Instant Pot Pork Ragu With Orecchiette Pasta

An incredible Pork Ragu that tastes like it has been slow cooked for 24 hours. Thanks to the Instant Pot it gets all of that flavour in around an hour, it is then served with a hearty orecchiette pasta!

Pork Ragu that tastes like it has been slow cooked for 24 hours in an hour or so thanks to the Instant Pot served with hearty Orecchiette Pasta.

Instant Pot Pork Ragu With Orecchiette Pasta.

This delicious pork ragu dish is probably going to see a marked slow down in the amount of Instant Pot recipes for a short while.

Our weather is definitely on the upturn and spring is on the way. With spring comes new ingredients and quicker lighter cooking techniques.

That, of course, does not mean that the Instant Pot gets put away. It will still get a regular workout making stocks and a few other odds and sods.

My pork ragu recipe relies on simple flavours that just work together. Combined with Orecchiette pasta to form a dish that is hearty enough but does not feel over facing.

Pasta with pork ragu is an Italian classic, although it is more often seen as pappardelle pork ragu. But hey, I like Orecchiette pasta and food is all about what you like.

Pork Ragu that tastes like it has been slow cooked for 24 hours in an hour or so thanks to the Instant Pot served with hearty Orecchiette Pasta.

What Is A Ragu?

A Ragu is typically a meat sauce used as a sauce for pasta. It really does not matter whether that meat is ground, chopped shredded.

Pasta Bolognese is probably the most well-known ragu style sauce, but it is not all about bolognese. For instance, this duck ragu looks very similar to Pasta Bolognese but it could not really be more different.

But like this pork ragu you should not become too focused, You can make a ragu from practically anything.

How about a nice rabbit ragu, or even this Italian sausage ragu? The latter of which demonstrates that ragu is not just about pasta!

Like many, I associate ragu recipes with Italy and more specifically with pasta recipes. However, the word Ragu actually derives from the French Ragouter, which means “revive the taste”.

In fact, there are a whole host of French Ragout recipes that predate any and all Italian Ragu recipes.

Of course, the fact that I have lots of Italian inspired recipes and no French ones speak volumes about relative popularity!

Pork Ragu that tastes like it has been slow cooked for 24 hours in an hour or so thanks to the Instant Pot served with hearty Orecchiette Pasta.

Cooking In The Instant Pot.

As I mentioned earlier my use of the Instant Pot will likely scale back over the summer. As a result, this Pork Ragu Recipe is probably a good time to share my thoughts on the IP.

In the main I love it, it is a great addition to the kitchen, that however is not to say it is without faults. As a pressure cooker, I love it, I was bought up with a spitting snarling beast as a kid and they scared the snot out of me.

This thing is quiet and refined and sits in the corner and does as it is told! It cooks ribs better than any other device that I own as I explain in this apple gazed rib recipe.

As you would expect it is great for soups, stews and curries. My personal favourite use is for pressed pork belly, which is my idea of food heaven!

However, I personally find it rank average as a slow cooker. I bought it as a replacement for my slow cooker as it died after 30 years. It has done just that but I no longer slow cook and have developed my recipes to work in the pressure cooker.

The other feature I find lacking is the saute function that is primarily because of ergonomics. It is fine for starting of a dice of vegetables for a sauce and not to bad for a gorund-meat based sauce.

However, if you want to get a nice sear on a piece of meat I find it pretty terrible, to be honest. However, I have no problem with using a saute pan to plug this gap.

In short, I am a huge fan of the Instant Pot, I am not an atypical evangelical fan, but it’s good, really good.

Pork Ragu that tastes like it has been slow cooked for 24 hours in an hour or so thanks to the Instant Pot served with hearty Orecchiette Pasta.
Instant Pot Pork Ragu With Orecchiette Pasta

Instant Pot Pork Ragu With Orecchiette Pasta

Yield: 2 Servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes

Pork Ragu that tastes like it has been slow cooked for 24 hours in an hour or so thanks to the Instant Pot served with hearty Orecchiette Pasta.


  • 300 g Pork Shoulder
  • 2 Tbsp Cooking Oil
  • 1 Onion, Approximately 75-100g finely diced
  • 2 Garlic Cloves, Finely Sliced
  • 1 Tbsp Red Wine Vinegar
  • 175 ml Tomato Passata, Tomato Sauce in the US I am informed
  • 1/2 Tsp Dried Oregano
  • 1 Bay Leaf
  • 2 Tbsp Capers
  • 175 g Orecchiette Pasta
  • Salt and Pepper, To Taste


  1. Set your InstantPot to Saute mode and when hot add half of the cooking oil along with the onions and saute for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  2. Meanwhile heat the remaining oil in a frying pan over a high heat, then season the pork with salt and pepper and brown on all sides. You can do this in the InstantPot if you like but my preference is to use a frying pan.
  3. When the onions have been cooking for 5 minutes add the garlic and stir for a further minute.
  4. Now add in the red wine vinegar, it should pretty much evapourate straight away, then turn off saute mode.
  5. Add the pork.
  6. Then add in the tomato passata, oregano and bay leaf along with a really generous grind of black pepper.
  7. Close the lid an cook on manual mode at high pressure for 40 minutes, with a 10 minute natural pressure release.
  8. Putting the pasta on to cook with 2-3 minutes left in the InstantPot should be perfect timing tom bring the dish together.
  9. When released, remove the pork from the InstantPot and flip over to saute mode and reduce the remaining liquid by half.
  10. Shred with two forks before returning back to the pan along with any juices, it would of course be rude to not check for seasoning again now.
  11. Add the capers and the cooked Orecchiette pasta and stir to combine.


Sprinkle with some freshly shredded basil to serve.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 2 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 756Total Fat: 47gSaturated Fat: 13gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 30gCholesterol: 135mgSodium: 749mgCarbohydrates: 39gFiber: 4gSugar: 7gProtein: 42g
Calorific details are provided by a third-party application and are to be used as indicative figures only.

36 thoughts on this Recipe:

  1. I am going to try this recipe tonight! So excited! Question and I apologize in advance if you are already answered this, do I need to cook the pasta over the stove or do I add it the insta pot?

    • I always cook my pasta on the stove, I am very particular about my pasta cooking ๐Ÿ˜‰ If you scroll up there is a comment from Rebecca where I took a guess at cooking it in the pot, she says it worked out well but I have not tried it.

      Enjoy ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Hello from North Carolina USA! I am so excited to try this recipe tonight, but I am confused as to what size piece of pork I should get to double this? What would it be in pounds, and what would the tomato sauce be in ounces? My apologies! But I’m at the grocery store. Help! ?

    • Greetings from rural Hungary! Double the pork in pounds would be 1lb 4oz give or take, and the tomato sauce would be around 12 fl oz doubled, this is a rough UK based conversion from metric to UK imperial, I have no idea if there are differences between UK and US imperial.

      Enjoy ๐Ÿ˜€

      • Thank you Brian! So I am. Doing. The recipe with a little over 2 pounds. The pork is in 2 pieces, roughly a pound each. Do you. Think I need to pressure cook longer? My apologies, I promise I will send you a picture! ??

        • Sorry I missed this Sheila… I was ling after sleepy hour here in Hungary. I am sure I am too late, the pork I used was around three quarters of a pound so it would need a little longer to cook, but the additional liquid means that the IP would take longer to come to temperature levelling the playing field a little.

          The best thing to do would be to increase the cooking time a little say to 45 minutes from 40 and then test, if you need another 5 you can always ad the lid give it another 5 minutes but you can never uncook something ๐Ÿ˜‰

          I hope you enjoyed your dinner ๐Ÿ˜€

  3. Hello! I hate cooking pasta on the stovetop! Do you know how I can cook the same recipe but add the pasta (and more liquid as needed) toward the end? Please give me great news! ?? Thank you very much.

    • Hey Rebecca… I have heard of people doing this but have never done it myself, I’ve done some research for you and most of what I can find advocates doing a quick release and cooking orecchiette pasta for 5 minutes on low pressure or 1-2 minutes on high pressure.

      So a little disclaimer this is just an educated guess, but this would be my starting point on doing it. Cook the recipe as per my instructions through to part 8.

      When you get to part 8, ignore putting the pasta in and remove the pork and shred it, do not put the pot on saute and do not reduce the liquid.

      Return the pork and add the pasta and stir but do not add the capers, if the pasta is completely covered with liquid you should be fine, if not add enough water to just cover the pasta.

      Cook on high pressure for 1 mintue, then quick release and check the pasta, if you need another 30 seconds or minute then go for it.

      After it would be a case of judging how to finish the dish. If there is too much liquid, strain out the solids and turn on saute mode to reduce the liquid.

      Finally, add the capers at the end and enjoy.

      Good luck and let me know how you get on ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. I just got an Instant Pot a few days ago and found your site today. May I say that ALL your recipes look fab, and the photos make me drool already!

    I am SO looking forward to trying this pasta recipe, but as an Instant Pot newbie I am worried about doubling the recipe. What would your recommendation be? (Particularly when it comes to the liquid) Thank you kindly in advance!

    • Hey Nina… Thanks for taking the time to write. I hope you have fun playing around with your instant pot and I am excited you find some of my recipes inspiring.

      As for advice on amounts of liquid there are two influences on the amount of liquid added to a pressure cooker recipe. The first is flavour obviously, the second is about ensuring that you have enough liquid to bring the instant pot to pressure. In general, this is roughly about 150ml of liquid.

      This recipe contains around 200ml of liquid so plenty to fulfil part 2. In order to double this particular recipe I would double it all and then reduce it down as per the recipe, to intensify the flavour in the dish.

      Ensure you use a proper passata and not a passata reduction as that runs the risk of catching and preventing the pot from coming to pressure. A passata reduction is really very thick and if that is all you can find use it but let it down with either stock, water or wine, depending on the variety it could take up to 50% of additional liquid.

      • Hi Brian,

        I can’t thank you enough for coming back to me. Your advice was really appreciated, and apart from adding a slosh of red wine, I followed it to the letter. It was… divine!! Making your Vindaloo dish next!

        Thanks again,

        • Thank you for the great feedback ๐Ÿ˜€

          I am sure us folk that develop recipes are not meant to have favourite recipes, they are like children apparently, We are meant to love them equally. Well I don’t my beef vindaloo is probably my favourite recipe ๐Ÿ˜‰ Enjoy!

  5. How will the instant pot come to pressure with so little liquid added to it? In my experience it usually needs at least ยฝ cup of liquid to be able to build pressure.

    • 1/2 a cup is 120ml there is at least 200ml of liquid including the passata, it has come to pressure for me every time with no issue at all. Try and avoid a heavily reduced passata which is not really passata at all but a tomato reduction.

  6. Hello from The USA!
    I’m still becoming acquainted with my Instant Pot that I got for Christmas. We just finished eating this for dinner and it turned out very good. Thanks for a great recipe

    • Hey Laurie… Hello back at you from Hungary, glad you like the recipe, it is dead simple and really tasty… Hope you find more to like ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. I received an InstantPot for Christmas but it’s still in the box if you can believe it! I keep collecting recipes for it, though. I’m adding this to my collection!

    • Haha, quit collecting recipes and have a play… I’m far from being an evangelist but price of entry has been worth it for the stock alone ๐Ÿ˜€

    • Thanks for flagging this Patricia, I am in the process of replacing part of my website and it is playing havoc with some of my recipes ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. I just got an instant pot and I can’t wait to try this. It’s so easy to use and cooks so fast, I’m in love! Loving your photos too!

    • Thanks Karen… I think this is fast at an hour too, to slow roast or slow cook this would take at least 8 hours although realistically even longer ๐Ÿ˜€

    • They most certainly have I am based in deepest darkest Hungary and have one… They are a web based success story from a small Canadian manufacturer I believe but easy to get hold of online although their presence in stores is not high ๐Ÿ™‚ Essentially they are a self powered pressure cooker kinda taking things by storm, I am far from an evangelist but I love mine and am loving getting back acquainted with cooking under pressure.

  9. We don’t have to worry about any darkness in THESE beautiful photos! Lovely dish, perfect for the dive “snow dive” forecast for today!

    • Cheers Dan… I have noticed the amazing pictures of the cold weather you have in parts of the US at the moment, meanwhile over here in my corner of Europe things are positively springy and I am heading to an outdoor thermal spa today ๐Ÿ˜€ I hope you keep warm ๐Ÿ˜‰


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