7 Easy, Kid-Friendly Instant Pot Recipes That Even the Domestically-Challenged Can Make

Hello, my name is Candy, and I’m domestically-challenged.

I don’t enjoy–or know much about–cooking. I don’t own a hand mixer. I didn’t know it was called a “hand mixer” until I just googled “what do you call an electric beater thingy.” My kids are awed and amazed when I manage to make pancakes without incident. But….! I am capable of using an Instant Pot for something other than storage (sorry, oven). So rest assured if I can handle these recipes, you most certainly can, too.

Perhaps most amazing of all: both of my kids will happily chow down on these meals without so much as a grunt or a grimace. Miracles do happen.


Prep Time: 5 minutes/Cook Time: 5 minutes/Total Time: 10 minutes

1 lb elbow macaroni or shells
4 tbsp butter
4 cups water
2 tsp dry ground mustard
2 tsp kosher or sea salt (+ more to taste)
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 cup evaporated milk
8 oz sharp cheddar cheese
8 oz monterey jack cheese
1/2 cup parmesan cheese


  1. Add macaroni, butter, water, mustard, salt and pepper to your Instant Pot.
  2. Secure the lid, select manual and high pressure for 4 minutes. (Note: if the directions on your boxed macaroni have a boil time that is less than 6 minutes, then cook on high pressure for only 3 minutes.)
  3. Once complete, use a quick release.
  4. Open lid and check that the pasta is cooked completely. If not, select saute and cook for an additional 2 minutes until pasta is indeed cooked.
  5. Add in evaporated milk, as well as each of the cheeses. Continue to mix and stir until creamy.
  6. Add extra salt to taste, if you so desire.
  7. Serve and enjoy!
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Candy Kirby

Candy is the founder of The Mom Beat and a humor columnist whose work as appeared in Redbook, Nickelodeon's NickMom, Disney's BabyZone, HelloGiggles and eHow. She also used to be a staff writer for the soap opera, The Bold and the Beautiful, where she penned many scripts featuring prolonged heated stares and countless “Who’s the Daddy?” story lines. Candy lives in Los Angeles with her husband, two young kids and three rescue Persian cats, the latter of whom are the real brains behind this operation.