Instant Pot Bolognese is next level amazing, and ready in no time! 

The Instant Pot has revolutionized cooking, hasn’t it? Especially for the recipes that require long, slow cooking and extensive prep. But the Instant Pot makes everything easy, especially Bolognese! 

If your family is like mine, they will go crazy for this time-honored Italian classic. Add a fresh bread, a bright tangy salad, and dinner is served! 

Instant Pot Bolognese in a white bowl with shaved parmesan cheese and parsley


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What’s the Difference between Ragu and Bolognese Sauce?

Ragu and Bolognese are both hearty red sauces that have rich flavors and are often used interchangeably in recipes. While Bolognese has red wine added to it and Ragu uses white wine, either will do! 

Bolognese is a variation of Ragu, a bit thinner but still packed with flavorful components like meat (beef, turkey, or sausage), sometimes mushrooms, or even lentils for a vegetarian version.

Just be sure to serve this Instant Pot Beef Bolognese with a heavy pasta like spaghetti, rotini, or penne so it has something to stick to.

Instant Pot Bolognese with noodles and a wooden spoon

How Do You Make Bolognese Sauce From Scratch?

No more tending the stove and endless stirring with this one-pot Bolognese sauce. It’s really that easy!

Pressure cooking the sauce in the Instant Pot takes out all the guesswork, while cooking in all the flavor in less than 30 minutes from start to finish! You will always want to make your Bolognese sauce this way. One pot, entire entrée, sounds like a winner!

To Make Instant Pot Bolognese:

  1. Saute beef, onion, and garlic in the instant pot, drain the fat.        NOTE: Frozen beef can be used but it will take longer to cook, be sure to break up the meat with a meat chopper or wooden spoon as it is sautéeing.
  2. Add sauce and 1 cup of water. Stir in wine.  
  3. Add spaghetti or other pasta. Cook for 8 minutes then quick or manual release.
  4. Add milk and pepper, then let sauce rest to thicken up. Garnish with parmesan cheese.

Instant Pot spaghetti Bolognese is easily doubled too, so share some with a friend or freeze portions for future dinners!

Instant Pot Bolognese on a fork  

Additions to the Recipe

For best results use fresh ingredients, this means anything you want to add to the recipe as well.

VEGGIES Fresh mushrooms, diced fresh zucchini, sliced black olives or bell peppers would all taste great in this dish! 

SPICES Fresh herbs like basil, oregano, rosemary, even a couple dashes of red pepper flakes will punch up the flavor of Bolognese.

Don’t forget, Bolognese isn’t just a sauce for pasta, why not add some extra meat and make a batch of sloppy joes? And don’t forget that hunk of bread for dipping!

Instant Pot Bolognese in a white bowl with parmesan cheese and parsley as garnish

What To Do With Leftovers

Instant Pot spaghetti Bolognese makes the best leftovers ever! It actually tastes better as it ages. It’s amazing for lunch the next day at work or school! Just reheat and eat!

To Refrigerate: Keep Bolognese sauce in an airtight container or Stasher Bag in the refrigerator and it should last about a week. To refresh it, simply give it a stir and add a little salt and pepper before serving!

To Freeze: Just ladle the sauce into Stasher Bags or zip top bags and write the date on the outside. Lay them flat in the freezer and once they are frozen, they can be stored upright (like books), to save freezer space.

Another option is to freeze some Bolognese in an ice cube tray and use a cube or two to saute veggies in or to use as a base for a sauce or soup in future recipes.

Instant Pot Bolognese in a white bowl with parmesan cheese and parsley
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Instant Pot Bolognese

Instant Pot Bolognese is an Italian-inspired dish that is made from scratch!
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 16 minutes
Resting Time 5 minutes
Total Time 36 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Author Candace



  • 1 pound extra lean ground beef *
  • 1 onion diced (about ½ cup)
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • 6 ounces spaghetti uncooked, broken in half
  • 20 ounces tomato pasta sauce 1 jar
  • 1 cup water
  • ¾ cup red wine
  • ¼ cup milk
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • ¼-½ cup freshly shredded Parmesan cheese


  • Select Saute setting on Instant Pot. Add beef, onion, and garlic and cook for 8 minutes, until beef is browned. Use meat chopper or wooden spoon to break up meat as it is browning. Once complete, press Cancel.
  • Add sauce, water, and wine, stir until combined, then add spaghetti and stir.
  • Using Manual setting, set for 8 minutes, then quick release.
  • Stir In milk and pepper, cover, and allow to rest for 5 minutes to thicken. Serve and sprinkle with parmesan cheese.


*If using lean ground beef, drain some of the fat (or soak up with a paper towel) before step 2.
5 from 16 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
Or to leave a comment, click here!

Nutrition Information

Calories: 434 | Carbohydrates: 45g | Protein: 35g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 77mg | Sodium: 928mg | Potassium: 1074mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 693IU | Vitamin C: 12mg | Calcium: 134mg | Iron: 5mg

Nutrition information does not include optional ingredients or garnish and is an estimate. It may change based on actual ingredients and cooking methods used.

Course Main Course
Cuisine American, Italian

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Instant Pot Bolognese in a white bowl with a title

Top image is cooked bolognese with noodles, parm & parsley, bottom image is bolognese with noodles in an instant pot with a title
Instant Pot Bolognese with writing
Instant Pot Bolognese with noodles and a spoon with a title

Recipe very slightly adapted from Campbells 



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About the author

I am a wife, mother of two, and professional accountant. I love fantastic food, and it is so often the center of our lives, from everyday dinner, to family gatherings, and special evenings at fabulous restaurants. I have always loved cooking and baking, with my mom and grandma, and now, with my daughter and son. I love trying new recipes while enjoying my favorites too. I’m so happy to share them with you.
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  1. Thank you for the recipe! I did t know how much 6oz of spaghetti noodles was so I guessed and I addd too many noodles so some were clumped together…I took them out and the meal was still delicious, I will add less noodles next time or cook them separately

    1. You can see 6 ounces in the image, it’s not a large amount. A small package of pasta usually has 8 ounces (1/2 pound), so it’s a little less than that. I measure it on my kitchen scale. Hope that helps for next time!

  2. I’m going to try this recipe–maybe even tonight. But why only 6 oz of spaghetti? It seems like with 20 oz of sauce, more spaghetti would be needed!