Instant pot spaghetti and frozen meatballs is a quick and easy dinner kids love! Gluten-free spaghetti is layered on top of frozen meatballs and topped with plenty of tomatoes and spices then cooks for just 9 minutes.
The instant pot not only speeds up the cooking time, it doesn’t require you to stand over a boiling pot of water stirring pasta. Plus, this one-pot meal is easy to clean-up and is packed with flavor. Instant pot spaghetti and meatballs will become one of your top choices to serve for dinner this week.
Looking for a vegetable side dish to serve with dinner? Check out Baked Brussels sprouts, Baked Zucchini Squash Rounds, and Instant Pot Broccoli.
Time to get cooking! Grab your equipment and ingredients then follow the step-by-step instructions. Make sure to read through our top 3 tips to successfully making instant pot spaghetti and meatballs.
- instant pot
- liquid measuring cup
- measuring spoons
- 1 pound frozen meatballs
- 8 ounces uncooked spaghetti, broken in half
- 28 ounce crushed tomatoes
- 15 ounce tomato sauce
- 1 cup chicken or beef broth
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
How To Cook Spaghetti In Your Instant Pot without burning
- Add meatballs and spaghetti. Add meatballs to the bottom of the instant pot. Top with broken spaghetti noodles, spread out. Make sure to keep spaghetti on top of the meatballs. DO NOT STIR.
- Add the rest of the ingredients. Add the crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, broth, Worcestershire sauce, brown sugar, Italian seasoning, and salt. DO NOT STIR. You can move the sauce around to cover the pasta, but don’t stir. The layering effect is what helps the pasta successfully cook in the instant pot and not burn.
- Cook. Place the cover onto the instant pot and turn to seal. Cook at high pressure for 9 minutes. Do a quick release. Use tongs to blend the pasta and sauce. Serve.
Related: How To Use An Instant Pot: A Beginners Guide
Tips & Tricks
Layer the ingredients.
Make sure once all the ingredients have been added to the instant pot that you do not stir. This will help the noodles to cook just right. Stirring could result in gummy and clumpy noodles. The spaghetti noodles should be on top of the meatballs prior to placing the lid on the instant pot.
Use frozen meatballs.
This keeps the recipe simple yet protein-packed. You can select any bag of frozen meatballs at the store or go the homemade route. If making homemade meatballs, make a batch at least a day before and store in the freezer. When ready to cook, add to the instant pot. Italian Meatballs or Turkey Zucchini Meatballs are two of our favorite versions!
Mix in vegetables.
Adding sautéed or roasted veggies is a great way to boost the nutrition of this recipe while getting your family to eat more veggies. Use up any leftover vegetables at home or head to the store for zucchini, squash, mushrooms, spinach, onion, peppers and/or broccoli. Mix in the veggies once the spaghetti is done cooking.
Yes. Cover the pasta with enough liquid and resist the urge to stir prior to pressure cooking. Tomato sauce is not enough liquid and will often result in the instant pot to display the “burn” message. Dilute tomato sauce with water or broth.
Around 20 minutes, which includes the time for the pressure cooker to reach pressure and the 9 minute cooking time.
Add to a microwaveable bowl and heat in 20 second intervals until warm. Place in a baking dish, top with a layer of cheese, cover dish with foil and bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes.
Next to spaghetti, Frozen Chicken Thighs, Frozen Chicken Wings and Pulled Pork Roast are a few of the best things to cook.
More Spaghetti Recipes
- Vegetarian Baked Spaghetti
- Instant Pot Chicken Spaghetti
- One Pot Spaghetti Recipe
- Meatless Baked Spaghetti
- Baked Spaghetti and Meatballs
CKC Features both Gluten-Free Guidance and Kids Cooking Instructions: If you’re new to eating gluten-free we understand it’s overwhelming trying to figure out which foods may contain gluten and which ones don’t. All of our gluten-free recipes marked with this symbol ✅ represent foods that need to be checked for gluten or cross-contamination.
The ⭐️ symbol in the recipe below denotes the steps in which kid cooks may need a helper (depending on age). If there is no ⭐️ symbol, that step (or recipe) doesn’t require a helper.
Instant Pot Spaghetti and Frozen Meatballs
- 1 pound frozen meatballs ✅
- 8 ounces uncooked gluten-free spaghetti, broken in half
- 28 ounce crushed tomatoes ✅
- 15 ounce tomato sauce ✅
- 1 cup chicken or beef broth ✅
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce ✅
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning ✅
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Add meatballs and spaghetti. Add meatballs to the bottom of the instant pot. Top with broken spaghetti noodles, spread out. Make sure to keep spaghetti on top of the meatballs.1 pound frozen meatballs, 8 ounces uncooked gluten-free spaghetti, broken in half
- Add the rest of the ingredients. Add the crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, broth, Worcestershire sauce, brown sugar, Italian seasoning, and salt. DO NOT STIR. You can move the sauce around to cover the pasta, but don't stir.28 ounce crushed tomatoes, 15 ounce tomato sauce, 1 cup chicken or beef broth, 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce, 1 tablespoon brown sugar, 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning, 1/2 teaspoon salt
- ⭐️Cook. Place the cover onto the instant pot and turn to seal. Cook at high pressure for 9 minutes. Do a quick release. Use tongs to blend the pasta and sauce. Serve.
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Super flavorful. It was a hit.
I got a burn notice but I had enough liquid
Jodi Danen, RDN says
Hi Robin! The order of ingredients is really important in this recipe as is layering and not stirring it at all. The meatballs have to go on the bottom (make sure if your instant pot is larger than mine to add more meatballs to keep the noodles off the bottom). I hope that helps?