5-Minute Pepperoni Pizza Pasta

This is a contribution from Chef Alli. 

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This!!  I love a speedy, flavorful one-pot meal, made in MERE MINUTES in my Instant Pot.  At my house, if I can’t have a meal on the table, hot and ready to go within 30 minutes, dinner probably isn’t going to happen….my guys just won’t wait around longer than that, no matter HOW starved they are – there’s just too much to do when you live on a farm.  Sadly, though, what they “grab and go” usually isn’t anything good for them and that makes their Mamma super sad.  THAT, my friends, is where my Instant Pot saves the day. #thankful #InstantPot #SpeedyMeal #pizza #pasta #OnePot

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5-Minute Instant Pot Pepperoni Pizza Pasta – The Easiest Pasta Meal Ever!

Howdy –

Are you ready for a super-fast meal that your family will beg you to make? This is it! You are going to love making this pasta in your Instant Pot.  It’s great to be able to brown your ground beef right in your Instant Pot, using the saute setting.  Next, you layer in the remaining ingredients and cook everything under pressure in just minutes. This is the speedy-meal beyond ALL speedy meals!

How to Make Instant Pot Pepperoni Pizza Pasta

Ground Beef. We always have a ton of ground beef in our freezer since we raise cattle, so I usually cook what I have on hand.  Just be sure to drain any fats from the beef after you cook it, before adding the remaining ingredients.

Crushed Garlic. I like to use fresh garlic, but if you don’t have that available, simple substitute a bit of granulated garlic (or garlic powder) in place of the fresh garlic.  I usually substitute 1/2 tsp. of granulated garlic per clove of garlic.

Penne Pasta. You can actually use nearly any type of pasta you have on hand in this dish.  I made this recipe first using macaroni and decided I just didn’t care for it- I think because it made me think of GOULASH.  I used regular-sized penne pasta in this recipe, but I think the mini penne pasta would be fun, too.

Mini Pepperoni.  I love these little guys!  They are smaller in size, but also a bit thicker, so they hold up well in pasta and gnocchi recipes.  Don’t have the mini pepperoni on hand?  Add in a handful of regular pepperoni at the end when you stir in the milk.

Green Bell Pepper.  I really like the addition of this veggie in this pasta, but my guys do not, sadly.  So….I often saute a diced green bell pepper in a small saute pan until al dente and just add it to my serving of pasta. Phooey on them!

Pasta Sauce.  Use any brand that you prefer.  We got started using Barilla brand and it’s somehow stuck with us.  If you’re lucky enough to have canned homemade pasta sauce in your pantry, definitely use THAT. Hunt’s Garlic Roasted Tomato Sauce.  If you’t like your pasta really saucy, you can omit this ingredient. Just remember that as your pasta sits, it will absorb ALOT of sauce.

Chicken Broth.  You can use any type of broth that you’d like in this recipe.  If you don’t have broth, substitute water.  Your pasta might not be as flavorful, but it will still work.

Italian Seasoning.  I always make my own from oregano, basil, and thyme with a bit of red pepper flakes and granulated garlic.

2% Milk. I used Hiland Dairy 2% milk for this recipe and that’s what makes this pasta dish so creamy and wonderful. Visit their website for more tasty recipes using dairy products.

Mozzarella Cheese.  If you shred your mozzarella fresh from a block when making this recipe, you’re going to get that “stringy-cheese” experience that we all crave.  It’s worth the extra work!

Fresh Basil and Italian Parsley. I simply adore fresh basil and we try to keep some handy in the fridge for Italian dishes like this one. In the summer I grow scads of it right outside my kitchen door since it’s really takes off in this hot and humid NE Kansas climate of ours – you can never have too much fresh basil!  A sprinkle of minced Italian Parsley adds a nice peppery flavor to the finished dish.

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Recipe Tips for Making Instant Pot Pepperoni Pizza Pasta in Just 5 Minutes

  • Can you REALLY make this pasta in 5 minutes? Yup, it’s true. 5 minutes is the actual cooking time once the Instant Pot is pressurized, but this recipe only takes a few additional minutes to get up to pressure. If you don’t have an Instant Pot yet, you NEED one – this small appliance has totally changed how we do dinner! Best investment in the history of EVER.
  • Can I substitute sausage or Italian sausage in place of the beef in this recipe? Yes, and it’s delicious.
  • It seems weird not to stir the ingredients when I add them all to the Instant Pot.  What is up with that?! The main reason you don’t stir this recipe once you’ve layered the ingredients inside the Instant Pot is this: it will likely keep your pot from pressurizing, giving you the dreaded BURN notice on the front display panel.  Your Instant Pot needs liquid to circulate inside, creating steam that then creates the pressure.  If you stir the chicken broth and pasta sauce INTO the pasta, it can’t circulate around the pot as it needs to.  Just trust me on this one time and try it.  After that, you’ll see how it works and will understand better.

Details:

 Prep Time 20 minutes
 Cook Time 5 minutes
 Total Time 25 minutes
 Servings 8

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb. ground beef (may substitute Italian sausage, if desired)
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 12 oz. penne pasta
  • 5 oz. package mini pepperoni
  • 1 green bell pepper, seeds and membranes removed, diced
  • 24 oz. jar pasta sauce
  • oz. can Hunt’s Roasted Garlic Tomato Sauce
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 tsp. Italian seasoning
  • cup 2% Hiland Dairy milk
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • Fresh basil and Italian parsley, as garnish

Instructions:

  1. Using the sauté setting on your Instant Pot (or any electric pressure cooker), brown the ground beef with the garlic until no pink remains and ground beef is fully cooked throughout; drain any fats.

  2. Top ground beef with pasta, pepperoni, bell pepper, Italian seasoning, pasta sauce, tomato sauce, and broth. DO NOT STIR!

  3. Lock Instant Pot lid into place. Use the manual button to choose High Pressure for 5 minutes, bringing the Instant Pot to full pressure.
  4. When the timer sounds, perform a quick release and remove the lid. Add the milk and give the pasta a quick stir, then top with the cheese.

  5. Cover the Instant Pot with the lid for 1-2 minutes to let cheese melt. Garnish with fresh basil and Italian parsley, as desired. Serve at once!

Recipe Notes:

This recipe was developed exclusively for Hiland Dairy using a 6-Quart Instant Pot.  This recipe will work perfectly in any brand of electric pressure cooker.  Cooking times will vary based on the brand and quirks of the electric pressure cooker you are using.

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~Chef Alli