This recipe for Instant Pot Loaded Tomato Sauce is so simple and satisfying you’ll be kicking yourself for not making this sooner. Ready in 35 minutes, you can make this recipe as is, or use any veggies of your choice to make your own version of this thick and hearty pasta sauce. It’s healthy, full of fiber and protein, and of course 100% plant based. Easily make this dish gluten free, by using your favorite gluten free pasta, or use any whole wheat, high protein pasta, or veggie pasta of your choice.
Why you’ll love this Instant Pot Loaded Tomato Sauce
-It’s gluten free if you use any gluten free pasta of your choice
-Easy and fast
-Oil free and low in fat
-Cooks in the Instant Pot worry free, without constant stirring
What kind of Pasta should I cook with this?
We like to eat this with a long spaghetti pasta, and really like Tinkyada Brown Rice Spaghetti Style Pasta. This is great because it keeps the dish gluten free and made with brown rice. If you want this dish to be gluten free, just use an gluten free pasta of your choice.
We also enjoy having this with whole wheat pasta, in particular, a penne or rigatoni work well. But use whatever you like! This dish is very versatile and you can really make it your own.
What other veggies can I use with this pasta sauce?
I love this recipe because you can literally throw almost anything in and it will be delicious. I call it the “Cleaning out the refrigerator” pasta, because I can use up whatever I have that needs to be used.
Here are some examples are other veggies that work well:
-Cauliflower (chopped into small pieces works well)
-Spinach (add this at the end of cooking so it doesn’t break down too much)
Whatever you decide to use, just make sure you chop everything into relatively similar sizes that your sauce will be more uniform.
What can I use for parmesan cheese substitute?
If you haven’t tried Minimalist Baker’s recipe for Vegan Parmesan, its fantastic! I keep a batch of of this on hand at all times, and we use it on top of all sorts of things. It’s super simple and fast too!
There are several store brought brands, including one from Follow Your Heart that is quite good. These will not be quite as healthy though as making your own at home.
If you’re looking for other Instant Pot recipes, try our Instant Pot Red Beans and Rice or our Easy Vegan Instant Pot Dahl!
Instant Pot Loaded Tomato Sauce
- Instant Pot or other Pressure Cooker
- Immersion blender or Blender (optional)
- 1/2 onion diced
- 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper (1/2 tsp if you like spice)
- 6-8 garlic cloves mined or pressed
- 2 cups chopped mushrooms of your choice (I used cremini)
- 1 bell pepper diced
- 1 zucchini chopped into 1" pieces
- 4 tbsp tomato paste (about 1/2 can)
- 1 32 oz can of crushed tomatoes
- 2 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tbsp italian seasoning
- 1/3 cup brown or green lentils (dry)
- 1 2.25 oz can of sliced black olives
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 tsp salt (or more to your taste)
- Set Instant Pot to Sauté function on medium heat. Add diced onion and crushed red pepper to the inner pot and sauté for 3-4 minutes until onions are translucent and start to brown slightly.
- Add garlic and contiune to sauté for 1 minute until it is fragrant.
- Add chopped mushrooms to the pot, stir, and sauté for 3-4 minutes until they begin to soften.
- Add remaining ingredients to the Instant Pot except for the salt. Cancel the sauté mode, secure the lid on top, and then set your Instant Pot to High Pressure for 15 minutes. Press start.
- While your Instant Pot is coming to pressure, start boiling water to the prepare your pasta of choice, and cook pasta following the directions on it's packaging.
- When the Instant Pot finishes, do a quick release to release all the pressure, and open the lid to the pot.
- With an immersion blender, blend about 1/3 to 1/2 of the sauce until you reach the desired consitency. This will make the sauce thicker and more uniform. Alternatively if you do not have an immersion blender, transfer 1/3 of your sauce to a standard blender, blend until smooth, and then tranfser back to your Instant Pot. (This step is completely optional, you can eat sauce as is, or mash a bit with a fork or potato masher to create a thicker consitency.)
- Taste and add salt to your liking. Start with 1/2 tsp and add from there.
- Serve with pasta of your choice, fresh basil, and vegan parmesean!