Instant Pot Mac and Cheese

Instant Pot Mac and Cheese – made with just 5 real food ingredients. This is SO MUCH BETTER (and easier) than any mac and cheese I’ve ever had! Unreal.

  • 1 pound uncooked whole wheat pasta
  • 4 cups water
  • 3 tablespoons butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/2 cups shredded cheese
  • 1/2 cup whole milk (add more if you want it saucier!)


  1. Noodles: Put the whole wheat pasta, water, butter, and salt into the Instant Pot (affiliate link). Cook for 4 minutes using the manual function. You can release the steam in two ways: 1) Quick release the steam using the valve on top immediately after the timer goes off (note: this can cause some butter to spray out, so be prepared with a towel); or 2) Do natural release for 10 minutes – there will still be a little bit of steam, but it will avoid the butter spray. When it’s done, the noodles should have a thin layer of starchy, buttery sauce on them.
  2. Cheese: Gently stir in the cheese and milk. Add more seasoning or liquid as necessary. MWAH! Enjoy. It’s so, so good.


  • Butter Spray: After some feedback about the butter spraying out during the quick release, we re-tested the recipe and found that doing a natural release for 10 mins avoids the buttery spray. There will still be a little bit of steam to release when you turn the valve, but will be much more minimal of a mess.
  • My favorite cheese combo is 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese and 1/2 cup Italian blend shredded cheese. Really, any kind of cheese you like will be good here. I lean towards smooth-melting cheeses such as cheddar, gouda, gruyere, Monterrey jack, etc. Stringy cheeses (i.e. Mozzarella or Provolone) might be tricky to work with (think ooey gooey cheese bomb) but would obvi still taste awesome.
  • I tried this with gluten free noodles and did not have great results – they just turned to mush. Sad face. I am writing the recipe to include whole wheat noodles because they kept their shape the best.
  • I often add a pinch of garlic salt or a swish of hot sauce when serving. I can’t not.


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