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Creamy Instant Pot Cheeseburger Macaroni

This Instant Pot cheeseburger macaroni recipe will take you back to your childhood! Just 10 minutes in your pressure cooker makes this cheesy goulash hamburger helper style pasta dinner. Your whole family will love it! 


I created this Instant Pot cheeseburger macaroni recipe the other night. Bringing this childhood favorite back into our house was great and got 10 thumbs up. One of our favorite comfort food Instant Pot recipes yet. (originally published 4/17, affiliate links present)

Tell me this was a staple in your home growing up too.

Your mom may have used a box to make this sort of cheesy hamburger helper dish, but homemade is so much better.

Let’s start with a few basic tips:

For reference, this is the pressure cooker I have and use for all recipe creations.

star wars instant pot
  • We made a crockpot hamburger helper recipe before and that was good. But it took quite a while to finish so we could eat.
  • This Instant Pot hamburger helper version has a VERY short cooking time and my kids’ favorite quick and easy meal.

You don’t even have to pre cook the pasta! Just throw it all in with your onion and garlic powder and set to high pressure with a quick release at the end. BAM!

It’s one of our favorite Instant Pot ground beef recipes, but you could use ground sausage too!

instant pot sausage

Cheeseburger macaroni casserole

Here are a few questions you might have in mind before getting started on this one:

How do you make hamburger helper cheeseburger macaroni from scratch?

This is it!! NO more using that box from the grocery store. Here you can skip that, use any shaped noodles you like and adjust the seasonings as you wish.

How many calories are in cheeseburger hamburger helper?

Well we are not suggesting that it is a low calorie food by any means. Typically for a 6 oz. serving you’re looking at 500ish calories.

This depends greatly on the type of meat used.

Do you drain hamburger helper?

I do not when I am sauteeing the ground beef. We do use organic grass fed meat so it is low in fat already. You can drain if you like, either way it is a great family friendly meal.

It really is a complete meal, but you could serve it with air fryer garlic bread on the side too.

Instant pot cheeseburger macaroni 2

Instant Pot cheeseburger macaroni

  1. Instant Pot or pressure cooker – this is the one I have
  2. Elbow macaroni – this is what I use (if you use organic or gluten free it will take longer and you will need to add a few more minutes.
  3. Cheddar cheese soup – Campbell’s has this one in the soup aisle
  4. Hamburger meat
    1. do not use more than 1 lb. or it won’t turn out properly
    2. spicy ground sausage is great too if you like a little heat
  5. Onion – optional
  6. Sour cream
  7. Shredded cheese – we like sharp cheese
  8. Water – or better yet substitute for chicken or beef broth

You can of course add any other seasonings you like such as onion powder or pepper. This is what it looks like when it is just done. The longer you let it sit the thicker it gets and tastes amazing.

If you love traditional hamburger helper but with added cheese this pressure cooker pasta dish is for you.

instant pot cheeseburger macaroni 2
  • As with all of my other Instant Pot recipes it is very easy and you only need a few ingredients.

You could also use another style of noodle other than elbow macaroni but I had that in the house so that is what I used. I like to use what I already have on hand if possible.

If you like a thicker consistency let it sit in the pot for about 5 minutes after you have turned it off. Like I said, t will thicken quite a bit as it sits!

If you like it a bit soupier like you see here above then serve and eat immediately.

Cheeseburger macaroni Instant Pot

instant pot cheeseburger macaroni

Here’s a quick step by step but there is a printable recipe card at the bottom of this post too.

Time needed: 10 minutes.

Instant Pot cheeseburger macaroni

  1. Saute

    Add olive oil, diced onions, ground beef or sausage into your pressure cooker on the saute function. Cook until meat is no longer pink on the outside.

  2. Add ingredients

    In a bowl whisk together your water (or beef broth), salt, garlic powder, & cheddar cheese soup until smooth. Pour this into your pot. Sprinkle in uncooked noodles and gently submerge.

  3. Cook

    Close lid and steam valve and set to high pressure for 3 minutes. Do a slow release when done (meaning move valve slightly so steam comes out slowly).

  4. Add more ingredients

    Lift lid, set pot to saute again and stir in sour cream and shredded cheese at this time. Allow to bubble, cheese to melt and contents to thicken. Then turn pot off.

  5. Allow to thicken

    Turn pot off and allow to sit for 10 minutes at least to allow sauce to thicken before serving.

instant pot boxed macaroni and cheese 2

Looking for more Instant Pot pasta recipes your family will love?

Crockpot chili mac is a great recipe too. If you want lower carb, try our Instant Pot hamburger soup.

Cheeseburger macaroni recipe

You can pressure cook this cheeseburger helper in your Crockpot Expresss too as well as our homemade mac and cheese recipe on the stovetop.

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instant pot cheeseburger macaroni 2
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4.54 from 32 votes

Instant Pot Cheeseburger Macaroni

This Instant Pot cheeseburger macaroni recipe will take you back to your childhood! Just 10 minutes in your pressure cooker makes this cheesy goulash hamburger helper style pasta dinner that your whole family will love. It’s one of our favorite Instant Pot ground beef recipes.
Course Entree, Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword cheese, cheeseburger, goulash, instant pot, macaroni and cheese, pasta, pressure cooker
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 3 minutes
Total Time 19 minutes
Servings 5
Calories 553kcal
Author The Typical Mom



  • Turn your Instant Pot to saute and add your olive oil and ground beef. 
  • Start to brown your beef, then add your diced onions and cook together until ground beef is no longer pink.  Turn instant pot off by pushing the cancel button (important step). Drain grease and return pot.
  • In a separate bowl whisk together your water, salt, garlic powder, & cheddar cheese soup. Pour on top of your ground beef.
  • Pour your uncooked noodles in and do not stir, just push noodles down gently so they are submerged in the liquid. Close your IP lid and set to manual, pressure, high for 3 minutes. 
  • When done do a slow release – meaning barely move your steam valve so the steam comes out slowly, and carefully lift your lid. 
  • Set IP to saute. Add your sour cream and shredded cheese. 
  • Stir slowly and allow it to come to a boil and bubble.
  • Turn IP off. Allow to sit for at least 10 minutes to thicken. The longer it sits the thicker it will become too. Serve! (top with more cheese if you're a real cheese lover.


Nutrition Facts
Instant Pot Cheeseburger Macaroni
Amount Per Serving (6 oz)
Calories 553 Calories from Fat 324
% Daily Value*
Fat 36g55%
Saturated Fat 13g81%
Cholesterol 90mg30%
Sodium 989mg43%
Potassium 622mg18%
Carbohydrates 27g9%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 2g2%
Protein 26g52%
Vitamin A 470IU9%
Vitamin C 0.6mg1%
Calcium 205mg21%
Iron 2.3mg13%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
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