Having watched the Instant Pot craze for the last year one of the things that kept coming up was how quick and easy Mac and Cheese is to make. So once the snow stopped and the roads cleared enough, I ran out for provisions (aka I completely missed that it was going to snow today).
While I was waiting for the snow to stop, I googled and googled looking at a few versions of the Mac and Cheese recipes. Ultimately I made my own mashed up version, adapting from This Old Gal and Simple Happy Foodie. Ambitious given this is really the first thing I made after the water test and oblatory hard boiled eggs.
I wasn’t actually planning healthify this with whole wheat pasta, but it kind of worked out that way based on what I could find at the grocery store.
One tip and something not to skimp on: grate your own cheese. I know, sounds annoying, but all recommendations say you’ll end up with a grainy texture if you use bagged. Pre-grated cheese has a coating to keep it from sticking to itself. That creates the grainy texture.
And one other thing you’ll notice, I didn’t add any extra salt. Since the pasta is cooked in chicken stock, which has some sodium in it already, I skip it since I generally try to limit my salt. If you prefer to add salt, go for it!
And one more note: this post contains affiliate links. This means I may receive a small commission if you buy through my link. You won’t pay any more if you use this link.
Once you’re done, soak your pot in the hottest water you can run and use Method Dish Soap. No joke. The hot water softens up the cheese and Method does a good job at cutting the grease.
Instant Pot Mini Whole Wheat Mac and Cheese
A quick and easy Mac and Cheese recipe sized for an Instant Pot Mini 3qt. Depending on how much you eat, this probably comes out to 2+ generous servings.
- 2 Cups Chicken Stock (water if you don't have)
- Sea Salt (to taste, I skipped this)
- 1 tbsp Butter (totally eyeballed it)
- 1/2 tbsp Ground Mustard (totally eyeballed it)
- 1 dash Cayenne Pepper
- 1 3/4 Cup Elbow Macaroni (Whole Wheat) (about half of a pound box)
- 1 cup Sharp Cheeder Cheese (grate it yourself while the pasta is cooking, don't buy bagged!)
- 2/3 cup evaporated milk (or milk or cream if you have that)
- Breadcrumbs (to sprinkle on top if you have a broiler safe dish handy)
Make sure your Mini's inner liner is in. Press the Saute function. Pour in the chicken stock, butter, mustard, cayenne pepper). Stir until this comes to a simmer.
Press the Cancel button to end the Saute function
Add the macaroni to the pot, stir, and put on the lid. Lock the lid and set the steam release knob to Sealing.
Press the Pressure Cook button and then the + or - to set the number of minutes. Use half the number of minutes the package of pasta says to use. For example I set mine to 3 minutes because the box said cook for 5-7 minutes).
Grate your cheese while pasta cooks.
When cook cycle ends, carefully do a Quick Release of the pressure. I tapped the knob to try and let it out slowly until I was sure I wouldn't end up with a foamy mess all over the place.
When the pin drops and all the pressure is out, carefully open the lid. Stir your pasta. If there's still some extra water, don't worry.
Press the Saute function and start stirring in the cheese. Continue to stir until the cheese melts and is fully combined.
Stir in the evaporated milk (or milk or cream depending on what you're using) until that's well combined. I continued to let this Saute until the extra liquid absorbed.
Sprinkle with breadcrumbs and quickly broil, if using.