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Instant Pot Cacio E Pepe Pasta

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A cheesy, Roman classic, this Instant Pot Cacio E Pepe Pasta Recipe is one of the fastest, easiest, and most delicious recipes you can make in your Instant Pot. Cacio E Pepe will bring a delicious cheesy flavor to your main course and can be made with just a few simple ingredients.

Instant Pot Cacio E Pepe

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • Authentic Italian Flavor: Experience a classic Roman dish in the comfort of your own home.
  • Effortless Preparation: The Instant Pot makes this thin spaghetti recipe easy and fast to prepare.
  • Creamy and Decadent: This pasta is a delightful mix of cheese, pepper, and al dente noodles.

Recipe Ingredients

You’ll only need a total of 4-ingredients to make this Instant Pot cacio e pepe recipe. It’s one of my favorite pasta dishes and is quick and easy to whip up. Here’s what you need:

  • Spaghetti Noodles: The base of the dish, they provide the classic pasta element.
  • Chicken Broth: Adds moisture and flavor to cook the spaghetti noodles.
  • Pecorino Romano Cheese: The star ingredient, it brings a rich and salty taste to the dish.
  • Freshly Cracked Black Pepper: Essential for flavoring the pasta, freshly ground black pepper adds a bold and aromatic kick to the dish.
Instant Pot Cacio E Pepe Pasta

How To Make Instant Pot Cacio E Pepe?

The best recipes are those with maximum flavour and minimal effort. This recipe falls into that category. Let’s get started!

Step 1: Add Spaghetti And Broth To Your Pot

First, add the spaghetti noodles and chicken broth to your inner pot. Be sure to break the noodles up and submerge them into the broth.


Step 2: Pressure Cook

Next, close the Instant Pot lid, push the pressure valve to the sealing position, hit the manual or pressure cook button, and set the timer for 8-minutes.

Step 3: Quick Release Pressure

Once your Instant Pot beeps, do a quick release by pushing the pressure valve to the venting position to release the pressure.

Step 4: Add Pecorino Romano Cheese

Let the noodles cool for 1-minute. Then, add 1/3 cup of the pecorino romano at a time to your noodles. Mix well with tongs. Repeat until all the cheese is mixed into your pasta.

Step 5: Add The Cracked Pepper

Finally, add in your desired amount of freshly cracked black pepper to your noodles. I did about 2 tablespoons, but you can use more or less.


Step 6: Serve and Enjoy!

Serve your cheesy spaghetti noodles in a bowl alongside your favorite protein or green salad.

Cooking Tips

Follow these top tips to get the max flavor and best texture for your cacio e pepe Instant Pot recipe:

  • Turn Your Instant Pot Off: Before adding the Pecorino Romano, make sure the Instant Pot is turned off and not on keep warm. If you don’t turn the Instant pot off the cheese will clump together.
  • Add Cheese to Warm Noodles: Don’t let the noodles cool longer than a minute otherwise the cheese won’t melt easily.
  • Use Freshly Grated Peppercorns: Freshly cracked peppercorns have much more flavor than the pre-grated containers.
  • For Best Flavor: Top with extra cracked black pepper, grated pecorino romano cheese, and some fresh parsley for added flavor and garnish. Yum!


  • Change Broth: One of the best things about using an Instant Pot for this dish is that it adds a delicious depth of flavor by cooking the pasta in chicken broth. However, if you’re looking to make this dish vegetarian or just want to try something different, you can easily switch out the chicken broth for vegetable broth or even water.
  • Add Shrimp: To make shrimp cacio e pepe, cook your shrimp in the instant pot before adding the spaghetti noodles. Cook the shrimp for 1-2 minutes under high pressure. Then, release the pressure and remove the cooked shrimp from the Instant Pot. Add your spaghetti noodles and continue with the recipe as directed. Add the shrimp back at the end.
  • Add Chicken: To make this recipe with chicken, cook thin slices of chicken in the instant pot before adding the spaghetti noodles. Cook the chicken for 1-2 minutes under high pressure. Then, release the pressure and remove the cooked chicken from the Instant Pot. Add your spaghetti noodles and continue with the recipe as directed. Finally, mix in cooked chicken.


  • Cheese: You can certainly experiment with different cheeses, but Pecorino Romano cheese is the traditional cheese used in cacio e pepe. This type of cheese has a sharp and salty flavor that pairs well with the pepper and spaghetti noodles. If you want to try out a different cheese, I recommend using grated parmesan cheese. Another cheese option could be Asiago or even a blend of cheeses. Just keep in mind that the sharper and saltier the cheese, the better it will pair with this cacio e pepe recipe.
  • Noodles: I use spaghetti noodles to make Instant Pot cacio e pepe, but you can use other noodles as well. Italians normally use tonnarelli to make this dish which is similar to spaghetti. You could also use fettuccini noodles, Vermicelli, Bucatini or Angel Hair Pasta.
Instant Pot Cacio E Pepe

Optional Toppings

  • While cacio e pepe is traditionally just made with cheese and pepper, there are plenty of delicious toppings you can add to make this dish even more tasty.
  • Try adding cooked bacon, crispy breadcrumbs, or even sautéed mushrooms for added texture and flavor. No matter how you choose to enjoy it.
Instant Pot Cacio E Pepe

Storage & Reheating Instructions

  • Storage: Once your Cacio e Pepe pasta has dazzled your taste buds, cool it down and transfer it to a container or wrap it up with plastic wrap, treating it like the pasta superstar it is.
  • Freezing: Label the container with an Italian flair and the freezing date, then let it hang out in the freezer for up to 2-3 months. It will bring the Roman charm back to life when you thaw and savor.
  • Reheating: If your Cacio e Pepe pasta has been on a frosty adventure, thaw it in the refrigerator, then reheat it on the stovetop, adding a touch of pasta water to restore its velvety texture. Get ready for a Roman holiday for your taste buds!

What To Serve With Cacio E Pepe?

Cacio E Pepe is a perfect side dish for a variety of dishes. You could also eat it all by itself. Here are some serving suggestions to serve alongside this classic pasta dish.

Cacio e Pepe: Indulge in the classic flavors of Cacio e Pepe alongside your favorite Instant Pot dishes for a diverse and satisfying meal experience.

  • Instant Pot tender Pork Tenderloin: Pair succulent pork tenderloin with Cacio e Pepe for a delightful contrast of flavors and textures, creating a well-rounded meal.
  • Creamy Honey Mustard Chicken Thighs: Serve creamy honey mustard chicken thighs alongside Cacio e Pepe for a combination of rich, savory, and peppery flavors that complement each other perfectly.
  • Instant Pot Petite Sirloin: Enjoy tender petite sirloin steak with Cacio e Pepe, creating a hearty and satisfying meal that’s both comforting and flavorful.
  • Instant Pot Shrimp Scampi: Accompany Instant Pot shrimp scampi with Cacio e Pepe for a delicious fusion of Italian and seafood flavors, offering a delightful dining experience.
  • Instant Pot Beef Tips: Pair tender beef tips with Cacio e Pepe for a hearty and comforting meal, combining the rich flavors of beef with the simplicity of pasta and cheese.
  • Instant Pot Chicken Alfredo: Serve Instant Pot chicken alfredo alongside Cacio e Pepe for a creamy and indulgent meal, perfect for pasta lovers seeking a satisfying dining experience.
  • Wild Buffalo Chicken Pasta: Enjoy the bold flavors of wild buffalo chicken pasta alongside Cacio e Pepe, creating a meal that’s both spicy and comforting, with a touch of Italian flair.


What Is Cacio E Pepe?

Cacio e pepe is a Roman pasta dish that quite literally translates to cheese and pepper.

This simple dish consists of spaghetti, pepper, and Pecorino Romano cheese. It’s basically like a stripped-down macaroni and it’s soooo delicious!

This Instant pot cacio e pepe dish is creamy, cheesy and full of bold pepper flavor. The Pecorino Romano cheese adds a sharp and salty taste to the noodles, while the black pepper brings a slight kick and warmth to each bite. It’s delicious and easy to make – give it a try!

How to Pronounce Cacio E Pepe?

Wondering how to say Cacio E Pepe? This Italian pasta dish is pronounced as “ca-cho ee pepe”.

Is Cacio Pepe Spicy?

If you want to make this delicious recipe spicy, you can add a pinch of red pepper flakes to your dish! But, traditionally, cacio e pepe is not spicy.

Is Cacio Pepe Vegetarian?

Cacio e pepe is typically made with Pecorino Romano cheese, which is made from sheep’s milk and therefore not technically vegetarian. However, you can easily substitute the Pecorino for a vegetarian alternative such as Parmesan or nutritional yeast to make this dish vegetarian-friendly!

What Is Pecorino Cheese?

Pecorino cheese is a hard, salty Italian cheese made from sheep’s milk. It has a slightly sharp flavor and can be used as a grating cheese or as a melting cheese. Pecorino Romano is the most common type of Pecorino cheese and is commonly used in dishes such as cacio e pepe

Can I Make Rigatoni Cacio E Pepe?

If you prefer rigatoni noodles, go for it! Just be sure to adjust the cooking time for the type of pasta you are using. Different types and shapes of pasta require different cook times.

Can I Make This Recipe in the Slow Cooker?

Yes, you can definitely make this recipe in a slow cooker. Cook the spaghetti noodles in chicken broth on low for 2-3 hours or until the noodles are tender. Then, stir in grated Pecorino Romano cheese and cracked pepper before serving.

What Is Bucatini Cacio E Pepe?

Bucatini pasta is a thick spaghetti noodle with a hollow center. Adding bucatini to your cacio e pepe will give the dish a unique texture and added depth of flavor to this easy pasta recipe.

Can You Make Cacio E Pepe With Fresh Pasta?

Yes you can make this pepe instant pot cacio with fresh pasta. To do so, reduce the cooking time to 2-minutes if using fresh spaghetti noodles. If using a fresh thick noodle like bucatini or tonnarelli, cook for 4-minutes under pressure.

Why Does My Cacio E Pepe Clump?

If your Instant Pot cacio e pepe clumps, it could be because you didn’t turn the Instant Pot off before adding the cheese. It is important to turn off the Instant Pot first so that the cheese can melt smoothly into the noodles without clumping. Another reason for clumping could be using a low-quality cheese .

Make sure to use high-quality and freshly grated cheese for the best flavor and texture. Also, be sure not to overcook the noodles as this can cause them to clump together. Adding a splash of chicken broth or milk can also help prevent clumping in your Instant Pot cacio e pepe pasta.

Can I Make Cacio E Pepe Ravioli?

Yes, you can make this recipe with ravioli instead of traditional spaghetti noodles. Cook the ravioli according to package instructions and then proceed with the recipe as directed, adding in the cooked ravioli at the end. If using frozen ravioli, cook for 2 minutes under pressure before releasing pressure and proceeding with the recipe.

Instant Pot Cacio E Pepe

Instant Pot Cacio E Pepe

Yield: 4
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 6 minutes
Total Time: 6 minutes

This Instant Pot Cacio e Pepe is delicious tasty and easy to cook in your pressure cooker


  • 8 oz spaghetti noodles, uncooked, broken in half
  • 2 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 1/2 lb. about 2.5 cups Pecorino Romano, grated, fresh
  • Freshly cracked black pepper


  1. Add to your instant pot your spaghetti noodles and chicken broth. Close the lid on your instant pot and make sure your sealing valve is closed as well. Set your instant pot to high-pressure for 8 minutes.
  2. Once your instant pot is done cooking, do a quick release by bringing the sealing valve toward you and releasing the pressure.
  3. Wait about one minute to allow the noodles to cool. Add 1/3 cup of cheese at a time to your spaghetti noodles and broth mixture. Mix well with tongs. Repeat until cheese is done.
  4. Add in your desired amount of cracked pepper to your instant pot. I did about 2 tablespoons cracked pepper for the entire pot, but you may enjoy more or less. You can also add more to each prepared dish. 
  5. Transfer to your serving bowl and enjoy!
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 289Total Fat: 14gSaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 55mgSodium: 1297mgCarbohydrates: 20gFiber: 1gSugar: 2gProtein: 20g

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