How To Cook Gluten
Gluten-free pasta production has come a long way and these days, if cooked properly, you will hardly tell the difference between regular and gluten-free varieties. Making the dough of gluten-free pasta is different and uses a combination of flours to get the best results. That is, to get a similar protein content and stretch of the dough and to get a similar texture. Usually, you will find a mixture of brown rice and corn flour often, quinoa flour or lentil flour might be added for extra protein.
We find that corn, brown rice and quinoa flour tends to have the most similar texture to regular pasta.
Even though the texture is quite similar, gluten-free pasta tends to be starchier and expands more while cooking, therefore it needs a little extra cooking liquid. As a rule of thumb, add an extra 1/4-1/2 cup or so. Adding salt and fat is the same for regular and gluten-free pasta!
It also means that when overcooked, gluten-free pasta really doesnt hold its texture or firmness well and is much softer and mushier than regular pasta. Therefore, the main rule with gluten-free pasta is DONT OVERCOOK IT!
Why Cook Pasta In The Instant Pot
There are three reasons to cook pasta in the Instant Pot / pressure cooker.
Spaghetti In Instant Pot
If youre new to using this high pressure pot, this is the first recipe you should make. If you follow the directions below youll never make it on the stovetop again.
Lets start with a few basic tips:
- Make sure to Bookmark our InstaPot recipes page. We add new ones each week!
For reference, this is the pressure cooker I have and use for all recipe creations.
With everything cooked in one pot it came out perfectly in just 10 minutes AND its been on the most popular Instant Pot recipes TWO years in a row!
You could make it vegetarian without meat, as is stated in the recipe card below, or cook porcupine meatballs in Instant Pot separately. Then serve them together and enjoy with parmesan cheese.
So yummy right??!! Its truly a grab your Instant Pot and set, then GO type of recipe.
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How To Stop The Foaming Of Pasta During The Cooking Process
Many people find their pasta can get pretty foamy when cooked in the Instant Pot. Just like when you cook on the stove, many add a splash of butter or oil to help from the pot boiling over and reduce the foam. Just do the same with your past in the Instant Pot. Add 1/2 teaspoon of butter or oil of your choice in when you go to cook. While it doesnt entirely fix it, you will find you have a lot less foam.
You Dont Use Enough Cooking Liquid
Instant Pot pasta soaks up all the liquid it is cooked in, so you might think you need less water than boiling requires. But if you dont add enough liquid if your pasta isnt completely covered youll end up with crunchy noodles, or get a BURN error from the Instant Pot.
Instead: Use at least four cups of liquid for every pound of pasta and make sure your pasta is completely covered! The type of liquid isnt important. It can include pasta sauce or dairy or even be all water. But it will affect the flavor, so make sure your liquid is well-seasoned.
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If The Sauce Is Runny
After the cook time is complete and the pressure has been released, take a peek at your sauce. If it seems too runny, you can allow the pasta to set for a bit before serving, which will allow it to absorb some of the excess water.
You can also use the Saute function to boil off some of the additional liquid.
Depending on the type of sauce, you may also be able to add a cornstarch slurry to thicken it up a bit.
How To Make Spaghetti In An Instant Pot
Cooking the noodles at the same time as the sauce make this recipe super fast and easy. All the work in one pot means less mess. More time to do the things you love and still put a hearty meal on the table.
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How Long To Pressure Cook Pasta
The general rule of thumb for Instant Pot pasta is to cook it for half the time recommended on the box. I usually cook most pastas for 4 minutes or 5 minutes if I want the pasta a little softer.
When the pasta is done, you may still have some water in the bottom. Just stir it well, and the pasta should absorb the water.
If there is still some water remaining, drain the pasta before serving.
How Long Should I Cook Pasta In An Instant Pot
The rule of thumb for pasta cooking time is half the cook time specified on box directions minus 1 minute. For example, if the box directions say cook for 12 minute for al dante, then you need to set the Instant Pot for 5 minutes .
However, if your pasta is on a thicker side, like rigatoni, or manicotti, then I suggest simply half the cook time on the box direction.
And always do a quick pressure release, when cooking pasta in Instant Pot. Because if you let Instant Pot release pressure naturally, itll continue to cook the pasta and youll end up with a mush.
NOTE: Ive seen some people experience with too much foam spitting out during quick pressure release. But Ive heard that it also depends on brand of pasta.
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Instant Pot Cheeseburger Pasta
The cheesy, creamy Instant Pot Hamburger Helper is one of the simplest, most satisfying meals you can create on a busy night. Cooking it in the Instant Pot not only saves on dishes since its all cooked in one pot, but it also takes no time at all.
Homemade Hamburger Helper is one of the most comforting easy dinners. One of my favorite things about the Instant Pot is meals like this one. I can cook everything in one pot and it cuts down on the time I stand next to the stove significantly.
A few years ago, I shared my Skillet Cheeseburger Pasta recipe. I thought it would be a perfect recipe to recreate in the Instant Pot and make it even faster. The ingredients for this meal are my all time pantry and freezer staples already, so its a meal I can cook anytime I want something easy or didnt meal plan.
Sautéing the ground beef with onions and garlic is really easy, but that is the most time consuming part of the recipe, so you can imagine how ridiculously simple it is to put it together. The combination of the ground beef, aromatic onion and garlic, dry and fresh herbs and the cheesy pasta is so satisfying and hearty. Its like Macaroni and Cheese with beef, or homemade Hamburger Helper, but way better:).
Free Printable: Formula For Perfect Instant Pot Pasta
Never look up how to cook pasta in the Instant Pot again! To receive your handy Pressure Cooker Pasta printable, simply fill out the form below.
Why make Perfect Pressure Cooker Pasta when the most common method is simply a matter of boiling water? I’ve got reasons for days.
Nothing drives me more crazy in the kitchen than dealing with a pot of pasta on the stove that WILL NOT STOP FOAMING! You stir, stir, stir, and when that doesn’t work, you take it off the heat, let it settle, only to put it back on the heat and have it quickly foam to the top and you repeat the entire process all over again.
I’ve tried all the gizmos, the wooden spoon trick, the oil trick, etc, etc, and I have resolved to lose the stovetop pasta battle.
To my rescue, totally awesome pressure cooker!
I can throw the pasta, salt, and water in and walk away. In fact, I can even have my daughter do it while I take a nap!
There are several different cook times and water to pasta ratios out there, and after a lot of experimenting, I’ve finally narrowed it down to my ideal time. Lots of good info here, let’s get started!
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How To Cook Spaghetti Noodles In A Pressure Cooker
The strange thing about cooking spaghetti noodles in your Instant Pot is that you cant stir the mixture while it cooks. That means you cant break up the noodles, preventing them from clumping together, during the cooking process.
To avoid clumping, its essential that you break the noodles into smaller pieces, and arrange them in a criss-cross manner as you add them to the pot. You can simply break the noodles in half, but I like to go a step further and break them into thirds for maximum non-clumping.
If your noodles to stick together for some reason during the cooking process, it is relatively easy to pull them apart with a fork when the cooking cycle is complete, but its nice to avoid having to do that as much as possible. I almost never have an issue when I break the noodles into thirds!
To Cook Spaghetti An Instant Pot
Start with your Instant Pot on a flat dry surface.
Take the Spaghetti, break it in ½ and use your fingers to slip it into the inner pot, separating the strands slightly as you go.
One of the things I love about the Instant Pot is that it will make a few noises as you use it as it does the things to ‘ask’ it to do.
- Set the pressure to high pressure
- Then set timer by using the up and down arrows
Let the Instant Pot build to the right pressure, cook the pasta and then it will beep to let you know it is done
- Press the quick release button and let the safety value deflate
- Turn and remove the lid , and use oven mits to remove the inner pot, drain spaghetti into a colander
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Whole Wheat / Alternative Pasta
There is no need to make any adjustment to the formula if using whole wheat or alternative pasta. Because this method of cooking pasta is based on the recommended cook time on the package, any type of pasta can be cooked this way.
We tested this method with several varieties of whole wheat pasta and with several varieties of alternative pasta .
Calculating Cooking Time For Pasta
Check out the recommended cooking time on the packet of the pasta. Most pasta cooks in 8 to 12 minutes. Often, you will have a range, say 9-11 minutes in boiling water. Al dente means its cooked but still has a little firmness when you bite through it, so it maintains its structure without being too soft or mushy. Al dente is the Italian way!
To cook the pasta in the Instant Pot, you would divide its regular cooking time by 2 and deduct 1 extra minute. So it would be -1 minute=3.5 minutes at HIGH pressure followed by a quick release of the pressure. On average, 4-4.5 minutes should work for most types of pasta.
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Can I Use Frozen Beef To Make Instant Pot Spaghetti
If you have a frozen block of beef , you can quickly thaw it out in the Instant Pot before you set out to make the spaghetti. You need 1.5 cups of water in the insert, then set frozen beef on a trivet. Set for 7 minutes on HIGH pressure. Quickly release the pressure. The meat wont be cooked through but thawed so you can now brown it to make the spaghetti. Discard the liquid and remove trivet. Rinse and wipe the insert clean, if needed. Heat up oil and begin browning the beef.
How Much Liquid Do You Need To Cook Instant Pot Pasta
A general rule of thumb for cooking Instant Pot pasta is to use four cups of liquid for every pound of pasta. Your dried pasta should be covered in the liquid the liquid can be simply water, or tomato sauce, or dairy-based.
When in doubt, just ensure that the pasta is just about submerged under the liquid, and you should be good!
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Tips For Perfect Instant Pot Pasta
Id like to say that Instant Pot spaghetti is foolproof, but after spending a lot of time reading through comments in an Instant Pot Facebook group, I quickly learned that a few common problems plague this kind of recipe. But all of them can be easily avoided with good technique.
- Always scrape the bottom of the pot after browning the meat. The goal here is to avoid getting a BURN warning from your pot, so youll want to brown the meat, add a little water to the pot, and scrape, scrape, scrape before you add the marinara.
- Layer the water under and over the pasta. To cook the pasta evenly, youll want to make sure there is water both under the pasta and over it. I like to rinse my sauce jar with water and then pour it over the pasta to avoid waste, but feel free to skip this if youre using homemade sauce.
- Resist the urge to stir after the pasta is added. As soon as youve got the pasta in the pot and the water over it, put the lid on. You can give the pasta a gentle prod, but do not stir, which will give you gummy, stuck-together pasta.
Cooking Pasta In The Instant Pot With Sauce
I often choose to cook my pasta in a sauce, making a one-pot meal for a quick and easy dinner.
If you prefer to cook the pasta in sauce, youll want to make sure the sauce is thin enough to boil well.
Sauce that is too thick or viscous wont boil well enough to create enough steam to generate pressure within the pot, and it can lead to scorching on the bottom of your insert pot and the dreaded BURN error on the Instant Pot.
Once you have thinned the sauce and you have enough liquid to cover the pasta, youll follow the same general instructions listed above for cooking plain pasta in the Instant Pot!
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Can You Cook Pasta In The Instant Pot With Just Water
While you can probably cook the pasta with just water, you may actually have the pasta stick to the pot and each other as the liquid decreases in the pressure cooker. This is why you will want to use the minimum for the best results for cooking pasta in the Instant Pot
- Water Chicken broth can be substituted to add more flavor to the pasta
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Which Type Of Pasta Can I Cook In An Instant Pot
Quite honestly, I prefer to cook shorter pasta, like penne, rigatoni, ziti, but you can cook any type of pasta in an Instant Pot.
Theres one caveat when cooking long noodles, like spaghetti. First, you need to break the noodles in half to fit in your pot and then layer them in a criss cross pattern to prevent them from clumping together. Basically, just throw the long noodles in a messy pattern and you should be good to go.
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The Instant Pot Meal Plan Jumpstart
You can also use dry, shelf-stable tortellini in the Instant Pot.
Fresh, refrigerated tortellini would not be my first choice to cook in the pressure cooker, because it is more delicate and would be more likely overcook and fall apart. If thats what you have on hand, you could try a 0 minute cook time, followed by a quick release, to hopefully keep it from getting too soft!
Also check out my instructions for how to cook frozen ravioli in the Instant Pot!