Instant Pot Penne Puttanesca

GFGluten Free

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This Instant Pot Penne Puttanesca is made from only 8 simple ingredients but delivers BIG flavor thanks to Olives, Garlic, and Capers. An easy and healthy meal! 

I didn’t know that Puttanesca sauce existed up until a few months ago, but once I discovered it, I was a hardcore fan. I mean, it’s (1) easy to make, and (2) pretty much has all of my favorite pasta ingredients in it. Need I say more?

ingredients for penne puttanesca in small white cups on round wood cutting board

“Spaghetti ala Puttanesca” is a classic Italian dish and, quite literally, translates to “worthless” or “whore.” This is because the basic sauce recipe is made using cheap and accessible ingredients. While Puttanesca falls short on cost, it definitely doesn’t compromise on flavor. Call me a cheap date, but I’d gladly enjoy this dish for a nice dinner any day 😉

white pasta bowl of penne puttannesca on wood serving platter with instant pot in background

Classic Puttanesca sauce is made using a combination of Olives, Capers, Garlic, Oregano, Anchovies, and Olive Oil. Basically, it’s a fragrant, rich, and salty sauce – so you know it’s going to be good. This plant-based version takes a slightly different route, but it still loaded up with Kalamata Olives, Capers, Garlic, and Spices to bring big flavor and heartiness to the dish.

cooked penne puttanesca inside of instant pot with wooden spoon

Not only is this version just as delicious as the classic recipe, but it’s also Gluten-Free and ready in no time at all! The pasta cooks in only 5 minutes on High Pressure, and you have super easy cleanup since we are making the sauce and pasta together in the Instant Pot. Because it does cook so quickly, I decided to use Fire-Roasted Crushed Tomatoes to add extra depth of flavor that would normally be achieved through a long simmer.

penne puttanesca topped with fresh basil and pepper in white pasta bowl on round wood cutting board

This recipe will happily serve 4 people, especially with a side Salad or piece of crispy Garlic Bread. However you choose to serve it, this dish is just as satisfying as it is easy to make 🙂

If you’re looking for more easy Pasta recipes, you’ll also love this One Pot Vegan Mushroom Stroganoff, Lentil Bolognese, and this Garlic Cream Sauce Pasta! And if you make this recipe and decide to share it on Facebook or Instagram, don’t forget to tag me @FromMyBowl + #FromMyBowl! I love seeing your delicious recreations.

close up photo of penne puttanesca in white serving bowl topped with fresh basil

A Few Final Thoughts:

  • You can make this recipe using either Gluten-Free or traditional Pasta. If you opt for Gluten-Free, I suggest using a variety that is made from Corn, Rice, or Quinoa. Bean-based pasta tends to fall apart with the pressure.
  • The Pasta “sauce” will look very runny when you first open the Instant Pot, but never fear! Let it sit for 5 or so minutes and stir well – it’ll thicken up nicely, and still be piping hot upon serving.
  • Like most pasta, this one will dry out with time. You can reheat it, but it is best fresh!

Instant Pot Penne Puttanesca

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4.8 from 4 reviews

This Instant Pot Penne Puttanesca is made from only 8 simple ingredients but delivers BIG flavor thanks to Olives, Garlic, and Capers. An easy and healthy meal! 

  • Author: Caitlin Shoemaker
  • Prep Time: 10 Minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 Minutes
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 4 Servings 1x
  • Category: Main
  • Method: Instant Pot
  • Cuisine: Italian


  • 45 cloves of Garlic, minced
  • ½ cup Kalamata Olives, cut in half
  • 1 ½ tbsp Capers, roughly chopped
  • 1 tsp Oregano
  • ½ tsp Red Pepper Flakes
  • 28 oz. Crushed Fire Roasted Tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp Tomato Paste
  • 12 oz. Pasta of Choice*
  • 3 ½ cups Filtered Water
  • Fresh Basil, for garnish (Optional)
  • Salt and Pepper, to taste


  1. Turn on the “Sauté” mode of the Instant Pot, and add a splash of Water or Oil to the pot. Add in the Garlic, Olives, Capers, and Spices, then cook until translucent, about 5 minutes.
  2. Stir the Tomato Paste and Fire Roasted Tomatoes into the mixture, until the Paste becomes evenly incorporated. Add the Pasta and Filtered Water to the pot, stirring well.
  3. Press “Cancel/Stop” to turn off the Sauté mode, then close the Instant Pot and set the valve to “Sealing”. Cook the Pasta on Manual High Pressure for 5 minutes, then manually release the pressure as soon as the timer goes off. Remember to press “Cancel” on your Instant Pot after it finishes cooking, to turn off the “Keep Warm” feature and prevent the Pasta from overcooking.
  4. Stir the Pasta well, and add Salt & Black Pepper to taste. Let the Pasta sit for 5 minutes in the iPot before stirring again and serving – this allows the sauce to thicken slightly! Divide the pasta into 4 bowls, then top with Fresh Basil and additional Black Pepper, if desired.


  • You can use either regular or gluten-free pasta for this recipe. I recommend using shorter shapes over long noodles, and if you do use GF pasta, go with a corn/rice/quinoa base over a bean-based variety.

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About the Author

Hey there, I’m Caitlin! I make easy-to-follow, wholesome, and budget-friendly vegan recipes that are mostly gluten-free and refined sugar-free. I’m also an avid yogi, love the great outdoors, am chocolate-obsessed, and enjoy eating almond butter straight off of the spoon.

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  1. Delicious! This is a very easy and impressive dish to make for yourself or company. My husband loved it. Bravo.

  2. Made this recipe tonight. I thought i had penne at home and did not realize until it was time to add the pasta that all i had was rotini. It was a good taste but felt 5 min for the rotini was a bit softer than I liked. I will definitely try it again with penne

  3. I made this last night and we loved it. Aside from tasting so good, I love the convenience of cooking it all up in the IP.

  4. I made this for my family of four (including two teenagers). It filled my 6 qt IP and we had no leftovers. I’ll add kale next time. Great recipe! Thanks.

  5. Easy and tasty. I upped the capers, olives and pepper flakes. I never would hav3 considered cook8ng pasta in an instantpot but it works! The best part was how Simple cleanup was. Can’t beat that on a busy night!

    1. Yes! I would sauté the initial ingredients the same way, skip the water, and let it simmer down for 10-15 minutes until nice and thick

  6. made this last night….amazing! so delicious and so easy!!! I love my instant pot and would love more recipes for that…Your recipes never fail 🙂

    1. Hi Deana! I don’t think that would work, as the volume of ingredients is a little too close to 3 quarts and might overfill the pot