Kid-O’s Pasta & Turkey Meatballs
This homemade pasta-and-meatball recipe tastes reminiscent of the old-school canned version of your childhood, with a slightly sweet tomato sauce, tender mini pasta shapes, and little turkey meatballs. Your kids will love it, and the kid in you will, too.
Servings Prep Time
4servings 10minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
10minutes 10minutes
Servings Prep Time
4servings 10minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
10minutes 10minutes
  • 9 round buttery crackersfinely crushed (1 oz/30 g)
  • 1 1/2tbsp plain yogurt
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 3/4lb ground turkey (a mix of dark and white meat is best)or 90% lean ground beef, 340 g
  • 7tbsp grated parmesan cheese50 g
  • 1/2tsp dried Italian seasoning
  • 1/4tsp garlic powder
  • kosher salt
  • 1 1/4cups chicken stock300 ml, page 270 or store-bought
  • 1 can tomato sauce15 oz/425 g
  • 1tbsp sugar
  • 6oz mini dried pastasuch as anelli, farfalle, ditalini, or penne (about 2 cups), 170 g
  • 3tbsp unsalted butterat room temperature
  1. In a bowl, combine the crushed crackers, milk, and egg yolk and mash with a fork until the crackers are moistened. Add the turkey, 3 tablespoons of the Parmesan, the Italian seasoning, garlic powder, and ¼ teaspoon salt. Using your hands or a wooden spoon, stir gently to combine. Form into 26–30 meatballs, using a heaping teaspoon for each one. Refrigerate for 10 minutes.
  2. In the Instant Pot®, whisk together the stock, tomato sauce, sugar, and ½ teaspoon salt. Add the pasta and stir to combine. Place the meatballs on top but don’t stir.
  3. Lock the lid in place and turn the valve to Sealing. Press the Pressure Cook button and set the cook time for 5 minutes at low pressure.
  4. Let the steam release naturally for 5 minutes, then turn the valve to Venting to quick-release any residual steam. Carefully remove the lid. Using a rubber spatula, gently stir in the butter and the remaining ¼ cup Parmesan. Serve right away.
Recipe Notes

TIP This kid-friendly comfort food gets a double dose of nutty Parmesan, which is used in the meatballs and also in the sauce.