Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs

This Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs Recipe is everyone’s favorite comfort food with a quick and easy makeover!

This Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs Recipe is everyone's favorite comfort food with a quick and easy makeover!pinterestRaise your hand if spaghetti and meatballs are your favorite comfort food.

Hands down, it’s my favorite comfort food of all time! I’ve made this recipe in just one skillet, but of course, I had to make it in my Instant Pot too.

Instant Pot Spaghetti Ingredients:

  • Meatballs – fresh or frozen. This is my favorite Homemade Meatball Recipe.
  • Pasta Sauce – You can use any kind of pasta sauce you enjoy. I like mushroom and basil pasta sauce, more flavor with less effort.
  • Spaghetti Noodles – Any kind you like, whole wheat, regular, anything. I even use penne pasta sometimes, and it works just fine.

Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs - everyone's favorite comfort food gets a quick and easy makeover with just 3 main ingredients and less than 30 minutes!

How To Make Pressure Cooker Spaghetti

Now that you’ve gathered all the ingredients, you just layer everything in your Instant Pot, and set it to cook on high for 10 minutes.

PRO TIP: This doesn’t mean you’ll be serving dinner in 10 minutes. The Instant Pot takes some time to build pressure inside. Once the pressure has built up, it will start counting down the cook time. Not to worry though, your delicious dinner will be on the table in no time!

  • Start by placing your meatballs in an even layer on the bottom of the pressure cooker.
  • Top with the spaghetti noodles and then drizzle with a little olive oil, to help prevent your noodles from sticking.
  • Pour your favorite jar of pasta sauce over the top and then add in 3 cups of water.

Do I Stir Before Turning On Instant Pot?

NO! You’ll want to make sure you layer your ingredients exactly as described in the recipe below. If you try to stir the ingredients together you’ll end up with pasta noodles on the bottom, giving you a higher chance of having them stick and getting a burn notice.

Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs - everyone's favorite comfort food gets a quick and easy makeover with just 3 main ingredients and less than 30 minutes!

Quick Release Or Natural Release of Pressure?

For this Instant Pot Spaghetti recipe, you’ll want to do a quick release of pressure. This will prevent your noodles from getting overcooked. Once cooking time is finished, just flip open the steam valve and wait until all the pressure is released before opening.

Give the ingredients inside a good stir and top with any parmesan cheese or fresh basil if desired!

Can I Double Instant Pot Spaghetti Recipe?

Yes, you can definitely double the recipe! Just make sure you layer the ingredients properly, and you’ll probably want to make sure you’re using at least an 8 quart size pressure cooker to avoid over-filling. The pot may take a little longer to reach pressure, but still go with the 10 minute HIGH pressure and you should be golden!

Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs - everyone's favorite comfort food gets a quick and easy makeover with just 3 main ingredients and less than 30 minutes!

Tips for Instant Pot Spaghetti Success:

  • Resist the urge to stir the ingredients together after adding them to the instant pot.
  • Add more flavor to the dish by using a more flavorful pasta sauce, extra Italian seasoning, or freshly minced garlic.
  • Don’t stress if your pasta looks “watery” after you’ve opened it up. Give it a stir and let it sit for a minute and the liquid should absorb into a delicious sauce.

Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs - everyone's favorite comfort food gets a quick and easy makeover with just 3 main ingredients and less than 30 minutes!

I’m sure you’re going to LOVE this quick and easy Instant Pot Spaghetti with Meatballs!


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Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs

Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs - everyone's favorite comfort food gets a quick and easy makeover with just 3 main ingredients and less than 30 minutes!

This Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs Recipe is everyone’s favorite comfort food with a quick and easy makeover!

  • Author: Shawn
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4 to 6 servings 1x
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Instant Pot
  • Cuisine: Italian


  • 1lb frozen meatballs (I use homemade frozen meatballs, but frozen cooked meatballs will work too.)
  • 8oz uncooked spaghetti
  • 24oz pasta sauce
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Parmesan cheese, fresh basil for serving, optional


  1. Arrange the meatballs in Instant Pot in one layer. Break the spaghetti in half and arrange them over the meatballs.
  2. Drizzle the olive oil over spaghetti. Pour in the pasta sauce and water, making sure spaghetti is completely covered.
  3. Cover and set the Instant Pot to manual. Set the timer to 10 minutes. Quick release the pressure and carefully open the lid. Stir in cheese and basil, if using. Serve immediately and enjoy!


Total time includes the time it takes for the Instant Pot to come to pressure.

Keywords: Instant Pot, spaghetti, meatballs, tomato, quick

About the author

Born and raised in Mongolia, Shinee (Shin-eh) now lives in rural North Dakota with her rancher husband and a very active toddler son. She believes delicious homemade meals don't have to take hours to cook. Her mission is to inspire busy cooks with simple, quick and tested recipes and avoid a dinner rut at all costs.
123 Responses
  1. Lara Lyon

    I’m not sure if this was asked in earlier posts, but what size IP is used for this recipe? I have a smaller one since I cook for two, and experienced spurting when I vented it. I am positive it is because I filled it too much, but I think it turned out ok. Even the “soupiness” some experience as they open it seems to go away.

  2. Julie

    Great recipe! I made this on the fly after moving all day long. Lots of boxes, driving, and unpacking with it ending at 945pm. I had 6 to feed. I doubled the pasta and sauce, but couldn’t find a measuring cup for the water so I winged it according to the measurements on my pot. It came out perfecto! Thank you for a great on the fly recipe.

    1. I wouldn’t double the water, I think 4 to 5 cups should be plenty, but I haven’t tested this so I can’t be certain. If you do give it a try, let us know how it turns out!

  3. Douglas

    I just made this as a half batch. The bag of frozen meatballs had 6 meatballs per serving. So I did 12 meatballs, half the sauce, half the spaghetti noodles, and half the water. It came out just a little soupy so I switched on the sauté and cooked it, while stirring, to a better consistency. This will be my go to recipe for spaghetti and meatballs! Thanks!

  4. Kim

    Hello! What if you just want to use ground beef vs meat balls? I imagine that I would season it first and place it on the bottom like you’ve done with the meat balls? Thanks!

  5. Cristin

    I made this last night and though I had a hiccup, ultimately it turned out great! I doubled the recipe (well, everything but the meatballs), and when I opened the lid, it was pretty soupy. I added some cornstarch to thicken it up a bit, but it still wasn’t quite right. Next, I added some cream, and presto… perfection! I also added a bunch of random spices like oregano, parsley, etc., to liven it up because store bought sauce can be pretty bland. Overall it was delicious and super easy!

  6. Cheryl Holtom

    If making homemade meatballs that would be raw, do you have to cook them first before putting them in with the other ingredients? This will be my first time cooking in the instant pot.

    1. You could put them in raw, but I would turn the IP to saute setting and sear them on all sides first so they hold their shape better when pressure cooked. Hope you enjoy the recipe!

  7. This has become one of my go to meals for when I do not feel like making a more involved dinner. My husband and kids love it. I use a whole box of Ronzoni smart taste pasta (12 oz) and just add a touch more broth than three cups. I also use meatballs made from pork and poultry since we no longer eat beef. Every time it comes out brilliantly. I usually add extra Italian seasonings and use unsalted broth instead of water for extra flavor.

  8. Mike

    Shawn-I halved the recipe since I’m cooking for two. In order to keep the spaghetti covered with water/sauce, I had to add the full 3 cups of water even though everything else was half. The result was a soupy watery mess…I had to strain the spaghetti and heated up more sauce in the microwave to make it palatable.

    So, if I halve the water my spaghetti isn’t covered…any advice? Should I place the spaghetti underneath the meatballs instead of on top?


    1. Oh bummer! I’m sorry halving the recipe didn’t work out. I would refrain from putting the noodles underneath the meatballs because they would most likely stick to the bottom and cause a burn notice. I’m thinking if you did try and half the liquid it MIGHT still work… reason being is that the water and pressure would boil up a bit and possibly still cook the noodles. It would take some testing to be sure… next time I make this I’ll try that and see what happens. Or if you get around to it before me, let us know how it goes!

    1. Hi Kirk, I have not tested doubling this recipe. This is a good question because doubling a recipe in an Instant Pot does not mean increasing the cooking time like you would think. More items in a pressure cooker will make it fuller which means it will take longer for the cooker to reach pressure. For time-sensitive recipes that are undesirable when over-cooked (like veggies, risotto or pasta) you might actually need to decrease pressure cooking time. That’s because even while the cooker is reaching pressure the food is already cooking. I would probably keep the cooking time the same as a single batch. Just be aware that the pasta might be more cooked than in a single batch. Hope this helps!

      1. Cristin

        Kirk, just wanted to let you know I successfully doubled the recipe (sans doubling the meatballs) and it was great, thought a bit soupy. I thickened it up with cornstarch and some cream. I cooked for it for 10 minutes, as stated in the recipe.

  9. Pat

    If i were making this meal for a non vegetarian and a vegetarian, would the vegetarian get a bad effect or meat taste from being in the same pot? What do you think?

    1. My guess is that it would depend on how stringent the vegetarian’s standards are. Some can tolerate a meat flavor, while others can not. If you cook the meatballs in the sauce there will be some juices and flavor transfer in to the sauce. Hope this helps!

  10. Kayla

    Love this with spaghetti! Interested in your thoughts/adjustments of using angel hair?! My husband wants angel hair… I’m nervous to try it and would think I wouldn’t cook as long?! But will my meatballs still cook?

    1. I’m happy to hear your family enjoyed this recipe! I have not tested this recipe with the angel hair pasta. The shortened cooking time needed for the pasta would not be enough to cook the meatballs.

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Shawn Syphus Hi, I'm Shawn and I'm a busy mom of five; pretending to live on a budget. I love to cook, and explore new recipes, but they have to be quick and easy with as few dishes as possible.

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