Make a delicious Italian dinner with fork-tender Italian Sausage in the Instant Pot in 20 minutes time! This is an easy weeknight dinner recipe.
I’m part Italian for those who might not know me in real life. Hence where the “cucina” comes from the title of this blog. I grew up eating a lot of Italian Sausage and peppers. I kept up with the tradition and also feed my family the same meals that I enjoyed growing up.
Thankfully my children also love Italian sausage. In past years, I found that I really enjoyed grilled Italian sausage or even baked Italian sausage. That was until I tried cooking my Italian sausage in the Instant Pot. Total game changer. In about 25 minutes time you get the most fork tender Italian sausage but I’ve ever had. It taste like it’s been slow cooking for hours.
Making Italian sausage in the Instant Pot is very easy and really requires just a few simple ingredients. Here is exactly what you will need.
A common question I receive often from friends and readers is “how do you cook Italian sausage in an electric pressure cooker?”
First, you want to add a little oil to the pressure cooker. Then select the sauté setting. You will want to brown the Italian sausage just like you would if you were cooking on the stove top. Giving the sausage a nice sear will not only add to the flavors developed during the cooking process. It also seals all those delicious juices in the sausage keeping it moist, tender, and exceptionally flavorful.
The Italian sausage will need to brown for about five minutes. Once browned, that’s when you can go ahead and add in the other ingredients like onions, garlic, or any other spices or herbs you might want to incorporate.
It’s always important to incorporate some sort of liquid when using an electric pressure cooker. This is where I will deglaze the bottom of the Instant Pot to prevent the dreaded “burning” warning. As long as you’ve scraped up those brown bits you won’t have that issue. I add a little bit of water or broth to the pot and scrape with a wooden spoon.
Next, turn off your pressure cooker, place the lid on top and set the valve to “sealing”. Set the Instant Pot to manual. If I’m only cooking five Italian sausage links I will only set the pressure cooker to 10 minutes. Once the sausage is done cooking I will carefully force pressure immediately.
Can you cook more than five sausage links in the instant pot at a time?
Yes! I’ve actually cooked up to 15 sausage links in my 8 quart Instant Pot. I did, however, cook the sausage links in batches so that all links were golden brown. Then once it was time to set the pressure I selected the manual setting. Making sure the lid is on and the valve is set to “sealing” I set the pressure cooker to cook at 15 minutes. When cooking more sausage I always let the pressure naturally release for at least 10 minutes before forcing pressure.
Instant Pot frozen sausage cooking time
Do you want to make Italian sausage for dinner, but forgot to thaw the sausage! No worries. The great thing about the Instant Pot is that you can safely cook meat from frozen because it cooks the food quickly thanks to the “high pressure”.
If you want to cook this recipe for Italian Sausage from frozen you’ll skip the browning step. You’ll add the frozen sausage links, onions, and garlic into the electric pressure cooker with the water. Then set the setting to “manual” for 20 minutes. Let the Instant Pot manually release for 10 minutes before you carefully force the remaining pressure.
Sides that go with Italian sausage
While I’m cooking the Italian sausage it gives me just enough time to boil a pot of water for pasta and heat up some sauce. I do you have an Instant Pot Italian sausage and peppers sauce recipe. That is different than this recipe. This recipe is just for the Italian sausage.
If I’m not making homemade sauce with the Italian sausage I either tap in to my freezer stash of sauce or simply open up get a jar of pasta sauce. Yes, even food bloggers use jarred pasta sauce from time to time. No shame in it whatsoever. Here are a few other ideas on what you can start with Italian sausage.
- Italian Bread
- Parmesan Pasta
- Sun-Dried Tomato Pasta
- Fettuccine Alfredo
- Roasted Broccoli and Matchstick Carrots
- Toaster Oven Roasted Broccoli
If you love Italian Sausage I hope you’ll give this easy method of cooking Italian Sausage in the Instant Pot a try!
Instant Pot Italian Sausage
- Instant Pot
- 1 tablespoon Olive Oil
- 5 Mild Italian Sausage Links
- 6 Garlic Cloves
- 1 White Onion thinly sliced
- ½ cup Water
- Place instant pot setting to “sauté”. Then add in 1 tablespoon olive oil. Next, place the Italian sausage in the Instant Pot and cook for 5 minutes. Make sure to turn 1 to 2 times until brown on both sides. Then added the whole garlic cloves and white onion and sauté for an additional 5 minutes into onions begin to become translucent and color.
- De-glaze the pot with a half cup of water. Use a wooden spoon to break up the brown bits on the bottom of the pot.
- Turn the Instant Pot off. Place the lid on the Instant Pot making sure the valve is set to “sealing“. Select the “meat” setting for 10 minutes. It will take the Instant Pot roughly 10 minutes to come to pressure before the timer begins.
- Once the sausage is done carefully, force the pressure by releasing the pressure valve using a pot holder and a dish cloth.
- Remove the lid from the Instant Pot. Mix well and divide evenly among plates.
This saved me! I had to prepare dinner quickly and only had FROZEN sausages.
A number of other people mentioned the cook time, but your post was the only one that really spoke to me, Thanks!!
Just for an experiment I tried soaking some thick pasta for a few mins in hot salty water and put it in a steamer mesh basket on top of sausage, 1 1/4c water, and about a 1 1/2c sauce. Threw a few artichoke hearts in there for fun. Sausages and ‘chokes were perfect.
The pasta … not so much.
New level of al dente LOL! Next time I’ll try embedding it in the sauce. Humans learn by screwing up – Mom says “Hot! HOT! DON’T TOUCH!!” but it’s not until you dump that boiling water on your foot before you get it, eh? Thanks again!
Bob, so happy you loved this recipe. It’s great for a busy weeknight dinner!
Delicious!!kids ate it so did the hubs.
Hi Melissa, Thank you so much for taking the time to rate and leave a review of my Italian Sausage Recipe. It is one of my families favorite recipes, so happy to read your family loved it, too!