Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs

Everyone loves a good meatball, especially when your Instant Pot does the heavy lifting.

Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs
Photo: Photography: Caitlin Bensel, Food Styling: Emily Nabors Hall
Active Time:
20 mins
Total Time:
55 mins

Flavorful and tender, this classic weeknight meal comes together in under an hour and leaves you with 16 delicious meatballs. Working in batches, the sauté setting works wonders on your mini mixtures of beef, pork, eggs, parsley, Parmesan, panko, milk and garlic. Don't toss those brown bites from the bottom of the pan, though. You'll be thankful for the flavor they'll add as you cook the rest of the recipe. From there, your uncooked spaghetti noodles, marinara sauce, and meatballs combine in the pressure cooker for just a bit, resulting in a classic spaghetti and meatball dinner so good that the family might think came from the Italian restaurant around the corner. While cooking, be sure to coat every noodle with sauce. This helps prevent sticking and also makes sure your pasta cooks evenly. Serve with garlic bread and a glass of wine for a winning weeknight meal that will have your table fighting over who gets the last meatball.


  • 1 pound 85/15 lean ground beef

  • 1/2 pound ground pork

  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten

  • 1/2 cup finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

  • 1 1/2 ounces Parmesan cheese, grated (about 1/3 cup), plus more for serving

  • 1/3 cup panko (Japanese-style breadcrumbs)

  • 1/4 cup whole milk

  • 2 large garlic cloves, grated (about 1 tsp.)

  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

  • 3 cups water

  • 1 (24-oz.) jar marinara sauce

  • 12 ounces uncooked spaghetti, broken in half


  1. Stir together beef, pork, eggs, parsley, Parmesan, panko, milk, garlic, and 1 1/2 teaspoons of the salt until combined. Shape mixture into 16 balls (about 3 tablespoons each).

  2. Select SAUTÉ setting on a programmable pressure multicooker (such as Instant Pot). Add oil to cooker. Select HIGH temperature setting, and allow to preheat, 2 to 3 minutes. Working in 2 batches, add meatballs to cooker. Cook, turning occasionally, until meatballs are browned, 6 to 8 minutes. Transfer cooked meatballs to a plate. Press CANCEL, and stir in 3 cups water and remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt, scraping to loosen browned bits on bottom of cooker.

  3. Add marinara sauce, spaghetti, and meatballs to cooker, stirring gently to combine. Cover cooker with lid, and lock in place. Turn steam release handle to SEALING position. Select MANUAL/PRESSURE COOK setting. Select HIGH pressure for 8 minutes. (It will take 14 to 15 minutes for cooker to come up to pressure before cooking begins.)

  4. When cooking is finished, carefully turn steam release handle to VENTING position, and let steam fully escape (float valve will drop). (This will take 6 to 8 minutes.) Remove lid from cooker.

  5. Stir spaghetti to unstick any noodles. Let stand 5 minutes. Serve with additional grated Parmesan.

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