Instant Pot (or Stovetop) Chunky Pasta Sauce with Sausage, Tomatoes, and Herbs (Video)
It took me quite a bit of experimenting to get a winner, but this Instant Pot Chunky Pasta Sauce with Sausage, Tomatoes, and Herbs was so delicious, and you can make it on the stovetop if you prefer. And this tasty pasta sauce served with zucchini noodles is low-carb, low-glycemic, gluten-free, and South Beach Diet friendly. Use the Diet-Type Index to find more recipes like this one.
Watch the video to see if you might like to make Instant Pot (or Stovetop)
Chunky Pasta Sauce with Sausage, Tomatoes, and Herbs!
At my house I have a sunny patch of herbs that’s right out the front door, and even though I now have a pretty small vegetable garden, those herbs remind me of past gardens when I had masses of tomatoes and would make fresh tomato sauce with herbs every summer and freeze it. So about a month ago I got obsessed with the idea of making an Instant Pot pasta sauce with my favorite Italian Sausage, tomatoes, and fresh herbs. It seemed like a no-brainer until I’d tried several batches of sauce that burned on the bottom of the Instant Pot!
Then I decided to look back at some of my old pasta sauce recipe on the blog and I found a chunky pasta sauce recipe that I first made with slow roasted tomatoes, kind of a close relative to the Spicy Cherry Tomato Sauce for Zucchini Noodles that I make every summer. So Kara and I experimented until we had this Instant Pot Chunky Pasta Sauce with Sausage, Tomatoes, and Herbs, and it turned out to be such a winner!
And because the Instant Pot Pasta Sauce was so closely inspired by an earlier stovetop recipe I decided to combine the posts, so people can choose the method they prefer. If you want the stovetop recipe that’s been hanging out in the archives since 2008, you can find the link for that after the pasta sauce recipe below. Whichever way you make this tasty sauce (and whether you eat it with zucchini noodles or pasta) I hope you have fresh herbs from your garden; that’s what puts this over the top for me!
Heat oil in the Instant Pot on SAUTE / HIGH HEAT. Squeeze sausage out of the casings and cook, breaking apart with a turner while you brown it. While sausage cooks, drain 2 of the cans of tomatoes. When the sausage is brown, push it to the side, add more oil, minced garlic, dried basil, dried Greek oregano, and ground fennel and cook 2-3 minutes more. Then add all the tomatoes and beef broth. Lock the lid, set the Instant Pot to HIGH PRESSURE, and cook 10 minutes, then QUICK RELEASE.
When the pressure is released, check to see if you want your sauce to be a little thicker. If so, use SAUTE / HIGH HEAT to cook until it has reduced a bit and is the thickness you prefer. Then change to SAUTE / LOW HEAT, stir in chopped herbs and 1 T more olive oil and simmer about 5 minutes to finish the sauce.
Serve hot, with zucchini noodles or pasta of your choice, and plenty of freshly-grated Parmesan cheese.
Love Your Instant Pot?
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More Pasta Sauce Ideas from the Past:
Weekend Food Prep:
This recipe has been added to a new category called Weekend Food Prep to help you find recipes you can prep or cook on the weekend and eat during the week!
Instant Pot (or Stovetop) Chunky Pasta Sauce with Sausage, Tomatoes, and Herbs
- 1 pkg. (19.5 oz.) hot turkey Italian sausage or pork Italian sausage (squeeze meat out of casings)
- 5 T olive oil, divided
- 3 cans (14.5 oz.) petite diced tomatoes, drain 2 cans and keep the liquid in the other one
- 1/2 cup beef broth
- 2 T minced garlic (or more)
- 1 tsp. dried basil
- 1 tsp. dried Greek Oregano
- 1 T ground fennel
- 1/4 – 1/3 cup (or more) finely chopped fresh basil (or can use frozen basil if you have some)
- 2 T chopped fresh oregano
- salt and fresh-ground black pepper to taste (I highly recommend using the fresh chopped herbs to finish the sauce, but if fresh herbs are not available you can still make a pretty good sauce by slightly increasing the amount of dried herbs.)
- freshly-grated Parmesan for serving (optional but recommended)
- Heat 3 T olive oil in the Instant Pot on SAUTE / HIGH HEAT. Squeeze turkey or pork Italian sausage out of the casings and add to Instant Pot and cook, breaking apart with a turner while you brown it. (Turkey sausage will release a bit of water, so cook until that’s evaporated.) While sausage cooks, drain 2 of the cans of tomatoes.
- When the sausage is brown, push it to the side, add another 1 T olive oil, minced garlic, dried basil, dried Greek oregano, and ground fennel and cook 2-3 minutes more. Then add 2 cans drained tomatoes, 1 can undrained tomatoes, and beef broth. Lock the lid, set the Instant Pot to HIGH PRESSURE, and cook 10 minutes, then QUICK RELEASE.
- When the pressure is released, check to see if you want your sauce to be a little thicker. If so, use SAUTE / HIGH HEAT to cook until it has reduced a bit and is the thickness you prefer. (This probably won’t take more than 5 minutes or so.) Then change to SAUTE / LOW HEAT, stir in chopped herbs and 1 T more olive oil and simmer about 5 minutes to finish the sauce.
- Season with salt and a little fresh ground pepper to taste. Serve hot, with pasta or zucchini noodles and freshly grated parmesan cheese. The sauce can be kept in the refrigerator for about a week or frozen for several months; reheat on low heat.
Recipe created by Kalyn and Kara.
To Cook Zucchini Noodles:
Here are Three Ways to Make Zucchini Noodles if you haven’t done it. I use the Paderno Spiralizer, and like the thicker size noodles. To cook zucchini noodles, heat 1-2 tablespoons olive oil in a large frying pan. (You can add a few sliced garlic cloves to season the oil. If you do that, only cook the garlic until you barely smell garlic; don’t let garlic brown or it will taste bitter.) When the oil is hot, add the zucchini noodles and cook until barely tender and heated through, not more than 2-3 minutes. Season with a little salt and serve with sauce or topping of your choice.
Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
This sauce served with zucchini noodles would be suitable for most low-carb or low-glycemic diet plans, and all phases of the South Beach Diet. Tomatoes do have some carbs, so it’s probably too high in carbs for Keto or people who want to strictly limit carbs.
Find More Recipes Like This One:
Use the Recipes by Diet Type photo index pages to find more recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. Or Follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there.
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