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Cheesy taco pasta in an Instant Pot with a serving spoon.
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5 from 6 votes

Instant Pot Taco Pasta

This Instant Pot Taco Pasta is an easy Instant Pot pasta recipe that's full of flavor! With ground beef, pasta shells and taco seasonings, this cheesy pasta is a favorite dinner idea.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time4 mins
Total Time35 mins
Servings: 8 servings
Calories: 405kcal


  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 bell pepper chopped
  • 15 ounce can crushed tomatoes or diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup jarred salsa I used mild
  • 15 ounce can corn drained
  • 3 tablespoons taco seasoning
  • 2 ½ cups low sodium chicken broth or water I use one 14.5 ounce can broth plus enough water to total 2 ½ cups
  • 12 ounces medium shell pasta 12 ounces by weight which is about 4 ¼ cups of dry medium shell pasta
  • 1 ½ cups shredded cheddar cheese


  • Press the Saute button on the Instant Pot. Add the ground beef to the pot and season with salt and pepper. Cook, crumbling the meat, until browned. Press Cancel to turn off the saute function.
  • Add the bell pepper, crushed tomatoes, salsa, corn, taco seasoning and chicken broth or water to the pot. Stir and scrape up any bits that are stuck to the bottom of the pot.
  • Add the pasta to the pot and press it down into the liquid but do not stir. Close the Instant Pot lid and turn the steam release valve to the sealing position. Set the cook time to 4 minutes at high pressure (see note below about pasta cooking time).
  • The Instant Pot will take about 15 minutes to reach pressure and then the cook time will begin counting down. When the cook time ends, immediately do a controlled quick release by slowly turning the steam release valve to the venting position using the handle of a long spoon. Once all of the steam has escaped and the pin drops down, open the Instant Pot lid. The pasta may look liquidy but give it a stir and the extra liquid will be absorbed by the pasta.
  • Stir in the cheese and serve.


  • Four minutes of pressure cooking time is perfect for cooking most brands of medium shell pasta. However, if your pasta box says that it takes 12 or more minutes to cook the pasta on the stove, I recommend increasing the pressure cook time to 5 minutes.
  • You can try other short pasta shapes in this recipe, but may need to adjust the cooking time slightly. See the previous note about pasta cooking times.
  • I would describe this taco pasta as just a little spicy when made with mild salsa. If you want it less spicy, you can reduce the amount of taco seasoning and replace some of the mild salsa with additional crushed or diced tomatoes. For spicier pasta, use medium salsa.
  • You can lighten up this recipe by replacing the ground beef with ground turkey or a can of black beans (rinsed and drained). If using beans, I recommend adding them after pressure cooking. Stir the beans in and let the pasta rest for a couple of minutes to warm the beans.


Serving: 1.25cups | Calories: 405kcal | Carbohydrates: 51g | Protein: 26g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 57mg | Sodium: 548mg | Potassium: 707mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 1176IU | Vitamin C: 28mg | Calcium: 196mg | Iron: 3mg
Nutrition information is only an estimate.
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