Instant Pot Chicken and Rice Soup – easy and adaptable!
Nutritious, healthy, and satisfying, easy to make Instant Pot chicken and rice soup is a family favorite. Enjoy it any time of the year for lunch or dinner.
Many of you may remember the classic book Chicken Soup with Rice: A Book of Months written by Maurice Sendak, published way back in 1962. In this simple rhyming story, a young boy enjoys his bowl of chicken soup with rice every month of the year, in a variety of fun ways, even spouting from a whale.
Try reading these lines from the last page of the book aloud. “I told you once, I told you twice, All seasons of the year are nice for eating chicken soup with rice!”
And isn’t that so true? Chicken and rice soup is such a simple and satisfying meal. Steaming bowls of soup chock full of vegetables, chicken, and rice, what could be more welcome than that? Nothing fancy, spicy, or exotic about this recipe–perfect for even the pickiest palate!
When you need a little comfort, or just plain good sustenance, try this easy to make Instant Pot chicken and rice soup. Enjoy it any time of the year!
PS: For fun, watch an animated version of Chicken Soup with Rice with Carole King singing the text on this YouTube video. Sing along while you prepare the soup. Your kids will love it!
About this Instant Pot chicken and rice soup:
Besides the great flavor of this soup, you’re going to love how easy it is to make. It’ll take you about 45 minutes, and much of that time is hands-off.
Begin by sautéing the onions, carrots, and celery in a bit of olive oil in your Instant Pot. When the vegetables are starting to soften, add the garlic and stir that for a minute or so. Add broth, water, boneless skinless chicken breasts, brown rice, and dried herbs to the pot. Set it to pressure cook for 11 minutes. Keep in mind that it will take about 10 minutes to come to pressure.
When the time is up, release the pressure, remove the chicken breasts, and chop or shred them with two forks. Add the chicken back to the pot and stir in the frozen peas and chopped fresh parsley. Taste the soup and add more salt and pepper, if needed. Keep the soup warm until ready to serve.
How to make this Instant Pot chicken and rice soup your own:
This is a pretty forgiving basic soup recipe. Use what you happen to have in your pantry and fridge to make your own special Instant Pot chicken and rice soup. Here’s a few ideas for you:
- While this recipe calls for celery, carrots, and peas, you could substitute other vegetables. Try diced sweet potato, green or red bell peppers, frozen or fresh corn, diced kohlrabi, cauliflower, and so on. Use what you like or what you happen to have in your fridge.
- Add greens – add finely chopped kale with the chicken, broth, etc. or stir in fresh spinach leaves when you add the peas and parsley.
- If you prefer dark meat, use boneless skinless chicken thighs. Or substitute shredded rotisserie chicken for the uncooked chicken breasts. Stir in the rotisserie chicken with the peas and parsley.
- Don’t have brown rice? Don’t worry, you can substitute other types of rice: jasmine, wild rice blend, or long grain white rice.
- Looking for a creamy soup, like what you might order at Panera’s? Try slow cooker creamy chicken and wild rice soup. Both recipes are delicious! I’ve made the creamy chicken rice soup countless times – it’s one of our favorites and uses ingredients that I usually keep on hand.
- Whole30, paleo, keto friendly: Omit the rice and green peas. Use a chicken broth that’s compliant to the plan you’re following. If desired, add more vegetables instead, such as spinach or shredded cabbage.
- Chicken and rice soup can easily be made on the stove top in a Dutch oven or large saucepan if you prefer. Adjust cooking times.
Storage and Reheating Tips
This soup tastes just as good the next day! Store leftover chicken and rice soup in a covered bowl or plastic container. It will keep for 3-4 days in the fridge. To serve, reheat gently in the microwave or in a saucepan on the stove until heated through.
Make ahead tip: Prepare the soup, cool, divide into freezer containers or heavy-duty freezer bags, and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge for best results.
Other Instant Pot recipes:
Like making soup in your pressure cooker? Here’s more delicious soup recipes for you to try:
- Instant Pot Chicken Noodle Soup (not crazy about rice? Try noodles)
- Instant Pot Broccoli Cheese Soup
- Instant Pot Minestrone Soup (vegetarian and vegan friendly)
- Instant Pot White Chicken Chili
- Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup (includes directions for stove top or pressure cookers)
- Instant Pot Stuffed Pepper Soup from Kristine’s Kitchen (can’t wait to try this one)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 1/2 cups diced carrots (3-4 carrots)
- 1 cup diced celery (about 3 stalks)
- 1/2 cup diced onion (about 1 small yellow onion)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1 clove garlic
- 4 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
- 1 cup water
- 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, uncooked
- 3/4 cup uncooked brown rice
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed rosemary
- 1 cup frozen peas
- 1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
- Heat 6-quart Instant Pot to "Sauté."
- Add oil, carrots, celery, onion, salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, until onions are translucent, about 5 minutes.
- Add garlic and continue to cook, stirring, for one minute or until fragrant.
- Add broth, water, chicken, rice, thyme, bay leaf, and rosemary. Secure lid and turn valve to "seal." Set Instant Pot on Manual (or "pressure cook," depending on your model) for 11 minutes. Quick release pressure when done cooking by turning valve to vent. Remove chicken to a plate; remove and discard bay leaf.
- Shred chicken with two forks, or chop into bite sized pieces and return to pot.
- Add peas and parsley, stir to combine. Taste and adjust seasoning for salt and pepper. Add more chicken broth or water if soup is thicker than you like it.
- Substitute or add additional vegetables, if desired or stir in baby spinach with the peas.
- Use boneless skinless chicken thighs instead of breasts, or stir in rotisserie chicken with peas.
- Other types of rice work well, too.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 10 Serving Size: 1 cup
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 215Total Fat: 5gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 77mgSodium: 436mgCarbohydrates: 10gFiber: 2gSugar: 3gProtein: 31g
RachelCooks.com sometimes provides nutritional information, but these figures should be considered estimates, as they are not calculated by a registered dietitian. Please consult a medical professional for any specific nutrition, diet, or allergy advice.
Husband’s take: Ben loves classic soups like this one. No complaints!
Changes I would make: None are necessary, but I’ve been known to add spinach to everything.
Difficulty: Very easy!