Everybody loves mac n’ cheese, whether you’re 7 or 77! It’s great comfort food for a cold or rainy day, or a quick weeknight meal that even the pickiest child will devour! Boxed mac and cheese is a processed convenience food (that’s not a bad thing, but let’s call it what it is!) while this simple recipe is made with real ingredients that you can feel good about serving. The best part? It doesn’t take any longer than that boxed macaroni because of your Instant Pot and it’s far more rich and flavorful!

Want New Instant Pot Recipes and Content Delivered Straight To Your Inbox? Sign up for our Instant Pot Email Newsletter!

This mac and cheese is ooey, gooey and only requires five ingredients (plus a few more if you want to garnish it before your family devours it!). In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if you already have everything you need to make it in your kitchen already! That means you can whip this up when the craving hits without a trip to the grocery store, during which you may talk yourself into something healthier (and we can’t have that, can we?!).

While the actual cook time is very quick, it’s important to remember that the pot takes time to come up to pressure. We found our 6-Quart Instant Pot Duo took about 6 minutes, but times may differ slightly depending on what size and model you’re using. The best part of using an Instant Pot to make mac and cheese is that you can set it and forget it and not worry about it boiling over. Plus you don’t have to drain any water, so it truly is a one pot meal! Minimal mess and minimal cleanup is definitely my type of dinner.

You have quite a bit of control over what the final product tastes like, as you can mix and match whatever cheeses you want! Think, mild, medium, or old cheddar, white cheddar, mozzarella, Monterey jack, pepper jack – the list goes on! Every combination will result in a slightly different taste. Just make sure you choose cheeses that melt well. We used marble cheese with a little bit of fresh Parmesan in our recipe!

When you’re ready to eat, serve it up hot from the pot or garnish it with Parmesan cheese, fresh parsley, or freshly ground pepper, depending on your tastes. Or ketchup or hot sauce –  we don’t judge!  Now without further ado, let’s get cookin’!

Advertisement

Servings: 6

Ingredients

  • 1 pound uncooked macaroni noodles
  • 4 cups water or broth
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 1/2 cups shredded cheese of your choice
  • 1/2 cup milk or cream
  • Parsley, for garnish

Equipment

  • Instant Pot

Method

  • Put the water/broth, pasta, butter, garlic, and salt into the Instant Pot. Secure the lid and close the pressure valve. Cook on Manual HIGH for 4 minutes.
  • Once cook time has elapsed, quick release the pressure with a dish towel handy, as the spray can be a little bit buttery.
  • Once pressure is released, remove the lid and add the cheese and milk, stirring until melted and mixed in. Garnish with parsley, ketchup, hot sauce, or whatever you normally eat your mac n' cheese with! Enjoy!

Notes

If you want to cut the calories a bit, use milk instead of heavy cream or half and half.

You can always use water, but we find that a vegetable or chicken broth makes the final product more flavorful! Since you’re not dumping any excess liquid, water can leave the dish tasting a little lacklustre. If you don’t have broth, go ahead and use water, but consider upping your spices including garlic, salt, pepper, and perhaps even a dried Italian seasoning to give it more flavor.

 

Rhiannon Ball

Rhiannon loves to cook and bake but has also never said "no" to a takeout burrito (see, she's just like you!). Despite slowly running out of room in her cabinets, she continues to expand her collections of cookbooks and kitchen gadgets and is deeply jealous of people who can just "whip something up" without a recipe. When she's not in the kitchen, you can find her camping and hiking with her husband and rescue dog, Waffles.

There is no comfort food quite like lasagna and I'm not talking about the frozen version picked up from the grocery store when...
Egg rolls are delicious, let's be honest. But they're crazy unhealthy because they're usually deep fried in those little wrappers!
Everyone's potluck favorite is about to get so much easier! Today, we're sharing how the Instant Pot can prepare potato salad...
Poached eggs are a delicious addition to your breakfast and a great way to add protein without all the extra oil of a fried egg.
While I love root veggies, they can take a long time to cook. Plus, my oven lets off a lot of heat, making me hesitant to use it...
Corn on the Cob is almost in season in our area, but it's already available in grocery stores and is the perfect summer side dish!
Chicken wings are a favorite meal for many, whether you're eating out at a restaurant or sitting around the dinner table with your...
The Instant Pot has built quite a reputation for itself. It can cook meals quickly and often, will require minimal effort too.
With so many kitchen gadgets on the market, it's hard to know which ones are worth the prime real estate in your kitchen.
Deep-fried foods are delicious but they come with a cost. Often dripping in oil and full of fat, these not so healthy foods can...
The holiday season is busy, between decorating for Christmas, hosting parties, buying and wrapping gifts it can all be...
Everyone and their besties have an Instant Pot pressure cooker these days, and if you don't have one yet, you really need to get...
Advertisement
Recipes
Easy 90-Minute Instant Pot Bone Broth