If you enjoy quick and easy family-friendly recipes, this Instant Pot Mac and Cheese Recipe is a must-try! it all comes together in one pot (no need to pre-cook the pasta!) so there are fewer dishes to wash and less mess. It’s cheesy, gooey, and everything you want in a mac and cheese recipe.
Instant Pot Macaroni and Cheese Recipe
This dish is perfect for any time of the day, be it after school, lunch, or dinner. It’s an excellent side dish for holiday meals when you have guests or at gatherings. Moreover, if you’re hosting a party, potluck, BBQ, or summer cookout, you can prepare a big batch of easy Instant Pot mac and cheese to keep everyone happy!
This instant pot mac and cheese calls for simple pantry and refrigerator staples you may already have.
Pasta: I use cavatappi pasta. If you want to substitute the cavatappi, pick a pasta that holds onto the cheese sauce nicely. Some great options include elbow macaroni, shells, and fusilli.
Water: Cold or room-temperature water is essential for the pasta to cook properly.
Seasonings: To enhance the taste of the cheese sauce, we use a blend of seasonings, including salt, ground mustard, paprika, and garlic powder. Paprika not only adds flavor but also gives a beautiful color to the sauce.
Milk: Evaporated milk, being more concentrated than regular milk, helps to create a rich and creamy sauce with more flavor.
Cheese: Mild cheddar cheese adds the perfect amount of cheesy flavor without overpowering the dish. In addition, I add Monterey Jack cheese for an extra kick of flavor and gooey consistency.
To make a delicious Mac and Cheese using an instant pot, follow these steps:
Add water, pasta, seasonings, and unsalted butter to the Instant Pot. Mix everything and add unsalted butter on top.
Cover the Instant Pot and set it to manual high pressure for 4 minutes, following the manufacturer’s instructions.
After completing the cooking cycle, quickly release pressure (for safety, use an oven mitt or towel to flip the valve). Once safe, carefully remove the lid.
Set the instant pot to the sauté setting, add the evaporated milk, and stir.
Then, gradually add 1 cup of cheese at a time, stirring after each addition. Turn off the instant pot. The mac and cheese is done
6. Serve your delicious mac and cheese right away.
If you want to go an extra step, distribute the mac and cheese into individual baking dishes like these, add a combination of breadcrumbs and cheese, and bake at 400 degrees F for 10 minutes.
INSTANT POT MAC AND CHEESE RECIPE
- 4 cups water
- 1 (16 oz.) cavatappi pasta
- 1 ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground mustard
- ½ teaspoon paprika
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 (12 oz.) can evaporated milk
- 1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
- 2 cups shredded mild cheddar cheese
Extra step ( optional)
- 1/3 cup breadcrumbs optional
- ½ cup parmesan cheese optional
- Add water, pasta, seasonings, and unsalted butter to the Instant Pot. Mix everything and add unsalted butter on top.
- Cover the Instant Pot with its lid and set it to manual high pressure for 4 minutes, following the manufacturer’s instructions.
- After the cooking cycle is complete, release the pressure quickly (for safety, I recommend using an oven mitt or kitchen towel to flip the valve and release pressure). Once it’s safe to open, carefully unlock and remove the lid.
- Set the instant pot to the sauté setting, add the evaporated milk, and stir.
- Then, gradually add 1 cup of cheese at a time, stirring after each addition. Turn off the instant pot. The mac and cheese is done!
- If you want to go an extra step, distribute the mac and cheese into individual baking dishes
- Add a combination of breadcrumbs and parmesan cheese, and bake at 400 degrees F for 10 minutes.
Tell me what you think of this recipe, and if you have any questions, don’t forget to get in touch with me. I’m always happy to hear from YOU.
Until the next one…