Instant Pot Chicken Dinner – Southwest Chicken Pasta

Southwest Chicken Pasta is a one-pot Instant Pot chicken dinner that delivers a flavor-packed meal in minutes.

Discovering the secret to cooking pasta dishes in my Instant Pot has created so many new options to get dinner on the table quickly and reduce cleanup time. I don’t know about you, but anytime I can use one pot to cook an entire meal, I’m a happy camper.

The method to make Southwest Chicken Pasta is very similar to the Instant Pot Chicken Alfredo. If you remember, the two most important rules to create the perfect pasta meal are 1) no stirring after the noodles are added, and 2) layering the liquid. The first rule is pretty self-explanatory, the second rule basically means that some of the liquid from the recipe is held back and then poured over the noodles after they’ve been added.

The no stirring rule really is the hardest part of this recipe. For me, anyway. I’m a stirrer. I love to stir. ;)

The chicken is browned and the onions and garlic are cooked using the sauté function. Then the spices are added and cooked for another minute to help them release all of their spiciness, part of the stock goes in and then the chilis and tomatoes. The cream is added after the saute function is turned off, the noodles are placed over the top and the last of the stock is poured over. Lock on the lid, choose the cooking time. And there you have it. Well, you do need to stir in the cheese and cilantro after the cooking time is up. But seriously, it’s that simple. And only one pot.

These one-pot Instant Pot dinners really help maintain some sanity when it comes to planning and making dinner. If you haven’t used your Instant Pot to create a one pot meal, you’re in for a treat. Some of our favorites are the Chicken Bowl with Braised Potatoes and Mushrooms, Orange Glazed Chicken Breasts with Coconut Rice and if you forgot to pull the chicken out of the freezer, the Chicken Breasts with Rice and Carrots is the answer.




Instant Pot Chicken Dinner – Southwest Chicken Pasta

  • Author: Allie McDonald
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 6


Southwest Chicken Pasta is a one-pot Instant Pot chicken dinner that delivers a flavor-packed meal in minutes.


  • 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 tbsp. chili powder
  • 1 tbsp. ground cumin
  • 2 tsp. dried oregano
  • 1 and 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken stock, divided
  • 1 (15-oz) can fire-roasted diced tomatoes
  • 1 (4-oz) can chopped green chilis
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 12 oz. fettuccine
  • 1/2 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup shredded pepper Jack cheese
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro


  1. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Set aside
  2. Add oil to the inner pot and select SAUTÉ to pre-heat. When the indicator says HOT, add the chicken to the pot and cook stirring occasionally, until the chicken starts to brown, about 2 – 3 minutes. Add the onion and the garlic and cook for another 4 minutes.
  3. Stir in the chili powder, cumin, and oregano and cook for 2 minutes.
  4. Add 1/2 cup of the chicken stock and deglaze the pot, scraping the bottom to loosen all of the bits.
  5. Add the tomatoes and green chilis and stir to combine.
  6. Press CANCEL and add the cream, stirring to combine well. Do not stir after this point.
  7. Break the fettuccine in half and place on top of the cream and chicken mixture. Do not stir.
  8. Pour the remaining chicken stock over the noodles – remember, no stirring.
  9. Close and lock the lid. Make sure the steam release handle is in the sealed position. Select PRESSURE COOK and cook on high. Set 5 minutes of pressure cooking time.
  10. When time is up, allow a natural pressure release of 5 minutes and then turn the steam release handle to the venting position and allow remaining steam to escape. When the valve has dropped, unlock the lid and open carefully.
  11. Press CANCEL and add the Cheddar and pepper Jack cheeses stirring to combine.
  12. Replace the lid and allow the residual heat to melt the cheese, about 3 minutes. Stir in the cilantro and serve immediately.