather.

Reheat: Honestly microwave is the best option. Any further cooking on the stove or Instant Pot will make pasta more mushy. It is possible, just being honest. I mean food is food. This is more of quick and easy dinner for same night.

I hope you enjoy and would love to hear in comments below if you did. 🙂

More Instant Pot One Pot Meals

Instant Pot Parmesan Chicken Pasta in a pot with a spoon
instant pot parmesan chicken pasta

Instant Pot Chicken Pasta with Parmesan

Instant Pot Chicken Pasta with parmesan will be your new weeknight favorite! This quick and tasty pasta dish with a simple homemade marinara sauce cooks in less than 30 minutes in your electric pressure cooker.
5 from 28 votes
Servings 6
Calories 377
Prep Time 3 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 23 minutes

Ingredients 
 

For Chicken:

For Pasta:

  • 5 cups chicken stock low sodium
  • 12 oz 4 cups any tubular pasta, uncooked
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp oregano or basil dried
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • Ground black pepper to taste
  • 14 oz can tomato sauce low sodium
  • 1-2 large garlic cloves grated
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese grated
  • 1 cup Mozzarella cheese grated & divided
  • Fresh parsley or basil for garnish (optional)

Instructions 

  • Press Saute on 6 or 8 quart Instant Pot and wait until display says Hot. Takes about 4-5 mins.
  • In the meanwhile, sprinkle chicken breasts with basil, garlic powder, salt and pepper on both sides.
  • Swirl oil in Instant Pot and add chicken breasts. Cook for 4-5 mins per each side. Helps to tilt the pot to distribute oil as its bottom isn’t flat like a skillet.
  • Remove chicken on a plate, add 1 cup stock and deglaze the pot. Press Cancel.
  • Add remaining 4 cups of stock, pasta, olive oil, oregano, salt, pepper and stir.
  • Add chicken and pour tomato sauce on top. Do not stir!
  • Close the lid, set valve to Sealing and Press Manual or Pressure Cook on High for 5 minutes.
  • Release pressure immediately by turning it to Venting (to avoid pasta overcooking) – quick release.
  • Open the lid, remove chicken onto a plate and cut into small pieces. Return to the pot.
  • Add 1-2 cloves grated garlic, 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, 1/2 cup Mozzarella cheese and stir.
  • Sprinkle with remaining 1/2 cup Mozzarella, close the lid and let cheese melt for 5 minutes.
  • Sprinkle with parsley or basil and preferably serve immediately. The best tastes is fresh!

Video

Notes

  • Store: Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight container for up to 2 days. Reheat in a pot with a splash of water or broth by simmering on low heat covered and stirring occasionally for about 5 minutes.
  • Freeze: Pasta does not freeze well.
  • Pasta: Gluten free, I would cook it for 3 minutes at first. If it comes out uncooked, close the lid and let it sit while you are slicing chicken. Pasta absorbs liquid fast! Any pasta with grooves works well.
  • “Too runny” when you open: Do not worry if you see a lot of liquid when you open the pot. Pasta will soak it up like a sponge – trust me.
  • Hood fan tip: I saute in Instant Pot under a hood fan. I am good with remembering not to turn on the stove.
  • Broth shortcut: Instead of broth I use organic low sodium bouillon cubes diluted in water.
  • To cut recipe in half or double: If you would like less servings, cut ingredients in half and keep same cook time for 6 or 8 quart Instant Pot. Double only in 8 quart, same cook time.
  • For 3 quart Instant Pot: Cut ingredients in half and keep same cook time.
See recipe post for more tips and FAQs.

Nutrition

Serving: 1.5cups | Calories: 377kcal | Carbohydrates: 48g | Protein: 38g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 90mg | Sodium: 439mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 4g
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: Italian
Author: Olena Osipov
Did you make this recipe?Mention @ifoodreal or tag #ifoodreal!

5 Secrets to Easy Healthy Dinners

Plus sign up for weekly emails with recipes to make your cooking stress free, delicious and healthy.

About Olena

Welcome! I grew up in Ukraine watching my grandma cook with simple ingredients. I have spent the last 11 years making it my mission to help you cook quick and easy meals for your family!

Pin this recipe now to save it for later

Pin Recipe

You may also like

Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Recipe Rating




This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.