Instant Pot Smoky Shells

I’ve been on a kick lately using less ingredients in my recipes. It’s been a challenge because I refuse to sacrifice a lick of flavor, but I am thrilled to say this dish is loaded with it. Here, it’s all about pasta shells in a creamy, scallion-filled marsala-sherry wine sauce kissed with a smoky flavor. Think of it as a more sophisticated mac & cheese, except it’s unlike any pasta you’ve had in terms of the deep and rich flavor. And since my world-famous Sausage & Shells did me well, Smoky Shells have arrived.

Smoky Shells
Begin by adding some olive oil to the pot
Begin by adding some olive oil to the pot.
Once the oil's heated, add some sliced garlic...
Once the oil’s heated, add some sliced garlic…
...and sauté until browned.
…and sauté until browned.
Adding scallions to pot
I personally love adding some sliced scallions to this dish, as they provide a slightly bitter, yet pleasant flavor tone. If you agree, add some now…
Sautéing scallions
…and sauté until softened.
Adding sherry and marsala wines to pot.
Now it’s time to wine. Add in two of them: sherry and marsala.
Stirring pot
Stir everything together.
Adding broth to pot
Once the wine bubbles, add in a broth of your choice.
Add the shells but don't stir them! Just smooth them out with a wooden mixing spoon.
Add the shells but don’t stir them! Just smooth them out with a wooden mixing spoon. Secure the lid and cook at high pressure.
Cooked pasta
When done, the pasta will have cooked perfectly!
Adding cream to pot
Now for the final, creamy and smoky finishing touches! Add in a bit of cream…
Adding herb cheese to the pot
…and an herb cheese such as Boursin, Alouette or make mine!
Stirring the pasta with the added items.
Stir until the cheese is melded into the sauce and let rest for 5 minutes to thicken up to the perfect consistency.
Pasta on serving spoon
When done, the sauce should scoop up nicely and cling well to the shells.

Pasta in bowl
Plate some up in a bowl…
Adding smoked paprika
…and top with smoked paprika (alternatively, you can add in 1 tablespoon of this to the pasta in the pot along with the cream, liquid smoke and herb cheese).
Adding smoked paprika
Top with additional smoked paprika and serve.
Pasta on fork
And there it is! Rich and smoky shells!
Man eating pasta
Give those shells a try…

Man looking euphoric
…and this photos says it all! SO GOOD and EASY!
Instant Pot Smoky Shells
Yield: 6

Instant Pot Smoky Shells

Instant Pot Smoky Shells

I've been on a kick lately using less ingredients in my recipes. It's been a challenge because I refuse to sacrifice a lick of flavor, but I am thrilled to say this dish is loaded with it. Here, it's all about pasta shells in a creamy, scallion-filled marsala-sherry wine sauce kissed with a smoky flavor. Think of it as a more sophisticated mac & cheese, except it's unlike any pasta you've had in terms of the deep and rich flavor. And since my world-famous Sausage & Shells did me well, Smoky Shells have arrived.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 6 minutes
Additional Time 6 minutes
Total Time 17 minutes

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Pour the oil in the Instant Pot, hit Sauté and Adjust so it’s on the More or High Setting. After 3 minutes of heating, add the garlic and sauté for 3 minutes until lightly browned. If using, add the scallions and sauté them in the oil for another 2 minutes.
  2. Add the wines and deglaze the bottom of the pot, freeing it from any browned bits from the sautéing of the garlic.
  3. Once the wine’s bubbling, add the broth to the pot and stir well. Add the pasta but do not stir. Just smooth it out with a spoon to make sure it’s mostly covered (it’s okay if some of it sticks out). Secure the lid, move the valve to the sealing position, hit Cancel and then hit Pressure Cook or Manual on High Pressure for 6 minutes. Quick release when done.
  4. Add the cream, liquid smoke, and Boursin or herb cheese and smoked paprika. Stir until fully combined. Let rest for 3-5 minutes to thicken. Top with additional sliced scallions and smoked paprika, if desired.

Jeffrey's Tips

The combination of the Marsala and Sherry wines are what makes this pasta so incredibly special. However, if you’re not into cooking with wine, just nix it and sub in an additional 1 ½ cups broth (so 3 ½ cups of broth total). In Step 2, add 1 cup of the broth to deglaze the pot before adding the rest in Step 3.

Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. Krys

    Jeffrey, I tried this dish and I have a question. I had to make one change, reduce the liquid smoke to 1 tsp instead of 2 because I didn’t have as much as I thought in the bottle. But everything else was as written. I also mixed in some sliced and browned smoke sausage, but I did try several bites of the pasta before I added that. Those bites had a very bitter scallion taste, and had we not added the sausage I don’t think we could have ate it.
    While the sausage did help, the bitter taste was still there. Do you think I just used too much scallion (2 bunches can be bigger or smaller depending on the store) or does 1 tsp of liquid smoke I left out really make that much of a difference counteracting the scallion taste? There are quite a bit of leftovers that I’m hesitant to eat it because of the bitterness. I really want to like this dish and would love to try it again, just wondering your thoughts on this. Thanks for being such a great part of the cooking community!!

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