This Creamy Pressure Cooker Macaroni and Cheese is fully loaded with a Crispy Bacon Garlic Breadcrumb Topping, is comfort food at its best. Instant Pot Macaroni and Cheese Fully Loaded
Pressure Cooker Macaroni and Cheese
Everybody loves Macaroni and Cheese. From young to old, from far and wide and from East and West. Okay, you get the drift, we all love Mac & Cheese.
I like to use a combination of cheese, to add creaminess, as using just extra sharp cheddar, will give a grainy unpleasant texture, which I don’t want in my Macaroni & Cheese!
Oaxaca is a melting cheese and wonderful for snacking, cooking and baking. I make a mean Pan de Yucca with Oaxaca cheese (recipe coming soon). If you don’t have Oaxaca in your area, Monterey Jack, Gruyère or Smoked Gouda will work well.
Sharp or Extra Sharp Cheddar is more crumbly and tends to get a bit gritty, but mixing it with a melting cheese, balances out the texture.
If you want a really mild taste, use a Mild Cheddar. I prefer a sharper cheddar taste. The Mild cheddar yields the most creamy texture, the Extra Sharp gives a bit of a grainy texture and the Sharp is in the middle.
A melting cheese, Oaxaca, Monterey Jack, Gruyère or Gouda, evens out the cheese to make it creamy, without being gummy or stringy.
This Pressure Cooker Macaroni and Cheese recipe has choices for the type of milk that gets added to the Macaroni. Choose whether you want to use Homemade Greek Yogurt, Heavy Cream or Evaporated Milk. We love it best with Homemade Greek Yogurt or the Heavy Cream, but days when there is no Heavy Cream in the fridge, the canned milk will suffice.
How cute is Cavatappi pasta? I love the curly whirly of this pasta and I love that the cheese gets stuck inside and when you take a bite, you get a little squirt of cheese sauce in your mouth.
I can’t always find it in my area, so I order in bulk from Amazon.
So simple, just add in everything but the milk and the cheese into your Pressure Cooker cooking pot.
Three minutes for Cavatappi pasta is perfect. If you use a heavier/thicker pasta (rule of thumb is Pressure Cook 1/2 the lesser time is says on the box of pasta and subtract 2 minutes), you might need an extra minute.
Perfection, perfectly cooked pasta in just three minutes! So cute! The Cavatappi are so inviting and make you feel like a kid again.
You will want to turn your Pressure Cooker to the Sauté or Browning setting and then add in the evaporated milk and mix to combine. Add the cheese in three stages. Make sure the cheese is completely melted before adding in another handful.
I like to buy blocks of cheese and grate them myself. The cheese is so much fresher tasting. I’ve heard that store bought shredded cheese has fillers to keep the cheese from sticking together, so not only is it cheaper to buy a block and shred yourself, but it tastes better.
The pasta will be soupy at first, but don’t fret. The pasta will continue to absorb the liquid, so don’t allow all the liquid to evaporate.
He says, Pressure Cooker Macaroni and Cheese is not complete with out a Crispy Breadcrumb Topping.
The beauty of this Bacon Garlic Breadcrumb Topping is that you can prepare it while your Macaroni and Cheese is in the Pressure Cooker, cooking and then just put on the topping when you are ready to serve.
Some people like to transfer their macaroni and cheese to the oven (with or without topping) and allow it to brown.
For wonderful surge of flavor, see my Crispy Bacon Garlic Breadcrumb Topping and add another layer of flavor to this Pressure Cooker Macaroni and Cheese
Enjoy this Pressure Cooker Macaroni and Cheese with a green vegetable and a salad.
This one’s for you, Poppy!
- Instant Pot Smart DUO60
- J.A. Henckels Classic 7-inch Hollow Edge Santoku Knife
- Amco Advanced Performance 18/10 Stainless Steel Measuring Spoons
- Culina Stackable (Dry) Stainless Steel Measuring Cups
- Anchor Hocking Glass (Liquid) Measuring Cups
- Cilio Olivewood Spatula
- Alton Brown Salt Box
- OXO Good Grips Cutting Board
- Microplane Artisan Ribbon Grater
- De Cecco Cavatappi Pasta
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Here’s the handy printable recipe.
- 1 pound Cavatappi (or other Pasta)
- 2 Tablespoons Butter
- 1 Tablespoon Ground Mustard Seed
- 1 teaspoon Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce
- 1/2 Tablespoon Kosher Salt (or 1 teaspoon Sea Salt)
- 3.5 cups Fresh Water
- 1 cup Heavy Cream (Evaporated Milk, Sour Cream or Homemade Greek Yogurt)
- 12 ounces Sharp Cheddar Cheese
- 8 ounces Oaxaca Cheese (Monterey Jack, Mozzarella, Gruyère, Smoked Gouda, or combination of melting cheese)
Add pasta, butter, mustard, hot pepper sauce, heavy cream,* salt and water to Pressure Cooker cooking pot.
Lock on lid and close Pressure Valve. Cook at High Pressure for 2 minutes. When Beep is heard, wait 5 minutes and then release the rest of the pressure.
Turn off Pressure Cooker and then select Saute or Browning and mix in the cheese in three parts, mixing well before adding more. When desired thickness is achieved, turn off Pressure Cooker.
Top with Crispy Bacon Topping, if desired.
You won't taste the hot sauce; it adds a layer of depth, so don't leave it out!
Amount of cheese is a personal preference, so start with the lower amount and add more, until desired amount is achieved.
Use any of your favorite kinds of cheese and be creative.
Any pasta shells will work. Rule of thumb is to cook pasta for 1/2 the lesser cook time stated on package and then subtract 2 minutes.
*If using anything other than heavy cream, add it in AFTER pressure release, as opposed to adding it in with the dry pasta and change cook time to 3 minutes.