Instant Pot Creamy Shells and Beef

Instant Pot Creamy Shells and Beef is an easy pressure cooker dinner recipe made with ground beef and pasta in a tomato cream sauce. Perfect for busy days!

If you’re looking for an easy dinner recipe made with ground beef and pasta, you’re going to love this delicious Instant Pot Creamy Shells and Beef. It’s like homemade Hamburger Helper, and it’s super kid friendly. Best of all, it’s a one pot dinner, so there’s hardly any clean-up!

Have you bought an Instant Pot yet? I’ve been seeing so many Instant Pot recipes on Pinterest and just about everywhere lately, so of course I was curious. I finally gave in and bought one of these modern pressure cookers on Cyber Monday — I got a smokin’ deal!  And friends, let me tell you, that I’m definitely in love!

If you’ve never made dinner or anything else in a pressure cooker, it can be tricky at first. There’s definitely a learning curve here! But once you get the hang of it, you’re going to love cooking with your Instant Pot!

I’ve been doing a lot of experimenting with different Instant Pot recipes, and I was able to convert some of my favorite one pot dinner recipes to pressure cooker dinner recipes. Yea — Go me!

Instant Pot Creamy Shells and Beef
Prep Time
5 mins
Cook Time
35 mins
Total Time
40 mins


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 small yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon italian seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 1-pound box medium shell pasta
  • 1 24-ounce jar marinara sauce
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 cup shredded Parmesan cheese


  • Turn Instant Pot to saute setting, and wait for the display to turn to HOT
  • Add olive oil and onions, and cook until slightly soft
  • Add ground beef, break up with spatula, and cook until no longer pink, stirring frequently to make sure it doesn't stick to pot
  • Season with sea salt, pepper, Italian seasoning and garlic powder, and  hit CANCEl
  • Add shells over ground beef, then add the marinara sauce and water. Do not stir, but press lightly with spoon to ensure pasta is completely covered with sauce and water

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