Pressure Cooker Creamy Caesar Chicken Breasts

When I was thinking of this recipe, I was obviously thinking about Caesar salad - the classic egg-based dressing made with garlic, anchovies and Parmesan tossed with romaine lettuce. I wanted a warm version of that dressing, but also wanted to incorporate all of the famous salad's ingredients.

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 I started with the garlic and anchovy and then used chicken stock and heavy cream to form the base of the sauce (and the liquid we need in a pressure cooker to create the steam needed to build pressure). Then, egg yolks are whisked in to thicken the sauce – classically called a liaison – along with some Parmesan cheese to round it all out. The only thing left was the salad’s croutons, so a quick stovetop toasting of crumbled bread became the mixture that you can sprinkle on top and you have all the qualities of Caesar Salad. It turned out to be a delicious creamy sauce that I think you’ll love over pasta OR just on the chicken as it sits next to some romaine lettuce – a great low carb option. 

Whole Creamy Caesar Chicken chicken breast on a grey plate with fettuccine and romaine lettuce on the side.

Chicken breasts are the ‘go to’ for busy cooks – they cook up quickly and please most eaters. Pressure cookers are also the ‘go to’ for busy cooks – they cut the regular cooking time down to roughly one third. (If you’re reading this recipe and you’re a busy cook, you probably already know this and would just like to read the recipe!) The only challenge with chicken breasts is finding that fine line where they are perfectly cooked – not under-cooked ?, nor over-cooked ?. The trick to cooking a chicken breast perfectly in the pressure cooker is to cook it under pressure for a very short period of time and then let it sit in the turned off cooker while the pressure drops naturally. That will not only cook your chicken through perfectly, but also help to keep the chicken tender. Releasing the pressure manually (the quick-release method) tends to toughen meats, chicken included. (You can read more pressure cooking tips here.) So, you’ll see that this recipe has just 2 minutes of cooking time, but a natural pressure release. Because I know you’re in a hurry, let the pressure drop naturally for at least 10 minutes. THEN, you can let the remaining pressure out manually with the quick-release method. Remember, you need a little time to cook the pasta anyway. ?

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Cream Caesar Chicken chicken breast sliced on a white plate with sauce and bread crumbles on top and romaine lettuce on the side.

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Pressure Cooker Creamy Caesar Chicken Breasts

  • Prep Time: 15 m
  • Cook Time: 2 m
  • Natural Release: 15 m
  • Total Time: 32 m
  • Servings:
    4

Ingredients

  • 4 4- to 5-ounce boneless chicken breasts
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • olive oil
  • 1 shallot minced
  • 1 to 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 large or 4 small anchovies, chopped
  • ½ cup chicken stock
  • ¾ cup heavy cream
  • 2 egg yolks
  • ¼ cup Parmesan cheese
Topping
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 to 3 slices rustic artisan bread torn into small crumbles (about 1 cup)
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
  • ½ lemon

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat the pressure cooker using the BROWN setting.
  2. Season the chicken breasts with the Italian seasoning, salt and freshly ground black pepper. Add the olive oil to the cooker and brown the chicken on both sides. Remove the browned chicken breasts and set aside.
  3. Add the shallot and garlic to cooker. Sauté for 1 minute and add the anchovies. Sauté for another minute and then add the chicken stock and heavy cream. Return the chicken breasts to the pot, pushing them down into the liquid.
  4. Pressure cook on HIGH for 2 minutes.
  5. Turn the cooker off and let the pressure drop NATURALLY.
  6. While the chicken is cooking, make the crumb topping. Heat the butter and oil in a sauté pan. Add the torn bread and Parmesan cheese. Toss everything together to coat the bread crumbles with oil and sauté until the crumbles are brown and toasted.
  7. Once the pressure has dropped, carefully remove the pressure cooker lid. Transfer the chicken breasts to a resting plate and cover with foil. Return the cooker to the BROWN setting and bring the sauce to a boil. Beat the egg yolks in a small bowl. While whisking, slowly ladle ¼ cup of the sauce into the yolks to temper the eggs (this will prevent the eggs from cooking and scrambling). Then, while constantly whisking the sauce, pour the egg mixture back into the pot. Turn the cooker off and add the Parmesan cheese, stirring until the sauce has thickened slightly.
  8. Serve the chicken over pasta or with some romaine lettuce leaves on the side. Pour sauce over chicken and top with the toasted bread crumbs, squeezing a little lemon juice on at the very end.
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