This simple chicken and lentil soup made right in your Instant Pot is a hearty meal that’ll warm you to the bone!
As you’ve probably noticed, I’ve been on an Instant Pot kick lately.
It’s been fun to play around with ingredients I’ve had in the fridge and pantry, particularly when they can create a hearty and simple soup.
It’s the perfect kind of comfort food for fall and winter (or, honestly, any time of the year)!
Chicken and Lentil Soup in the Instant Pot
To get started, I coated three boneless skinless chicken thighs with salt, pepper and turmeric, and then I seared them in olive oil in my Instant Pot set on sauté for a few minutes on each side.
Boneless chicken thighs cook really quickly, which (in addition to having great flavor) is one of the reasons I love using them so much.
Then, while the chicken was resting, I sautéed some smashed garlic cloves in the bottom of the pot, and then added two cups of dried green lentils.
The beauty of the Instant Pot (or any pressure cooker) is that you don’t need to soak or prep the dried lentils before using them, aside from making sure little bits of non-lentil debris is removed … though I don’t usually find much.
Giving the lentils a minute or two to warm with the olive oil and garlic before adding the chicken stock adds a layer of flavor that’s hard to beat.
Then, I poured chicken stock and water into the Instant Pot, taking care to scrape up all the lovely bits at the bottom, and lastly added the chicken and a cup of thawed frozen spinach.
Once the lid was securely in place, I set it on high to cook for ten minutes (it took about five or ten minutes to come to pressure).
When the time was up, I let the pressure release naturally, but you could manually release it, too.
If you do choose to manually release, just give it a few minutes for the pressure to come down a little, and then be careful of the steam when it shoots out.
I added salt and pepper as the final step, and then I promptly devoured two bowls.
You guys. This soup is out of this world!
So warm and comforting. I can’t wait for lunch leftovers!
- 3 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, smashed
- 2 cups dried green lentils
- 1 cup frozen spinach, thawed
- 6 cups chicken stock
- 2 cups water
- ½ teaspoon turmeric
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- Place the Instant Pot on sauté and add the olive oil.
- Sprinkle the chicken on both sides with half the salt and pepper, and all of the turmeric. Once hot, add the chicken to the Instant Pot and let it cook for 3 minutes. Flip the chicken (it may stick a little), and continue cooking for another 3 minutes. Remove the chicken to a plate, cover with foil, and set it aside.
- Add the garlic to the Instant Pot and let it simmer for a minute. Add the lentils, give a few stirs, and then pour the chicken stock and water in all at once, taking care to scrape the bits off the bottom.
- Add the spinach. Dice the chicken into bite-sized pieces and add it. Give another stir, and then secure the lid and set it to cook for 10 minutes on "Manual."
- Once finished, you can let the pressure release naturally, or you can release it manually. Stir in the remaining salt and pepper, and then serve immediately!
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