This Instant Pot Chicken Wild Rice Soup is super easy to make. And it can also be cooked on the stovetop as well. It’s gluten-free and dairy-free, but there’s also a creamy option to check out as well. It’s chock full of veggies and I love making it for meal prep lunches during the winter to heat up for lunches. It also makes a cozy dinner anytime, and you’ll find some serving suggestions below.
This soup is the definition of cozy and comforting! I started making it back in March, and it really just came together based on what I had in the pantry/freezer. It was such a hit, I’ve been making it ever since.
So during the colder months this year, I’ve been making this soup for anyone we know going through a hard time, or that is feeling under the weather. It’s just the right amount of filling when you’re not at your best.
And it really just hits the spot at any time in a way I can’t describe. There’s something about the flavors that just keep you coming back for more. So I know you’ll enjoy this simple and comforting meal too.
It’s also super easy to make which I think is at least half the reason it’s become such a go-to recipe for me. So if you know anyone who could use some extra care, try taking them a container of this soup with a batch of my Healthier No Bake Cookies.
That has been a winning combination for me so far this year! (Also this combo is allergy-friendly because it’s a meal that’s… gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free, soy-free, and refined sugar-free… phew!)
We’re also so fond of this soup, that I often make it as part of my weekly meal prep. It reheats beautifully for healthy (and hot) lunches all week long.
Lately, Tyler has been working at a job site that doesn’t have heat. And so after a few hours of working around cold concrete walls, he loves having hot soup for lunch.
Let’s make this Instant Pot Chicken Wild Rice Soup step by step
Step 1: We’re going to start by prepping all the ingredients listed in the recipe. Then it’s time to hit the sauté button on the Instant Pot.
When it comes up to temperature, cook the onion, carrot, and celery mixture for a few minutes until just beginning to soften.
Step 2: From there you’ll add the cubed-up chicken thighs, and cook briefly just until the edges begin to turn white.
Step 3: Then it’s time to add the wild rice and sweet potato. I cut the sweet potato chunks to be on the large side so they don’t completely break down during the cooking time.
Step 4: Finally, pour the chicken stock over the top. Then using the back of a spoon press the chunks down to be as covered as possible by the chicken stock.
From there you pressure cook and quick release. Season to taste with sea salt and pepper, and dinner is ready!
Ways to serve this
- We love a bowl of this soup with crackers, and if I have a little extra time I make my Almond Flour Rosemary Crackers. You can also serve this soup with fresh biscuits or crusty bread.
- If desired add veggie side dishes like my Roasted Broccoli, Sautéed Green Beans, or Roasted Brussels Sprouts.
- Add something fresh with my Apple Spinach Salad or Mandarin Spinach Salad.
You can make this soup creamy by adding 1/2 cup of heavy cream and simmering briefly after the Instant Pot has finished cooking. To keep this recipe dairy-free, try 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut cream or my Savory Vegan Cashew Cream.
Yes and no. If you cook this on the stovetop, add the squash in after about 10 minutes of simmering the wild rice. If you add it in too soon, it will dissolve into the soup. And I’ve found it doesn’t hold up well cooking in the Instant Pot because it cooks faster than the wild rice.
Yes, you can sub in chicken breasts for the chicken thighs. I would add the chicken breasts to the Instant Pot whole, then after the cooking time shred the chicken breasts with 2 forks. You can dice them into large pieces and add them, but they tend to dry out a bit.
Yes, you can use regular potatoes in this chicken and wild rice soup recipe and it’s very tasty!
- To store – place any cooled/room temperature leftover soup into an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 4 days.
- Make ahead – this soup can be made ahead and reheated, just be aware of the storing time listed above.
- Reheating – place any leftovers into a saucepan and reheat on medium heat stirring until the soup is heated through.
- To freeze – freeze any leftovers in an airtight sealed container for up to 3 months. The sweet potatoes will be much softer and break down a bit after being in the freezer, but this soup is still very tasty. Defrost in the fridge overnight before reheating. If you freeze the soup in a Ziplock bag, I recommend freezing it on a cookie sheet so it’s flat and easy to store. Then when you place it in the refrigerator to defrost, place it on a glass baking dish or pan with a rim to thaw and catch any leaks that might happen as it defrosts in the bag.
I really hope you enjoy this Instant Pot Chicken Wild Rice Soup recipe! If you do get a chance to make this recipe, I’d love to hear from you in the comments.
Instant Pot Chicken Wild Rice Soup
- 2 tbsp avocado oil - or olive oil
- 1 onion - 1/4″ diced measuring 3 cups
- 4 stalks celery - thinly sliced measuring 2 cups
- 4 carrots - peeled and sliced measuring 2 cups
- 2 cloves garlic - minced
- 1 pound boneless skinless chicken thighs - cut into 1/2 pieces
- 1 tsp poultry seasoning
- 1 tbsp chopped fresh thyme leaves - or 1 teaspoon dried, or other herbs like rosemary
- 2 sweet potatoes - peeled and cubed 1/2″x 3/4″, measuring 6 cups
- 1 cup wild rice - not cooked
- 4 cups chicken stock - or chicken broth, preferably low sodium or unsalted
- 1 tsp sea salt - or to taste, see notes
- 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
Optional Creamy Variation:
- 1/2 cup coconut cream - Savory Cashew Cream, or heavy cream
- Add the cut-up chicken thighs with the poultry seasoning and thyme. Continue to sauté until the outer edges of the chicken begin to turn white, 2-3 minutes. (The chicken doesn't need to be done at this step.)
- Turn off the sauté function, then add the sweet potatoes and wild rice. Pour the chicken stock over the top. Then stir the ingredients together and push the ingredients down with the back of a spoon to submerge them as best as possible.
- Secure the lid, set it to sealing, and pressure cook for 30 minutes. When the timer is done, cover the valve with a cloth to avoid spattering and quick release. When the Instant Pot is safe to open, stir in salt and pepper to taste.
- If you're using the creamy option, stir in either the coconut cream or cashew cream and serve immediately.
- To make this on the stovetop, sauté just like you would with the Instant Pot version. After you've reached the step where you add in the chicken stock, partially cover and simmer until the rice is tender.
- You may need to add as much as 2 additional cups of chicken stock due to evaporation. Season to taste and serve. If you're using the creamy variation, add the cream of choice about 10 minutes before the soup is done.