A prolific scorer with 322 regular season goals to his name, Stamkos missed almost 11 months recovering from a torn lateral meniscus in his right knee.
Stamkos entered with five assists in three games this season.
Slater Koekkoek got his first two National Hockey League goals, and Victor Hedman and Nikita Kucherov also scored for the Lightning. Andrei Vasilevskiy made 36 saves.
Jake Guentzel and Bryan Rust each had a goal and an assist for the Penguins (2-2-1). Antti Niemi, who allowed four goals on 13 shots over 9:16 against Chicago on October 5 in his Penguins debut, stopped 29 shots.
Penguin disaster as just two chicks live
Rod Downie, head of polar programmes at conservation group WWF, said: 'These are one of the most incredible animals on our planet. As a result the chicks starved.
First Period_1, Tampa Bay, Koekkoek 1 (Stralman, Kunitz), 6:07. 5, Pittsburgh, Sheary 3 (Ruhwedel, Niemi), 8:58.
Hunwick got Pittsburgh within 5-4 at 10:01 of the third.
Hedman put the Lightning ahead 2-1 with a power-play goal that beat the buzzer at the end of the first period.
Former USC linebacker Osa Masina pleads guilty to sexual battery
Masina, 20, pleaded guilty to 3 charges of sexual battery during a hearing on Thursday morning in Salt Lake City. Upon conviction, each charge would have been punishable with a maximum sentence of life in prison.
Kris Letang assisted on Guentzel's goal and joined Paul Coffey (332) as the only Pittsburgh defenseman to reach 300 assists.
Power-play opportunities_Pittsburgh 1 of 5; Tampa Bay 2 of 5.
Penguins: Return home to play Florida on Saturday night.
Clashes Break Out Between Police and GJM Supporters in Darjeeling, 2 Dead
Uncormed sources state that the deceased is ASI Amitava Mullick. A police vehicle is believed to have been torched. Police have preferred to remain tightlipped.