Instant Pot Chicken and Rice is an easy meal of shredded chicken, white rice, and tender vegetables perfectly seasoned with Italian herbs and spices.
We've had the Instant Pot for almost 3 years, and there are a few meals that never get old. Chicken and rice is one of those dishes.
That being said, we do have a couple of versions to change things up.
Instant Pot Ranch Chicken and Rice is one of the most popular recipes on the site, while Instant Pot Buffalo Chicken and Rice is newer and just as tasty. I can't skip the Instant Pot Chicken Bacon Ranch Pasta, not a rice dish but still super tasty!
This Instant Pot Chicken and Rice recipe is different from both of those but is prepared in a similar way. The main difference is the flavoring.
This chicken and rice dish is flavored with an Italian dressing seasoning packet and sauteed vegetables. The combination adds a ton of flavor without a lot of work.
How to Make Instant Pot Chicken and Rice:
Sear the Chicken:
Start by turning on the Instant Pot using the saute function. I like to use the lowest saute setting for this, so the oil doesn't splatter.
The saute setting can be changed by pressing the saute button multiple times to cycle through the settings.
Season both sides of the chicken with salt and pepper.
Choose the setting of choice, and wait for the stainless steel liner to get hot. Then, add the oil and the chicken breasts.
Cook the chicken breasts for 3 to 4 minutes on each side, just until they are lightly browned. Remove the chicken from the liner to a waiting plate.
Sauté the Vegetables:
Leave the Instant Pot on saute, and add the onions, celery, and carrots. Use a wooden spoon or silicone spatula to stir the vegetables around for 3 to 4 minutes until they barely begin to soften.
Add the garlic to the cooking vegetables, and continue to sauté for about 30 seconds. Any longer and the garlic may burn.
The garlic needs to cook until it becomes fragrant but not brown. Turn off the Instant Pot by pressing the "Cancel" button.
Add the Chicken, Rice, Broth, and Italian Dressing Mix:
Use tongs to add the chicken breasts back to the stainless steel liner. Try to get them into an even layer.
Add the rice next. I try to pour it around the chicken breasts, and down into the bottom of the liner.
If the rice sits on top of the chicken, it may not be under the broth and may not cook correctly. Pour the broth in making sure to cover the rice completely.
Sprinkle the Italian dressing mix over the top of the chicken and rice. The great thing about using a mix, is that you can add more or less to your tastes.
Be careful of the sodium if you're salt sensitive. It may be necessary to use a low-sodium broth or substitute water.
For those with an MSG allergy or sensitivity, I looked for MSG free Italian dressing mix.
There was a brand listed on Amazon, however; it was more suited for restaurant-sized servings. Therefore, I didn't leave a link.
An option would be to leave out the dry dressing mix and add a homemade Italian dressing to taste after the chicken and rice is cooked. 🙂
Back to chicken and rice! Cook it for 8 minutes on high pressure, then turn off the Instant Pot (this keeps the rice from drying out and sticking)!
Let the pressure release on its own for about 10 minutes. This will keep the chicken from being rubbery.
Shred the Chicken:
After the 10 minutes is over, open the valve to release any remaining pressure. Carefully remove the lid.
Use two forks to shred the chicken directly in the pot, or remove it and shred it in a bowl or on a plate. Then return the chicken to the pot. Stir the chicken and rice together, and serve the Instant Pot Chicken and Rice hot with your favorite side dish.
Tips for Instant Pot Chicken and Rice:
- Instant Pot Chicken and Rice has a slightly creamy texture. To make it even creamier, add a touch of milk, heavy cream, or shredded Parmesan cheese at the end.
- We've only tried this recipe with long grain white rice and chicken breasts. If you'd like to experiment with a different rice and another cut of chicken, the times and/or liquid amount may need to be adjust.
- Each Instant Pot size requires a different amount of liquid to work correctly. Please check your user manual and adjust the amount of liquid accordingly.
- To help prevent the rice from sticking and burning, try these things:
- Measure correctly. Use a dry ingredient (stainless steel) measuring cup for the rice and a liquid (glass) measuring cup for the broth.
- Make sure there are not food bits stuck to the bottom of the stainless steel liner before adding the rice. (Deglaze the pot before cooking the rice.)
- Ensure there is enough liquid and that the rice is fully submerged in the liquid.
- We've had the best results by turning off the "keep warm" function after the Instant Pot finishes cooking. This keeps the rice from sticking to the liner and becoming gummy and sticky.
Recipe Card with Ingredient Amounts and Instructions
- 1 tablespoon cooking oil, your choice
- 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- ½ cup white onion, diced
- ½ cup carrots, diced
- ¼ cup celery, finely sliced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 cup long grain white rice
- 1 ¼ cups low-sodium chicken broth
- .7 ounces Italian dressing mix, 1 packet
- Turn on the Instant Pot using the “saute” function. When the stainless steel insert gets hot, add the oil and chicken breasts. Season the chicken breasts with salt and pepper, and cook on each side for 3 to 4 minutes just until lightly browned.1 tablespoon cooking oil1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts½ teaspoon kosher salt¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- Remove the chicken from the Instant Pot but leave the pot on saute. Pour in the onion, carrots, and celery. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes until just barely soft and use a wooden spoon to scrape the browned bits off the bottom of the stainless steel insert. Add the garlic and cook for an additional 30 seconds.½ cup white onion½ cup carrots¼ cup celery2 garlic cloves
- Turn off the Instant Pot by pressing the “cancel” button. Add the chicken back to the stainless steel insert. Pour the rice around the chicken, then add the broth.1 ¼ cups low-sodium chicken broth1 cup long grain white rice
- Use a spoon or spatula to press the rice into the broth. Sprinkle the Italian seasoning over the chicken..7 ounces Italian dressing mix
- Close the lid, set the valve to “sealing,” and press the manual (pressure cook) button. Adjust the time to 8 minutes. After the 8 minutes is up, allow a 10 minute natural release before opening the valve to release any remaining pressure.
- Carefully open the lid, and use tongs to remove the chicken. Use two forks to shred the chicken and return to the Instant Pot. Stir to combine the ingredients.
- Serve hot! Store any leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.