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Instant Pot Spaghetti and Turkey Meatballs

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This one-pot Instant Pot Spaghetti and Turkey Meatballs is a fast and easy dish the kids and whole family will love!

This one-pot Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs is a fast and easy dish the kids and whole family will love!
Instant Pot Spaghetti and Turkey Meatballs

This spaghetti and meatballs recipe is sure to be a winner with your family. Because it’s made healthier with whole wheat spaghetti and turkey meatballs, you’ll feel good knowing it’s good for them too. Making it all in the Instant Pot is certainly a dinner game changer. The Instant Pot makes spaghetti and meatballs super easy!

A few years ago, I shared my Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meat Sauce recipe, which is always a hit in my home. The high pressure of the Instant Pot combined with the whole wheat pasta’s starches makes for the most wonderful sauce in minutes. Now I made a healthy spaghetti and meatball version.

I’ve seen many recipes for Instant Pot spaghetti and meatballs that use frozen meatballs, but since I always make mine from scratch, usually with ground turkey finding a way to do so without destroying the meatballs took a few rounds of testing.

Similar to my Slow Cooker Italian Turkey Meatball recipe, rather than sautéing them first, I just plopped them right into the homemade sauce. They turned out to be the best Instant Pot spaghetti and meatballs I have tried! This pasta is saucy and delicious. I recommend eating it right after you make it for the best results.

For this recipe, I used my favorite brand of whole wheat pasta, DeLallo. Their whole wheat pasta is better tasting than any other brand I’ve tried. No more gritty, earthy-tasting pasta. Their whole-wheat pasta boasts the irresistible taste and texture of traditional Italian pasta… with the added benefits of hearty whole-wheat goodness.

And if you’re on WW, whole wheat pasta has zero points on the new purple plan! The best part is that DeLallo Organic Whole-Wheat Pasta is made with only two ingredients (wheat and water) and generations of Italian pasta-making experience. You can buy their pasta as well of tons of other amazing products like pizza kits, marinara, olives, etc on the Delallo website and they will ship it to you.

How to Make Perfect Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs

I initially tried sautéing the meatballs first, but this resulted in extra time and work. Plus, the meatballs tend to stick to the pot. Also, I was trying to avoid the dreaded IP “burn” error on newer models. To prevent the burn message, I skipped the browning step and plopped them right into my sauce, which helped with cooking times and ultimately made for juicer meatballs.

Building a sauce with garlic and canned tomatoes (rather than starting with a jarred sauce) gave me more control of the amount of oil used in the recipe. Here are some helpful tips for success:

  • Make the Meatballs. Don’t overwork the meatballs because it will make them tough. Mix all the ingredients well, adding the turkey last.
  • Make the Marinara Sauce. This pasta is saucy and delicious. I start with garlic and olive oil and then add crushed tomatoes and basil. Super simple.
  • Add the Meatballs. Just nestle the meatballs in. If you have a 6-quart pot, they should fit in one layer. If not, just add more on top, but be sure not to smash them.
  • Add Pasta. Add your spaghetti, which you will need to break in half so the noodles fit in the pot. Do not stir. You do not want the noodles to end up on the bottom of the pot – they could stick to the pot and burn. Then, pour in your broth or water.
  • Pressure Cook. Cook on high pressure for 8 minutes (it takes about 10 minutes to come up to pressure). Then, do a quick release by turning the valve and uncover. You don’t want to do a natural release because your noodles could end up being overcooked. Stir everything at this point. If it looks too watery, don’t worry – it will thicken as you stir.

This one-pot Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs is a fast and easy dish the kids and whole family will love!This one-pot Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs is a fast and easy dish the kids and whole family will love!This one-pot Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs is a fast and easy dish the kids and whole family will love!This one-pot Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs is a fast and easy dish the kids and whole family will love!This one-pot Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs is a fast and easy dish the kids and whole family will love!Instant Pot Spaghetti and Turkey Meatballs

More Spaghetti Recipes You’ll Love:

Instant Pot Whole Wheat Spaghetti and Turkey Meatballs

4.32 from 29 votes
This one-pot Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs is a fast and easy dish the kids and whole family will love!
Course: Brunch, Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine: Italian
This one-pot Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meatballs is a fast and easy dish the kids and whole family will love!
Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 30 mins
Total: 40 mins
Yield: 6 servings
Serving Size: 1 3/4 cups



  • 2 tablespoons skim milk, or water
  • 1/3 cup seasoned breadcrumbs
  • 1/3 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese
  • 2 small cloves crushed garlic, or 1 large
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley, plus more for garnish
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 pounds 93% ground turkey
  • cooking spray

Spaghetti and Sauce:

  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed with the side of a knife
  • 1/4 cup torn basil, plus more for garnish
  • 28- ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • kosher salt and black pepper, to taste
  • 12 ounces dry whole wheat spaghetti, DeLallo
  • 2 cups low sodium chicken broth


  • In a large bowl combine the milk, breadcrumbs, Pecorino, garlic, egg, tomato paste, parsley and salt and mix well to combine.
  • Add the turkey and mix using a fork to fully mix everything together, careful not to overwork and form into 18 meatballs.
  • Press sauté on the Instant Pot and add the oil and garlic and cook until golden, about 1 to 2 minutes.
  • Turn off the pressure cooker.
  • Add the tomatoes, basil, salt and pepper to taste and gently place the meatballs in the sauce.
  • Don’t worry if they are snug in the pot or aren’t completely covered in sauce. If you have to, stack a few on top of each other as needed but don’t smash them.

For the spaghetti:

  • Break 12 ounces of dried spaghetti in half and spread them in one or two layers over the meatballs. Do not stir.
  • Pour in 2 cups of low-sodium chicken broth.
  • Lock the lid on and make sure the valve is set to seal. Set to cook on HIGH pressure for 8 minutes.
  • Use the quick release to let the pressure out once it's done, then shut off and uncover.
  • Stir pasta into the sauce, it will thicken and soak the sauce up so no worries if it looks too watery.
  • Serve immediately with grated cheese and basil for garnish.

Last Step:

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Serving: 1 3/4 cups, Calories: 480 kcal, Carbohydrates: 55 g, Protein: 31 g, Fat: 13.5 g, Saturated Fat: 3.5 g, Cholesterol: 119.5 mg, Sodium: 830 mg, Fiber: 6.5 g, Sugar: 6.5 g


Recipe created in partnership with Delallo Foods, a brand I love and use in my kitchen.

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79 comments on “Instant Pot Spaghetti and Turkey Meatballs”

  1. Just made this as written. The result was all meatballs mushed together! So now it’s more like a Bolognase sauce.. I would change this to sauté/brown the meatballs before adding sauce and noodles just to keep them together as meatballs.

  2. I made this as written with the addition of some onion powder and Italian seasonings in the sauce and it was delicious! Will definitely be making this one again.

  3. I was really excited about this but, I’ve received the “BURN” notification on my Instapot 2x’s so far. I’ve added 2 more cups of broth and stirred but, still having issues. I try and try but the Instapot and I do not get along.

  4. Avatar photo
    Patti Bernstein

    The sauce and meatballs were delicious and so easy to make! I made the mistake of using Banza GF spaghetti. Pasta clumped together and consistency was starchy.. is there another GF option?

  5. Avatar photo
    Jasmine Spada

    Made this last night .  Kids and husband loved it. This was so simple and easy to make, will definitely keep in the rotation. 

  6. Wow!! This was fantastic! I followed the recipe exactly, minus I used panko breadcrumbs (because that’s what I had on hand). MY super picky 9 year old loved it, as did myself and husband, will be remaking this again! Thanks for a wonderful and simple recipe!! 🙂

  7. I made this last night and really enjoyed it. I used 99% fat free turkey since I always have it in my freezer. In this case, since the meatballs were cooking in the sauce, I wasn’t super concerned about them being too lean. I made fewer, but larger, meatballs so I cooked everything for a minute longer. Next time I will add even a minute more, bringing the cooking time to ten minutes for me. The spaghetti was “just” al dente and I actually prefer my noodles a bit softer, especially the whole wheat variety. I will also use fewer noodles next time…maybe more like 8 oz. I like a lot of sauce, but there wasn’t really much left over when using 12 oz of pasta. 

  8. Avatar photo
    Deborah Matheson

    Could u please tell me if it is 1 cup + 3/4 cup or do u mean just 3/4 cup for serving.

    Thank U

    1. Avatar photo
      Jennifer Pacifico

      Did you use the same amount of time it states (bc i want to make this without the pasta in it )

  9. Super yummy.  I added in some dried herbs, garlic powder and pepper flake to the tomatoes to up the spice flavor and also used whole week linguine and it turned out great!  Another awesome recipe!! 

  10. I love this. However the 2 times I made it I get a burn notification on my instant pot. Any recommendations on how to stop that? 

    Thank you!

    1. Here are some tips—
      After you sauté your ingredients, press cancel to shut off the heat so it doesn’t continue heating up.
      When using the sauté button always deglaze the pot after sautéing with some water or broth before adding your other ingredients and use a wooden spoon or spatula to remove any food that may be stuck to the bottom.
      Make sure the sealing ring is installed properly, if not steam will escape and scorch the food on the bottom of the pan.
      Make sure your steam release button is set to sealing, not venting so steam does not escape.
      Hope it helps!

      1. I’ve made this before and really enjoyed it! However, I prefer cooking my pasta on the stovetop to have a bit more control. If I am just pressure cooking the meatballs, should I still add a smaller amount of chicken broth, or skip the broth altogether? Thanks for so many delicious recipes!

  11. My mom’s meatball recipe calls for cooking the meatballs by simmering them in the sauce (not browning them first). I have been wanting to give them a try in the instant pot, but hadn’t because I was unsure of how it would turn out. Based on this recipe I’m going to give it a try!

    I’m also going to give your recipe a try as written as well, because it looks yummy! Thanks for the inspiration!

  12. Made this tonight, turned out really good!! I am on the WW green plan, when I put in the ingredients for the recipe builder, it came out to 11 points per serving, so this will be add to our regular dinner list. Thank you!

  13. It had a super weird flavor. I wouldn’t make it again! I think I followed the directions to a T. I usually don’t ever make things my husband doesn’t like, he’ll eat anything. He would not eat this again.