The Foreign Fork

Instant Pot  Basil Pesto Chicken

This Basil Pesto Chicken in the Instant Pot is the perfect meal to throw together if you kind of want to cook, but don’t have a lot of time. 10 minutes worth of active effort at the beginning, but then press the right buttons on your Instant Pot and wait.

Prep the Chicken


In a bowl, season chicken with salt and pepper to personal preference. Then add 2 tbsp pesto into the bowl and mix to coat.

Brown the Chicken


Add chicken into the pot and allow to brown, about 4 minutes. Use tongs to flip the chicken thighs and brown the other side. 

Pressure Cook


Add the broth into the pot to deglaze. Add pesto and cherry tomatoes into the pot, Then add chicken thighs back in. Turn off saute. Cook on Manual for 6 minutes

Top with Cheese


Quickly place a slice of mozzarella cheese on top of each chicken. Then, close the lid to the pot but do NOT turn on the pressure cooker). Allow to sit for 2-3 minutes to soften. 

Expert Tips

If you want to use chicken breasts, you can! Simply butterfly the breasts until they’re about ½ inch thick, and then pressure cook for 7-8 minutes with a quick release.

Expert Tips

You can also use frozen thighs, but make sure to cook them for a few minutes longer than the recipe entails. About 8-9 minutes should do the trick.

Expert Tips

You can use any pressure cooker to make this recipe, not just an Instant Pot!

What To Serve With Basil Chicken

I like to cook pasta separately and then serve it with my pesto chicken. It is amazing! You can serve it with roasted potatoes or with rice. Vegetables on the side is always a good idea as well!

FAQ - What is Pesto?

Pesto is a very delicious sauce that originated in Genoa, Italy. It is made with basil, lemon juice, pine nuts, and garlic. This sauce pairs well with noodles, and on meats/fish like chicken or salmon.

FAQ - Is Basil Pesto Good for You?

Pesto made the right way is full to the brim with healthy ingredients. Herbs, olive oil, nuts… these ingredients are filled with wonderful nutrients.

The Foreign Fork 

Tap the link below for the full recipe

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