Move over Hamburger Helper! Instant Pot cheeseburger macaroni is an easy comforting dinner the whole family will love. The flavors of cheeseburgers combine with the creamiest macaroni and cheese for a quick hearty meal that’s on your table in 20 minutes. Perfect for busy weeknights.
Back to school season is here. That means the lazy nights grilling and lingering outside watching the sun set are a thing of the past until next summer.
Instead of relaxing outdoors for hours, now I am back to busy mom mode, shuttling my kids from place to place after school and trying to make sure everyone does there homework.
Plus, you know, I’ve heard it’s good to feed them so I have to get dinner on the table too.
This Instant Pot cheeseburger macaroni is perfect for making a delicious, no fuss dinner on the busiest back to school nights.
It’s comfort food for when the weather finally starts to cool off but I am ok making it in what’s left of the summer heat and humidity because I don’t have to heat up my kitchen to make it.
Just like my slow cooker baked beans with bacon, it’s a blend between summer food and fall food. Summer since it lets me keep the house cool and fall with it’s ability to be quick and comforting.
Can you really make pasta in the Instant Pot?
Yes! Pasta purists will say no, just boil water on the stove and make it the traditional way. But that’s unnecessary for this.
The pasta will cook right in the liquid you add to the pressure cooker in a fraction of the time that it would take to bring water to a boil on the stove.
And because the pasta cooks directly in the cooking liquid with the beef and onions, it absorbs extra flavor making it super delicious.
Plus the pasta gives off its starch in the liquid which will help make the macaroni and cheese super creamy and luxurious. It’s the best of both world’s, and one of the biggest pros in my opinion of one pot pasta meals.
What about the dairy? I thought you couldn’t put milk in a pressure cooker.
While it’s true you shouldn’t cook with milk in the Instant Pot because according to Delish it may curdle or scald, there is an easy work around for Instant Pot cooking with milk. Just stir the milk and other dairy products in at the end of the cook time after you release the pressure.
The carry over heat from the pasta and the other ingredients will be enough to melt the cheese and warm the milk through. Without any potentially disastrous side affects, and thickening them up perfectly in the process.
In fact, the Instant Pot makes for absolutely delicious macaroni and cheese like this creamy, classic macaroni and cheese.
How to Make Instant Pot Cheeseburger Macaroni
Making Instant Pot cheeseburger macaroni is so easy. Just start by setting your Instant Pot to saute mode and adding the ground beef, diced onions, and diced peppers to the pot. Cook until the meat is brown. Then drain the grease and return it to the inner pot.
Now add your macaroni, water, spices, and butter to the pot. Be sure that the liquid covers all the noodles. Put the lid on the Instant Pot and turn the pressure valve to seal.
Cook on manual high pressure for 4 minutes. That’s it! Then do a quick pressure release and stir in the cream cheese and cheddar cheese. Finish it off by stirring in the milk a little at a time.
Make it a meal! Serving Suggestions for Cheeseburger Macaroni and Cheese
The beauty of this one pot wonder is that everything you need for a meal is in your Instant Pot so if you don’t feel like putting out anything else at dinner you don’t have to.
Think of it like the hamburger helper, or cheeseburger helper, from a box that you enjoyed as a kid- but vastly improved, a million times more flavorful, and made even easier!
I do like to round this out with a classic salad and garlic bread, making it a fuller meal. If you want a heartier salad I’d recommend our blt salad bowl, or even this pepperoni pizza salad. You could also sub out my marinated tomato salad for a side salad if you’d prefer.
However you serve it, your family will love this creamy Instant Pot cheeseburger macaroni. And it will save you time and energy getting this effortless comforting dinner on the table.
OTHER EASY INSTANT POT DINNER IDEAS:
- Instant Pot Cheesy Ground Beef & Rice
- Instant Pot Vegetable Soup with Barley
- Instant Pot Porcupine Meatballs
- Instant Pot Salmon Dinner (from frozen!)
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 green bell pepper diced
- 1 yellow onion diced
- 3 cups dry elbow noodles
- 3 ¼ cup water
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon dry mustard
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 3 ounces cream cheese
- ¾ cup milk
- 3 cups sharp cheddar cheese shredded
- On saute mode, cook the onions, bell pepper and ground beef until the ground beef has browned. Drain grease. Return to inner pot.
- Combine next 6 ingredients in Instant Pot inner pot on top of the ground beef mixture. Make sure noodles are all submerged in liquid.
- Close the instant pot lid and turn pressure valve to seal. Cook on manual high pressure for 4 minutes.
- Allow for a quick pressure release and then add in the remaining ingredients, stirring in the cream cheese and cheddar cheese to melt with the pasta, and then adding in the milk a little at a time.