We love a fresh homemade meatball with fresh ground beef and your favorite Italian seasoning. But I don't always have time for that. This Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs Recipe is so easy to make with hardly any clean up, that you will never want to make it on the stove top again. You should also try our InstantPot Mac and Cheese, it's one of our family favorites.
Easy Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs
Spaghetti and Meatballs has long been my “emergency meal.” A few paltry ingredients. A few spare minutes. Add a salad or a frozen veggie. Possibly some garlic bread. And viola! Dinner is done! Who would have thought things could get easier than that? Turns out I was wrong!
I don't have to stay in the kitchen at all! With my Instant Pot electric pressure cooker there's no need for me to stand there at all! There's no waiting for the water to boil, No more using Facetime to watch for the water to boil while getting ready in another room! Not that I would ever do that…
Can you cook meatballs raw in sauce?
Depending on what you are doing absolutely. Marinara sauce tastes better when it is cooked for a long time really low. My grandmother used to always make her “Porcupine” meatballs and simmer them all day in tomato sauce. If you don't plan on cooking everything together for a long time or if you want to make your meatballs ahead and freeze them you can cook them first. But when you use a slow cooker or Instant pot and everything is going to be thoroughly cooked you should not worry. Your meat will be nice and tender.
Should you cover meatballs when cooking in sauce?
I cover the pot on the stove with a lid because as tomato sauce simmers and bubbles it tends to make a mess. If you are using a crock pot or Instant pot you will of course have it covered.
Do meatballs get softer the longer you cook them?
As with most meats you will get more tender and falling apart meats the longer and lower it cooks.
Why do my meatballs fall apart?
Meatballs will fall apart if you do not use the correct portions of binders in your recipe. Too little or too much breadcrumbs or parmesan cheese can cause your meatballs to crumble.
Why are my meatballs rubbery?
When you are rolling your meatballs and mixing everything you want to avoid over mixing and making them too small and tightly compacted. Because of cooking time you want your meat to be able to cook through without cooking too fast. If your meatballs are too small they will cook up too fast and your sauce won't be cooked well enough.
Can you put pasta in an instant pot?
I absolutely love to make my spaghetti in the Instant Pot and Mac N Cheese. I really think if you try this Instant Pot spaghetti recipe you will be hooked on making your pasta in the Instant Pot.
Yes You can Make this in the Instant Pot!
If you're a still a little intimidated, and don't understand what all the fuss about pressure cooking is about, let me use this recipe as a VERY SIMPLE example of what it can do!
Add 4 ingredients: Frozen meatballs, Jar of sauce (just use your favorite pasta sauce) , Box of uncooked spaghetti noodles, and water. Allow time to pressure-ize. Which is 5-15 minutes depending on the temperature of your ingredients. If you're doing a freezer meal that you've prepped ahead of time it will take towards the 15 minute mark, but if most of your ingredients are room or fridge temp it will be in the 5-10 minute range. Make sure you have a secure lid.
Set your cook time for 3 minutes on high pressure. That's right! Only 3 minutes! Allow to NR or Natural Release for 5 minutes and then go ahead and release the rest of the pressure or QR (quick release) and remove your lid. Give it a good stir to ensure your noodles aren't stuck together, and you're ready to serve dinner!
Lets count that up: 5 minutes to come to pressure +3 minutes cook time +5 minutes natural release = 13 minutes and dinner is ready! Now, that's really not much difference from the stove top.
The difference is you were able to set the table, or do the dishes, help the kids with their homework, feed the baby, have an actual conversation with your honey, or even grab a quick shower; because you didn't need to be in the kitchen at all! That's why I love my Instant Pot!
How can I spice up spaghetti and meatballs?
Homemade meatballs with fresh bread crumbs, ground pork or beef are some of the yummiest things out there, but if you put some garnish on top of these frozen meatballs like fresh parsley, basil, red pepper flakes and parmesan cheese you will really have some flavor that is phenomenal, even without fresh meatballs.
This one-pot meal is perfect for busy weeknights or fitting in before soccer practice. Just make sure you have enough spaghetti sauce and enough liquid to cook your pasta through so it cooks to al dente and doesn't get stuck to the bottom of the pot, the residual heat that is in the pot as the pressure releases will have it cooked all the way.
This delicious dinner can be planned ahead so you have very little to do besides toss everything in the pot. If you want some side dishes to go with this a green salad is great or some green beans. They both can be prepped and ready fairly fast if you plan ahead and have what you need on hand. This delicious recipe is so good I recommend making a big batch so there are leftovers for lunch the next day. Are you ready for Instant Pot pasta?
Change it up
There are so many different ways you could switch this up with different sauces or meats. If you cook boneless skinless chicken breast in your spaghetti sauce and top it with some mozzarella and parmesan as you plate it you will have all the flavors of chicken parm without the frying, oil and cleanup! So many easy dinner ideas that give you homemade taste in half the time when you know how to use your Instant Pot to cook pasta or rice. Serve it with a side of Rosemary Parmesan Bread from a fellow blogger.
Has your family taken a classic from the family cookbook and given it a new twist with the Instant Pot or Crock Pot? Feel free to share with us your favorite recipes for weeknights made with one of these pots. We are always looking for new things to try that will make our life easier when we are on a tight schedule or even out camping in the camper. I know when I plan my meals for the week and grocery shop accordingly it takes so much stress out of my day, but when we can add quick and easy recipes to the plan it is an added bonus!.
- 1 box of spaghetti
- 1 bag of frozen meatballs
- 1 jar of spaghetti sauce, about 24-36 oz
- 24 oz of water, I just fill the sauce jar
- Add bout 1/2 of the jar of water to your Instant Pot
- Dump in Meatballs
- Break spaghetti in 1/2 and add to the pot
- Add sauce and the rest of the water
- Lock your lid and close the pressure valve.
- Cook on high for 3 minutes.
- Once you hear the beep, allow for natural pressure release (about 5 minutes), the quick release
- Open your lid and carefully mix all your ingredients together and make sure no noodles are stuck together.
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