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Instant Pot Cajun Chicken Pasta Recipe

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Experience the vibrant flavors of the Louisiana Bayou with our Instant Pot Cajun Chicken Pasta. This easy and savory dish brings together tender chicken, perfectly cooked pasta, and a rich Cajun spiced cream sauce all effortlessly prepared in the Instant Pot.

Get ready for a one-pot wonder that will transport your taste buds to the heart of Cajun cuisine with every delicious bite

cajun chicken

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • Restaurant Quality at Home: Recreate a fan-favorite dish with this easy-to-follow creamy cajun chicken pasta.
  • Spice Lovers’ Dream: The Cajun seasoning brings a delightful heat to the chicken pasta.
  • Time Saver: The Instant Pot reduces cooking time without compromising on flavor.

Recipe Ingredients

  • Penne Pasta: Hold onto the creamy sauce, ensuring each bite is packed with flavor.
  • Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts: Provide a lean protein source and a hearty texture to the dish.
  • Cajun Seasoning: The star ingredient that gives this dish its bold and flavorful taste.
  • Butter: Used to create a creamy sauce, contributing a velvety texture and a buttery taste.
  • Half and Half: Helps to mellow out the spiciness of the Cajun seasoning and creates a delightful contrast of flavors.
  • Lemon Zest: Brings a subtle tanginess that cuts through the richness of the sauce, balancing the overall taste.
  • Salt, Pepper, Garlic Powder: Used to enhance the flavors of the dish.
  • Tomatoes: Provide a juicy and vibrant element, adding a delightful contrast to the creamy sauce and spicy chicken.
  • Shredded Parmesan Cheese: Melts into the sauce, enhancing its creaminess and providing a rich and savory taste.
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How To Cook Instant Pot Cajun Chicken Pasta?

Here are the steps for cooking this delicious copycat cajun chicken pasta dish.

Step One: Cook The Pasta

  • Place the penne pasta in the Instant Pot and fill with enough water to cover the noodles.
  • Close the lid and seal your lid by pushing the valve away from you.
  • Set to high pressure for 8 minutes.
  • Once your cook time is complete, do a quick release by bringing the valve toward you to open the pressure.
  • Drain your noodles in place in a separate bowl. Set aside.
pasta

Step Two: Cook Your Chicken

In a skillet:

  • You can choose to cook your chicken on the side in the skillet while your pasta is cooking or in the Instant Pot. If you choose this option simply season your chicken with the Cajun seasoning.
cajun chicken

In The Instant Pot Sliced:

  • In the Instant Pot after you are done cooking your pasta. Set to sauté mode. Add 4 tablespoons of oil (enough to cover the center of your pot).
  • Season with your Cajun seasoning and slice your chicken into strips and sauté (or cook whole, then slice later).
  • Saute until the inside of your chicken reaches 165°. 
  • If you don’t have a thermometer test the chicken is cooked through using a fork.
cooking cajun chicken in the instant pot

In the Instant Pot Whole:

  • You can also pressure cook your chicken whole by placing the trivet inside, adding 1 cup of chicken broth, and placing your seasoned chicken (sprinkled with Cajun seasoning) on the trivet.
  • Close the lid as well as the sealing valve.
  • Set to High Pressure for 10 minutes. Quick release when done. Remove water.

Step Three: Cook The Zesty Sauce

  • Continue to keep your Instant Pot on sauté mode. Add in your butter, half-and-half, lemon zest, pepper, salt.
  • And garlic powder to your pot.
  • Continue to stir until it starts to bubble. 
  • Add the pasta back into the pot.

Step Four: Serve Your Cajun Pasta Dish

Serve your pasta, chicken and zesty sauce in a bowl. It’s delicious! Garnish with diced tomatoes and parmesan cheese.

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Cooking Tips

Deglaze Your Pot: If you choose to cook the chicken in the Instant Pot, be sure to deglaze the pot and scrape any food particles from the bottom of the pot before cooking the sauce.

Variations

  • Add Veggies: Add vegetables such as bell pepper or chopped mushroom to give the dish more variety.
  • Add Sausage: Add some smoked sausage or chopped andouille sausage to the mix for an Instant Pot cajun chicken and sausage dish.
  • Add Cream Cheese: Add a spoon of cream cheese to make a more creamy cajun chicken pasta.

Substitutions

If you wish to substitute cajun seasoning you may want to opt for the following seasonings: Simply use 2-3 teaspoons of the flavour you pick.

  • Paprika or Smoked Paprika
  • Onion Powder
  • Dried Basil
  • Cayenne Pepper
  • Garlic Powder
  • Dried Oregano
  • Dried Thyme

What To Serve With This Recipe?

  • Garlic Bread or Baguette Slices: Enjoy the Cajun Chicken Pasta with some crusty garlic bread or slices of baguette to soak up the flavorful sauce.
  • Side Salad with a Zesty Dressing: Serve a fresh and crisp side salad with mixed greens, cherry tomatoes, and a zesty vinaigrette to balance the richness of the Cajun flavors.
  • Roasted Vegetables: Opt for a medley of roasted vegetables such as bell peppers, cherry tomatoes, and zucchini to add a burst of color and a light, roasted flavor.
  • Steamed Asparagus: Keep it simple with steamed asparagus spears, providing a nutritious and vibrant side that complements the bold Cajun spices.
  • Cornbread: A classic Southern side, cornbread, pairs well with Cajun dishes, offering a slightly sweet and crumbly texture that contrasts with the creamy pasta.
  • Avocado and Black Bean Salad: Create a refreshing avocado and black bean salad with lime dressing to add a cooling element that complements the Cajun heat.
cajun-chicken-pasta-instant pot recipe

FAQ’S

What Is Half and Half?

Half and Half is a dairy product that consists of equal parts whole milk and cream, with a small amount of sugar. It gets it’s rich taste from having about 10 to 18% butterfat. We use half and half in this recipe. If you can’t find half and half, then simply use 1 1/2 cups of whole milk and 1 1/2 cups of cream.
cajun-chicken-pasta-instant pot recipe 

What Is Cajun Spice Made From?

Cajun seasoning is a blend of spices that is commonly used in Cajun cuisine. The spice blend can vary, but generally consists of paprika, salt, garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne pepper and black pepper. Other ingredients such as ground oregano and thyme may also be added to enhance the flavor of the Cajun seasoning.

What Brands Are Best?

My personal favorite is Tony Chachere’s Cajun Seasoning . I recommend this brand because it’s been around for a long time and they use fresh spices to make their product. You can also make your own homemade Cajun seasoning, which would be way better than anything.

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cajun-chicken-pasta-instant pot recipe

Instant Pot Cajun Chicken Pasta

Yield: 6
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Additional Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes

This Instant Pot Cajun Chicken Pasta is the best way to satisfy your craving yet it is a healthier alternative meal. This high-protein meal will definitely love by your whole family.

Ingredients

  • 10 oz penne pasta
  • 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 4 teaspoons Cajun seasoning
  • 4 Tablespoons butter (divided)
  • 3 cups half and half
  • 1/8 tsp of lemon zest
  • 1.5 teaspoon salt
  • 1.5 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • Tomatoes (diced)
  • Shredded Parmesan cheese

Instructions

STEP ONE: COOK THE PASTA

  • Place the penne pasta in the instant pot and fill with enough water to cover the noodles.
  • Close the lid and seal your lid by pushing the valve away from you.
  • Set to high pressure for 8 minutes.
  • Once your cook time is complete, do a quick release by bringing the valve toward you to open the pressure.
  • Drain your noodles in place in a separate bowl. Set aside.


STEP TWO: COOK YOUR CHICKEN

In a skillet:

  • You can choose to cook your chicken on the side in the skillet while your pasta is cooking or in the Instant Pot.If you choose this option simply season your chicken with the Cajun seasoning.

In the instant Pot sliced:

  • In the instant pot after you are done cooking your pasta. Set to sauté mode. Add 4 tablespoons of oil (enough to cover the center of your pot).
  • Season with your Cajun seasoning and slice your chicken into strips and sauté (or cook whole, then slice later).
  • Cook until the inside of your chicken reaches 165°. 
  • If you don't have a thermometer test the chicken in cooked through using a fork.

In the Instant Pot Whole:


You can also pressure cook your chicken whole by placing the trivet inside, adding 1 cup of water, and placing your seasoned chicken (sprinkled with Cajun seasoning) on the trivet.

  • Close the lid as well as the sealing valve.
  • Set to High Pressure for 10 minutes. Quick release when done. Remove water.

STEP THREE: COOK THE ZESTY SAUCE

  • Continue to keep your instant pot on sauté mode. Add in your butter, half-and-half, lemon zest, pepper, salt.
  • And garlic powder to your pot.
  • Continue to stir until it starts to bubble. 

STEP FOUR: SERVE YOUR CAJUN PASTA DISH

Serve your pasta, chicken and zesty sauce in a bowl.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 369Total Fat: 22gSaturated Fat: 14gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 97mgSodium: 1431mgCarbohydrates: 22gFiber: 1gSugar: 6gProtein: 20g

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More Instant Pot Chicken Recipes

If you like this creamy cajun pasta then be sure to check out the following Instant Pot Recipes.

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