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Instant Pot Pork Ragu with Capers

Instant Pot Pork Ragu is a delicious & simple way of cooking a meat sauce that tastes like it has been cooking all day in just an hour.

It is a hearty meaty shredded style of ragu with fresh tones that lighten it up, it is perfect served with pasta or over a nice cheesy polenta.

Instant Pot pork ragu with orecchiette pasta served in a white bowl.

Pressure Cooker Shredded Pork Ragu

This recipe joins a long list of ragu recipes on my site. I have everything from venison ragu to beef cheek ragu and red lentil bolognese to mushroom ragu and loads in between.

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.

I cook this delicious pork ragu in an Instant Pot, it reduces the cooking time of what is traditionally a slow-cooked dish to something you can just about do for a midweek dinner.

For instance, my lamb ragu takes 3 hours to cook. This pork recipe comes in at around an hour in the Instant Pot.

Overhead Instant Pot pork ragu with orecchiette pasta served in a white bowl.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use a different cut of pork?

Yes, but you do want something with a decent fat content. Pork blade or Boston Butt for my US readers is the best sub, but you could get away with leg too.

Can I use a stovetop pressure cooker?

Yes, stovetop pressure cookers cook at a higher pressure and as a result cook quicker.

Cook as per the recipe but reduce the cooking time by 5-7 minutes.

Can I cook this in the oven or on the stovetop?

Yes, you can simmer it on the stovetop on a low heat or in the oven at around 160°C or 320°F for 2-2½ hours.

Can I cook this in advance?

Yes, this recipe stores well in the fridge for a couple of days and can even be scaled up and frozen. It will freeze perfectly for up to 3 months.

I defrost before reheating slowly in a saucepan with a lid to prevent too much evaporation.

Close up Instant Pot pork ragu with orecchiette pasta served in a white bowl.

Serving Suggestions

Pasta is a quick and easy option for ragu recipes.

I have not strayed from that link here and I have served this Instant Pot pork ragu with orecchiette pasta.

But it will work well with lots of different types of pasta, everything from tagliatelle to farfalle. You could even make a batch of my homemade duck egg pasta and turn it into pappardelle.

Don’t get tunnel-visioned though, ragu sauces are wonderful spooned over cheesy polenta.

They are equally good spooned over a baked potato, which I incidentally recently found out you can cook superbly in an air fryer!

You can also use it to make dirty fries or spoon over some nachos and bake in the oven with some cheese.

So many options, so little time!

Instant Pot or pressure cooker pork ragu with orecchiette pasta served in a white bowl.

Equipment Used

I only mention specific brands of equipment if I believe that it makes a material difference to a recipe. If you have any questions feel free to ask them in the comments section below the recipe.

  • Instant Pot, you can use a stovetop pressure cooker and take 5-7 minutes off the cooking time.
  • Sharp kitchen knife.
  • Chopping board.
  • Weighing scales and or measuring cups and spoons.
Instant Pot or pressure cooker pork ragu with orecchiette pasta served in a white bowl.
Yield: 2 Servings

Instant Pot Pork Ragu Recipe

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 that's perfect served with pasta or over some cheesy polenta.


  • 300g (10oz) Pork Shoulder
  • 2 Tbsp Cooking Oil
  • ½ Tsp Salt
  • ¼ Tsp Black Pepper
  • 100g (⅔ Cup) Onion
  • 2 Garlic Cloves
  • 2 Tbsp Red Wine Vinegar
  • 125ml (½ Cup) Chicken Stock
  • 175ml (⅔ Cup) Tomato Passata
  • ½ Tsp Sugar
  • 1 Tsp Dried Oregano
  • 1 Bay Leaf
  • 35g (¼ Cup) Capers


  1. Peel the onion, cut it in half and then cut it into a 2-3mm (⅛") dice.
  2. Peel the garlic cloves and then slice them as finely as you can.
  3. Set your Instant Pot to saute mode and when it is hot add cooking oil.
  4. Season the pork shoulder with the salt and pepper, then sear it until it is nicely coloured on all sides, then remove and set aside.
  5. Throw the onions into the pot and saute for 2-3 minutes, stirring regularly.
  6. Add the garlic and saute for a further minute, then turn off saute mode.
  7. Return the pork to the instant pot and pour over the stock, passata, and red wine vinegar.
  8. Sprinkle over the sugar, and oregano and then toss in the bay leaf, close the lid and cook on manual mode at high pressure for 35 minutes, with a natural pressure release.
  9. Remove the pork from the pot and place the pot on saute mode (high) and reduce the liquid by a third
  10. Whilst the sauce is reducing shred the pork.
  11. Roughly chop the capers.
  12. Add the capers and pork back onto the pot and stir to combine.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 636Total Fat: 47gSaturated Fat: 13gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 30gCholesterol: 137mgSodium: 1191mgCarbohydrates: 13gFiber: 2gSugar: 6gProtein: 38g

Calorific details are provided by a third-party application and are to be used as indicative figures only.

Did you make this recipe?

If you made this recipe, I'd love to see what you did and what I can do better, share a picture with me on Instagram and tag me @krumplibrian and tell me how it went!

Megan Life

Tuesday 14th of January 2020

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?

Brian Jones

Tuesday 14th of January 2020

I always cook my pasta on the stove, I am very particular about my pasta cooking ;) 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 :)

Sheila Youlio

Wednesday 23rd of October 2019

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! ?

Brian Jones

Wednesday 23rd of October 2019

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 :D


Saturday 10th of August 2019

This is my favorite meal that I've made in my pressure cooker. Thank you for sharing this delicious recipe!

Brian Jones

Monday 12th of August 2019

Thanks for taking the time to tell me you like it :)


Friday 31st of May 2019

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.

Brian Jones

Saturday 1st of June 2019

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 :)


Tuesday 25th of September 2018

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!

Brian Jones

Wednesday 26th of September 2018

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.

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