Chicken Khichdi (Instant Pot)

Discover the perfect blend of simplicity and flavor with this chicken khichdi recipe – a wholesome one-pot dish that promises comfort and satisfaction in every bite.

Chicken khichdi in a white bowl.

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Khichdi is a staple in nearly every Indian home, made using lentils and spices, with each household having a family favorite flavor. This chicken khichdi is a variation from the classic khichdi recipe made using rice and lentils. Here, chicken is added along with rice and lentils to create a well-rounded meal.

I like to make chicken khichdi in my Instant Pot as it gets done in 30 minutes with minimal hands-on time. Have this one-pot meal recipe up your sleeve for those “what’s for dinner” moments!

Ingredients

Ingredients to make chicken khichdi placed on a white surface.

Chicken: Use boneless, skinless chicken thigh pieces for this recipe.

Rice and lentils: Basmati rice and petite yellow lentils (moong dal) are the key ingredients to make khichdi.

Spices: In my recipe, I use cumin seeds, bay leaves, cinnamon sticks, turmeric, and garam masala.

See the recipe card for the complete list of ingredients and quantities.

Step-by-step instructions

Sauted onion and spices in Instant Pot.

Step 1: Heat oil and add the cumin seeds, bay leaf, and cinnamon. Once the spices bloom, add the onions, ginger garlic paste, and green chilies. Saute for 4-5 minutes until they begin to soften.

Sauted chicken in Instant Pot.

Step 2: Add the chicken, salt, and garam masala. Mix well and saute for 3-4 minutes.

Rice, lentils, and water added to sauted chicken and onions in the Instant Pot.

Step 3: Add the rice and dal to the pot. Also, add four cups of water. Mix well and secure the Instant Pot lid.

Pressure cooked chicken khichdi with cilantro garnish in the Instant Pot.

Step 4: Pressure cook for 6 minutes. Let the pressure come down naturally for 10 minutes, then do a quick manual pressure release. Open the lid and garnish with cilantro.

Expert Tips

  • Rinse the rice and dal thoroughly before using them. You can also soak them for 10-15 minutes, but this is optional.
  • Brown the chicken and spices before adding the rice and dal. This adds a richer flavor and a slight textural contrast.
  • The amount of water I have used in this recipe gives me soft and thick khichdi, similar to a porridge. If you want a drier khichdi, reduce the water to three cups instead of four.
  • You can also add other vegetables to this dish. Carrots, green beans, cauliflower, potatoes, and peas are great options.

What to serve with chicken khichdi

Chicke khichdi is usually served with four accompaniments: yogurt, Indian pickle, papadum, and ghee. You can also top it with lemon or lime juice just before serving.

Storage Tips

This can be stored in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. You can also freeze it in a freezer-safe container for up to three months. To reheat, place the khichdi in a pan and add a small amount of water (not more than ½ cup). Simmer on low heat for a few minutes.

Recipe FAQs

Can I add vegetables to chicken khichdi?

Yes. You can add up to 2 cups of vegetables to this recipe. You can include peas, cauliflower, carrots, and green beans.

How to make this dish on the stovetop?

To make this dish on the stovetop, follow this recipe until adding the rice and lentils. Add 5 cups of water and bring it to a boil. Reduce the heat, cover, and simmer until the chicken, rice, and lentils are fully cooked. This can take up to 30 minutes. Keep stirring occasionally, and add more water if needed.

Can I make chicken khichdi in a slow cooker?

Yes. Use a frying pan and follow this recipe until sauteing the chicken and spices. Transfer it along with rice, lentils, and water to a slow cooker. Cook on low for 6-8 hours or until the rice, lentils, and chicken are tender.

Is khichdi gluten-free?

Yes, it is naturally gluten-free.

Bowl of chicken khichdi on a white plate with spoons in the background.

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Chicken khichdi in a white bowl.

Chicken Khichdi

Discover the perfect blend of simplicity and flavor with this chicken khichdi recipe – a wholesome one-pot dish that promises comfort and satisfaction in every bite.
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Indian
Servings: 4
Author: Shilpa Kerur

Equipment

Ingredients

  • 1 lb chicken thigh cut into small pieces
  • ¾ cup basmati rice
  • ½ cup moong dal (yellow lentils)
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1-2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 medium onion sliced
  • 2 tsp ginger garlic paste
  • 1-2 green chili chopped
  • 2 tsp garam masala
  • 2 tsp salt adjust as per taste
  • 2 tbsp cilantro finely chopped
  • 4 cups water

Instructions

  • Wash the rice and dal and set it aside.
  • Set the Instant Pot in saute mode and add oil. Once it heats, add the cumin seeds, bay leaf, and cinnamon.
  • Once the spices bloom, add the onions. Saute for 4-5 minutes until they begin to soften.
  • Add ginger garlic paste and green chili. Saute for one more minute.
  • Add the chicken, salt, and garam masala. Mix well and saute for 3-4 minutes.
  • Add the rice and dal to the pot. Also, add four cups of water.
  • Mix well and secure the Instant Pot lid. Pressure cook for 6 minutes.
  • Let the pressure come down naturally for 10 minutes, then do a quick manual pressure release.
  • Open the lid and add cilantro. Mix well and serve warm.

Notes

  • Rinse the rice and dal thoroughly before using them. You can also soak them for 10-15 minutes, but this is an optional step.
  • Brown the chicken and spices before adding the rice and dal. This adds a richer flavor and a slight textural contrast.
  • The amount of water I have used in this recipe gives me soft and thick khichdi, similar to a porridge. If you want a drier khichdi, reduce the water to three cups instead of four.
  • You can also add other vegetables to this dish. Carrots, green beans, cauliflower, potatoes, and peas are great options.

Nutrition

Calories: 551kcal | Carbohydrates: 48g | Protein: 28g | Fat: 27g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 6g | Monounsaturated Fat: 12g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 111mg | Sodium: 1318mg | Potassium: 327mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 163IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 60mg | Iron: 2mg
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Chicken khichdi topped with cilantro ready to be served.

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