Instant Pot Creamy Salmon Pasta is really easy and quick to make. It is delicious and great alternative to chicken pasta dishes. It’s great to make when you have no time to buy fresh ingredients as it uses frozen salmon and ingredients from a fridge and pantry.
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I mentioned a few times that I prefer white creamy pasta to tomato pasta. But to be fair, I’ll take any pasta anytime.
I don’t particularly consider making pasta sauces to be difficult but I don’t like using a few pots and pans to make a delicious pasta meal. This is why I absolutely adore making pasta in Instant Pot as both pasta and sauce cook together at the same time!
There’s no need to watch the pot with the pasta so that it doesn’t over-boil on the stove. There’s no need to keep testing if the pasta is cooked. There’s no need to drain the pasta. No need to stir the pan with the sauce and then mix everything together.
Just add everything to your electric pressure cooker, set the time, and forget about it for a few minutes. Once everything is cooked, just add a couple more ingredients, mix and serve. Voila! So easy!
There are some people who feel that Instant Pot Pasta tastes different from when it is cooked in the traditional stove-top method. I, however, do not taste any difference.
After a huge success of my Instant Pot Fish and Potato Soup (I had dozens and dozens of people tell me in various Facebook groups how much they love it), i’ve been meaning to make even more Instant Pot Fish Recipes. So, after many tries, I am finally happy with this recipe!
This Instant Pot Creamy Salmon Pasta is a great alternative to the traditional chicken pasta. Salmon adds a delicate and unique flavour. For those who are worried that this pasta will taste fishy, fear not! My mom couldn’t even tell it was salmon and kept asking me if it was chicken.
Instant Pot Salmon Pasta is creamy and delicious. Perfectly satisfying comfort meal made in mere minutes with almost no effort or hands-on cooking. And since everything is made in Instant Pot, you don’t even need to defrost your salmon. So convenient and easy!
Ingredients to make Instant Pot Creamy Salmon Pasta
- Frozen salmon filets (no need to defost)
- Seasonings (I used dried dill, Old Bay seasoning, salt, chili flakes)
- Cream cheese
- Shell pasta
- Vegetable or chicken broth
- Half and half cream
- Fresh dill
How to make Creamy Salmon Pasta in Instant Pot
Just like most Instant Pot Pasta recipes, this particular one is very easy.
- Combine all the ingredients except for the cream, parmesan, and dill in Instant Pot.
- Cook on High Pressure for 4 minutes.
- Do a quick pressure release.
- Here’s the most tricky part. You need to add parmesan first and mix it really well into the pasta. Only add the cream once the cheese is mixed in. If you add both together then parmesan will clump up and not melt well.
- Let stand for 5 minutes. This step is important. The pasta that wasn’t entirely under the liquid will be on a tougher side after cooking, so the step of letting the pasta stand will soften it.
- Add the dill and serve.
That’s it! Isn’t it super easy?
I love that you don’t even need to defrost the salmon filets. So, Instant Pot Creamy Salmon Pasta is perfect for when you have no time to cook or even no time to go to a grocery store to buy fresh ingredients.
Ingredients and variations for Creamy Salmon Pasta Recipe
- Salmon filets
- I have not tried cooking this recipe with fresh salmon filets. My guess is that it would work just the same.
- No need to cut up the filets either, once they are cooked, you can easily break them into pieces while mixing the pasta.
- Feel free to add more salmon or less. No need to adjust the timing.
- Make sure that you dice the onion really small. Do not cut it up into big pieces. You want the onion to give lots of flavour yet melt into the sauce.
- If you have time, feel free to lightly sauté the onion for a few minutes.
- I like a little bit of heat with creamy pasta sauces, so I use chili flakes. Feel free to omit if you don’t like heat or add more.
- Dill and fish are the best combination in my opinion, so I use both dried and fresh dill. If dill isn’t your thing, feel free to use dried parsley instead.
- As with most my recipes, I don’t use as much salt as other people, so adjust to your taste.
- Shell pasta
- It took me quite a few tries to get the proportions and ingredients right when I was developing this recipe. I made many tweaks and tested different ingredients. However, I only tested this recipe with one specific shape of pasta. I do not know how it will work with other shapes. If you try, please let me know.
- Cream cheese
- Cream cheese is the main ingredient that turns this pasta creamy, so you cannot really omit it.
- If you do decide to omit it though, I’m sure the pasta will still be delicious but the texture and flavour will be very different.
- I use Better Than Bouillon exclusively when I cook. I use whatever I have in the fridge: vegetable or chicken base.
- You can use your favourite broth instead. You may need to adjust the seasonings based on how salty the broth is.
- I tried this Creamy Salmon Pasta with parmesan, cheddar, and mozzarella.
- I liked parmesan the most but you can use your favourite melty cheese.
- Feel free to add more for cheesier pasta.
- Technically it’s an optional ingredient. It makes the pasta creamier and a bit saucier.
- You can add a bit more or a bit less.
- Feel free to use 10%, 18, or 35% cream.
- Fresh dill
- I love dill and fish together. If dill isn’t something you like, feel free to use parsley or omit altogether.
For me, this Instant Pot Creamy Salmon Pasta is just perfect but you can add some extra mixings for more flavour and nutrients.
- Frozen peas – just add together with the cream and let stand for 5 minutes.
- Fresh broccoli – chop into small pieces and add with the cream and let stand for 5 minutes.
- Fresh spinach – add at the end, right before serving, it’ll wilt a little bit from the residual heat.
- Capers – add right in the beginning before cooking, about 1 tablespoon or so.
- Lemon juice and zest – add right to the plate for extra zing.
- Smoked salmon – for double salmon flavour, add a few ounces of smoked salmon together with the cream.
- Cooked shrimp – if the shrimp is frozen then add with the cream and let stand until it defrosts. If the shrimp is defrosted then add and just let stand for a minute to heat up.
I do not find that Instant Pot smells fishy after I cook fish in it. It smells a little bit but I usually store the lid upside down and 2-3 days later there’s no smell. However, if you are worried about the smell, then I suggest buying an extra sealing ring and using it exclusively for fish recipes.
You can also see my list for 9 Ultimate Instant Pot Accessories You Need to Buy.
More Instant Pot Pasta Recipes:
- Instant Pot Greek Chicken Pasta Salad
- Instant Pot Creamy Pasta and Meatballs
- Instant Pot Creamy Chicken Pasta
- Instant Pot Pumpkin Fettuccine Alfredo (vegetarian)
DO YOU WANT MORE INSTANT POT RECIPES?
Join my Real Ingredients Instant Pot Recipes Facebook Group!!! It’s a fun and safe place to share your own Instant Pot recipes made with Real Ingredients.
Instant Pot Creamy Salmon Pasta
- 3/4 pound frozen salmon filets
- 1/2 onion, very finely diced
- 1 teaspoon dried dill
- 1 teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning
- 1/8 teaspoon chili flakes
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 125 g cream cheese, cubed (half a block)
- 1/2 pound medium shell pasta
- 1.5 cup broth (chicken or vegetable)
- 1/2 cup shredded parmesan
- 1/4 cup 10% cream
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh dill
- Add frozen salmon filets to your Instant Pot, add the onion, seasonings, cream cheese over it. Add the pasta and pour the broth over it. Do not mix.
- Close the lid of your Instant Pot and turn the valve to Sealing.
- Press Manual or Pressure Cooker button (depending on your model) and use the arrows to select 4 minutes. Use default High Pressure. It should take about 10 minutes to come to pressure.
- Once the Instant Pot beeps that the 4 minutes of cooking are done, do a quick release. This should take another 2-3 minutes.
- Carefully open the lid, you'll see that the top layer of pasta that wasn't under water will be undercooked. It is fine and expected.
- Add the grated parmesan and mix well, breaking the big pieces of salmon into bite-sized pieces.
- Add the cream, mix, close the lid and let stand 5 minutes. This will help pasta soften.
- Add the fresh chopped dill, mix, and serve with extra parmesan if desired.
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omg creamy and dill-y! will be making this often soo yummy!!!
Absolutely wonderful dish! Thank you for posting this easy and accurate recipe!
I used fresh salmon — about a pound. Removed the skin and cut it into chunks. I layered ingredients as described. I used only fresh dill, which gave it delightful “green notes.” I was generous with red-pepper flakes. Didn’t have Old Bay seasoning so used some random fish seasoning spices. Added frozen peas at the end. Used grated Parmesan. Generous with half & half. Served with lemon wedges and more fresh dill.
I think a splash of white wine would be nice in the sauce.
It was an easy, perfect recipe. It made enough for two, leftovers for tomorrow’s lunch, and two portions in the freezer.
I came across this recipe and although I made my own tiny modifications, this was amazing!!! My husband doesn’t eat salmon and he’s eating a plate of this right now! On my next round, I’m adding some asparagus.
Your directions were spot on-I was a bit nervous about the pasta being somewhat uncooked but once I mixed in the Parmesan and then the cream and let it sit, I got perfect pasta!
Okay! So! I tried this recipe with thawed out salmon, not frozen. I also used frozen tortellini rather than the pasta mentioned and can I just say wow?! I actually only used the cream cheese, half and half, grated cheese, salt, pepper and garlic powder and chicken broth….this is officially my new crack, lol. So, SO…SOOOO good. 10/10 would recommend this, seriously lol.
Have you ever tried making this with Canned Alfredo sauce instead?
I’ve never tried. I’m sorry. It might be too thick for IP. Not sure if you’d get a burn notice or not
Tried it having done other lazy pasta recipes in the instant pot. Had to add about equal parts water/broth and the jarred sauce (used half jar of sauce, half jar of water with a chicken base)
I came across this recipe because I had all of the ingredients but used fresh salmon and penne pasta. It was so easy and so delicious!! And the best part was only cleaning 1 pot!
I love this recipe also!
Fantastic recipe! We added some chopped capers and it was so tasty! So easy to make!
I’m so glad you loved it!
Awesome recipe! I added some lemon juice and peas… I am looking forward to eating it cold for lunch tomorrow.
Julia G says
I just made it, it literally takes a few minutes to put together and it’s delicious! I used frozen haddock fillets instead of salmon and it worked well too. An excellent recipe that will be in my go-to collection for sure!
What a great idea using Haddock. I am definitely going to try!
I had fresh salmon and worked great. I’m not a huge fan of salmon but wanted to fit it in my eating plan and this is very good tasting!
I’m glad it worked with fresh salmon also. Thanks for sharing!
i have canned salmon… will that work?
I’m pretty sure that the flavour will be great but I’m not sure about texture of the salmon as it’s already cooked and I haven’t tried this particular recipe with canned salmon. However, I do use canned salmon in my cooking quite often so I *think* it should work but once again, I haven’t actually tested it with canned salmon
Tried this tonight. Love the flavor. My pasta shells were not cooked. The part above the ingredients says
pressure release wait 17 minutes.
The instructions say do a quick release.
I did the quick release. Is that the problem?
17 minutes include time to build pressure, cooking time, time to release pressure, and the additional 5 minutes waiting time. As I described in the recipe step 5 the top layer of pasta will be undercooked. It’s expected. At this point you add the cheese, mix well, close the lid and wait for 5 minutes. Those extra 5 minutes should finish cooking the pasta.
In your particular case, was ALL pasta uncooked or just the top layer that wasn’t under liquid?