Pressure Cooker Bow Tie Pasta is the perfect weeknight meal—quick, easy and delicious! The pasta cooks in the sauce so you only have one pot to clean up.
Bow Tie pasta is the very first pasta I ever made in the pressure cooker. I love the way these little pastas collect the sauce. Plus, the fun bow tie shape is well suited to the pressure cooker and is less likely to clump than thin spaghetti-like pastas. This Instant Pot / Pressure Cooker Bow Tie Pasta is one of my most popular pasta recipes on the site. I’ve updated this post with a video and fun new pictures, along with tips and tricks I’ve picked up since it was first published in 2012.
Several years ago, Cook’s Illustrated did a story on pressuring cooking and included a ziti pasta recipe. That gave me the little push I need to try cooking pasta in the pressure cooker. And I’m so glad I did. Now I’m in love with cooking pasta in my pressure cooker, and I’ve never looked back!
Making Pressure Cooker Bow Tie Pasta in an Instant Pot
An Instant Pot is one of the most popular brands of electric pressure cookers. They are easy to use and your Instant Pot can help you create this delicious Bow Tie Pasta!
I’ve mentioned before how much I like cooking pasta in the pressure cooker vs. on the stove. With the pressure cooker, I don’t have to worry about the noodles boiling over or tomato sauce bubbling and making a mess on my kitchen backsplash.
You can use any type of Bow Tie (farfalle) pasta in this recipe—including gluten-free and whole wheat pasta varieties. (For these varieties, you may need to adjust the cook time based on the formula outlined in my How to Cook Perfect Pressure Cooker Pasta post.)
Pressure Cooker Bow Tie Pasta Cooks in the Sauce
For this Pressure Cooker Bow Tie Pasta, I combined the Cook’s Illustrated recipe with my quick pasta sauce recipe. This is my go-to pasta sauce because I always have crushed tomatoes and spices on hand. It’s a forgiving recipe, so I can throw in grated carrots, fresh tomatoes, corn, baby spinach, and any other veggies I have on hand. (Stir in quick cooking veggies like spinach and corn for after pressure cooking.) And it cooks up quick and delicious.
In this recipe, I make the pressure cooker bow tie pasta right in the sauce. I love having only one pot to clean on busy nights, and if you want to add ground beef or sausage to the sauce, you can saute it in the same pan, transfer the ground beef to a paper towel–lined plate, and then start this recipe.
If your pasta sauce is more watery than you like (different pastas absorb different amounts of water), Cook’s Illustrated recommends simmering the pasta for a few minutes after it’s been pressure cooked so there’s no worry about overcooked noodles. However, I find I rarely need to do that these days.
If you prefer to control your sauce levels (say you have picky kids at home) and would rather cook the sauce separate, follow the guidelines in the How to Cook Perfect Pressure Cooker Pasta post.
Pressure cooked pasta is on a regular rotation at our house. I hope you’ll give it a try too.
Put olive oil in the cooking pot and select browning or sauté. When oil begins to sizzle, sauté sausage, onion and garlic until meat is no longer pink and onion is tender, about 10 minutes, drain if necessary. Add remaining ingredients and stir to combine. Select High Pressure. Set timer for 5 minutes. When beep sounds turn pressure cooker off and use a quick pressure release. When valve drops carefully remove the lid. Stir mixture. Select Simmer and cook, stirring often, until pasta is tender, 2 to 5 minutes. Season with additional salt and pepper to taste.
Put olive oil in the cooking pot and select browning or sauté. When oil begins to sizzle, sauté sausage, onion and garlic until meat is no longer pink and onion is tender, about 10 minutes, drain if necessary. Add remaining ingredients and stir to combine.
Select High Pressure. Set timer for 5 minutes. When beep sounds turn pressure cooker off and use a quick pressure release. When valve drops carefully remove the lid.
Stir mixture. Select Simmer and cook, stirring often, until pasta is tender, 2 to 5 minutes. Season with additional salt and pepper to taste.
More pressure cooker / Instant Pot pasta recipes:
- How to Cook Pasta in the Instant Pot
- Pepperoni Pizza Pasta
- Chicken Bacon Penne Pasta
- Chicken Enchilada Pasta
- Bow Tie Pasta
- American Goulash
Instant Pot / pressure cooker pasta recipes in The Electric Pressure Cooker Cookbook:
- Baked Cheese Ravioli (page 124)
- Spaghetti with Ragu (page 125)
- Anytime Spaghetti and Meatballs (page 126)
- Creamy Chicken Pesto Pasta (page 165)
- Linguine and Clam Sauce (page 181)
- Bow Tie Pasta with Sausage (page 182)
- Monterey Chicken Pasta (page 183)
- Pasta Primavera (page 184)
- Chicken Fettuccine Alfredo (page 195)
- Spicy Cheesy Chicken Spaghetti (page 197)
- Tuscan Garlic Chicken Fettuccine (page 198)
- Grown-Up Mac and Cheese (page 268)