I’m not gonna lie, when I first saw recipes for cooking pasta in the instant pot, I was appalled. I couldn’t believe people were trying to claim that pasta cooked in a pressure cooker could be anything but a disgusting abomination to an otherwise delicious carb!
Well, let’s just say I’m now eating my words! I finally gave it a try and, last week alone, I made three pasta recipes in the Instant Pot and they were all delicious! I’m definitely kicking myself for taking so long to get on board! Talk about a super easy way to make a one pot meal for your family!
I had a hard time deciding which new instant pot pasta recipe to share with you first because my family loved them all! I decided to start with this Creamy Chicken Pasta with Asparagus and Mushrooms because it was my favorite…have I ever told you I LOVE (like totally adore, in any form except marinated) mushrooms! So it just felt right to start with this one.
I realize there are probably a few of you reading this that do not feel the same way about mushrooms, you might even think you hate them. I will try not to hold it against you, but no promises. 🙂 For those of you who fall into that category, don’t worry this recipe will still be delicious if you leave them out and only use the asparagus. In fact, if you were just looking to eat some Creamy Chicken Pasta without vegetables you could leave the asparagus out too. I’m not advocating you make it that way, but technically the recipe will still work and be yummy!
Let’s get to the recipe:
First off, you can choose to use uncooked chicken breast sliced thinly and saute it with your onions, mushrooms and garlic, or you can add precooked shredded chicken (rotisserie works great) at the end.
I added precooked chicken at the end with this one as you will see in the step by step photos.
Start by sauteing the onions (add uncooked chicken at this point if you are using it and remember to slice it thinly) for a minute or so and then add the mushrooms and garlic and saute for about 2 more minutes.
Next add the asparagus, pasta, salt, pepper and water. Stir and make sure to pat it all down as flat and even as possible before putting the lid on and starting the cooking process. This will help the pasta cook evenly.
Put lid on Instant Pot, secure it and set for 5 minutes. You can use the beans/chili setting or the poultry setting. Adjust time down to five minutes. When finished cooking, quick release and add in the heavy cream, cream cheese and Parmesan cheese. Mix well paying close attention that the cream cheese gets completely integrated. If using precooked chicken add it now and mix again.
Serve immediately and top with a little more Parmesan cheese.
Frequently asked questions:
What Size Instant Pot should I use?
My instant pot is a 6 quart and is plenty big for my family of seven. An 8 quart would work great too, but you would need to half the recipe if you are using a 3 quart instant pot. This is the exact instant pot I have.
Do I have to add the mushrooms?
No, like I mentioned above in the post, this recipe will still turn out great if you do not use mushrooms.
do I have to use chicken?
No, if you would like to make this as a meatless meal, you can definitely leave the chicken out. You may want to consider adding extra mushrooms or asparagus to it if you cut out the chicken though.
Does it Matter what type of Pasta I use?
Penne and Rotini are the only two types of pasta I have tested with this recipe. Both of them have a cooking time of 12 minutes on the back of the box which leads me to believe that any pasta with a cooking time of 12 minutes should work fine in this recipe.
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 large chicken breast, thinly sliced into 1 inch strips (or 2 cups pre-cooked chicken)
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 3-4 large cloves of garlic, finely chopped or crushed
- 1 8 oz package of sliced mushrooms
- 1 lb penne pasta, uncooked
- 1 bunch of asparagus, trimmed and cut in two inch pieces
- 3 cups water
- 1 tsp salt
- dash pepper
- ½ cup heavy cream
- 4 ounces cream cheese, cut into 1 inch pieces
- ½ cup Parmesan cheese
- Using the Saute feature on your instant pot, saute the onion in olive oil for 1-2 minute. If using un-cooked chicken add it at the same time as the onion. I like to add a little salt and pepper while sauteing.
- After one to two minutes add the mushrooms and garlic and continue sauteing for 2 minutes or until chicken is white and onions are translucent.
- Turn saute feature off and add penne, asparagus pieces, salt, pepper and water. Mix well.
- Put lid on instant pot and secure it. Use the beans/chili or poultry function and set time to 5 minutes.
- When cooking is done, carefully do a quick release (I like to put a hand towel over mine to keep the moisture contained.)
- Remove lid and add heavy cream, cream cheese and Parmesan cheese. Mix until all incorporated. If using precooked chicken add it now and gently mix one more time.
- Serve immediately and sprinkle with a little extra Parmesan cheese. We like to eat this with garlic or french bread and a side of green salad.
Can I swap out the chicken for stir fry beef?
If I want to only use 1/2 pound of pasta would I only add 1.5 C of water?
Hi Alicia, yes, the water will need to be halved.