Do you love a creamy and delicious bowl of mac and cheese but don’t want to spend hours in the kitchen? Look no further than this Instant Pot Mac and Cheese recipe. With just a few simple ingredients and some easy steps, you can have a cheesy and comforting meal in no time.
What’s great about this recipe is that it’s versatile – perfect for a quick weeknight dinner, or as a crowd-pleasing side dish at your next potluck or family gathering. Plus, it’s made with real ingredients like milk, butter, and cheese, so you know exactly what you’re putting into your body.
Don’t have an Instant Pot? No worries – this recipe works just as well on the stovetop. So whether you’re a pro in the kitchen or just starting out, give this Instant Pot Mac and Cheese a try and indulge in its creamy goodness.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
Are you craving something creamy, cheesy, and comforting? Then look no further than this Instant Pot Mac and Cheese Recipe! I can promise you that once you try this recipe, you will never go back to any other mac and cheese recipes again.
What sets this recipe apart is that it requires only a fraction of the time and effort of traditional stovetop recipes. Instead of slaving over a hot stove stirring a pot of boiling water, with this recipe, you just add everything to your Instant Pot and let it do its magic!
I love how versatile this recipe is too. It’s perfect for a quick weeknight dinner or can be dressed up with some gourmet toppings for an impressive meal. Plus, it’s a crowd-pleaser that even picky eaters will enjoy.
And let’s talk about the three-cheese sauce – it’s creamy, rich, and utterly indulgent. With Parmesan, mozzarella, and cheddar cheeses mixed together in harmony, every bite will be filled with ooey-gooey goodness. The added garlic powder, black pepper, and chicken broth elevate the flavors even more.
So why not give this Instant Pot Mac and Cheese recipe a try? Once you taste it, I’m sure it will become an instant favorite in your household too!
Here is a list of all the ingredients you need for this Instant Pot Mac and Cheese Recipe:
- Elbow Macaroni (2 cups)
- Water (4 cups)
- Butter (4 tbsp)
- Salt (1 tsp)
- Garlic Powder (1/2 tsp)
- Chicken Broth (1/2 cup)
- Mustard (1/2 tsp)
- Black Pepper (1/4 tsp)
- Mozzarella Cheese, shredded (1 cup)
- Parmesan Cheese, grated (1/2 cup)
- Milk (3/4 cup)
These ingredients are fairly common and can be found at any local grocery store. You may also experiment with different types of cheese or pasta to find your own unique variation. Now that you have all the ingredients ready, let’s get started with the recipe!
The Recipe How-To
Now that you have gathered all the necessary ingredients, let’s get started with making Instant Pot Mac and Cheese! This recipe is perfect for a quick and easy weeknight meal or as a crowd-pleaser dish for your next potluck party. With the help of an Instant Pot, you can achieve perfectly creamy and cheesy macaroni without having to stand over the stove. Ready? Let’s dive in!
- 1 pound elbow macaroni
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon mustard powder
- 1/4 teaspoon hot sauce (optional)
- 1 can (12 oz) evaporated milk
- 4 cups shredded cheese (cheddar, parmesan, mozzarella)
- Cooking spray
Step 1: Add Pasta
Add uncooked macaroni to the inner pot of the Instant Pot. Pour chicken broth and water over pasta. Add butter, salt, garlic powder, black pepper, mustard powder and hot sauce to the pot.
Step 2: Pressure Cook
Close the lid and set valve to sealing position. Select manual high pressure and cook for 3 minutes if using regular elbow macaroni or 4 minutes if using whole wheat elbow macaroni.
Step 3: Quick Release
Once cooking time is up, do a quick release by moving valve to venting position. Open the lid carefully once pressure has fully released.
Step 4: Make the Cheese Sauce
Set Instant Pot on saute mode. Add shredded cheese one cup at a time while stirring continuously until all cheese is melted and a creamy sauce forms.
Step 5: Serve and Enjoy!
Turn off heat and let sit for a few minutes for the sauce to thicken. Serve immediately and enjoy!
Tips for Perfect Results:
- Use the best quality cheese you can afford for an extra flavorful mac and cheese.
- Shred your own cheese instead of using pre-shredded cheese, as it often includes anti-caking agents.
- Make sure to stir continuously when adding the cheese to prevent sticking or burning.
- For a creamier mac and cheese, add another can of evaporated milk before adding the shredded cheese.
Now that you have all the steps down to make the perfect Instant Pot Mac and Cheese, it’s time to get cooking! Don’t forget to adjust the recipe according to your preferences by adding more or less hot sauce, seasoning or even adding more types of cheese. Enjoy your deliciously cheesy and satisfying meal!
Substitutions and Variations
Looking to change up this Instant Pot Mac and Cheese Recipe? Fear not, my dear reader! There are plenty of tasty substitutions and variations that you can try out.
First, let’s consider the cheese. While this recipe calls for a delicious blend of Parmesan and mozzarella cheese, you could certainly mix it up. Try swapping in some sharp cheddar or even cream cheese for a creamier mac and cheese. If you prefer a smokier flavor, add some smoked Gouda or smoked cheddar cheese. If you’re feeling adventurous, head to your local gourmet cheese shop and see what unique kinds of cheese they have to offer.
But the cheese isn’t the only place where you can get creative. You could also try adding in some different spices or seasonings to really amp up the flavor. A pinch of cayenne pepper can add a nice kick, while some paprika will give your mac and cheese a warm, smoky flavor. Try experimenting with different herbs like thyme, basil, or oregano as well.
If you’re looking to make this recipe a little healthier, consider using whole grain elbow macaroni or even spiralized zucchini noodles instead of traditional pasta. You could also swap out the butter for olive oil or coconut oil to cut down on the saturated fat.
Want to take things up a notch? Consider adding some crispy bacon bits or even lobster meat (if you’re feeling extra fancy) to your Instant Pot Mac and Cheese. And don’t forget about the toppings – try sprinkling some breadcrumbs, chopped parsley or green onions on top for some added texture and flavor.
Overall, the possibilities for substitutions and variations with this recipe are truly endless. Don’t be afraid to experiment and see what works best for your taste buds!
Serving and Pairing
Now let’s talk about the best way to enjoy this soul-warming Instant Pot Mac and Cheese!
First things first, I recommend serving this cheesy goodness hot off the press! The creamy sauce is at its best when it’s piping hot, so be sure to dish it out while it’s still warm.
This is a crowd-pleasing comfort food that works well as a main dish or as a side for your favorite protein. This mac and cheese recipe pairs perfectly with barbecue chicken, roasted vegetables, or crispy fried tofu. Once you’ve tried this recipe, you’ll find it hard to come up with a dish that isn’t elevated by its presence!
If you’re looking for ways to add more flavor and texture, I recommend adding toppings like bacon bits, jalapenos, green onions, or bread crumbs. The possibilities are endless! You can even add hot sauce if you like it spicy.
This Instant Pot Mac and Cheese also works great for potlucks or picnics since it’s easy to transport! Simply transfer it to an oven-safe dish and bake until heated through for that melted cheese on top effect.
So go ahead, try out this recipe and jazz it up with your favorite pairings!
Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating
One of the best things about making Instant Pot Mac and Cheese is that you can make it ahead of time and store it for later use. This is especially useful when you have a busy schedule but still want to have a delicious homemade meal.
To make this dish ahead of time, simply cook the macaroni according to the recipe instructions, then mix in the cheese sauce. After that, let it cool to room temperature before placing it in an airtight container.
You can store this dish in the refrigerator for up to 3 days or freeze it for later use. However, keep in mind that freezing may affect the texture of the pasta.
When reheating the dish, simply place it in a microwave-safe dish and heat it up for a couple of minutes until heated through. Alternatively, you can reheat it on the stovetop by adding a little bit of milk or water and heating it up over low heat while stirring constantly.
One tip to keep in mind when reheating this dish is to avoid overheating it. Overheating can cause the cheese sauce to split and become oily. So, heat it up gently and stir often until heated through.
With these storing and reheating tips, you can enjoy your delicious Instant Pot Mac and Cheese anytime without worrying about the hassle of cooking from scratch every time you crave this creamy comfort food.
Tips for Perfect Results
Making mac and cheese in your Instant Pot is a quick and easy way to satisfy your cravings for a homely comfort dinner. Despite its simplicity, there are still some tricks to ensure that the result will be the best possible. Here are my tips for guaranteeing perfect results every time you make this instant pot mac and cheese recipe.
Firstly, don’t skip adding garlic powder and black pepper to your macaroni. They make such a difference in taste! However, go easy on the salt since cheese tends to be salty enough on its own, and you can always adjust the seasoning at the end.
Secondly, when you sauté butter in your instant pot before adding macaroni, wait until it melts and foams over then stir constantly. This should take no more than 30 seconds otherwise the butter will brown which might alter the overall taste of your dish.
Thirdly, when you add macaroni to the instant pot, try keeping it on top of butter without stirring or mixing everything together. The reason is that when you pressure cook it, there’s a risk of some of the pasta sticking together and ending up with clumps rather than separate cooked pasta noodles.
Another tip is about chicken broth. If possible use low-sodium chicken broth or homemade chicken broth so that you can control how much sodium goes into your dish. You could also consider skipping the chicken broth altogether and using water instead. This will still give you a good flavor.
When choosing cheese, opt for flavorful kinds like sharp cheddar or Gouda. They add a nice zing to your macaroni and cheese. Don’t forget about Parmesan cheese; it amplifies the taste with every bite.
Finally, if you want to switch things up a bit, try adding ¾ cup of evaporated milk instead of regular milk or heavy cream. It gives creamier results without having to add additional ingredients.
By following these tips, I guarantee that you will have the best homemade mac and cheese made in your Instant Pot!
In conclusion, this Instant Pot Mac and Cheese recipe is the perfect dish for any occasion. Not only is it easy to make, but it’s also delicious and satisfying. With a blend of Parmesan and mozzarella cheese, plus the addition of chicken broth, this recipe is sure to be a crowd-pleaser.
Not only that, but there are many variations and substitutions you can make to suit your taste preferences. Whether you prefer a spicier version with hot sauce or a creamier one with cream cheese, there’s a version of this recipe that will work for you.
This recipe is perfect for busy weeknights, casual get-togethers with friends or family gatherings. It’s simple enough to whip up at home, yet fancy enough to impress your guests.
So go ahead and give this Instant Pot Mac and Cheese recipe a try — you won’t be disappointed. And remember, the key to success with any recipe is to have fun in the kitchen and experiment with different ingredients until you find what works best for you.
Instant Pot Mac and Cheese Recipe
- 16 ounces uncooked elbow macaroni
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 teaspoon hot pepper sauce
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
- 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese
- 1/2 c- 1 c milk
- Add the uncooked macaroni, chicken broth, butter, hot sauce, garlic powder, pepper, and salt to the instant pot.
- Place the lid on the pot and set to sealing. Cook on manual function, high pressure for 5 minutes. Then, do a quick release.
- Add the milk, then the cheese to the pot in 3 to 4 handfuls, stirring inbetween each addition until smooth and creamy.