We love getting the best out of our Instant Pot pressure cooker, and this recipe delivers tender chunks of boneless chicken breast with perfectly cooked white rice, all smothered in a creamy and vibrant sauce bursting with the zesty flavor of fresh lemon. With only a few minutes of preparation and a short cooking time, this meal is on your plate and ready to enjoy in about a half hour.
With minimal prep and only one pot to clean up, this dish is sure to become a family favorite!
Why I Love This Recipe
I love the simplicity of this recipe and the results are awesome. I’m a huge fan of just about anything that is “chicken and rice”. You name it, and it’s likely gonna be a meal that I’ll enjoy. It’s the perfect combination of ingredients and can be filled out with any number of additional ingredients and flavor profiles. For this recipe, we flavor it with a delicious, creamy lemon sauce that will make your taste buds dance for joy. Then, at the very end, we toss in some frozen peas which will warm up and provide the perfect accompaniment to the whole dish.
Every time I make this, I serve myself a bowl full, and then undoubtedly wind up filling the bowl with a 2nd helping after I’ve gobbled up the first. Yeah, it’s that good!
I always like to keep things simple and this recipe is no different. Our ingredient list includes:
- Fresh boneless, skinless chicken breast
- White rice
- Chicken broth
- Fresh onion and garlic
- Italian blend seasoning, salt, pepper
- Fresh lemon
- Heavy cream
- Frozen peas
We’ll also use a splash of olive oil during the sauteeing of the chicken. At the end I like to add fresh chopped parsley and grated parmesan cheese. But we’ll leave those optional ingredients up to you. The recipe, as written, will be awesome – I promise!
In staying with the keeping things simple theme… we’ll dice some chicken, dice some onion, and mince some garlic. Ok, the hard part is done. Now toss the chicken with the salt, pepper, and Italian seasoning until well coated. There it is, now it’s time to get cooking!
Easy Instant Pot Cooking
We start by sauteing the chicken and onion for a few minutes, followed by the garlic for an additional minute. It’s important to add the garlic at the end of sauteeing, as it can burn easily and we only want to have it go for about 1 minute.
After sauteing, we’ll add in the broth and rice, close the lid and pressure cook on high pressure for 6 minutes. When the 6 minutes are up, let the pressure naturally release (do nothing) for 3 minutes, then quick release the remaining pressure.
When the pin drops, carefully remove the lid and give everything a good stir. Now, slowly pour in the cream, lemon juice and lemon zest and continue to stir well to combine. Finally, stir in the frozen peas and then let it sit for 2 minutes. This will warm up the peas perfectly.
Serve the creamy lemon chicken and rice in bowls and top with fresh chopped Italian parsley. I’m a huge fan of the Italian parsley on this dish as it adds that perfect complement to the lemon and garlic flavors.
Parmesan cheese is another wonderful addition. It adds additional richness to the overall texture and further deepens the creamy flavors.
Keep some extra lemon wedges on hand if you want an extra dash of tangy vibrance. And of course, add salt and pepper to taste.
Goes Well With…
The creamy lemon chicken and rice dish has a lot of flavors and textures, so it would pair well with a variety of side dishes. Some excellent suggestions are…
Roasted vegetables. Some of our favorites include:
Air Fryer Asparagus. Asparagus is gently seasoned and roasted to perfection in your air fryer. This goes excellent with the chicken and rice!
Air Fryer Roasted Zucchini and Peppers. Another great air fryer recipe and the perfect companion to our dish.
Our Oven Roasted Asparagus with Garlic and Parmesan is another wonderful option.
I also like to enjoy a fresh green salad with this dish. A delicious fresh salad and a warm bowl of the creamy chicken and rice really makes for a great lunch or dinner.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes. While the quarter cup of heavy cream provides an excellent, silky, creamy texture, we can get good results with a couple of different substitutions.
Regular milk can be used, but it’s recommended to add a tablespoon or two of butter along with it to provide fat. Since the chicken breast is so lean, the fat from the butter (or cream) adds a much-needed richness.
Greek yogurt or sour cream. These can also be used as a substitute for heavy cream, but be careful when adding them to the hot dish. If the dish is still too hot curdling can occur. You might want to temper them first by mixing a small amount of warm water with the yogurt or sour cream before adding them to the pot.
You can also use coconut cream or coconut milk, just be aware that the dish will take on the flavor of the coconut. Add in small amounts until desired consistency.
While the answer is yes, the increased food amount can affect the time for the pot to come to pressure, thus affecting the cooking of the rice. If you double the recipe, reduce the cooking time to 5 minutes instead of 6.
Absolutely? This is a dish where you can really get creative with add-ins. If you have frozen mixed vegetables, add them right in as you would the peas at the end! Leftover cooked broccoli or asparagus are also excellent. Again, add them at the end.
Store in airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat in the microwave for 1-3 minutes. Add a splash of water to rehydrate if necessary.
It sure can. Make sure it’s cooled and add to freezer-safe, airtight containers and store in the freezer for up to 3 months.