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5 ingredient Instant Pot Classic Mac and Cheese is one of my favorite easy dinner recipe for family or friends. It’s an easy Instant Pot pasta recipe that will please everyone.

macaroni and cheese in a foil tray

Here are some common questions with the Instant Pot and mac and cheese!

How do I not overcook my pasta in the Instant Pot? 

You want to be careful with how long you cook your pasta.  Pasta can be completely cooked in 2-3 minutes on manual.  

How do I know my pasta is done?

To know your pasta is done, take one of the noodles out and taste it.  If the pasta is firm, but cooked through your pasta is done.  You can also cut into the pasta with a fork or knife.  Your pasta should still hold its shape. 

What is the best cheese to use for mac and cheese?

I like to use a variety of cheeses for macaroni and cheese because each cheese can bring something to the table.  You are looking for two things; flavor and melting factor.  Here are some of the best cheese options for mac and cheese:

For The Melt:

  • Cream Cheese
  • Mozzarella Cheese
  • Brie Cheese
  • Fontina Cheese
  • Tallegio
  • Cheddar Cheese
  • American Cheese
  • Gruyere Cheese

For The Flavor:

  • Sharp Cheddar
  • Boursin Cheese
  • Parmesan Cheese
  • Smoked Gouda 
  • White Cheddar
  • Gruyere Cheese

If you need some mac and cheese inspiration you can check out my Instagram post all about easy ways to change up mac and cheese. 

Easy Instant Pot Mac and Cheese Recipe:

mac and cheese in foil tin
Yield: 8

Instant Pot Mac and Cheese

Prep Time: 2 minutes
Cook Time: 3 minutes
Additional Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes

Quick and easy Instant Pot mac and cheese is rich, creamy, and cheesy.


  • 16 Ounce Bag Large Elbow Macaroni Noodles
  • 4 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter
  • 6 Cups Chicken Stock
  • 4 Ounces Cream Cheese, Diced 
  • 6 Cups Cheddar Cheese, Shredded
  • 2 Teaspoons Real Salt

Pick One:

  • Panko Bread Crumbs
  • Cheese Crackers, Crunched
  • Ritz Crackers, Crunched


    1. Place the macaroni, butter, and chicken stock in the Instant Pot. Seal and turn on manual for 3 minutes.
    2. When the 3 minutes are done, perform the quick release by manually turning the valve to venting.
    3. Add cream cheese, cheddar cheese, and salt, stirring until cheese is melted.
    4. Transfer to a foil baking dish and top with topping of choice.
    5. Turn on the broiler to low. When oven is ready, place the pan under the broiler for 3 minutes or until top is golden.


I tend to account for about 1 cup of topping for this recipe, but you can use more or less if desired.

This is also a great recipe to make one and freeze one.

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