4 Minute Instant Pot Taco Mac and Cheese

closeup view of Instant Pot Taco Mac and Cheese

Instant Pot Taco Mac and Cheese is a quick, 4-minute dinner packed with taco meat, macaroni and, of course, melty, delicious cheese. Frankly, it’s a weeknight dream.

With no chopping or extra prep. Simple, straightforward… and yummy!

When your days are crazy and the nights are full with homework, household chores, family activities… or just when you’re tired and need a cooking break, this is a simple go-to solution.

And the ingredients? Mostly pantry ingredients you likely have on hand. It’s simple, but delicious. Because honestly, who doesn’t love tacos and mac and cheese?

In the pressure cooker or Instant Pot? It’s a quick and easy cleanup dinner that has you off to the next thing. Even if that is taking a break on the couch!

Side view of a bowl of Instant Pot Taco Mac and Cheese

Ingredients Needed for Instant Pot Taco Mac and Cheese

Gather these pantry staple ingredients you likely already have on hand! 

  • Ground turkey or ground turkey
  • Taco Seasoning (or see note to make your own)
  • Elbow macaroni (gluten-free option too)
  • Chicken or beef broth 
  • Salsa
  • Spinach Leaves (This isn’t strictly necessary but I always add greens when I can)
  • Milk
  • Mexican Shredded Cheese

Steps in Making Instant Pot Mac

How do you make Instant Pot Taco Mac?

  1. In the base of the pressure cooker insert on the saute setting, brown the ground meat until you no longer see any pink. Drain off any cooking juices.
  2. Add the taco seasoning and salt and pepper; cook another minute until it becomes fragrant. Add the uncooked macaroni, pour the broth into the pot and top with salsa. Do not stir after adding the salsa.
  3. Attach the Instant Pot Lid and manually pressure cook for 3 minutes. Once cooked, naturally release the pressure for 4 minutes before quickly releasing remaining pressure. Switch to the sautee setting and stir in the spinach, cheese, and milk. Stir until the spinach is wilted, and the cheese has melted. 
  4. Add taco toppings!

What are some other easy Instant Pot recipes?

Top view of a bowl of Taco Mac and Cheese

closeup view of Instant Pot Taco Mac and Cheese

Instant Pot Taco Mac and Cheese

Yield: 6 to 8 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 4 minutes
Total Time: 14 minutes

This Instant Pot Chili Mac and Cheese is an easy pasta dish and family favorite dinner. A blend of lean ground beef, macaroni, chili beans, tomatoes, and spices. And, of course, melting cheddar cheese. An easy dinner to table meal in around 15 minutes, give or take a few.

Ingredients

  • 1 lb ground turkey (or ground beef)
  • 2 tablespoons taco seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups low sodium chicken broth (or beef)
  • 12 oz dry macaroni (1 box)
  • 1/2 cup salsa
  • 3-4 cups fresh baby spinach leaves
  • 1 cup low-fat milk
  • 2 cups Mexican shredded cheese

Instructions

  1. Turn the Instant Pot to the saute function. Once hot, cook the ground meat until there is no traces of pink. Stir in the taco seasoning or (1 1/2 tablespoon chili powder, 1 tsp garlic powder, and 1 1/2 tsp cumin) along with salt. Cook and stir until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in the broth and scrape the bottom to remove any browned bits on the bottom of the pot. Turn off the Instant Pot.
  2. Add the uncooked macaroni and top with salsa, but do not stir in. Press the pasta down so that it is submerged in the liquid. Attach the Instant Pot lid and turn the valve to sealing.
  3. Select the manual or Pressure Cook setting and cook for 3 minutes. Once cooked, naturally release the pressure for 4 minutes before quickly releasing any remaining pressure.
  4. Remove the lid and switch to the saute function. Add the spinach and stir the macaroni to blend. Then stir in the milk and shredded cheese. Continue stirring until the cheese is melted and the spinach is wilted and cooked through. Add additional milk if desired.

Notes

TOPPING IDEAS:

  • chopped cilantro or parsley
  • diced tomato
  • sour cream
  • red chili flakes
  • avocado

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 405Total Fat: 20gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 87mgSodium: 823mgCarbohydrates: 27gFiber: 8gSugar: 3gProtein: 34g

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