Instant Pot Mac and Cheese: Creamy and cheesy, this pressure cooker mac and cheese comes together almost effortlessly and is made with all real food.
Instant Pot Mac and Cheese
Instant Pot Mac and Cheese has quickly become a staple at our house. Not only do my kids adore this easy meal, pressure cooker macaroni and cheese is easier to make than boxed mac and cheese.
How To Make Instant Pot Macaroni and Cheese
Step One: Cook your Pasta
- Add stock and seasonings to pressure cooker.
- Mix in 16 ounces of dried pasta.
- Cook on high pressure for half the time the cook time the box indicates.
- 5 minutes for elbow noodles
- 5 minutes for corkscrew noodles
- 6 minutes for penne or rotini noodles
Step Two: Quick Pressure Release
- Once cook time has elapsed, immediately do a quick release of pressure.
- Be sure to use a wooden spoon or kitchen towel to protect yourself from the steam.
Step Three: Add in cheese and milk
- Stir in freshly grated cheese and milk.
- Stir until cheese is melted, adding additional milk if needed.
- Taste test to determine if additional salt is needed.
What Cheese is best for Mac and Cheese?
Cheese is what makes Macaroni and Cheese, so choose carefully. I personally like a mixture of strong flavored cheeses that melt well for the best flavor and texture.
- Sharp Cheddar Cheese–Sharp cheddar provides incredible flavor and melts perfectly.
- Parmesan Cheese–Parmesan Cheese adds a kick of flavor and depth to Mac and Cheese.
- Swiss Cheese–Swiss cheese has a nutty flavor and melts smoothly.
It is extremely important to use freshly grated cheese. Pre-grated cheese has anit-caking agents and therefore will not yield as smooth of a melt.
How long does Mac and Cheese Last?
- You can store macaroni and cheese in your fridge for up to 3 days.
- Reheat in 1 minute intervals in the microwave, adding 1-2 tablespoons stock or milk if needed to add moisture to the pasta.
- Use leftover Mac and Cheese to make Macaroni and Cheese muffins for a perfect lunch on the go!
Can you Freeze Mac and Cheese?
- Mac and Cheese does freeze, but does not have the same texture when reheated.
- To freeze, allow to cool and place in 1-2 cup freezer safe containers.
- Freeze for up to 3 months.
- Defrost in fridge overnight and add in a few tablespoons stock or milk. Reheat gently low 300 degree oven, or at 50% 1 minute intervals in the microwave.
Notes on Instant Pot Macaroni and Cheese
- I prefer whole wheat elbow noodles for mac and cheese, but any noodle that has ridges or is curved works well to grab onto the cheesy sauce.
- Feel free to use white or yellow sharp cheddar and any type of Swiss cheese (like Gruyère or Fontina cheese)
- Any type of milk works–skim, 2%, whole, or even half and half for a really decadent recipe.
- Chicken Stock or Vegetable Stock can be used for this macaroni and cheese. I would not use water as water yields very little flavor.
More Easy Instant Pot Recipes
Instant Pot Mac and Cheese Recipe
Instant Pot Mac and Cheese
A simple recipe for creamy, cheesy pressure cooker macaroni and cheese.
- 4 cups chicken or vegetable stock
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 2 cups sharp cheddar cheese grated
- 1 cup Swiss cheese grated
- 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
- 16 ounces elbow noodles whole wheat or regular
- 1/2 cup milk
Place stock, seasonings, and noodles in inner pot or pressure cooker and stir well.
Put lid on pressure cooker and set to seal.
Cook on HIGH pressure for 5 minutes.
When cook time is finished, do a quick release of pressure.
Add in cheese and 1/4 cup milk and stir well.
Add in up to 3/4 cup milk if needed.
Taste and add in more salt or pepper if needed.
- Use any type of milk you like. I personally prefer 2% or whole milk for this recipe.
To Make Pressure Cooker Mac and Cheese, You May Need
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