Quick 30 minute Instant Pot Chicken Pasta in garlic tomato sauce is comfort food at it’s finest! Every taste of this chicken pasta is filled with plump and tender chicken, pasta, and the perfect amount of sauce and seasonings!

Pasta is a fabulous meal when you are craving comfort food. There is just something about it that makes you feel like a kid again. It’s warm, delicious, and very easy too. We all love this chicken pasta recipe because it’s loaded with flavor from the garlic tomato sauce and is loved by both kids and adults!

I love using my Instant Pot to make meals. The cleanup is truly a breeze, and you don’t have to worry about checking and stirring every few minutes. The pressure cooker takes care of all the hard work, and you can spend your time worrying about sides or desserts.

What You Need To Make Instant Pot Chicken Pasta

  • Chicken breasts: We always try to use boneless, skinless chicken when making this pasta. It’s essential to cut up, so it cooks evenly.
  • Olive oil: You will need the olive oil to saute the chicken and onions.
  • Chopped onion: The onions add yummy flavor to the pasta.
  • Minced garlic: Italian dishes are always better with a little bit of minced garlic. It smells amazing too.
  • Italian seasoning: A little bit goes a long way and seasons this chicken pasta perfectly.
  • Salt & Pepper: Season to taste.
  • Rotini: While we usually use rotini, sometimes we will swap it for another short cut pasta. Most of it tastes the same; the texture is what changes.
  • Marinara sauce: You can use store-bought jarred marinara sauce or make your own. You will need about 3 cups total to get the correct consistency.
  • Water: It’s always important to have some type of liquid in your dishes that are made in the Instant Pot. That pressure and combination of fluid are what cooks the food. Plus, you don’t want to have to deal with a burn error from food sticking.
  • Grated mozzarella cheese: Topping the pasta with cheese makes it melty and flavorful.
  • Shredded parmesan: I don’t feel like you can ever really have too much parmesan! Okay, maybe you can, but I always add it because it’s so good.

How To Make Instant Pot Chicken Pasta

I don’t think you could find a better or more simple chicken pasta recipe! Begin by cutting the chicken into pieces that are bite-sized.

Then drizzle in the olive oil into the Instant Pot and turn it to the saute setting. Begin sauteing the onions for a couple of minutes. Add in the minced garlic, seasonings, and chicken and cook for 3-4 more minutes.

Pour in the water, marinara sauce, and add the pasta then give all the ingredients a stir. Turn off the saute function and add the lid. Make sure to seal the valve and turn it to manual. Then set the pressure to high and for 5 minutes.

Once the time is up, finish with a quick-release and add the cheese to the top. Place the lid back on the pressure cooker so the cheese can melt for a minute then serve hot.

How Do You Store Leftover Chicken Pasta

Once the chicken pasta has cooled down all the way after cooking, put it in an airtight container. Then you can put it in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

For best results, you can add the pasta to a microwave-safe plate and heat it up for a minute or two. Pasta tends to warm up really quickly in the microwave, so don’t cook it too long.

If you have extra time and aren’t in a huge hurry, you can warm it in the oven if you’d rather. Heat the oven to 350 degrees and place the pasta in a casserole dish. Warm it for 10-15 minutes or until the cheese has melted and everything is hot.

4.59 from 34 votes

Instant Pot Chicken Pasta

Quick 30 minute Instant Pot Chicken Pasta in garlic tomato sauce is comfort food at it's finest! Every taste of this chicken pasta is filled with plump and tender chicken, pasta, and the perfect amount of sauce and seasonings.
Prep10 minutes
Cook5 minutes
Total15 minutes
Servings 6 servings


  • 2-3 medium chicken breasts, boneless skinless , (about 1.5 pounds)
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 3-4 cloves garlic, (minced)
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon salt, (or to taste)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 12 ounces rotini or penne pasta, (or any short cut pasta)
  • 25 ounce jar marinara sauce, (or 3 cups)
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup grated mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan, (optional)


  • Cut chicken into bite size pieces and set aside.
  • Add olive oil and onion to an instant pot and turn on to saute setting. Saute onion for 2-3 minutes or until tender then add the garlic, chicken pieces, italian seasoning, salt & pepper. Saute for another 3-4 minutes.
  • Add the pasta, marinara sauce and water; stir to combine.
  • Press the cancel button, close and lock the lid and seal the valve. Select the manual setting, adjust the pressure to high and set time to 5 minutes.
  • When finished cooking, quick-release pressure according to the manufacturer’s directions. Open the lid, sprinkle both kinds of cheese, close the lid and let the cheese melt for one minute.


Nutritional information is per serving (1/6th the recipe). A 12oz box of pasta should be enough to serve up to 6 people. 
Protein options: Recipe will work with boneless skinless chicken thighs or ground beef. Follow the same directions as the chicken breasts. 
To Make Vegan or Vegetarian: Simply Replace the chicken with your favorite veggies such as mushrooms, or zucchini or make it with just the tomato sauce. 
To Make it Creamy: Stir in 1/2 cup heavy creamy after opening the instant pot, just before adding the cheese. 


Serving: 1serving, Calories: 425kcal, Carbohydrates: 51g, Protein: 23g, Fat: 14g, Saturated Fat: 5g, Cholesterol: 42mg, Sodium: 1242mg, Potassium: 696mg, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 7g, Vitamin A: 682IU, Vitamin C: 10mg, Calcium: 186mg, Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: chicken, dinner, easy, instant pot, pressure cooker
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  1. This is in the weekly rotation! Both kids and husband love it and it’s a forgiving recipe. I have always used whatever tomato sauce we have on hand. This is always a winner!

  2. Thanks for the awesome recipe and tips! I got my first instant pot today and this is a great starter recipe 🙂 Friendly suggestion to add at the end of article for the reheating tip, that you can use the keep warm setting on your instant pot (it’s in the starter manual) thanks again!

  3. Loved the recipe. Great meal. I did add another cup of pasta as I found 12 oz of rotini was not enough.

  4. Great recipe, thank you! I’ve just tried it and it’s delicious.
    I followed the comments from some others who suggested adding a sprinkle of chilli flakes & only pressure cooking for 4 minutes if you like your pasta al dente. I have the Pro Crisp so I also changed lids & grilled the top for 2 mins after sprinkling the cheese on top. Yum. Great recipe & definitely a keeper.

    1. Thanks for the feedback! so happy you enjoyed the recipe 🙂

  5. Delicious! Great quick meal to make. I’m often disappointed in the instant pot recipes that I try, but this one is a keeper. Thank you!

  6. Just tried this. Thought it was amazing. Followed recipe completely but substituted water for chicken stock and added a few chilli flakes. Will definitely make again. Thanks.

  7. I’m in the UK. Followed recipe, didn’t add many herbs etc as they were in the sauce already. Sautéed for a couple of minutes longer and PC for 4 minutes. Was fantastic, thanks!

  8. Easy and delicious. I added 3 chopped shallots, and 1 cup cut up orange and yellow bell peppers. I used 16 oz of orichette pasta so I increased the water to 3 3/4 cups. Followed directions to cook and it was perfect.

  9. I had to restart it 3 times because of the burn notice. A recipe that says it should take a total of 10 mins has taken an hour and it’s still not done because it’s taken this long to get past the preheating stage. Won’t be using this recipe again

    1. I’m not sure if you’re referring to an error code on the instant pot that shuts off the machine while in sauté mode (C8 on mine), but it’s very frustrating! I just do all my sautéing in the pot on my gas cook top (my model has an insert that can be used on the stove) and then move it to the instant pot for the pressure cooking phase..

    2. I had the same problem! Had to finish is it in the oven.
      Will not be making this recipe again.

  10. This is so delicious, it’s become a staple in my home for sure!

  11. We didn’t have mozzarella so added more parm and it was still delicious. We also got a little crazy and put some goat cheese on top at the end and that was awesome!

    Great recipe! Thanks!!

  12. Made this last night with a jar of Rao’s marinara and it was delicious! I seared the chicken a little longer than the recipe called for because I was afraid of undercooking it, but I assume with the pressure cook, it doesn’t need to be fully cooked after you sear it. Is that right?

    1. You’re correct. It will continue to cook as it cooks in the pressure cooker.

  13. Kept getting the burn error as well 🙁 used the 8 qt.

    1. I’m sorry about that! Please try with a 6qt next time or try adding a little more water.

    2. Most of the “Burning” comes from the stainless steel pot that the Instant Pot comes with. I purchased on Amazon for $20, a ceramic non-stick 8qt pot, and swapped it out and cook all my pasta dishes there and never get a “Burning” error signal.

      1. I didn’t get a burn notice, but did have minor burning on the bottom of the pot. I use a 6 qt. Stainless pot.
        My solution is to change the directions to add some water to deglaze the pot prior to adding rotini , marinara, and water.
        No additional water is needed.

    1. Hmm.. not sure why that happened. Lots of readers have had success with the 6qt. Maybe next time try 1/4 cup more water?

    2. When adding the pasta, the sauce, and water do NOT MIX IT. The pasta will go down to the bottom and when it sticks to the pot you get a burn error. You want to just lightly push it down so it’s covered by liquid.

  14. I keep making this. Truly the best. Family loves it and the pasta tastes amazing. Have been trying this with celery onion and carrot for a more pollo type dish and it works well.

  15. My second time using Instant Pot. Made this dish, loved it, easy and tasty. clean up a cinch!!!

  16. Used 6oz brown rice pasta (all I had at the time) and 1 cup of broth, no water. 3 chicken breasts. Awesome! I like a little extra sauce 😋 and no burn message!

  17. Made this tonight and loved it!
    I used a 16oz bag of gluten free pasta and substituted half the water with chicken broth. Didnt change the cooking time.
    The chicken was nice and tender and sauce is so tasty.
    I did get some stuff burnt on the bottom of the pot but it wasnt bad at all and cleans easily.

  18. Just made this as my 1st instant pot dinner. I added some fresh tomatoes, and a can diced tomatoes, just cleaning out some veggies. It was delish.

  19. Made this and my kids loved it! This is now a recipe in my rotation for dinner, thank you! Question, hav you ever doubled the recipe in the insta pot?

  20. Easy, fast and delicious! We’ll definitely be making this again. Thank you for posting!

  21. This is a fail – Keep getting the burn error – eventually abandoned the instant pot and went old school to the oven

    DON’T use this recipe. There are similar recipes out there that include steps to avoid the burn error

    1. I’m sorry to hear that, Eric! did you use a 6 qt instant pot or an 8 qt?

    2. Hi Eric!

      Try scraping the edges and bottom after you add the pasta, water and marinara sauce. I found that helped with the error signal.

      Have a wonderful day!

      1. Overall a great recipe, but the chicken tasted dry. Almost chewy like. Not sure if I messed something up. But I would rather cook the chicken in the oven, then combine everything later.

    3. Also, if you have a stew setting use that instead of reg high and it helps with the burn notice.

  22. My kids, who tend to be fussy, loved this recipe!

  23. I made this exactly as written the other night and it was a hit! Excellent recipe!! I have a question …, do you think there’s any possible way to make it with homemade meatballs instead of chicken??