Katie's Kitchen San Diego, CA

Tuscan Chicken Pasta Instant Pot Recipe

Couple disclaimers here and then we’ll get right into the Tuscan Chicken Pasta Instant Pot recipe. There’s nothing worse (okay there is, looking at you social distancing) than finding the perfect recipe on Pinterest only to have to scroll through PAGES of information about the cook/ingredients/etc that you just don’t care about – give me the goods! With that being said, one quick intro paragraph and we’ll be on our way to our delicious recipe. lol 

After two weeks in social isolation, I‘ve already gotten tired of the protein, starch/grain, and vegetable combination repeated over and over with different ingredients to put together a basic meal. The meals taste okay but I’m definitely not looking forward to dinner time and it’s making me miss going out to eat even more. So I’ve started getting creative in the kitchen, inventorying what we have on hand, planning meals, and using a variety of kitchen appliances/gadgets that take up so much of our cabinet space. That’s how this recipe was born! I found something similar online and then tweaked for what I had on hand. It was SO good just from the tastings I was doing while cooking (guilty!) that I texted a friend the recipe and told her she HAD to make this! The sauce is dairy based and creamy but isn’t super heavy or dense. It’s a quick meal to make once we’re back to the hustle and bustle of real life. It’s honestly just perfect. I have the Instant Pot Duo Plus and LOVE it. If you don’t have an Instant Pot, you could always make the ingredients individually and then jump to step six to combine on a traditional stove top. 

Let me also include – I’m a really good at home cook (just ask my boyfriend) but am not a great at home food photographer, so trust me – this dish tastes WAY better than I photographed it. Now let’s get to it!

Tuscan Chicken Pasta Instant Pot Overview 

Prep Time: 10 minutes 
Cook Time: 15-20 minutes – 3 minutes cook time plus the time to come to pressure, a 5 minute natural release, and a few minutes of combining ingredients at the end 
Yield: 6 servings (unless you’re feeding a Marine, then 4 servings haha) 
Description: A creamy sauce combines with sundried tomatoes, fresh basil, spinach, chicken, and parmesan cheese to create one delicious pasta. 
Nutrition: ¼ of the recipe, 520 calories, 4g sugar, 1139mg sodium, 18g fat, 45g carbohydrates, 44g protein. *approximate values

Tuscan Chicken Pasta Instant Pot Ingredients 

  • 1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts cut into bite sized pieces 
  • 8oz cavatappi noodles (½ a box) 
  • 2 Tbsp butter 
  • 2 cups chicken broth 
  • ½ tsp garlic powder 
  • 4oz cream cheese 
  • ¾ cup milk 
  • 1.5 cup grated parmesan cheese (I sprung for the nice stuff from the refrigerated deli/cheese section and added more to garnish after plating) 
  • One jar (7oz or 8oz)  sun dried tomatoes – drained and chopped 
  • ¼ tsp salt 
  • ¼ tsp black pepper 
  • 2 Tbsp fresh chopped basil (you can also sub with 1tsp dried basil if you’d like) 
  • 2 handfuls baby spinach (you can also do this to sight/taste, I probably added three handfuls total because I was at the end of a bag) 

Tuscan Chicken Pasta Instant Pot Instructions 

  1. Add noodles, butter, and chicken broth to the Instant Pot. Give it a good stir and try to make sure the noodles are covered with liquid as much as possible. 
  2. Place your bite sized chicken on top of the noodles. Put your Instant Pot lid on and secure. Don’t forget to make sure your valve is set to “sealing”. Set the manual pressure cook button for 3 minutes. 
  3. Pour yourself a glass of wine. Enjoy said wine. I also used this time to pop a garlic bread baguette into the oven. You can also use this time to prep the rest of your ingredients if you’re like me and didn’t do everything before you started cooking. 
  4. When the timer beeps and your cook time is complete, let the Instant Pot sit for 5 minutes. You’ll notice your pot timer start to count up. Don’t unplug your Instant Pot or turn off, we’re fine with the keep warm function. You’ll see why in a few steps. 
  5. Once your Instant Pot shows 5 minutes, move the valve to “venting”. Once all the pressure is released, remove your lid. 
  6. Turn your Instant Pot to the sautee function. Stir in the garlic powder, cream cheese, and milk. Don’t worry if your sauce still looks runny or thin, it’ll fix itself in the last few steps. Once your cream cheese is melted, add in your parmesan cheese and stir until all ingredients are melted and combined. 
  7. Add in your sundried tomatoes, salt, pepper, and basil. Give it a good stir. Lastly, add in your fresh spinach and stir until the spinach is cooked down and mixed with all other ingredients. 
  8. Turn off your Instant Pot, scoop into bowls, and serve. 

Tips, Tricks, Reminders 

  • Don’t worry if all your pasta is not covered by the liquid. It’s totally okay and will be fine during pressure cooking! 
  • I drained my sundried tomatoes into a strainer and then used scissors to chop into smaller pieces while still in the strainer – less cleanup! 
  • I also didn’t really measure the basil I used. I chopped a lot and then would add to the pasta, give it a few stirs, and see if I visually liked the ratio. I don’t personally believe you can ever have enough fresh basil. Same with the spinach! 
  • Don’t feel tied to the chicken! I actually was going to use some Costco Chicken Sausage as the protein in the dish but forgot to defrost it and had the chicken ready to go. I could also see this dish still being so good without any protein if that better fits your diet. 
  • You can also use the whole box of pasta and double this recipe but you may need to let your pot sit for a little longer than 5 minutes to release the pressure or you could get foaming out of your valve. No biggie, just wait a minute or two and try to manually release again. 
  • Get creative! My boyfriend loves these jarred artichoke hearts from Costco and I could definitely see us mixing some in at the end next time around. 

That’s all she wrote folks! If you make the Tuscan Chicken Pasta Instant Pot recipe, please let me know in the comments what you think! Or Pin the image below to save for later!

Print Recipe
5 from 2 votes

Tuscan Chicken Pasta Instant Pot Recipe

A creamy sauce combines with sundried tomatoes, fresh basil, spinach, chicken, and parmesan cheese to create one delicious pasta.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time25 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: Instant Pot, pasta, Quick
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 520kcal

Equipment

  • Instant Pot

Ingredients

Ingredients Needed At Start

  • 1 LB boneless skinless chicken breasts cut into bite sized pieces 
  • 8 oz cavatappi noodles 1/2 a box
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 2 cups chicken broth

Sauce Ingredients

  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 4 oz cream cheese
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1.5 cup parmesan cheese

Finishing Touches

  • 1 jar sundried tomatoes 7oz or 8oz, drained and chopped
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 2 Tbsp fresh chopped basil
  • 2 handfuls fresh baby spinach

Instructions

  • Add noodles, butter, and chicken broth to the Instant Pot. Give it a good stir and try to make sure the noodles are covered with liquid as much as possible.
  • Place your bite sized chicken on top of the noodles. Put your Instant Pot lid on and secure. Don't forget to make sure your valve is set to "sealing". Set the manual pressure cook button for 3 minutes.
  • Pour yourself a glass of wine. Enjoy said wine. I also used this time to pop a garlic baguette into the oven, You can also use this time to prep the rest of your ingredients if you're like me and didn't do everything before you started cooking.
  • When the timer beeps and your cook time is complete, let the Instant Pot sit for 5 minutes. You'll notice your pot timer start to count up. Don't unplug your Instant Pot or turn off, we're fine with the keep warm function. You'll see why in a few steps.
  • Once your Instant Pot shows 5 minutes, move the valve to "venting". Once all the pressure is released, remove your lid.
  • Turn your Instant Pot to the sautee function. Stir in the garlic powder, cream cheese, and milk. Don't worry if your sauce still looks runny or thin, it'll fix itself in the last few steps. Once your cream cheese is melted, add in your parmesan cheese and stir until all ingredients are melted and combined.
  • Add in your sundried tomatoes, salt, pepper, and basil. Give it a good stir. Lastly, add in your fresh spinach and stir until the spinach is cooked down and mixed with all other ingredients.
  • Turn off your Instant Pot, scoop into bowls, and serve.

Notes

  • Don’t worry if all your pasta is not covered by the liquid. It’s totally okay and will be fine during pressure cooking! 
  • I drained my sundried tomatoes into a strainer and then used scissors to chop into smaller pieces while still in the strainer – less cleanup! 
  • I also didn’t really measure the basil I used. I chopped a lot and then would add to the pasta, give it a few stirs, and see if I visually liked the ratio. I don’t personally believe you can ever have enough fresh basil. Same with the spinach! 
  • Don’t feel tied to the chicken! I actually was going to use some Costco Chicken Sausage as the protein in the dish but forgot to defrost it and had the chicken ready to go. I could also see this dish still being so good without any protein if that better fits your diet. 
  • You can also use the whole box of pasta and double this recipe but you may need to let your pot sit for a little longer than 5 minutes to release the pressure or you could get foaming out of your valve. No biggie, just wait a minute or two and try to manually release again. 
  • Get creative! My boyfriend loves these jarred artichoke hearts from Costco and I could definitely see us mixing some in at the end next time around.
Comment

8 Comments

  • Carol
    April 13, 2020

    5 stars
    This sounds amazing and I will definitely be trying it! Thanks!

    • Katie
      Carol
      April 15, 2020

      Let me know when you do! I hope it becomes a favorite for you too!

  • Gina
    April 14, 2020

    Thanks for the recipe! This looks yummy!

    • Katie
      Gina
      April 15, 2020

      Thanks Gina! I can’t wait to have again already!

  • Hayley Lloyd
    April 14, 2020

    Yum! This looks so good! I’ll definitely be trying this.

    • Katie
      Hayley Lloyd
      April 15, 2020

      Thanks Hayley! It’s already on my list again to make this week!

  • Lisa
    May 27, 2020

    5 stars
    I made this tonight for dinner. It was sooo good! Definitely a do over!

    • Katie
      Lisa
      June 11, 2020

      Isn’t it the best?!

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