Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs brings you the taste and flavor of a homemade pasta dish all while being ready in under 10 minutes!
Instant Pot recipes like this Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs are perfect for busy weeknights when you need dinner in a hurry.
I have a confession to make: I am in love with my Instant Pot! If you don’t already have one, I totally suggest making the investment.
I was hesitant at first. I didn’t want another small appliance I used once and then collected dust and used storage space, but I have to say, I use it more than I expected.
Make sure to PIN Spaghetti and Meatballs!
Sometimes after a long day of work, you just want a quick and easy dinner. That is where the Instant Pot comes in.
An Instant Pot is an electric pressure cooker. It speeds up your cooking time by 2-6 times and uses up to 70% less energy! It’s the perfect kitchen tool for a full-time working family that doesn’t have a lot of time for dinner in the evenings.
Full disclosure, there are certainly some recipes that don’t make sense in the IP (Instant Pot), but for the those that are actually quicker on stovetop, there are at least 50% more than are faster.
For example, I tried an IP Chicken Marsala that actually took more time.
Ok, I have another confession: I am also in love with spaghetti! There is something so simple and comforting, yet delicious and flavorful about a big bowl of homemade spaghetti and meatballs.
My Italian ancestors are turning over in their grave knowing I made sauce in just 10 minutes.
My mouth is watering just thinking about it. Especially after my recent trip to Italy. But I don’t always have time to make my family recipe that needs to simmer for 8 hours. Great for a lazy Sunday, not so great for our lifestyle on a weekday.
Now onto how to make Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs….
The meatballs cook and the noodles boil all in less than ten minutes. It doesn’t get much quicker than that! Pressure cooker meatballs are moist and tender, which is a common complaint and issue with fried or even baked meatballs.
PRO TIP: You can use pre made fresh meatballs or frozen meatballs to make this recipe even faster!
The meatballs are made with ground beef, egg, bread crumbs, fine sea salt, white ground pepper, Parmesan cheese, garlic powder and evaporated milk.
Homemade meatballs like these ones are full of flavor! When meatballs are made this fast, you really can’t make a case for using the frozen.
The spaghetti sauce uses onion, garlic, fennel seed and Italian seasoning, and mixes it with olive oil crushed tomatoes for a homemade sauce that it out of this world! Add your own blend of spices to make it your own. Other popular additions are bay leaves, fresh oregano or parsley and red wine.
PRO TIP: Use fresh garlic opposed to bottled garlic. Fresh garlic has garlicky flavor while bottled garlic is almost sweet.
Combine all of this with dry spaghetti noodles and water, and tada, you’ve got yourself a homemade spaghetti and meatballs dinner in no time!
About 50% of the individuals who have made this received a “burn notice” for too little liquid. Crushed tomatoes can vary greatly by brand as to how much liquid versus whole tomato is in the can.
The size of your IP also makes a difference, smaller IPs tend to give the burn notice more often because there is too much volume. Standard Instant Recipes are meant for the 6 quart cooker.
Lastly, different brands cook differently and may not yield the same results.
If yours is more of a puree, add 1 cup of water. If yours has large chunks of tomato and is less liquidy or really thick, add an additional 1/2 cup (1 1/2 cups total) water and you should be good.
PRO TIP: Freshly grate your cheeses, blocked cheese holds in the flavor and moisture, while pre grated cheese tends to be drier and less flavorsome.
Toss well when finished and allow to sit to let some of the water mix into the sauce. Some folks like to use tongs and transfer to a serving bowl or baking sheet to leave excess liquid in the IP.
Make sure to top with freshly grated Parmesan or Pecorino Romano cheese and freshly minced parsley for the ultimate touch garnish.
More Instant Pot recipes:
Tools for making this Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs:
Instant Pot – If you don’t have one, you need to invest! This is my favorite new appliance that takes the place of 7!
Questions you might have about how to make spaghetti and meatballs:
Can I use a different type of pasta? You don’t have to use spaghetti, but this specific recipe does call for it. If you use a smaller size pasta like cappellini (angel hair) or thicker like fettuccine, the cooking times may vary and this might alter the ability for your meatballs to cook.
Can I use frozen cooked meatballs? Yes, if you used cooked frozen meatballs, the cook time should be exactly the same. However, if you use pre cooked thawed meatballs, the cooking time will be off. Use either raw meatballs or frozen cooked for best results.
Why did I get the burn notice? About 50% of the individuals who have made this received a “burn notice” for too little liquid. Crushed tomatoes can vary greatly by brand as to how much liquid versus whole tomato is in the can. I added extra liquid to the base recipe, it should be fixed now.
Can I just cook frozen meatballs in sauce? Yes! You can just add the sauce and meatballs and add the pasta separately or just keep it low carb.
Can I freeze spaghetti and meatballs? Cooked spaghetti and meatballs can be frozen. If packaged correctly, it will stay good for up to 4 months.
How long is spaghetti and meatballs good for? Like most foods, if kept in the refrigerator, it will stay good for about 5 days, but is best eaten fresh.
Can I use black pepper instead of white pepper? Sure! Be my guest!
The pasta doesn’t fit into my IP, what do I do? Make sure you break the spaghetti so it is all covered by tomato sauce and water.
I like mine a little spicy, what can I add? Add red pepper flakes for more heat.
Can I use ground beef instead of ground beef? You can substitute ground pork for ground beef or any mix of the two. If you use bulk Italian sausage, your meatballs might take more like sausage. Not a bad thing, just different.
Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs
- In a medium mixing bowl, combine crumbled ground beef, egg, breadcrumbs, fine sea salt, white ground pepper, Parmesan cheese, garlic powder and evaporated milk. Toss to combine, but do not over mix. This leads to tough meatballs.
- Form into 8 large meatballs. Set aside.
- Set Instant Pot to saute function, add onion and garlic, sauteing for 2 minutes.
- Add fennel seed, crushed tomato and Italians seasoning. Stir well.
- Add meatballs on top of sauce.
- Place dry spaghetti on top of meatballs.
- Pour 1/2 cup water over pasta.
- Lock lid in place. Set to manual high pressure and set for 5 minutes.
- Use quick release method.
- Pour spaghetti and meatballs onto a large serving platter, breaking apart any stuck pieces of pasta.
- Serve immediately.
- If you’ve tried this recipe, come back and let us know how it was!