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Instant pot pasta is the easiest way to cook pasta at home! You are never going to have to wait on the water to boil or worry about the pot boiling over ever again! Everything you need to make dinner in just one pot!

Make chickpea pasta in the instant pot and have a healthy, simple meal on the table in under 20 minutes. This one pot pasta is so easy to make and can easily be adjusted based on what you have on hand and what you love in your pasta! This simple 5 ingredient recipe is vegan, gluten free and high in protein (thanks to the chickpea pasta).

Large spoonful of instant pot chickpea pasta.

WHY YOU WILL LOVE INSTANT POT CHICKPEA PASTA

  • You never have to stare at a pot of water waiting on it to boil again! Instant pot chickpea pasta is so easy. Just dump and cook, no real cooking skills required! This is the perfect recipe to make when you don’t feel like cooking!
  • I like to keep my pasta simple and this recipe is no different. I add frozen spinach at the end for more veggies (because I always have it on hand). You could add other veggies if you prefer. Use your favorite jarred marinara sauce or make your own!
  • Great for weeknight meals and it’s budget friendly. Even though chickpea pasta is typically more expensive than traditional pasta, since it’s so high in protein and fiber, you don’t need to add an additional protein.

INGREDIENTS AND SUBSTITUTIONS

  • Chickpea pasta: If you don’t have chickpea pasta, you can use lentil pasta or your favorite gluten free pasta. See the tips above on how to modify the pasta based on what you have on hand.
  • Water: If you wanted to add more flavor to the dish you could use vegetable broth or chicken broth in place of the water.
  • Marinara sauce: You can use store bought marinara sauce or make your own with crushed tomatoes and tomato paste to make 2 Minute Marinara.
  • Frozen spinach: Use whatever veggies you have on hand. You can add onions, garlic, zucchini, bell pepper, summer squash, fresh or frozen spinach, kale or peas to the pot! Check out the tips above on how to add these veggies!
  • Salt and garlic powder: These are optional ingredients – feel free to omit or add you own favorite herbs and spices!

HOW TO MAKE CHICKPEA PASTA IN THE INSTANT POT

  1. Pour the pasta into the bottom of the pressure cooker insert.
  2. Cover the pasta with water.
  3. Pour the sauce directly over the pasta, do not stir.
  4. Add the lid and ensure the vent is set to “seal”. Turn on high pressure for 2 minutes (see below depending on the cooking time on your box).
  5. Allow to come up to pressure, cook for 2 minutes. Let the pressure start to naturally release. When the pot reads LO:04, manually release the pressure.
    Tip: you may want to put a kitchen towel over the vent to help reduce the steam shooting out from the pressure cooker. You should not see any foaming liquid.
  6. Once all pressure is gone and the pin has dropped, remove the lid. You will see that the pot looks watery, that is normal. Stir the pot and make sure the “keep warm” function is on.
  7. Add the frozen spinach, salt and garlic powder to the pot. Stir well.
  8. Allow the pasta and spinach to sit in the instant pot for 2-3 minutes so the spinach can fully defrost and warm up. Stir again before serving.

COOKING TIMES FOR CHICKPEA PASTA

You will need to look at the box of pasta (each size and shape will have a different cooking time).

  • If the box says 5-7 minutes: Cook 2 minutes high pressure, 4 minutes natural release
  • If the box says 7-9 minutes: Cook 3 minutes high pressure, 4 minutes natural release
  • If the box says 9-11 minutes: Cook 4 minutes high pressure, 4 minutes natural release

WHAT ELSE TO ADD TO THIS PASTA

I love simple pasta dishes, especially on busy nights. You could easily add more veggies, your favorite protein or fresh herbs after cooking. Some great ideas include:

  • Garlic and onions: Saute the garlic and onions on sauté mode of the instant pot. Once starting to caramelize, press cancel to stop the sauté function. Add ½ cup of the water to the bottom of the pot and scrape all the brown bits off the bottom. This is very important as those brown bits will cause a BURN notice when the pressure cooker is trying to come up to pressure. Once the brown bits have been scraped off, add the pasta, the rest of the water and the sauce. Follow the rest of the directions as written.
  • Fresh veggies: Add things like thinly sliced bell pepper, zucchini, summer squash before cooking. After chopping, add the veggies to the pasta + water before pouring the sauce over it all. Cook according to the directions in the post. If you want to use fresh or frozen spinach, kale or peas, add them after cooking as they will cook quickly in the hot liquid.
  • Fresh herbs: Basil, fresh parsley, green onions can all be added to the pasta right before serving.
  • Sausage: If the sausage needs to be browned off first, brown the sausage using the sauté function. Once cooked, add ½ cup of water and scrape down the bottom of the insert so there are no brown bits left. Add the pasta, water and sauce to the sausage and cook per the instructions. If the sausage do not need to be cooked first, slice it and add it the pasta before pouring the sauce over top, do not stir.
  • Cooked chickpeas, white beans, lentils: These are already cooked and can be added before or after cooking the pasta depending on your preference. Note: When you add the beans or lentils before cooking the pasta, they tend to get softer under pressure.

TOP TIPS

Depending on what size pasta you are cooking, the cooking time will vary. For chickpea pasta or lentil pasta I have found that a formula of ½ the minimum cooking time, round down works well since you allow the pot to naturally release for 4 minutes. Example: Cooking time for this fusilli chickpea pasta was 5-7 minutes. So 5/2 =2.5 Round down to 2.

If you try to naturally release pressure as soon as the pasta is done cooking, you may get foam and pasta sauce that releases out of the vent. This is because as the pasta cooks, it boils up inside the pot. Allowing it to sit for 4 minutes before venting allows that foam to dissipate before releasing the pressure.

Using other gluten free pasta like brown rice pasta or quinoa pasta, you will need to cook that pasta differently because it gets mushy when cooked under pressure for too long. Cook other gluten free pasta for 0 minutes high pressure and allow to naturally release 8 minutes before manually releasing the pressure.

The sauce does have a thicker texture since the pasta cooks right in the sauce. If you don’t love the way the sauce changes, you can simply cook the pasta in the instant pot in 6 cups of water and strain the pasta after cooking. Add the pasta back to the instant pot, pour the sauce over and add the frozen spinach.

INSTANT POT CHICKPEA PASTA COMMON QUESTIONS

CAN YOU COOK LENTIL PASTA IN THE INSTANT POT

Yes. Lentil pasta is very similar to chickpea pasta. Follow the same method and cooking times indicated above for lentil pasta.

CAN YOU COOK OTHER GLUTEN FREE PASTA IN THE INSTANT POT

Brown rice or quinoa pasta are typically will start to get gummy if cooked for too long under pressure. Because of this you will want to cook them for 0 minutes high pressure (just keep scrolling down past 1 and it will set to 0). Allow the gluten free pasta to naturally release 8 minutes before manually releasing pressure or you may notice a lot of pasta water spews from the pot.

WHAT IF YOU DON’T WANT TO ADD THE SAUCE TO THE POT

If you have ever made a one pot meal, you know that as the pasta cooks, it absorbs liquid from cooking but also gives off starch in the cooking liquid. When you cook everything in one pot without straining off the liquid, the texture of the sauce changes a bit. If you really love the texture of your pasta sauce, you can cook the pasta in more water and add the sauce after you strain off the water from cooking. In this example, you will want to cook the pasta in at least 6 cups of water, and you will strain the pasta after cooking before adding it back to the pressure cookier.

HOW TO STORE CHICKPEA PASTA

Fridge: Store leftover pasta in the fridge for up to 5 days.

Freezer: I do not recommend freezing this pasta as the texture may get a little mushy when defrosting. Typically if you are going to freeze pasta, you cook it to right before al dente so that the pasta can cook a bit more as it’s reheating.

 

INSTANT POT CHICKPEA PASTA RECIPE

Prep Time: 2 mins
Cook Time: 2 mins
Total Time: 14 mins
Servings: 4 servings

INGREDIENTS

  • 8 oz chickpea pasta – $2.99
  • 2 cups water – $0.00
  • 3 cups marinara sauce – $1.79
  • 2 cups frozen spinach – $1.00
  • 1/2 tsp salt – $0.03
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder – $0.05
Chickpea pasta in a white bowl with instant pot in background.

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Add pasta to the instant pot. Cover with water.
  • Add marinara sauce over pasta, do not stir.
  • Put the lid on your instant pot, set the vent to “sealing” and turn on high pressure for 2 minutes (see below for cooking time based on what kind of pasta you are cooking).
  • Allow the instant pot to come up to full pressure, cook for 2 minutes and naturally release for 4 minutes (you will see LO:04) then you can manually release the pressure.
  • After all pressure is gone and the pin drops, you can open the instant pot. You will notice the pasta and sauce looks watery at first. Stir well. Keep the “Stay Warm” Function stays on.
  • Add the frozen spinach, salt and garlic powder to the pot, stir well.
  • Allow the pasta to sit for 2-3 minutes to heat up the spinach.

NOTES

For cooking lentil or chickpea pasta:

You will need to look at the box of pasta (each size and shape will have a different cooking time).

  • If the box says 5-7 minutes: Cook 2 minutes high pressure, 4 minutes natural release
  • If the box says 7-9 minutes: Cook 3 minutes high pressure, 4 minutes natural release
  • If the box says 9-11 minutes: Cook 4 minutes high pressure, 4 minutes natural release

How to cook gluten freer pasta (brown rice pasta or quinoa pasta).

These pastas can get gummy if overcooked in the pressure cooker. You will want to cook gluten free pasta for 0 minutes high pressure (just keep scrolling down past 1 and it will set to 0). Allow the gluten free pasta to naturally release 8 minutes before manually releasing pressure or you may notice a lot of pasta water spews from the pot.

See how I calculate food cost.

NUTRITION INFORMATION

Nutrition Facts
Amount per Serving
Calories 257
Fat 4g
Carbohydrates 45g
Fiber 13g
Sugar 13g
Protein 19g
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