Instant Pot Pasta with Meat Sauce

This Instant Pot Pasta with Meat Sauce is an easy and delicious meal that's ready in no time. Packed with flavor and using only a few ingredients, this recipe is perfect for busy weeknights. Your family will love it and you'll love how quickly you'll have dinner on the table!

pasta with meat sauce on a plate

This Instant Pot Pasta with Meat Sauce is a busy mom’s best friend! It’s super quick to put together and uses only a few ingredients. Though it’s a simple recipe, we love the flavor and my family devours it every time I make it.

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This recipe may seem a bit heavy on the minced garlic, but I make it this way because my father-in-law used to do the same. He made the best spaghetti and meat sauce, and he always put tons of dry minced garlic in it. I would say the pasta doesn’t taste garlicky but it’s very flavorful. It’s very meaty and not too saucy. My kids think it tastes just like grandpa used to make!

a bowl of pasta with meat sauce sitting in front of the instant pot

What Ingredients Do I Need for Instant Pot Pasta with Meat Sauce?

This Pasta with Meat Sauce recipe is incredibly easy and quick. You don’t need much to get dinner on the table, fast. Below you will find the full list of ingredients.

  • Ground Beef: You’ll need 2 pounds of ground beef. I like to use 90/10 so there’s no need to drain.
  • Farfalle Pasta: You will need one pound of Farfalle pasta. This is bow tie pasta, and any brand will do. I usually buy Barilla when available.
  • Pasta Sauce: You’ll need one 24 oz. jar of pasta sauce. For this recipe, I used Classico Spicy Tomato and Basil.
  • Unsalted Chicken Stock: You will use 3 cups of unsalted chicken stock. My go-to brand is Kitchen Basics.
  • Seasonings: You’ll need Italian seasoning, dry minced onion, dry minced garlic, kosher salt, ground black pepper, and crushed red pepper flakes.

That’s it! All pretty basic ingredients most of us have on hand.

a jar of classico brand spicy tomato and basil pasta sauce sitting on the counter

Substitutions for This Instant Pot Pasta with Meat Sauce Recipe

I always get lots of questions about substituting ingredients in recipes. Below are the questions that you’re probably going to ask me so I’ve gone ahead and answered them for you. If you have any other questions, please leave them in the comments.

Can I Use a Different Kind of Pasta?

You can sub the Farfalle pasta for one pound of elbow pasta with no adjustments. If you use a different, bigger kind of pasta like rigatoni you may have to add a minute or two to the pressure cooking time.

Can I Use a Different Sauce?

This recipe is very versatile and you can use whatever pasta sauce you prefer. I like using a spicy one, but you can use your family’s favorite. As I mentioned above, this is not a saucy pasta. If you want to make it saucier, add one more jar of pasta sauce.

Can I Use Fresh Garlic and Onion?

I like keeping my recipes super easy, and this one was made to be just that. This is why I use dry minced onions and dry minced garlic. That being said, if you have time to chop onions and mince garlic, then by all means do it. You can use half to one whole onion, and 2 tablespoons fresh minced garlic.

dried minced garlic in a small bowl

Can I Make this Recipe on the Stove?

You can definitely make this recipe on the stove. Boil your pasta as you usually would. Brown your ground beef and add the seasonings required for the recipe. Mix the pasta, sauce, and ground beef together. That’s it! The nice thing about making it in the Instant Pot is you only have one pot to clean!

What Can I Serve with this Pasta with Meat Sauce?

When we have pasta, we usually pair it with a side of veggies. You can try making my Easy Oven Roasted Broccoli. It’s delicious! Another delicious side to try is my easy Instant Pot Lemon Butter Broccoli.

And my super delicious Homemade Garlic Bread is another perfect addition to any pasta dish. It’s very easy to make and tastes so good!

a bowl of pasta and meat sauce
Essential Items

Here are some essential prep tools, utensils, and appliances I used to make this recipe.

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Featured Items

Here is a list of the products featured in this post or products similar to those featured in this post:

23 Must-Have Electric Pressure Cooker Accessories

Make sure to check out my Ultimate List of Electric Pressure Cooker Accessories! I’ve included everything you could ever need to help make your pressure cooking quicker, easier, and even more convenient.

How To Make Instant Pot Pasta with Meat Sauce

Here’s a step by step for making this easy pasta recipe. If you don’t need a step by step, you can scroll down to the printable recipe.

Step 1: Cook The Ground Beef

Start by turning your pot to ‘Sauté’ and ‘Adjust’ the heat level to ‘More’. Once the display reads ‘Hot’, add your ground beef. Break it apart into smaller and smaller pieces as it browns. It will take about 6 to 8 minutes for the ground beef to cook through.

Step 2: Season The Ground Beef

Once the ground beef is browned through, add all the seasonings (Italian seasoning, dry minced onion, dry minced garlic, kosher salt, ground black pepper, and red pepper flakes) and mix them into the meat well. Continue sautéing for another minute or two to allow the herbs and spices to release their flavors into the ground beef.

Step 3: Add the Chicken Stock and Deglaze

Next, add the chicken stock and deglaze the pot by scraping the bottom to make sure there are no stuck bits on the bottom of the pot.

Step 4: Add the Pasta and Sauce

Now, add the pasta to the pot, layering it over the ground beef. Push it down into the liquid as much as possible without mixing. Then pour the jar of sauce evenly over the top of the pasta and do not mix.

Step 5: Cook the Pasta

Close your pot and set the lid to ‘Sealing’. Cook the pasta on ‘High Pressure’ ‘Manual’ or ‘Pressure Cook’ for 5 minutes. The pot will read ‘ON’ for a while until it comes to full pressure and then will start counting down.

When the cooking time is up, you need to allow for a 2 minute NPR (Natural Pressure Release). This means you do nothing and let the pot sit. When the screen reads L0:02 you can release the remaining pressure by switching the valve to ‘Venting’. When the pin drops, you can open your pot.

Serve and Enjoy a Plate of Pasta With Meat Sauce!

Give everything a good stir and… You’re ready to eat! I recommend topping this pasta and meat sauce with grated or shredded parmesan cheese.

an instant pot filled with pasta and meat sauce

Did you make this Instant Pot Pasta with Meat Sauce? I know you will absolutely love this pasta recipe as much as we do! Please, let me know in the comments when you try it.

More quick and easy recipes that you may enjoy:

Looking for even more Pasta recipes to make in the Instant Pot? If you want to make an easy ‘dump and start’ recipe, try my Instant Pot Cream Cheese Pasta with Sausage in your pressure cooker. And for a pasta recipe that will leave everyone raving, try my Instant Pot Tuscan Chicken Pasta recipe.

For a full list of all the pressure cooker pasta recipes on this blog, make sure to check out my Instant Pot Pasta Recipes post.

Need a dessert to go with this Pasta with Meat Sauce dish? If you’re looking for a perfect and quick dessert for this recipe, then try my Easy Crustless Buttermilk Pie recipe. It’s so delicious, takes only a few minutes to prep, and can bake while you eat dinner!

Instant Pot Pasta with Meat Sauce


5 from 4 votes
Cooking Method(s)
  • Pressure Cooking
Pressure LevelHigh
Program SettingManual / Pressure Cook
Prep Time
10 minutes
Cook Time
5 minutes
2 minutes
Total Time
17 minutes
Recipe by: Valerie Cooper
Looking for a quick and delicious pasta dish that you can make in your pressure cooker in less than 20 minutes? This is your recipe! This super easy Italian dish is a comforting and filling family favorite.
pasta with meat sauce on a plate

Essential Equipment


for the Ground Beef

for the Pasta


prepare the Ground Beef

  • Set to Sauté: Set the Instant Pot to ‘Sauté’, use the ‘Adjust’ button to set the heat level to ‘More’, and allow the pot to heat up.
  • Cook the Ground Beef: As soon as the digital display reads ‘Hot’, add the ground beef to the pot and cook it, breaking it apart into smaller and smaller pieces as it cooks. Continue until the meat is cooked through, about 6 to 8 minutes.
  • Season the Ground Beef: Mix the Italian seasoning, dry minced onion, dry minced garlic, kosher salt, ground black pepper, and red pepper flakes into the meat and cook for an additional 2 minutes, tossing occasionally.
  • Cancel Sauté: Cancel out of the Sauté function.

add the Stock, Pasta & Sauce

  • Add the chicken stock to the meat and deglaze the bottom of the pot. Layer the pasta on top of the ground beef and, using a wood spoon or spatula, gently push it down into the stock so that it is submerged and damp. Pour the pasta sauce evenly over the pasta, do not mix it in.

set the Cook Time

  • 5-Minute Cook Time: Close the Instant Pot and set the pressure release valve to ‘Sealing’ and then set the pot to cook on ‘Manual’ / ‘Pressure Cook’, ‘High Pressure’ for 5 minutes.
  • 2-Minute NPR: Once the cook time has completed, allow for a 2 minute NPR (natural pressure release). Release any remaining pressure after the two minute NPR has completed.

Mix & Serve

  • Once all the pressure has been released, open the pot and then mix the pasta and ground beef well.
  • Serve and enjoy.

Nutrition Facts

Calories: 461kcal | Carbohydrates: 52g | Protein: 34g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 74mg | Sodium: 989mg | Potassium: 916mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 418IU | Vitamin C: 7mg | Calcium: 75mg | Iron: 5mg

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7 thoughts on “Instant Pot Pasta with Meat Sauce”

  1. 5 stars
    First try was a huge success! Slight changes I made based on what I had on hand…I made the recipe for 4 and used Italian sausage. I used a 15 oz can of tomato sauce instead of only 12 oz. I added a 10 oz bag of frozen butternut squash. I will definitely be keeping this in the regular meal rotation. Thank you SO much for a quick, easy, delicious recipe!!!

  2. I like to normally cook 1lb meat to 1lb pasta to 1 Jar sauce. Do you think in the 8 quart you could fit another lb of pasta AND 1 jar of sauce?

    1. Hi Kathy! I usually only cook one pound of pasta. I’d be concerned that if you make two pounds you may have a mess when you release the pressure. You can certainly try it and just be aware when you’re releasing in case you need to close it up or do it in small bursts. You would need to add broth as well, of course.

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