Skip the stove and whip up a batch of instant pot kraft mac and cheese instead! Plus, you can spice it up with hot dogs or one of the other ideas on our list! Check out our full list of instant pot pasta recipes.
We love homemade Baked White Cheddar Mac and Cheese around here, but sometimes we just need something quick and easy to make our little people happy. This instant pot boxed mac and cheese recipe does the trick!
We have shared many kid-friendly instant pot recipes over the years, including Loaded Instant Pot Macaroni and Cheese, instant pot cheesy taco pasta, Instant Pot Strawberry Applesauce, Instant Pot Pull Apart Pizza Bread, instant pot granola bars, and instant pot cinnamon rolls.
Why Instant Pot Kraft Mac and cheese?
At first, I was a little skeptical about making kraft mac and cheese in the instant pot. I mean, why bother? But, sometimes, you don’t have access to a stove. Or you don’t want to stand in front of a hot stove on a hot day – even for a few minutes.
That was the case for me. It was hot outside. It was hot inside. I was trying not to turn on the AC. And the kids wanted some blue box mac and cheese. So, I decided to experiment with cooking it in the instant pot. We had leftover hot dogs, so I decided, why not throw those in, too!
What really sold me on making kraft mac n cheese in my instant pot over my stove is that I don’t have to wait for the water to boil and then wait again for it to finish cooking the noodles. I can just throw it all in and wait for my instant pot to beep at me. It elimates a step, which I like.
Since then, I have made instant pot kraft mac and cheese several times for my kids. We have even made it while camping (in our travel trailer) and it was great! If I despise cooking on a stove anywhere, it’s while camping. I would much rather set my instant pot and play with my kids.
How to make boxed mac and cheese in the instant pot?
This recipe is really easy. As it should be, making kraft macaroni and cheese on the stove top is easy, too! Here is how to make kraft boxed mac n cheese in the instant pot:
- Start by adding the macaroni noodles, sliced hot dogs, and water to the pot.
- Close the lid and set the pressure release valve to sealing.
- Cook on high pressure for 3 minutes.
- Quick release and remove lid.
- Drain the water.
- Mix in the butter, milk, and cheese.
What can you add to instant pot kraft mac n cheese?
If you aren’t in the mood for hot dogs (but still want to spice up your mac n cheese) then try one of the ideas on this list!
- Diced Ham
- Hot sauce
- Bacon bits
- Cooked Chicken
- Canned Tuna
- Ranch Seasoning
- Chopped broccoli
- Shreded cheese (for extra cheesiness)
- 1 (7.25-ounce) box Kraft macaroni and cheese
- 6 cups water
- 1 (24-ounce) package beef hot dogs, sliced
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1/4 cup whole milk
- Open box of mac n cheese and remove cheese packet and set aside.
- Pour macaroni noodles (from box) and water into instant pot.
- Add sliced hot dogs and stir.
- Close lid and set pressure release valve to sealing.
- Press manual or pressure cook button and set to 3 minutes.
- Quick pressure release and remove lid.
- Drain any leftover water.
- Mix in butter and stir until butter is melted.
- Mix in milk and reserved cheese packet.
- Serve immediately.
Any brand of boxed mac and cheese can be used for this recipe. Keep in mind when using a whole grain version of noodles, you may need to increase the cook time. Simple cut the pasta cook time in half and subtract 1 minute (according to package directions).
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Nutrition InformationYield 4 Serving Size 1 cup
Amount Per Serving Calories 244Total Fat 20gSaturated Fat 10gTrans Fat 1gUnsaturated Fat 8gCholesterol 41mgSodium 292mgCarbohydrates 13gNet Carbohydrates 0gFiber 1gSugar 3gSugar Alcohols 0gProtein 4g
Nutrition information is an estimate.
My kids loved this recipe for instant pot kraft mac and cheese with hot dogs. We hope yours do, too!