Last Updated on March 22, 2023 by Corinne Schmitt
These Instant Pot Stuffed Shells with Sausage and Cheese are a surefire hit with everyone in the family. This classic Italian dish is easy to make in your Instant Pot.
So, we do end up eating Italian food once a week, I just switch up some of the details to make it less monotonous. These Instant Pot Stuffed Shells with Sausage and Cheese are one of my favorite variations!
Loaded with flavorful Italian sausage and a creamy blend of cheeses, this melt-in-your-mouth meal doesn’t disappoint!
How to Make Instant Pot Stuffed Shells with Sausage and Cheese
No matter what you cook them in, stuffed shells do require more effort than spaghetti since some assembly is required. For these Instant Pot Stuffed Shells with Sausage and Cheese I’ve tried to keep the extra work to a minimum.
After all, we love our Instant Pots because they make dinner easier, right? The big win with making these in your Instant Pot instead of in the oven is that we don’t have to cook the shells first! This not only saves you time, but the shells are also so much easier to stuff.
Step 1: Brown the Sausage
First, we need to brown the Italian sausage. Set your Instant Pot to saute mode and wait for the display to read “Hot” before adding the sausage to the pot.
Cook the sausage, stirring constantly and scraping the bottom to remove bits that are sticking.
After the sausage is browned completely, drain the fat and set the sausage aside in a large bowl. Add a little water to the bottom of the liner and scrape away any bits of sausage that are stuck there, then pour out the water and scraps.
Step 2: Make the Filling
Next, we’re going to make the delicious filling that’s really the star of this meal. In the bowl where you’ve placed the browned sausage, add ricotta, mozzarella, oregano, basil, garlic powder and salt.
Stir it until the ingredients are well combined.
Step 3: Stuff the Shells
Now, we just need to stuff the filling into the uncooked shells. Spoon a generous amount into each shell. Place the shells into a casserole dish that fits inside your Instant Pot inner liner.
In a separate bowl, combine diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste and Italian seasoning.
After you’ve stuffed all the shells and placed them in a casserole dish, pour the sauce over the top.
If the sauce doesn’t cover the shells completely, add some water (otherwise you’ll end up with crunchy pieces of shell).
Step 4: Pressure Cook
Put the trivet that came with your Instant Pot in the bottom of the inner liner. Then, add 1 1/2 cups of water.
Lower your casserole dish onto the rack. Secure the lid, set the valve to sealing and press the Manual button. Set the time to 15 minutes.
When the timer beeps indicating the cook time has ended, quick release the pressure by turning the valve to venting. When the pressure has fully released, remove the lid.
Carefully remove your casserole dish from the inner liner using the handles of the trivet.
Your Instant Pot Stuffed Shells with Sausage and Cheese is ready to serve! Top with grated parmesan and serve with a side salad.
Instant Pot Stuffed Shells with Sausage and Cheese Recipe
Ready to make your own Instant Pot Stuffed Shells with Sausage and Cheese? Here are the exact measurements and summarized instructions.
Instant Pot Stuffed Shells with Sausage and Cheese
- 16 ounce box jumbo shells uncooked
- 6 ounces Italian sausage
- 15 ounces package Ricotta cheese
- 1 cup mozzarella cheese
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes
- 2 8 ounce cans tomato sauce
- 6 ounces tomato paste
- 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
- Turn the Instant Pot on saute mode. When hot, add the sausage and cook, stirring often until no longer pink. Remove from the pot to a large bowl. Deglaze the inner pot to remove any pieces stuck to the bottom of the inner liner.
- In the large bowl of browned sausage, add the ricotta cheese, mozzarella cheese and next 4 ingredients. Stir until well combined and then stuff into the jumbo shells. Place shells in a casserole dish that fits inside the inner liner of the Instant Pot.
- Mix together the diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste and Italian seasoning. Pour over the stuffed shells. If the shells are not completely covered, add just enough water until they are all covered.
- Place the trivet in the bottom of the inner liner and add 1 ½ cups of water. Lower casserole dish onto trivet.
- Close the lid of the Instant Pot and turn the pressure valve to sealing. Cook on manual high pressure for15 minutes, then quick pressure release when the cooking time has completed.
- Carefully remove dish from inner liner using the handles of the trivet. Serve warm with salad and Italian bread. Top with grated parmesan, if desired.
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16 thoughts on “Instant Pot Stuffed Shells with Sausage and Cheese”
Not sure what type of IP you’re using, but it took 28 minutes and a 10 minute NR before the pasta was cooked. Everything else came out OK.
I use a 6 quart instant pot.
After 25 minutes (and yes the shells were completely covered with sauce and then some) the noodles are still not close to fully cooked.
Looks like a wonderful weeknight meal! I love classics like this! Thank you for sharing at Fiesta Friday!
I’m so far behind, but I wanted to make sure I stopped by and thanked you for sharing at the What’s for Dinner party. Hope to see you again this week – Your recipe is featured!
My not justnunderdone, but still hard after 25 minutes. They are in for 15 more.
Did you add water to make sure they were all covered before cooking? That should have been plenty of time for the noodles to cook.
This looks to be a really lovely recipe! Looking forward to my future Instant Pot.
Where do you get these unusual containers like this casserole dish and the one for the cheesecake?
Mostly from Amazon. This one is one of the stackable pans and I use the springform pan for cheesecake. You can find them both on this Instant Pot Accessories page on Amazon — https://amzn.to/2Eavors
Could you substitute your favorite marinara or spaghetti sauce for the tomatoes, tomato sauce, and paste?
Absolutely. And you probably won’t need to add much water then to ensure the shells are covered (the mixture in the recipe tends to be thicker than most marinara/spaghetti sauces).
Can the instant pot be used to can small amounts of food ?
Absolutely! As a pressure cooker, one might argue that canning is its primary function, though I’ve never canned in mine. Here’s a great video on YouTube with tips to get you started – https://youtu.be/G09BhYnJglY
Is there a way this can be made into a freezer meal? Thank you
Yes! Follow the instructions up to the point that you have poured the sauce over the shells. Make sure the container you have the shells and sauce in is freezer-safe. Cover with plastic wrap, wrapping it all the way around to eliminate gaps where air can get in. Freeze for up to 3 months. When you’re ready to cook the shells, remove from the freezer the night before and let thaw in the refrigerator. Then, pressure cook as normal (as called for in the regular recipe).