A Spicy Perspective

Instant Pot Herb Chicken Orzo

This cozy Instant Pot Herb Chicken Orzo is a quick Italian meal your whole family will love.

Instant Pot Herb Chicken Orzo Recipe (Pressure Cooker Italian Pasta)
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Sometimes I just need a little edible comfort in the form of pasta. Who’s with me?

Even in the summer, when I’m supposed to be sticking to barbecue and watermelon, I’ve got to have a carby pasta dish on occasion. It just makes me feel like all is right with the world.

How to Make Instant Pot Herb Chicken Orzo Recipe (Pressure Cooker Italian Pasta)

Today’s Instant Pot Herb Chicken Orzo is a fabulous recipe year-round, yet I especially like to make it in the summer and early fall when my herbs are growing tall.

It’s also great for summer cooking, because the entire recipe in made in an Instant Pot, so you don’t have to turn on your oven or stovetop and heat up the house.

Making Instant Pot Herb Chicken Orzo Recipe (Pressure Cooker Italian Pasta)

Although I may get stoned for saying this, Instant Pots are not great for every type of recipe. There are times when you’re better off using a skillet to intensify flavor and produce a better overall texture. (Like this Hawaiian BBQ Chicken Skillet, or Carne Asada.)

However, I have found with recipes like this Italian Chicken Orzo dish you can pressure cook your chicken to tender perfection, and boil your pasta at the same time… In just 4 minutes!

How To: Instant Pot Herb Chicken Orzo Recipe (Pressure Cooker Italian Pasta)

How to Make Instant Pot Herb Chicken Orzo

Seriously, Instant Pot Herb Chicken Orzo is so easy to make. Just sauté the chicken thighs in the pot to create some caramelization on the exterior.

Next add in onions, garlic, orzo, tomatoes, and fresh garden herbs. Stir in water and position the chicken thighs on top.

Prepping Instant Pot Herb Chicken Orzo Recipe (Pressure Cooker Italian Pasta)

Then pressure cook the pasta and chicken together.

I like to stir in fresh basil leaves at the end, so you have the deep herby undertones of the pressure cooked herbs, balanced by a pop of fresh sweetness from the raw basil.

Perfect Instant Pot Herb Chicken Orzo Recipe (Pressure Cooker Italian Pasta)

This simple meal is so satisfying, it’s sure to end up on your regular dinner rotation.

And if you don’t have an Instant Pot, it’s worth the purchase!

Best Instant Pot Herb Chicken Orzo Recipe (Pressure Cooker Italian Pasta)

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Check out our recipe card below…

Instant Pot Herb Chicken Orzo Recipe (Pressure Cooker Italian Pasta)
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Instant Pot Herb Chicken Orzo

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 16 minutes
Total Time: 26 minutes
Instant Pot Herb Chicken Orzo Recipe - An easy one-pot pressure cooker meal with robust Italian flavors of tomato, rosemary, thyme and basil.
Servings: 4 +


  • 2-2 1/2 pounds bone-in chicken thighs (4-6 thighs)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3/4 cup chopped onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1-2 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 3-5 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 12 ounces dry orzo pasta
  • 28 ounces fire roasted diced tomatoes
  • 4 cups water
  • 1/3 cup fresh basil leaves, torn
  • Salt and pepper


  • Place the oil in the Instant Pot and set on Sauté. Salt and pepper the chicken pieces on both sides. Then place them skin-side-down in the Instant Pot. Sauté for 5 minutes per side, then remove from the pot. Scrape the bottom of the pot with a metal spatula to loosen any chicken skin. (Skin stuck to the bottom of the pot could later result in a "burn" notice.)
  • Next add the onions and garlic to the pan juices. Sauté for 1-2 minutes.
  • Add the fresh herbs, orzo, diced tomatoes, and water to the pot. Season with 1 1/2 teaspoons salt and stir well. Set the chicken thighs on top of the orzo. Lock the lid into place and set the Instant Pot on Pressure Cook High for 4 minutes.
  • Once the timer goes off, turn off the Instant Pot and perform a Quick Release. When the steam valve button drops, it's safe to open the top. Remove all herb stems. Taste the orzo, and season with salt and pepper as needed. Stir in the fresh basil and serve.



Serving: 1thigh + orzo, Calories: 407kcal, Carbohydrates: 76g, Protein: 13g, Fat: 4g, Saturated Fat: 0g, Cholesterol: 0mg, Sodium: 324mg, Potassium: 233mg, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 8g, Vitamin A: 935IU, Vitamin C: 7.8mg, Calcium: 101mg, Iron: 2.4mg
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Author: Sommer Collier

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11 comments on “Instant Pot Herb Chicken Orzo”

  1. Hello. I was wondering if fresh herbs and bone in chicken could be swapped out for boneless chicken thighs and dried if that’s what is on hand.

  2. Love this one

  3. Looks delicious-do you think chicken breasts would work in this recipe? Boneless, or on the bone?

  4. I had difficulty with the burn notice on this recipe. Even scraping the skin off the bottom of the pot, the orzo sank to the bottom and burned.  I’m wondering if it is layered differently, not stirred, but with the orzo non top of everything but the chicken maybe it won’t have the same issue? 

    • Hi Susan,

      Sorry about that! One thing I’ve noticed after posting IP pasta recipes, is that there are several models and sizes and they don’t all cook exactly the same. :(

      Try adding another 1/2 to 3/4 cup of water. Or you could definitely try layering it differently. If you figure something out with your Instant Pot, please report back!

    • Burnt 3 times in a row. Couldn’t stop the pasta from sticking to the bottom of the instant pot. 

      Very very frustrating. Not super happy with the recipe. Added water, nothing. Emptied out the entire thing and scratched off everything added water again, burnt again. If anyone can give me some sort of guidance that’d be great. 

  5. Could you swap out the orzo for brown rice?

  6. Pingback: 21 Easy Fall Instant Pot Recipes That Will Warm You Up This Season | Good Cookery