Instant Pot Italian Sausage Pasta loaded with ground Italian sausage, spinach, & fantastic seasonings makes a hearty dinner with so much flavor. This Instant Pot creamy sausage pasta also get’s done under 30 mins, it is so easy to make and freezes well too.
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Instant Pot Creamy Sausage Pasta
We love this Instant Pot Penne pasta and sausage recipe so much because it’s totally beginner friendly, picky eaters approved, get’s done in a jiffy and tastes out of the world good. The creamy tomato and parmesan cheese based pasta sauce is to die for! You can even make it super cheesy, it’s totally upto you 🙂
No more mushy, fall apart pasta that tastes meh & bland, today’s Instant Pot penne pasta and sausage recipe will reward you with al dente pasta coated in a delicious creamy sauce just like this Instant Pot Salmon Pasta.
Tips & Tricks
- Perfect al dente pasta: Cook for 4 mins on high pressure and than perform a quick pressure release.
- Softer Pasta: For softer pasta cook on high pressure for 6 mins followed by quick pressure release. You’ll have soft pasta without a bite but not mushy.
- Prevent dairy curdling: Add the dairy (cream, milk & parm) only after the pressure cooking cycle is over. This will prevent the dairy from separating and turning grainy.
- For best flavor: Brown the sausage nicely and saute it along with the seasonings for a couple of mins. The seasonings when sautéed with the sausage release a whole lot of amazing flavor. Don’t miss this trick.
- Spicy Sausage Pasta: Add 1 tsp cayenne pepper and 1 tsp red pepper flakes (extra) along with all the other seasonings.
- Ingredient subs: If you do not have tomato passata (it’s tomato puree) add same quantity tomato sauce. If you do not prefer alcohol in recipes than replace the white wine two tablespoon white wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar in the recipe. The white wine adds a crisp flavor to this instant pot creamy sausage pasta recipe that tastes so good!
Instant Pot Italian Sausage Pasta – Ingredients
Find the Ingredients with actual measurements at the bottom of the post. The list below is just a reference.
- Italian Sausage: We used mild ground Italian Sausage. You can use the spicy or sweet version as well.
- Pasta: We used penne pasta. However, you can use any pasta shape except macaroni or ditalini. The cook time would remain the same. This recipe is not tested using gluten free pasta.
- Aromatics: Yellow onion & garlic. Use yellow onion for best flavor, do not use red onion. It’ll make the dish overwhelming.
- Veggies: Red bell pepper & spinach. DO NOT skip the red bell pepper and do not sub it with green pepper. It provides a subtle sweetness to the sausage and pasta dish and blends very good with the other flavor profile. We used baby spinach. If you choose to use regular spinach than do chop them roughly and than add it in the recipe.
- White wine: Use it if you can and use the white wine that you would prefer drinking. DO NOT use cooking wine. The white wine adds a crisp flavor to the dish and helps bring out other flavors as well. We love using it. Sub mentioned above in the “Tips & Tricks” section.
- Tomato Passata: It’s basically tomato puree and you will get it in a long transparent glass jar. If you do not have it handy use tomato sauce instead (same amount).
- Seasonings: Paprika, Oregano, Italian seasoning, red pepper flakes, ground black pepper and salt to taste.
- Dairy: Whole milk, heavy whipping cream & parmesan cheese. You can use the pre shredded cheese or grate from a block, both works good in this recipe!
- Better than Bouillon: We used the chicken base for best flavor. Stir this in the water and use it as chicken stock. You won’t go back to the store bought stock ever!
- Liquid: Water. Better than Bouillon chicken base is stirred in the water to make a quick chicken stock with big flavor.
How to make Instant Pot Sausage Pasta?
Find the detailed step by step recipe along with measurements + Video at the bottom of the post.
Step #1 Brown sausage & saute aromatics
- Brown Sausage: Set instant pot on SAUTE function & set it on high heat. Add oil and brown the ground Italian sausage very well. This will almost instantly elevate the flavor. Don’t skip this step.
- Saute aromatics: Add the onion, garlic, bell pepper and saute for a couple minutes.
Step #2 Deglaze with wine & saute seasonings
- Add wine: Add the white wine, stir to mix well and allow the wine to evaporate a bit. The white wine will add lots of crisp fresh flavor and also help open the other flavors of the dish. Find subs above in the Ingredients section.
- Saute with seasonings: Add all the seasonings and saute along with the sausage for a couple minutes. This step will help release amazing flavor from the seasonings and make the instant pot creamy sausage pasta outright delicious. Sautéing helps release the essential oils from the seasonings, do not skip this step.
Step #3 Deglaze pot & layer pasta
- Deglaze pot: Pour the chicken stock (water + better than bouillon chicken base) and de-glaze the pot very well scraping the sides and the bottom of the pot with the help of spatula. This will help loosen any stuck food particles and help prevent the burn error! CANCEL the SAUTE function.
- Layer pasta: Now add the pasta in a single layer and do not stir or mix. Just spread the pasta with the help of your spatula in an even layer on top of the sausage and liquid.
Step #4 Pressure cook
- Layer ingredients: Pour the tomato passata all over the pasta. DO NOT stir or mix. Gently push down the pasta with the help of your spatula so that the pasta gets a nice coat with the liquid. DO NOT mix or stir.
- Pressure cook: Secure the lid and PRESSURE COOK on HIGH for just 4 mins followed by quick pressure release.
Step #5 Add dairy, spinach & serve
- Add dairy: Stir everything in the pot to mix the cooked ingredients well. Than add the milk and heavy whipping cream. Stir well to mix well. Add the parmesan cheese and mix well until the cheese melts. You will have a wonderful creamy sauce.
- Serve: Add the spinach and stir well to mix everything in the pot. The residual heat will help wilt the spinach leaves. Serve the instant pot Italian sausage pasta hot and enjoy!
Fridge: This creamy sausage Pasta will last in the fridge for upto 3 days in air tight containers. Follow the reheating directions shared below.
Freezer: The instant pot Italian sausage pasta is freezer friendly and you can freeze it upto 2 months in freezer safe containers or heavy duty portion control freezer safe bags. For best results follow the reheating directions shared below.
How to reheat creamy sausage penne pasta?
Freeze: Pasta absorbs sauce pretty fast and when it’s fridge cold the sauce almost would complete vanish. Here’s what you can do – sprinkle few drops water over the pasta and heat it the microwave oven until hot or warm. If you prefer more sauce you may stir in some warm milk or heavy whipping cream and warm it up.
Frozen: Thaw the frozen sausage pasta over night in the fridge and follow the reheating directions above.
Note: Reheating the fridge cold or frozen pasta will cook down the pasta and the spinach a bit more. The pasta will turn soft and the spinach will become more tender. You might not have al dente pasta or just slightly wilted spinach!
Instant Pot Italian Sausage PastaPrint Recipe Pin Rate
Watch Recipe Video
- 1 pound Ground Italian Sausage (**we used mild sausage. You can use the spicy or sweet variety as well.)
- 1 pound Penne Pasta (**you can use any pasta shape except macaroni or ditalini.)
- 1 cup onion (**use yellow onion finely chopped.)
- 1.5 tbsp garlic (**minced.)
- 1 cup red bell pepper (**finely chopped.)
- 1/3 cup white wine (**use the wine that you love drinking. )
- 1.25 cups Tomato Passata (**or sub it with tomato sauce.)
- 3 cups baby spinach
- 2 tbsp Olive Oil (**use light or extra light olive oil.)
- salt (**use according to your personal preference.)
- 2.75 cups Water
- 2 tbsp Better Than Bouillon (**we used chicken base. Stir this in the water to make an instant flavorful stock.)
- Brown Sausage: Set instant pot on SAUTE (high heat), add oil and when the oil becomes moderately hot gently release the ground Italian sausage and brown the meat nicely stirring and breaking down the sausage with the help of your spatula. It might release some amount of fat, if you prefer you may drain out the excess fat.
- Saute aromatics & add wine: Now, throw in the chopped onion, red bell pepper & minced garlic and saute for couple of mins. Pour the white wine and deglaze the pot by scraping the bottom & the sides of the pot, this will also give the alcohol a chance to evaporate and cook down & it’ll infuse the dish with the best flavors.
- Saute seasonings: Add all the seasonings mentioned above in the “Seasonings” section of the ingredient list. Also add salt according to your personal taste preference and saute for couple of mins. This will help release the essential oils from the seasonings and massive flavors.
- Deglaze pot: Pour the chicken stock (water + better than bouillon mixed well) and deglaze the pot very well scraping the bottom and the sides of the pot with the help of a spatula. This will help loosen any stuck food particles & prevent the BURN error. CANCEL the SAUTE function.
- Layer pasta & sauce: Dump the uncooked penne pasta, spread the pasta in a single layer on top of the sausage & the liquid with the help of a spatula. DO NOT stir or mix. Pour the tomato passata all over the pasta and gently press down the pasta with the help of a spatula just to make sure that they get a good coat with the liquid. DO NOT mix or stir anything in the pot.
- Pressure Cook: Secure the lid and PRESSURE COOK on HIGH for just 4 mins for al dente pasta and for 6 mins for soft pasta. Once the cooking cycle is over the instant pot will begin to beep. Perform a quick pressure release immediately by manually moving the valve from the sealing to the venting position. Open the lid carefully when the metal pin on top of the lid drops.
- Add dairy: Now, give everything in the pot a good stir. This will help mix all the cooked ingredients well. Warm up the fridge cold milk and the heavy whipping cream slightly in the microwave oven and than add them in the instant pot. Mix well. At this stage you can control the consistency. If you prefer soupy pasta add more milk or stock at this stage and mix well. We prefer a good sauce but not soupy pasta. Throw in the parmesan cheese & mix well until the cheese melts.
- Serve Sausage Pasta: Now, add the baby spinach and stir to mix well. The residual heat will wilt the spinach leaves and perfectly cook them down without making them overtly mushy. Serve the instant pot creamy sausage pasta warm or hot and enjoy!
- Al dente Pasta: Today’s cook time is perfect for al dente pasta.
- Tender/soft pasta: The cook time would be 6 mins on high pressure followed by quick release.
- Soupy Sausage Pasta: Todays recipe is not soupy. it’s creamy & has enough sauce! If you prefer soupy sausage pasta or prefer more sauce add more cream/milk according to your personal taste preference and also up the seasonings a bit.
- Italian Sausage subs: You can sub the Italian sausage (pork) with ground turkey sausage (spicy or sweet), you can even use 50 : 50 ratio ground turkey and ground chicken in the recipe.
- Can I sub the spinach with kale: We will recommend baby kale. The rest of the recipe would remain the same.
- Can I sub the red bell pepper with green? We would not recommend green bell pepper as it has a crisp, fresh flavor, whereas, we added the red bell pepper for it’s sweet nature, goes very well in creamy sauces. You may sub the red bell pepper with yellow or orange bell pepper.
- Heat intolerant? Skip red pepper flakes or reduce the quantity. We love the subtle kick it lends to the recipe…so good!