I've had my Instant Pot for just over four days, and I'm in absolute awe. It took me those four days to build up enough courage to get it out and use it.
Let me tell you, this machine is intimidating. With all of its buttons and endless options, it reminds me of the part in Back to the Future when they stick that dehydrated pizza in a machine, and it's done in 3 seconds.
We didn't get dehydrated pizza and a machine that cooks it in 3 seconds, like Back to the Future predicted. Instead, we got the Instant Pot. It's the perfect solution for busy mom's like me, who don't have time to cook homemade meals.
Before I get to the recipe, I have a funny story. One of the reasons it took me so long to use my Instant Pot was fear of the pressure cooker. I watched a video shortly before making this recipe, and it was a complete disaster. She was making soup, and when she came back to check on it, it was spewing all over the place from the top of the Instant Pot. Like a volcano of hot soup lava, it made me fearful of using that setting on my Instant Pot.
On Saturday, I decided to get over my fear and ended up cooking something my son and family loved.
I have never made homemade Mac and Cheese. After one bite, seriously, one bite. I was hooked. I probably won't make the box option again.
This recipe is rich and full of flavor. Unlike traditional stovetop Mac and Cheese, this recipe doesn't require a separate cheese sauce. You just cook the pasta under pressure (don't be scared), add the milk, cheese, and then stir. It's that easy.
A little mustard and hot pepper sauce can be added for extra flavor, and the cheese combinations are endless.
Can we get a Woo-HOO for homemade Mac and Cheese?!
- 16-ounce bag of your favorite pasta
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 4 cups water or low sodium chicken broth
- 1 cup milk
- 2 cups cheddar cheese, shredded
- 1 cup Monterey Jack cheese
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon seasoning salt
- 1 teaspoon hot sauce (optional)
- 1 teaspoon dry mustard powder (optional)
- Click the Saute button and pour in the water/broth.
- Add the butter, salt, pepper, and seasoned salt (and any optional ingredients). Stir and bring to a simmer.
- Stir in the pasta (right out of the bag) and close the lid. Set the steam release know to sealing (don't forget to do this)
- Cancel the saute function
- Press the Pressure Cook button and then use the + or - to choose 4 minutes (use the package directions of the type of pasta you are using and use half the time it calls for).
- When the cook cycle ends, do a Quick Release of the pressure. Make sure to go slow at first to make sure only the steam escapes. Then open the steam knob all the way.
- When the pin in the lid drops, open it up and stir the pasta.
- Add the cheese and stir well, letting it melt.
- Stir in the milk. Taste and adjust salt, if needed.
- Serve hot.