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Instant Pot Frozen Meatballs

Discover the ultimate convenience of cooking Instant Pot Frozen Meatballs. With savory seasonings and a quick sautéed sauce, these flavorful meatballs will be ready in no time.

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Two bowls filled with prepared meatballs and pasta.

These Instant Pot frozen meatballs may start in the freezer, but with a little culinary creativity, they transform into something extraordinary! 

Using a savory blend of beef broth and Worcestershire, plus a handful of herbs and spices, you can enjoy tender Instant Pot Swedish meatballs using frozen meatballs in just 30 minutes. The sauce is thickened at the end with a creamy cornstarch slurry.

Instant Pot meatballs make a great appetizer — just serve with plenty of toothpicks! For a weeknight meal, spoon Swedish meatballs over buttered egg noodles with a side salad.

Whether you’re a busy home cook seeking quick and delicious meals or an adventurous foodie eager to experiment, frozen meatballs in the Instant Pot are your new secret weapon. Get ready to unlock a world of convenience, versatility, and mouthwatering flavors. 

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I made this recipe using my Instant Pot 6-Quart Duo Nova. It’s the perfect size for my family of four and makes releasing the steam so much easier than the standard Instant Pot.

Ingredients needed to prepare frozen meatballs in an Instant Pot.

How to Make Instant Pot Frozen Meatballs

A full printable version of this recipe with ingredient measurements is available at the bottom of this post.

Beef broth, herbs, seasonings and spices in an Instant Pot.

STEP ONE: Add beef broth, Worcestershire sauce, minced garlic, and the herbs and spices to the Instant Pot. Stir until well combined.

Frozen meatballs in an Instant Pot with beef broth and seasonings.

STEP TWO: Place frozen meatballs in the Instant Pot, stirring again until they are evenly coated.

STEP THREE: Secure and seal the lid of the pressure cooker, then cook on Manual High Pressure for 3 minutes. Once the timer goes off, perform a quick pressure release by carefully moving the valve to the venting position. Be cautious of the hot steam that will escape, so use oven mitts or a long-handled utensil.

Adding cream and cornstarch to meatballs in an Instant Pot.

STEP FOUR: In a small bowl, whisk together the cream and cornstarch until smooth. Stir this creamy mixture into the beef meatballs, allowing it to coat them evenly.

Sauteeing frozen meatballs in an Instant Pot.

STEP FIVE: Switch the IP to Sauté mode, cooking and stirring the Instant Pot meatballs for a few minutes until the sauce thickens to perfection.

A wooden spoon lifting prepared meatballs in an Instant Pot.

What to Serve with Instant Pot Frozen Meatballs

Variations for Frozen Meatballs in the Instant Pot

  • Use a different protein. Feel free to switch up the type of meatballs used in this recipe — even mini meatballs! You can try using pork, turkey, chicken, or even a combination of different meats for a unique flavor profile. We typically use Walmart brand meatballs.
  • Swap the broth. If you make Instant Pot Swedish meatballs using frozen meatballs made from poultry or pork, chicken or vegetable broth will be a better choice. 
  • If you don’t have Worcestershire sauce on hand or prefer a different flavor, you can try using soy sauce, balsamic vinegar, or even barbecue sauce as a substitute.
  • Try different herbs and spices. Customize your Instant Pot frozen meatballs by adding herbs such as dried thyme, rosemary, or even a pinch of paprika to the sauce!
  • Lighten it up. You can substitute the heavy cream with half and half or whole milk. 
A Bowl of pasta and seasoned meatballs.

More Instant Pot Recipes

What Makes Swedish Meatballs Different from Italian Meatballs?

Seasonings and sauce are the key differences when it comes to meatballs! Italian versions feature — you guessed it — Italian seasonings and are simmered in a rich, tomato sauce. They can also be made with beef, pork, veal,  or a combination of both.

Instead, Swedish meatballs are typically made with a 50/50 blend of beef and pork. If you can find those, great! We ended up making our Instant Pot Swedish meatballs using frozen meatballs made with all beef. Once cooked, they are served in a creamy gravy made from beef broth and thickened with a roux.

A fork holding a meatball above a bowl of pasta and meatballs.

How Do I Prevent the Frozen Meatballs from Sticking to the Instant Pot?

As long you use enough liquid — at least 1 cup total for any Instant Pot recipe — you should have no trouble with meatballs sticking in the IP. The largest culprit for sticking is when the meat is touching the bottom of the stainless steel liner.

Make sure to combine the sauce ingredients first, then stir in the meatballs, to prevent this from happening.

Can You Cook Meatballs Straight From Frozen?

Absolutely, and this recipe is proof!

Storebought frozen meatballs are pre-cooked, which means they just need to be warmed before serving. This cuts down on cooking time and makes frozen meatballs in the Instant Pot such an easy meal option, even with no sauce.

You could also make Instant Pot meatballs with frozen, uncooked homemade meatballs. Just increase the cooking time by a minute or two, or do a 5 minutes natural pressure release followed by a quick release.

To ensure your meatballs are safe to eat, check the internal temperature with a digital meat thermometer. Ground beef is considered safe when it reaches 160 degrees F in the center.

A fork holding a meatball with a bite taken out of it.

More Meatball Recipes 

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Two bowls filled with prepared meatballs and pasta.
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Yield: 4 Servings

Instant Pot Frozen Meatballs

A wooden spoon lifting prepared meatballs in an Instant Pot.

Discover the magic of Instant Pot Frozen Meatballs! From Swedish classics to innovative twists, you can elevate your meals with ease.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 pound beef meatballs, frozen
  • 2 cups low sodium beef broth
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon allspice
  • ½ cup heavy cream (or half and half)
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • Fresh parsley, for garnish

Instructions

  1. Into the Instant Pot, add beef broth, Worcestershire sauce, garlic, parsley, salt, pepper, nutmeg, and allspice.
  2. Stir to combine, then add the meatballs and stir to coat.
  3. Secure and seal the lid and cook on Manual High for 3 minutes.
  4. When cook time is over, perform a quick release.
  5. Whisk together cream and cornstarch and stir into meatballs.
  6. Turn the Instant Pot to saute and cook and stir just until the sauce has thickened.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

4

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 263Total Fat: 19gSaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 72mgSodium: 736mgCarbohydrates: 14gFiber: 2gSugar: 5gProtein: 12g

This nutrition information is based on the exact products I used in this recipe. Brands and sizes of products could alter exact nutrition and should always be calculated independently.

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samantha

About Samantha

I’ve always had a love of cooking and creating new recipes, so it only made sense to create a food blog so I could share those recipes with you. This site is designed to provide easy and flavorful recipes with as little ingredients as possible. That means you still get great flavor combinations without all that extra time and effort. Read more...

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