This amazing Instant Pot recipe combines dill pickle juice, pasta and a creamy cheesy sauce to make the best creamy chicken pasta dinner for the family!
You might be scratching your head with this recipe and I can see why you might think that. After all, pickles, chicken and pasta seems a little out of the box. But in the world of the internet, anything dill pickle is trending like crazy. I came up with this recipe on a whim and with an attitude that if it worked then awesome, but if it didn’t, how bad could it actually taste and I’d use it up somehow. I was also inspired by these Dill Pickle Chicken Wings which I can’t wait to try!
It ended up being one of those recipes where everything turns out perfectly and the end result is a total winner! If you like pickles you should definitely give this a try, the flavor is very mellow but you can still taste that familiar dill pickle flavor in each bite. It’s a little bit like chicken Alfredo but no garlic and only a little Parmesan on top. The main flavor here is definitely the dill pickle juice, It’s all about the pickle!
How do you make dill pickle creamy chicken pasta?
It’s really easy and it’s an Instant Pot recipe so we’re talking about making a family dinner in around 30 minutes which is about the normal amount of time I have to feed everyone on a busy weeknight. Between dance classes and baseball there’s never enough time to spend in the kitchen.
The secret to capturing that awesome pickle flavor is to pressure cook the chicken in the juice which only takes about 12 minutes.
How do I make the sauce creamy?
Once the chicken is cooked transfer it form the Instant Pot. Add the heavy cream to the pickle juice along with a cornstarch slurry (worst word ever) and that’s how easy it is to create the sauce. Add the chicken and cooked pasta back into the pot and season.
Does it matter what kind of pickles I use?
Yes it does because you’ll need to chop some pickles for garnish, so bread and butter pickles or hamburger pickles won’t work, they’re too thin. I used this 24oz jar of Kosher Baby Dills and diced them up to sprinkle over the finished pasta. The jar should give you just the right amount of pickle juice once you extract the pickles.
Do I have to use penne pasta?
No, you can use any pasta but I used mini penne and I like how the tubes get filled with the sauce meaning more flavor for me in each bite!
Can I reheat this creamy chicken pasta?
You can reheat in the microwave for a minute or two or place in a pan adding a half cup of milk and bring back to a simmer until hot.
Let me know if you make this recipe or any other from Foodness Gracious and as always remember to tag me @foodnessgracious on any social. I love seeing what you guys are making!
Make sure you’re following me on Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest where you can find all the latest recipes!
Dill Pickle Creamy Chicken Pasta
- 2 cups dried penne pasta
- 2 tbsp canola oil
- 1 1/2 lbs skinless chicken breasts chopped into cubes
- 1 3/4 cups dill pickle juice a 24oz jar of pickles should be enough
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 2 tbsp cornstarch
- 2 tbsp water
- Sea salt and black pepper to taste
- 3 kosher baby dill pickles diced to garnish
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- Bring a pot of water to a boil and cook the pasta using the directions on the box, drain and set aside.
- Set your Instant Pot to brown/sauté and add the oil.
- Add the cubed chicken and brown.
- Add the pickle juice and switch the setting to poultry-high pressure for 12 minutes.
- Once the chicken is cooked, release the pressure and scoop the chicken from the pickle juice with a slotted spoon to a plate, leaving behind the liquid.
- Switch the Instant Pot back to sauté and bring the juice to a simmer.
- Add the heavy cream and whisk until simmering again.
- Combine the cornstarch and water in a small bowl and add to the cream whisking until thickened.
- Add the chicken and the pasta back into the Instant Pot and stir to combine everything.
- Serve at once adding some grated Parmesan and diced pickles on top of each serving.
I don’t have an instant pot. Do you have advice on how to convert your recipe to top-of-the-stove and/or oven? I really like the idea of pickles and pasta.
Hi- you could poach the chicken in the pickle juice or separately sauté the chicken and then follow the steps for adding the cream to the warm pickle juice though the chicken might not have as much pickle flavor/ Let me know :)
Marinate the chicken in the pickle juice over night. Season lightly and sear in a pan. Add a little pickle juice when they’re almost done, drop to low and let finish in the juice.
Boil the pasta- reserve a half cup of pasta water (probably won’t need the cornstarch). Here’s the tricky part- I’m not sure quite how much pickle juice youll need, but add the pickle juice to your final pan, let rich a simmer, mix in your cream. Drop the heat to low (make sure the pan isnt too hot here) then add your pasta, pasta water, and the cheese and stir/toss vigorously to emulsify the fats and create that rich sauce.
Top with some dill, more cheese, and I guess some diced pickles. and that should do it!
Side note- I think this is a really creative recipe. It makes a lot of sense- I make a lemon butter, parm pasta really similar to this- but swapping out lemon for pickle juice, while it sounds weird, actually makes a lot of sense. We’ll get the acidity of the lemon, but also adding the other flavors of pickle brine like garlic, black pepper, red pepper, and dill.
Ohhh this sounds delicious!!! I love how creamy it looks. Only change I have is I’m going to use my spicy kosher dill pickles that I already have. Can’t wait!
I’m new to your blog (linked from How Sweet Eats)- this was SO good!! I was a little skeptical but my husband loves pickles so thought I’d give it a try. We both ate two bowls- yikes! Thanks for a great change-up to pasta!
Glad to hear it Saria!
This was quick and tasty. Never would have thought to do this. Thanks for the recipe!