Chili’s Cajun Chicken Pasta is a popular dish millions worldwide have enjoyed. Now, you can easily recreate it at home with this Instant Pot Copycat Chili’s recipe!
This creamy, cheesy, spicy, and delicious dish will quickly become one of your family’s favorite dinner recipes.
The combination of chicken breast chunks in a zesty Cajun sauce served over penne pasta creates an irresistible meal packed full of flavor that won’t take hours to make. Best of all, this copycat version comes together in just 30 minutes using your Instant Pot – so you can have restaurant-quality meals right from the comfort of your own kitchen any night of the week!
What Is Chili’s Cajun Pasta
Chili’s Cajun Pasta is a popular dish served at the Chili’s restaurant chain. It is a pasta dish combining Cajun seasoning with creamy Alfredo sauce, creating a bold and spicy flavor that is rich and satisfying.
The dish typically includes penne pasta, sautéed bell peppers and onions, and a creamy sauce made with heavy cream, Parmesan cheese, and Cajun seasoning. Additional ingredients, such as chicken, shrimp, or sausage, may also be added for extra protein and flavor. Chili’s Cajun Pasta is a hearty and flavorful dish that has become a fan favorite for those who love bold and spicy flavors.
Why You Will Love Chili’s Copycat Recipe For Cajun Pasta
There are many reasons why you will love Chili’s Copycat Recipe for Cajun Pasta:
- Flavorful: This dish is packed with bold and spicy flavors, thanks to the Cajun seasoning and creamy Alfredo sauce.
- Easy to make: This recipe is simple and easy to follow, making it a great option for busy weeknights or when you want to prepare a quick and delicious meal.
- Customizable: You can adjust the level of spiciness to your liking by adding more or less Cajun seasoning or using a milder seasoning blend.
- Versatile: This dish can be served as a main course or as a side dish and pairs well with various proteins, such as chicken, shrimp, or sausage.
- Budget-friendly: Making this copycat recipe at home is much more affordable than dining out at a restaurant.
- Crowd-pleaser: The bold and flavorful combination of Cajun seasoning and Alfredo sauce will surely be a hit for kids and adults alike.
Overall, Chili’s Copycat Recipe for Cajun Pasta is a delicious, easy-to-make, and versatile dish that will surely become a favorite in your household.
Ingredients Needed For Instant Pot Copycat Chili’s Cajun Chicken Pasta
Are you a fan of Chili’s Cajun Chicken pasta? Do you want to try making this delicious dish at home but feel intimidated by all the cooking steps? We’ve got great news – it’s much simpler than you think with an Instant Pot.
In just one pot, you can have a flavorful and hearty meal that tastes like it came from your favorite restaurant. Keep reading for an easy guide on making copycat Chili’s Cajun Chicken pasta with detailed instructions on the ingredients needed for success. With this recipe, in no time at all, you will be feasting on creamy and decadent flavors reminiscent of your favorite restaurant dish!
Remember the step-by-step directions are below in the printable recipe card at the bottom of the page, as well as the nutritional information.
- Pasta: Use penne pasta, ziti, bowtie pasta, or rigatoni. Any short pasta will work.
- Chicken: Use boneless, skinless chicken breast, or chicken tenders
- Butter: Use unsalted butter for the best flavor
- Half and Half: You can also use almond milk, coconut milk, or heavy cream
- Shredded Cheese: Use Parmesan cheese or Mozzrealal Shredded Cheese
- Seasonings and Spices: Cajun Seasoning, Kosher Salt, Black Pepper, lemon zest, and Garlic Powder
- Liquid: You can use low-sodium chicken broth or chicken stock instead of water for added flavor.
- Serving: Serve with sliced green onions or fresh parsley.
How To Cook Chili’s Delicious Creamy Cajun Chicken Pasta In Instant Pot
If you want to add spicy, flavorful flair to your next meal, try this creamy cajun chicken pasta recipe. Taking inspiration from Chili’s Meals, it has a tangy combination of bold flavors that everyone is sure to love! Plus, using an Instant Pot gives you the same delicious outcome without waiting for hours in the kitchen.
This dish comes together quickly and easily for a nutritious dinner packed with protein and veggies – perfect for those busy weeknights when time is tight, but the flavor still matters!
Step One: Cook Pasta
Place the penne pasta in the Instant Pot and fill it with enough water to cover the noodles. Close the lid and seal your lid by pushing the valve away from you. Set to manual high pressure for 8 minutes. Once your cook time is complete, quick release the valve toward you to open the pressure. Drain your cooked pasta in place in a separate bowl. Set aside.
Step Two: Pressure Cook Cajun Chicken Breast
Season your chicken with the Cajun spices and slice the chicken into strips. Press the saute button on the Instant Pot after you are done cooking your pasta. Add four tablespoons of olive oil. Place your coated chicken into the bottom of the instant pot, and Sauté until the inside of your chicken reaches 165 degrees F by using a meat thermometer.
Step Three: Prepare The Sauce
Continue to keep your Instant Pot in saute function. Add in your butter, half-and-half, lemon zest, pepper, salt, and garlic powder to your Instant Pot. Continue to stir until it starts to bubble.
Return your past to the bowl, mixing well.
Step Four: Serving
Transfer your pasta to your serving dish. Top with a few chicken strips, extra cajun seasoning, black beans, diced tomatoes, and as much Parmesan cheese as you want!
Pro Tips For The Best Chili’s Cajun Chicken Pasta Recipe
Here are some pro tips to help you make the best Instant Pot Copycat Cajun Chicken Pasta.
- Use high-quality ingredients: Use high-quality pasta, fresh bell peppers and onions, and fresh chicken breasts to enhance the flavor and texture of the dish.
- Cook the pasta al dente: Cook the pasta until it is al dente, which means it should be cooked but still firm to the bite. This will prevent the pasta from becoming mushy and will ensure that it holds its shape and texture.
- Season the chicken with homemade Cajun seasoning, salt, and pepper before cooking to add flavor and ensure it is well seasoned.
- Don’t overcook the chicken: Cook the chicken until it is just cooked through, being careful not to overcook it. Overcooked chicken can become tough and dry.
- Use a mixture of heavy cream and milk: Use a mixture of heavy cream and milk in the Alfredo sauce to create a creamy and rich sauce without making it too heavy or thick.
- Add Cajun seasoning to taste: Add Cajun seasoning to taste, adjusting the amount depending on how spicy you like your food. Add additional cayenne pepper or lemon pepper if you want some added spice.
By following these pro tips, you can make the flavorful, creamy, and satisfying Chili’s Cajun Chicken Pasta Recipe. Enjoy your delicious and spicy pasta dish!
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I use a different type of pasta?
Yes, you can use a different type of pasta, such as penne, fusilli, or rotini. This is one of the easiest pasta dishes you can make in the Instant Pot.
Can I use frozen chicken breasts?
Yes, you can use frozen chicken breasts in this recipe. Increase the cooking time to 10 minutes on high pressure for frozen chicken.
Can I make the dish ahead of time?
Yes, you can make the dish ahead of time and store it in the fridge for up to 3 days. Reheat the pasta in the microwave or on the stove before serving.
Can I add vegetables to the dish?
Yes, you can add vegetables such as bell peppers, onions, or mushrooms to the dish. Simply sauté the vegetables before adding them to the Instant Pot.
Can I use a different type of cheese?
Yes, you can use a different type of cheese, such as Parmesan or Romano. Just be sure to use hard, grated cheese that will melt well.
Can I use a different type of protein?
Yes, you can use a different type of protein, such as shrimp, sausage, or tofu. Just be sure to adjust the cooking time accordingly.
Can I make the dish less spicy?
Yes, you can make the dish less spicy using less Cajun seasoning or a milder seasoning blend.
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Instant Pot Copycat Chili’s Cajun Chicken Pasta
- 10 ounces penne pasta, dry
- 2 medium boneless skinless chicken breasts
- 4 teaspoons Cajun seasoning
- 4 tablespoons butter, (divided)
- 3 cups half and half
- 3 teaspoons lemon zest
- 1 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 cup tomatoes, diced
- 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded
- 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 manual 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 pasta in place in a separate bowl. Set aside.
- Season your chicken with the Cajun seasoning, slice the chicken into strips.
- Press the saute button on the Instant Pot after you are done cooking your pasta.
- Add 4 tablespoons of oil.
- Sauté until the inside of your chicken reaches 165°
- 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 Instant Pot.
- Continue to stir until it starts to bubble.
- Return your past to the bowl, mixing well.
- Transfer your pasta to your serving dish. Top with a few strips of chicken, diced tomatoes, and as much Parmesan cheese as you want! Enjoy!
- Instant Pot, or Ninja Foodi