• Instant Pot Jalapeño & Chorizo Mac & Cheese

Instant Pot Chorizo & Jalapeño Mac & Cheese

Oh mac & cheese, there is no redemption from your own particular cheesy brand of sin. Oh well, it’s not like I believe in an afterlife anyway which is a good job as this Instant Pot Chorizo & Jalapeño Mac & Cheese is about as naughty as cheese and pasta get. And yep, the magic ratio is 50:50 cheese to pasta :O

I’ve got two friends who share my obsessive search for the ultimate mac ‘n’ cheese (big shout out to my girls Shazza and Regan here) and we barely go a week without sharing recipes for our beloved cheesy carb fest of a dish with each other. It may not do your waistline or blood pressure any good but man alive, will it do your soul good. There can’t be many first world dramas which can’t be cured with a big fat bowlful of this. Just go get into your fat pants before continuing to read on… 😉

This is the most perfect Instant Pot Mac & Cheese - try it tonight! Click To Tweet

I recently published my recipe for Instant Pot Custard Cream Cheesecake and proclaimed that it was the reason to purchase an Instant Pot. Now that still remains true but if you aren’t cursed with a sweet tooth and instead, eye up the cheeseboard after dinner like a rabid pitbull then this mac & cheese will be the reason you should get one! I’m fast becoming evangelical about the benefits of this electric pressure cooker and am loving finding new things to cook in it. Would you believe that with only 4 minutes cooking time, you will have this ooey-gooey, hot and spicy bowl of loveliness before you?


Now the truth is, you will spend a few minutes prepping the dish, a couple more sautéing the chorizo, a few for the pressure to build in the machine and then a couple more finishing the dish but really, you are still looking at a comfort meal classic being on your table in less than 20 minutes. If anything, it’s a bit scary how fast and easy the Instant Pot makes this (I think now is the time to put a disclaimer on this recipe to state that I will accept no responsibility for excessive weight gain after purchasing said Instant Pot and devouring said mac & cheese!). It must take me an hour to knock the traditional one together on the hob and in the oven. You should also know that you can multiply this up to feed a crowd very easily and the cooking time remains the same.

In developing this recipe, I came to realise that certain ratios and ingredients need paying attention to, to ensure your mac comes out perfect each time. Like for every 120g pasta, you need 250ml water – you definitely need to weigh this one out. And yes, you do need the same amount of cheese as pasta or you are just lining yourself up for disappointment. I find the combination of mozzarella, Double Gloucester and Parmesan give both the taste and the goo factor I want from my mac.

Creamy ingredients such as the evaporated milk (thanks to Nigella for teaching me in her book Express that you can make mac & cheese with this store cupboard staple, rather than making a béchamel sauce) definitely need adding at the end as they can clog up the filter inside the IP if added before. Adding the chorizo brings garlic and smoky paprika which always play well with cheese. The jalapeños bring heat which cuts all that crazy richness and the spring onions add their rasp again, making this all to easy to eat despite the creaminess of all that dairy. Honestly, one mouthful and you’ll be hooked. Go get you Instant Pot Chorizo & Jalapeño Mac & Cheese on now!

5 from 1 vote
Instant Pot Chorizo & Jalapeño Mac & Cheese
Ooey, gooey macaroni cheese with the gentle fire of jalapeños and the smoky warmth of chorizo sausage. Made in the Instant Pot in just 4 minutes!
Servings: 2
: 807 kcal
Author: Just Jo
  • 100 g chorizo sausage sliced into thin discs
  • 120 g dried macaroni pasta
  • 1 tsp mustard powder
  • Good grating of nutmeg about 20 scratches on your plane or grater will do
  • 250 ml water
  • 50 g grated mozzarella
  • 50 g Double Gloucester or Red Leicester cheese
  • 20 g grated Parmesan
  • 2 tbsp jalapeño adjust to your heat preference, finely chopped
  • 2-3 spring onions minced finely
  • 100 g evaporated milk*
  1. Set the Instant Pot to Sauté mode and add the chorizo. Stir frequently until it releases its oil and there is no pearly white fat remaining. This should take a couple of minutes. If there is lots of oil, spoon it away - you only need about 1 tbsp worth.

  2. Turn off Sauté and add the macaroni, mustard, nutmeg and water and give it a good stir. Set the Instant Pot to manual mode and adjust the time to 4 mins. Put the lid on and set the vent to "Sealing".

  3. When the cooking cycle has finished, do a Quick Pressure Release (QPR). There should be little or no excess water left and the pasta will be fully cooked. Press cancel and the Instant Pot will remain in Keep Warm whilst you finish the mac & cheese.

  4. Stir in the cheeses and keep stirring until no clumps remain - barely 30 seconds.
  5. Add in the jalapeños, spring onions and evaporated milk and give it one final good stirring. You are done! The pasta will suck up the evaporated milk and you will have the gooiest mac & cheese ever!
  6. Optional: if you like a grilled cheese topping to your mac & cheese, then scrape the contents of the Instant Pot into an oven proof dish having reserved a little of each of the cheeses to sprinkle on at the end and finish under a hot grill in the oven for a few minutes.
Recipe Notes

*= evaporated milk is what it says on the tin - milk cooked down until thick and sticky. Don't confuse it with condensed milk which is 50:50 milk to added sugar! I only say this as the tins can be remarkably similar and I *may* have bought the wrong one on more than one occasion!
Top Tip - if you can bare waiting a moment, put the Instant Pot inner pot in the sink and add some washing up liquid and hot water before you eat so making the clean up a lot easier!

Nutrition Facts
Instant Pot Chorizo & Jalapeño Mac & Cheese
Amount Per Serving
Calories 807 Calories from Fat 360
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 40g 62%
Saturated Fat 19g 95%
Cholesterol 113mg 38%
Sodium 1151mg 48%
Potassium 745mg 21%
Total Carbohydrates 69g 23%
Dietary Fiber 5g 20%
Sugars 11g
Protein 40g 80%
Vitamin A 18.1%
Vitamin C 27.4%
Calcium 56.9%
Iron 17.9%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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  1. Platter Talk 18th October 2016 at 1:33 pm - Reply

    Nice and spicy mac & cheese. Love this recipe. I’ve had the Gloucester but am not familiar with Red Leicester cheese.

    • Just Jo 18th October 2016 at 1:49 pm - Reply

      It’s a much darker orange colour and sharper than Double Gloucester but you could substitute a cheddar for it if that is easier where you are.

  2. Amanda 18th October 2016 at 2:25 pm - Reply

    This is so fast! I need to use my instant pot more!

    • Just Jo 18th October 2016 at 2:48 pm - Reply

      Oh you so do Amanda – it’s a brilliant piece of kit!

  3. Janette@CulinaryGinger.com 18th October 2016 at 3:30 pm - Reply

    I’m loving the chorizo in this, what a kick of flavor.

    • Just Jo 18th October 2016 at 3:36 pm - Reply

      I do love a bit of chorizo, it works really well with all that gooey cheese 🙂

  4. Lisa @ garlicandzest.com 18th October 2016 at 3:30 pm - Reply

    You are totally amping up the flavor quotient in this mac and cheese. I really wish you were my neighbor!

    • Just Jo 18th October 2016 at 3:35 pm - Reply

      Aw I’d be more than happy to bring a pan round Lisa!

  5. Allison - Celebrating Sweets 19th October 2016 at 4:36 am - Reply

    So much flavor going on here! Love it!

  6. Thanh @ Eat, Little Bird 19th October 2016 at 10:11 am - Reply

    Oh wow! That looks so delicious! I always have a jar of pickled jalopenos in the fridge and I never thought of adding it to mac & cheese – sounds perfect!

    • Just Jo 19th October 2016 at 10:21 am - Reply

      Oh hello my lovely Thanh! So wonderful to hear from you, I’m still shocked how long it’s been since we last chatted. Im a pickled things fiend so I always have the jalapeños in too. Am always looking for an excuse to add them to things lol 😉

  7. Carole Skellorn 11th January 2017 at 6:35 pm - Reply

    This was delish! For lunch I adapted the recipe, used bacon lardons instead of choritzo, cream cheese instead of the cheeses, added green beans at the start, lots of pepper. It’s so versatile I’m already thinking of different versions!

    • Just Jo 11th January 2017 at 7:17 pm - Reply

      Oh thank you for letting me know how you got on Carole – I’m so pleased you enjoyed the recipe. Recipes are totally there to be tried and adapted to our own tastes and I love hearing that readers make my recipes their own.
      It sounds really delicious with your subs! Happy blogger here – thank you 😀

  8. Gerry 11th February 2017 at 10:01 pm - Reply

    Oh my goodness made this last night for supper. Slightly lowered the pasta measurements and added a leek. And some herb stock. Utterly sublime. The nicest mac and cheese ever. Thank you for this recipe. The joy of the instant pot.

    • Just Jo 12th February 2017 at 4:56 pm - Reply

      You’re so welcome Gerry, I’m so happy you loved it so much! The IP really is a kitchen wizard 🙂

  9. Steve 6th May 2017 at 1:24 pm - Reply

    Very similar to my IP mac and cheese – great minds, eh?
    What I’ve found adds a bit more oomph to the flavour is to put 4 peeled garlic cloves and some butter in the IP when cooking the pasta, they completely disintegrate when stirring the cheese in.

    • Just Jo 7th May 2017 at 9:11 pm - Reply

      Absolutely – the “formula” for an IP mac ‘n’ cheese is pretty well written about, it’s those extra summin’ summin’ bits that make it your own. I *love* your idea of adding the garlic as the pasta cooks – a stroke of genius!

  10. Stephanie 18th July 2017 at 9:58 pm - Reply

    So, I love this recipe, so I brought the ingredients to the cottage to share with friends, fully intending to pack the Instapot…but left it at home. So…how do I adapt this to make in the good old fashioned way? Will the noodles be hit enough after straining to melt the cheeses if I pre-heat the evaporated milk to mix in I wonder? I don’t think the chorizo will stand up to boiling…

    • Just Jo 18th July 2017 at 10:26 pm - Reply

      Hi Stephanie, I’m so happy to hear you look be this recipe so much! What I would do is sauté the Chorizo to render out some fat and then follow this recipe by Nigella, adding the chorizo, jalapeños and spring onion before you bake it. The eggs help it set but you don’t have to use them if you don’t want to. I hope you have a lovely meal with your friends! https://www.nigella.com/recipes/macaroni-cheese

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