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The Best-Ever Pressure Cooker Mac and Cheese Recipe

I love trying out new cooking methods for tried and true foods and then sharing the recipes.

Feel free to pin it on Pinterest!

Feel free to pin it on Pinterest!

Let me just say this is hands down the best mac and cheese I have ever made. I followed the steps exactly and used my new Instant Pot which, if you like to cook, is awesome! Now I'm gonna eat my lunch, and I bet you can guess what it is.

Cook Time

Prep timeCook timeReady inYields

5 min

7 min

12 min

approximately 4-6, depending on portion size

Instant Pot mac and cheese ingredients

Instant Pot mac and cheese ingredients


  • 2 1/2 cups elbow macaroni (you can use other types but cooking time may need to be adjusted), uncooked
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 1/2 cup shredded mozzerella cheese


  1. Place the macaroni, chicken stock, cream, salt, and pepper into the pressure cooker.
  2. Set your pressure cooker to high, and set a timer for 7 minutes. (I think this time is perfect, but you may want to adjust it depending on how "done" you like your macaroni).
  3. Once the timer goes off, let the steam out of the pressure cooker according to your machine's directions. Add the butter, milk, and cheeses to the pot and stir. Voila . . . best macaroni and cheese ever!
  4. Substitutions: If you only have milk handy, you can substitute the following: melt 1/3 cup butter in the microwave and add 2/3 cup milk in place of the cream. For 2% milk, just add a tablespoon of flour plus the above ingredients. It comes out perfect!
Irresistible pressure-cooker mac and cheese.

Irresistible pressure-cooker mac and cheese.

How Can You Resist?

I was very reluctant at first to get a pressure cooker. Many people these days know the brand name Instant Pot. I didn't know how to use it, and I was afraid! However, after my mom got one, I decided that maybe I should give it a second thought. After all, I work full-time and have a second job on top of that. Cooking dinner was becoming more and more difficult. (I am also famous for forgetting to take something out of the freezer and therefore getting home and not having anything to cook without going to the store!)

The best thing is that, even after working two jobs, I have been able to make quick dinners in 10–25 minutes! Simple, fast, and delicious. I found some great recipes online, but the best recipe came from my mom. This is a recipe she got from a friend, and it has turned out to be my favorite. It is a true comfort food that can be turned into a dinner or just a simple and delicious side dish, this macaroni and cheese will be one of your go-to recipes. Bring it to a potluck dinner, a friend who needs some cheering up, a luncheon, a BBQ, or just make a bunch for yourself. It will be gone very quickly, that I promise!

Additions, Hacks, and Praise From Other Cooks for This Mac and Cheese Recipe

Some people like more peppers, other people like less! While it's not an exhaustive list, here are some suggestions that you might tweak.

  • "Made it with 3 cups of sharp cheddar because that's the cheese I had on hand. Turned out great. Will absolutely make again and try adding some bacon or sausage. Thank you." – Jim
  • "This is delicious. Used Swiss instead of mozzarella. Better than Mom's." - Susan
  • "The stringiness is mostly from the mozzarella cheese. You could cut back on the amount and just add more cheddar. It also gets less stringy when it cools. Hope that helps!" – Savenlives
  • "I just made this! You are right... this is the best pressure cooker recipe ever! The whole thing was done in half the time it takes to make a stove-top cheese sauce! So delicious! One pan! The taste of the cheese really stands out. Yum!" - Jeannine
  • "I've made this at least 15 times by now. A favorite and so much better than the boxed orange powder stuff! So rich and creamy - AMAZING. I made a "healthier" version for my baby using gluten free noodles, goat cheese, raw heavy cream, and grass fed butter...she LOVES it (although it was very expensive doing it with these ingredients). I had enough to fill 30 small jars and put them in the freezer. Thanks again for sharing." – C


How Can I Spice Up My Mac and Cheese?

If you're looking to add a bit more character to your mac and cheese, try these suggestions.

Add-Ons and Substitutions

  • Pepper jack cheese and sautéed poblanos
  • Additional spices, such as ground mustard, dill, or Old Bay
  • A variety of cheeses such as cheddar and jack
  • Add 2 ounces of cream cheese (makes the dish super creamy)
  • Add tuna, buffalo or BBQ chicken, sausage, hotdogs, or braised pork
  • Substitute the chicken stock for Better Than Bullion


  • Bacon
  • Bread crumbs
  • Green onions
  • Whatever suits you!
Pressure cooker mac and cheese with bacon

Pressure cooker mac and cheese with bacon

Pressure cooker mac and cheese with chives

Pressure cooker mac and cheese with chives