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Instant Pot Chili Mac and Cheese (one-pot)

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This Instant pot chili Mac and cheese recipe is a simple and easy weeknight dinner you can whip up in no time right in your electric pressure cooker or Instant Pot.

chili macaroni and cheese

The BEST Instant Pot Chili Mac

This recipe is my family’s go-to weeknight recipe, right alongside comfort food favorites like meatloaf.

  • it’s effortless because it’s all in one pot
  • pure comfort food everyone will love
  • the flavors are cheesy, creamy and full of Mexican-inspired flare

How do I make chili mac & cheese in the instant pot or pressure cooker?

This recipe for chili cheese mac is so simple.

  1. First, you brown your ground beef on the sauté setting on your Instant Pot. 
  2. Next, add in your tomatoes and chilies, peppers, uncooked elbow macaroni, and beef broth. 
  3. Then, cook on high pressure for a few minutes in your electric pressure cooker.
  4. Finally, natural release (vent closed) for about 10 minutes. Finally, add in other ingredients and stir.  
cheesy mac made in the instant pot pressure cooker

What kind of noodles do I use to make homemade chili mac & cheese?

I use regular elbow macaroni for this recipe, just like Martha Stewart’s Chili Mac n Cheese…. but quick and easy peasy!

What kind of beans can I add to chili mac & cheese?

I like the taste of black beans for this recipe, however, you may use chili beans or kidney beans. 

chili mac and cheddar cheese with black beans

How do I make chili Mac and cheese with canned chili? 

Instead of adding in your beans at the end of this recipe, you may simply add your favorite canned chili and place your Instant Pot on sauté until heated. 

How do I make chili Mac in the crock pot or slow cooker? 

Add ingredients to your crock pot and cook on low for 6-8 hours or high for 3-4 hours.

What are the best toppings for chili Mac and cheese?

If you’re a cheese lover like me, add some extra cheese (I like to add pepper jack to mine). 

If you enjoy spicy foods, add some diced jalapeños to your chili Mac or serve with Mexican street corn.

Like it mild? Add in some sour cream and chives

Can I freeze chili mac & cheese?

Yes, this chili cheese Mac is easily frozen in an air tight bag for up to three months, which makes it great for meal prepping! 

Simply thaw it out overnight in the refrigerator and reheat. 

cheesiest creamiest chili mac with cheese

What are other ingredients are best for chili Mac and cheese?

Like a spicy chili Mac and cheese? Add jalapeños, extra green chiles or hot peppers. 

Want it mild? Add sour cream or cream cheese. 

Chicken lover? Make with shredded chicken instead of ground beef. 

Vegan? Add extra beans or frozen veggies instead of hamburger meat. 

Low calorie? Make with ground turkey instead of ground beef.

instant pot chili mac n cheese being lifted from pot with cheese strings

Instant Pot Chli Mac n Cheese

Mac and cheese made right in the Instant Pot/Slow Cooker or Foodie! Only 3 minutes at pressure and this delicious cheesy dinner is done!
5 from 4 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Pressure Cook Time: 3 minutes
Total Time: 13 minutes
Servings: 8
Calories: 427kcal
Author: Amber


  • Pressure cooker


  • 1 lb lean ground beef *or chicken/turkey
  • 1 pkg taco seasoning
  • 16 oz tomatoes and chiles or diced tomatoes
  • cups elbow macaroni
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • 16 oz can black beans optional
  • 2 cups shredded monterey jack cheese or cheddar


  • Brown ground beef on the sauté setting of your instant pot / foodie or cooktop.
    browned ground beef on saute setting
  • Add taco seasoning. Stir to incorporate.
    adding taco seasoning to ground beef
  • Add remaining ingredients (except beans and cheese) to the pressure cooker and submerge noodles just so liquid is right above them.
    adding elbow macaroni noodles
  • Close vent and cook on high pressure for 3 minutes. Natural release (vent) for 10 minutes.
    adding beef stock tomatoes and elbow macaroni
  • Add beans and cheese. Stir.
    stirring cheesy chili mac



Serving: 1cup | Calories: 427kcal | Carbohydrates: 47g | Protein: 29g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 65mg | Sodium: 1015mg | Potassium: 635mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 762IU | Vitamin C: 9mg | Calcium: 259mg | Iron: 4mg


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Monday 15th of August 2022

What size Instant Pot do you use???


Thursday 18th of August 2022

you may use either 8 or 6 qt, both will work for this recipe. It does make quite a lot, so if you have a smaller family to feed, I recommend cutting the recipe by half and giving it a go.