Instant Pot Mac and Cheese

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Super creamy mac and cheese in the Instant Pot? You bet! We’ve got the tips you need for it to turn out just right.

Super creamy mac and cheese in the Instant Pot? You bet! We've got the tips you need for it to turn out just right.

Mac and cheese isn’t a particularly hard recipe to make but it does require a bit of watching unless you make this Slow Cooker Mac and Cheese or in the Instant Pot.

You can totally turn out delicious mac and cheese in the slow cooker, but if you make it in the Instant Pot, it’s even easier AND faster. (We recommend this one.) I was a little concerned that making pasta in the Instant Pot may not go so great. Would it be mushy? Flavorless? A huge mess? NO, NO, and NO. If you follow these steps exactly it turns out fantastic and is perfect when you need to make a big batch of mac and cheese .

After the pasta is done cooking in the Instant Pot (only 4 minutes once it reaches pressure), you add in the half and half and cheese to the pot and stir it until everything is creamy and cheesy. If your mac and cheese ends up a bit watery, you can always turn on the saute function for a few minutes, until it’s cooked off. Just make sure you stir frequently while doing this so that the bottom of the pot doesn’t overcook.

It’s a good thing it makes a big batch. It’s creamy, cheesy and plates will be cleared in no time.

Tip: Because the cooking liquid stays in the mac and cheese, we use chicken broth, which adds some extra flavor to the overall dish. You can use whatever broth you prefer, including veggie if you want to keep the dish vegetarian.

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Instant Pot Mac and Cheese

Super creamy mac and cheese in the Instant Pot? You bet! We’ve got the tips you need for it to turn out just right.

  • Author: Emily Dingmann
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings

Ingredients

  • 16 oz. elbow macaroni
  • 4 cups chicken broth (or veggie)
  • 2 Tbsp. butter
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp. mustard powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 cup half & half
  • 3 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese

Instructions

  1. Add ingredients to the Instant Pot in this order – pasta, broth, butter, garlic powder, mustard powder and salt.
  2. Lock pressure cooker lid and close pressure release valve.
  3. Set Instant Pot to manual high pressure for 4 minutes. Natural release for 2 minutes, then quick release.
  4. Stir in half & half and cheese until combined.
  5. Serve immediately.

Notes

Actual cook time will vary depending on your Instant Pot and altitude as time for the pot to come to pressure may vary. It usually takes approximately 15 minutes for most pots.