Instant Pot Chicken and Rice is a great dinner to make when you need a little comfort food. The bonus is that this is basically a one pot meal. You have your starch, protein, veggie, and dairy all in one! What is really great is this chicken and rice recipe is done in about 30 minutes in your electric pressure cooker!
This recipe for cheesy chicken and rice in the instant pot is a little healthier than traditional chicken & rice casserole. This dish is made without canned soup or butter. Instead it is made creamy with the help of plain Greek yogurt.
For a little crunch I add chopped water chestnuts. I also add frozen broccoli and canned mushrooms for an extra layer of veggies and flavor.
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The main reason that I recommend these two Instant Pots is the size, 6 quarts. This gives you the space you need inside the pot to make just about any recipe, for two people or ten people! But it is small enough to store in the cabinets.
Did you know that your Instant Pot can also double as a Slow Cooker!!! I plan to take advantage of that feature more this winter.
How to Make Instant Pot Cheesy Chicken and Rice
Turn the Instant Pot onto saute mode and add the oil. Saute the onions and celery for about 5 minutes. Add the chicken base and let it melt into the veggies. Pour in the water.
Turn the saute mode off.
Add the next 4 ingredients to the instant pot in this order:
- chicken pieces
- 1 tsp salt & ½ tsp black pepper sprinkled over top
- can drained mushrooms
Make sure all the rice is covered by liquid so it cooks properly.
Pop the lid on the Instant Pot and lock it into place, turn the top pressure valve to “seal”, turn the pot on to Rice mode for 12 minutes (auto rice mode – 12 minutes is normal heat/low pressure).
At the end of 12 minutes do a quick release of pressure by turning the pressure valve to “vent”.
Add the frozen broccoli florets and give the pot a stir. Sprinkle the water chestnuts over top. Pop the lid back on so the residual heat in the pot can thaw the broccoli for 5 minutes.
Meanwhile make the cream/cheese sauce by whisking together ½ cup milk, ⅓ cup mayo, ⅓ cup plain greek yogurt (non-fat), 1 tsp garlic powder, and 1 cup shredded cheese.
When the broccoli is warmed through pour the sauce over the chicken, broccoli and rice and give it a stir to coat.
Give it a little taste to see if you want additional salt & pepper.
Fresh Broccoli vs Frozen Broccoli
This recipe calls for frozen broccoli because I find that it cooks perfectly in the hot rice, yet still has a little crunch and isn’t mushy.
I have also tried this recipe with fresh broccoli. It is still good, of course, but the broccoli doesn’t cook down quite enough for my taste. But if you love a super crunchy veggie in your chicken and rice definitely give fresh broccoli a try.
If you use fresh broccoli make sure you cut it into small bite size florets and increase the time it sits in the hot rice pot to 8-10 minutes.
Variations on IP Chicken & Rice
This can be a pretty flexible recipe, depending on what you have in your kitchen. Here are some ideas to get you started:
- Make this without the chicken for a vegetarian entree, or an excellent cheesy rice side dish.
- If you do not have broccoli, try making it with canned green beans (drained).
- To add more veggies add a ½ cup of frozen peas with the frozen broccoli.
- Use sour cream instead of plain greek yogurt.
- When asparagus is in season and inexpensive (spring), try subbing it for the broccoli, or add it for an extra veggie.
Instant Pot Cheesy Chicken & Rice Recipe
Instant Pot Cheesy Chicken, Broccoli, and Rice
- Instant Pot or Electric Pressure Cooker
- 1 tbsp oil
- 1 cup yellow onion, chopped (about 1 small-medium onion)
- 1 cup celery, chopped (about 2 stalks)
- 2 tsp chicken base (see notes below)
- 2 cups water
- 1 ½ cups rice long grain white rice
- 2 fresh boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1 inch cubes
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- ½ tsp black pepper
- 6.5 oz canned chopped mushrooms, drained
- 2 cups (heaping) frozen broccoli florets
- 8 oz canned sliced water chestnuts, drained and chopped
- 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- ½ cup milk
- ⅓ cup non-fat plain greek yogurt
- ⅓ cup mayonnaise
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- Turn the Instant Pot on to saute mode and add the oil. Saute the onions and celery for about 5 minutes.Add the 2 tsp chicken base, stir to melt the chicken base into the veggies. Pour in 2 cups water.
- Turn saute mode off
- Add the next 4 ingredients in this order: rice, raw chicken breast cubes, mushrooms.Sprinkle with 1 tsp kosher salt and ½ tsp black pepper.
- Put the lid on the pot and lock it into place. Turn the top pressure vent to "seal". Set to cook on Rice mode for 12 minutes.
- When the Instant Pot beeps do a quick release by turning the top pressure valve to “vent”.
- Add the 2 heaping cups of frozen broccoli florets and stir into the rice (I find using a fork for this works best because it "fluffs" the rice)Sprinkle the drained chopped water chestnuts over top. Close the lid of the pot and let the residual heat in the pot thaw the broccoli.
- Whisk together the cream/cheese sauce ingredients: 1 cup shredded cheese, ½ cups milk, ⅓ cup mayonnaise, ⅓ cup non-fat plain greek yogurt, ½ tsp garlic powder.
- Pour the cheese sauce over the chicken and rice and stir to coat.
- Serve immediately!
Additional Instant Pot Recipes
If you are looking for other ways to use your Instant Pot here are some great IP recipe from Mom’s Dinner:
- Sausage Rigatoni with Tomato Cream Sauce
- Steak Soup
- Sausage & Kale Potato Soup
- Cajun Rice with Chicken & Sausage
- Shredded Chicken Tacos
- Instant Pot Chili
- Instant Pot Rotisserie Chicken
Originally posted August 2018 – Recipe, Copy, and Photos Updated January 2020