The holidays are over. We are in that span of time where days seem to run together and I really don't know what day of the week it is. I have been nibbling on treats and leftovers since Christmas and I can feel my pants getting tighter. I never shared this here, but about a year ago, I started eating better and exercising more regularly and lost about 20 pounds. Today I finally stepped on the scale after having about two weeks of fun and I am up a few pounds. Not a huge deal, but it is something I am ready to tackle, before things get out of hand. This Instant Pot® Broccoli Macaroni and Cheese is not part of that plan, and this blog is not a weight loss site. This recipe is my last hurrah for a little bit, while I rein things in. Feel free to indulge, and you shouldn't feel too guilty, because this mac is chock-full of broccoli!
Cooking pasta in the Instant Pot® can be a little bit of a mess. When it comes time to release the pressure, eventually the starchy liquid starts spraying out. The normal solution for cooking high-starch foods is to let the pressure release naturally, but in the case of pasta, it will end up overdone and gummy. No thanks! What I do to combat the problem is to throw a clean kitchen towel over the vent. This keeps the starch from spraying all over your kitchen. After I am done cooking, I usually have to clean out the condensation collector and wipe any starchy liquid around the rim.
The key to the success of the creamy "stove top" macaroni and cheese is this same starchy liquid. The concentrated pasta water is what eventually thickens the cheese sauce without the addition of extra flour. It is worth the minor mess for the major creaminess of this dish.
Instant Pot® Broccoli Macaroni and Cheese
1 pound of prepared broccoli (chop and set aside)
2 tablespoons butter
1 medium onion, chopped
1 pound of pasta (elbow, rotini, penne)
3 1/2 cups water
3/4 cups milk
2 cups shredded sharp cheddar
4 oz. cream cheese
1 teaspoon dijon mustard
salt and pepper to taste
1. Prepare broccoli according to these instructions. After cooking chop into bite-sized pieces and set aside.
2. Set Instant Pot® to saute. Melt butter and add chopped onion. Saute until translucent for about 5-6 minutes.
3. Stir in pasta, salt, pepper, and water. Set Instant Pot® to manual high-pressure for 4 minutes. Make sure the lid is locked and the vent is in the sealing position. When finished, do a quick pressure release (throw a clean kitchen towel over valve to prevent starch from spraying everywhere), by switching the valve from sealing to venting.
4. Reset the Instant Pot® to saute. Stir in milk, cheeses, and dijon mustard. Stir continually for about 4 minutes, until both cheeses melts fully. Stir in reserved broccoli and set the inner pot on a trivet to cool for about 10 minutes before serving. Sauce will thicken more in this time.
Hi, I am Julie and welcome to Instantly Delicious. I am so glad you are here to share in my adventures with using an Instant Pot ® to make easy, nutritious, and Instantly Delicious food.
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