Instant Pot Chicken and Rice

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Instant Pot Chicken and Rice is a creamy chicken and rice casserole made completely from scratch in just one pot.  Recipe includes slow cooker instructions!

close up of instant pot chicken and rice in a bowl with sprig of thyme on top

My boys and I came down with a nasty cold last week, which made for a very unproductive week.  Thankfully we’re on the mend, and I’m in the process of playing catch up.

I had to put off sharing this Instant Pot Chicken and Rice recipe with you for a while, so I’m glad it’s finally time!  I made it countless times last month as I tested the recipe a few different ways, and I can honestly say that I never got tired of it.

My mom used to make a cream of mushroom chicken and rice dish that I loved when I was growing up.  That version included condensed cream of mushroom soup, but I’ve found a way to impart those flavors in this dish quite easily without it. 

This dish truly takes me back to my childhood. 🙂

overhead show of instant pot chicken and rice casserole in bowl with fork

Why you’ll love this chicken and rice casserole:

  • It’s pure comfort food that can be made as healthy (or unhealthy!) as you like.
  • It’s creamy and delicious, with no fancy ingredients.
  • This meal is family friendly and customizable to include your favorite herbs, spices and veggies.
  • There’s only one pot to wash.  Gotta love one pot dinners!
  • It may be made in the slow cooker as well.  You decide whether you’d like it fast or slow.
  • Instant pot chicken and rice is gluten free, and is versatile enough to be made vegetarian and dairy free.

One pot chicken and rice ingredients

instant pot chicken and rice ingredients

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Olive oil
  • Mushrooms
  • Garlic
  • Coconut milk (or your favorite milk)
  • Low sodium chicken or vegetable stock
  • Brown rice 
  • Coconut aminos (optional)
  • Thyme
  • Gruyere cheese (or your favorite)

See my homemade chicken stock and vegetable stock recipes to make your own!

How to make Instant Pot Chicken and Rice

This is one of the easiest recipes that you’ll ever make, and it comes out perfectly every single time.

chicken and rice instant pot process collage 1

  • Start by heating the olive oil in the Instant Pot in Sauté mode.  Add the mushrooms and cook 5-7 minutes until the liquid has evaporated, then add the garlic and cook 30 seconds more.
  • Add the coconut milk and stock, and scrape up the browned bits from the bottom of the pan.  Add the rice, coconut aminos, thyme, salt and pepper to taste, and stir well. 
  • Add the chicken to the Instant Pot and secure the lid.  Select High Pressure for 20 minutes, then naturally release the pressure for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, turn the pressure valve to the open position and remove the lid when safe to do so. 

chicken and rice instant pot process collage 2

  • Remove the chicken from the Instant Pot and chop or shred. If the rice has not absorbed all of the liquid, press the Sauté button and cook for 1-3 minutes or until most of the liquid has been absorbed. Stir in the grated cheese and adjust the seasoning as necessary.
  • Serve with freshly grated parmesan if desired.

How to make chicken and rice in the slow cooker

  • This easy instant pot chicken and rice recipe may be made in the slow cooker very easily, just like my Crockpot Chicken Rice.
  • Simply cook the mushrooms and garlic in a skillet on the stove top, and place all of the ingredients except for the cheese into the slow cooker.
  • Cover and cook on High for 2 1/2 – 3 hours or until the rice has absorbed all of the liquid.
  • Remove the chicken and shred, then stir in the cheese.

chicken and rice instant pot

Can I use frozen chicken in this recipe?

I haven’t tested this Instant Pot chicken and rice recipe with frozen chicken, so I don’t recommend using it. 

Frozen chicken takes longer to cook, therefore it may not be cooked through when the rice is done.

What’s the best kind of rice to use for this dish?

Short or long grain brown rice may be used in this chicken and rice.  

I’ve made this recipe with a wild rice blend and it worked very well in this recipe.

I don’t recommend using white rice as it cooks much faster than brown and wild rice, and may be done before the chicken has finished cooking.

chicken and rice casserole in instant pot with wooden spoon

Can I use chicken thighs in this recipe?

Chicken thighs are a great alternative to chicken breast in this recipe.  The bones in the chicken will add great flavor too!

  • For skin on, be sure and brown the skin prior to cooking.
  • For skinless chicken thighs, simply season and proceed as directed.  

Recipe notes and substitutions

  • The coconut milk adds a wonderful creamy texture, but feel free to substitute it with your favorite milk.
  • Coconut aminos are a less salty version of soy sauce, which I added for a savory flavor boost.  If you don’t have it on hand, substitute with 2-3 teaspoons of reduced soy sauce or tamari.
  • Additional time of 10 minutes is the amount of time it takes for the Instant Pot to come to pressure.
  • Wild rice works perfectly in this recipe as well, but I don’t recommend using white rice as I have not tested it in this recipe.
  • Customize this dish with your favorite veggies, herbs and seasonings!
  • Omit the chicken for a vegetarian option, and the cheese for a dairy free option.

bowl of instant pot chicken and rice with fork

More Instant Pot meals you’ll love:

Instant pot beef stew

Instant pot pulled pork

Instant pot minestrone soup

Instant pot risotto

Instant pot rotisserie chicken by A Mind Full Mom

Instant Pot Chicken and Rice

Yield: 8 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Additional Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes

Instant Pot Chicken and Rice is a creamy chicken and rice casserole made completely from scratch in just one pot.  Recipe includes slow cooker instructions!

close up of instant pot chicken and rice in a bowl with sprig of thyme on top

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 8 ounces mushrooms, stemmed and sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups light coconut milk*
  • 2 cups low sodium chicken or vegetable stock
  • 2 cups brown rice
  • 2 tablespoons coconut aminos (optional)**
  • 1 tablespoon freshly chopped thyme (or 1 teaspoon dried)
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • (2) boneless skinless chicken breasts, seasoned with salt and pepper
  • 1 cup grated gruyere cheese (or your favorite)
  • Freshly grated parmesan, for serving (optional)

Instructions

Instant Pot instructions:

  1. Press the Sauté button on the Instant Pot and add the olive oil. When the oil is hot, add the mushrooms and cook for 5-7 minutes or until the liquid from the mushrooms has evaporated. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds more.
  2. Add the coconut milk and stock and scrape the brown bits from the bottom of the Instant Pot with a wooden spoon. Add the rice, coconut aminos, herbs and salt and pepper to taste, and stir well.
  3. Place the chicken in the Instant Pot, then seal the lid and turn the valve to the sealing position. Select High Pressure for 20 minutes, then naturally release the pressure for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, turn the pressure valve to the open position and remove the lid when safe to do so. Note -- the Instant Pot takes 10 minutes or so to come to pressure and begin the cooking process.
  4. Remove the chicken from the Instant Pot and chop or shred. If the rice has not absorbed all of the liquid, press the Sauté button and cook for 1-3 minutes or until most of the liquid has been absorbed. Stir in the chicken and grated cheese, and adjust the seasoning as necessary.
  5. Serve with freshly grated parmesan if desired and enjoy!


Slow cooker instructions

  1. Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add mushrooms and cook for 5-7 minutes until their liquid has evaporated, then add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds more.
  2. Grease the slow cooker with cooking spray. Add all ingredients except for the cheese to the slow cooker, then cover and cook on High for 2 1/2 - 3 hours or until the rice has absorbed all of the liquid.
  3. Remove the chicken and shred, then stir in the cheese.

Notes

  • *The coconut milk adds a wonderful creamy texture, but feel free to substitute it with your favorite milk.
  • **Coconut aminos are the less salty version of soy sauce, which I added this for a savory flavor boost. If you don't have it on hand, use 2-3 teaspoons of soy sauce or tamari.
  • Additional time of 10 minutes is the amount of time it takes for the Instant Pot to come to pressure.
  • Wild rice works perfectly in this recipe as well, but I don't recommend using white rice as I have not tested it in this recipe.
  • Customize this dish with your favorite veggies, herbs and seasonings!
  • Omit the chicken for a vegetarian option, and the cheese for a dairy free option.

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Nutrition Information:

Yield:

8

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 231Total Fat: 11gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 40mgSodium: 551mgCarbohydrates: 17gFiber: 2gSugar: 2gProtein: 17g

Nutrition information is mean to be an estimate only. The numbers will vary based on the quantity consumed, brands used and substitutions that are made.

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