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Instant Pot Hamburger Helper recipe is the perfect meal for busy weeknights. Everything you need for a delicious meal can be ready in just minutes.

instant pot hamburger helper with a wooden spoon in it.
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Instant Pot Hamburger Helper

We are always looking for a quick and delicious meal idea. My kids love the boxed version of Hamburger Helper but I wanted to find something I could make without all the processed ingredients.

This recipe is better than than anything store bought and sure to impress the entire family. This delicious one pot meal has everything you love but without all of the processed ingredients in the box kits. You might also like any of our Instant Pot Ground Beef Recipes.

The pressure cooker makes this meal super fast so you can have homemade in just minutes. Truly, you can’t get any simpler with this easy recipe. Get dinner on the table fast.

Bowl of instant pot hamburger helper.

The kids go crazy over this recipe.

Once you make this and see how easy and tasty it is, you will never by store bought again. The cheese and beef with the noodles make such a wonderful meal.

It is truly comfort food and such a great recipe to enjoy as a family.

Anytime I find something that everyone loves, it is definitely a keeper. Plus, this recipe is so frugal.

Ingredients for recipe: onion, cheese, pasta, ground beef, crushed tomatoes, seasoning.


  • Ground Beef
  • Onion, diced
  • Minced Garlic
  • Milk
  • Red Bell Pepper
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Italian Seasoning
  • Crushed Tomatoes
  • Beef Broth
  • Macaroni Pasta
  • Cheddar Cheese

How to make Instant Pot Hamburger Helper:

  • First, add the ground beef to the pressure cooker. Brown the meat on the saute setting until it is no longer pink.
Browned ground beef in the pressure cooker.
  • Next, add the bell pepper, seasonings, tomatoes, milk, broth, and pasta. The onion and garlic will smell amazing.
  • Make sure all of this is combined really good. Stir from the bottom of the pot and make sure the pasta is covered so it will cook properly.
Ingredients in pressure cooker ready to cook.
  • Then add the lid and set to sealing position. Lock the lid and set to high pressure for 5 minutes.
  • Finally, do a quick release and stir the hamburger helper mixture to make sure it is not stuck to the bottom.
  • Stir in the cheese while hot so it will melt easily. Mix everything together for a really tasty dinner idea.

Jump to recipe below for specific cooking time, saturated fat information and more.

It is that simple to make. Your family can enjoy a delicious home cooked meal even during busy weeks.

Pressure cooking is so easy and this dinner recipe is the best. This is one of our favorite instant pot recipes.

Bowl of instant pot hamburger helper

What to serve with Instant pot hamburger helper

  •  Green Beans. These are so quick and easy.  We make green beans a lot for an easy vegetable.
  • Steamed Broccoli. This microwaveable side dish is perfect with hamburger helper. Kids also seem more likely to eat it when paired with the cheesy sauce from the hamburger helper.

All of these would be yummy with hamburger helper in the instant pot.

Bowl of instant pot hamburger helper

Variation Ideas:

  • Ground turkey or ground chicken. You can easily substitute ground turkey or chicken in this recipe.

    I doubt anyone will even notice the difference or miss the beef. Plus, it is a great way to save a little money and lighten up this recipe.
  • Pasta. We used elbow macaroni but any type of pasta will work. While elbow is more traditional for Hamburger Helper, you can use bowtie, shells and penne.
  • Broth. The last time I made this, I was out of beef broth. Chicken worked just fine. We are big fans of using what we have.
  • Veggies. Try adding diced celery and carrots to this recipe. It adds a lot of flavor. Plus, it provides an easy way to sneak in more veggies.
  • Cheese. You can omit the cheese all together if you do not want this. It will still be amazing.

    If you plan to add the cheese, feel free to try different types. We used cheddar but Colby or mozzarella taste yummy too.

How to store:

Refrigerate leftovers inside an airtight container. They will keep up to 3 days.

I like to put the leftovers in individual serving containers for quick lunches during the week.

This recipe reheats well and makes for great leftovers. The only thing you may need to add to this is a little bit of water or broth when reheating.

Can you freeze this recipe?

You can freeze leftovers up to 3 months. Just make sure to store the food inside a freezer container or bag. The container should be airtight for best results.

When reheating, you may want to add a little bit of water or broth. Sometimes, the pasta can soak up the broth and more will be needed.

Just make sure to only add a little at a time so you don’t add too much.

Tips for Instant pot Hamburger helper:

  • If you are concerned with the burn indicator light coming on, you can add a little oil before adding the ground beef to brown.
  • Cook the pasta al dente if you plan to freeze it. Otherwise, it will become mushy when you reheat it.
  • Shred the cheese yourself and don’t buy the bags of shredded cheese. It only takes a few extra minutes and it melts much smoother. The consistency is creamier and as a result so will your hamburger helper.

Can you make this in the crockpot?

Yes. If you do not have a pressure cooker yet, try Crock Pot Hamburger Helper Recipe. This is also a nice alternative when you need to set it and forget it.

instant pot hamburger helper

Print this Instant Pot Hamburger Helper Recipe below:

Instant Pot Hamburger Helper Recipe

5 from 10 votes
Homemade hamburger helper pressure cooker recipe gets dinner on the table in just minutes. Try Instant Pot Hamburger Helper Recipe for a meal to impress.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 8
Cuisine American
Course Main Course
Calories 627


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  • In a the Instant pot, cook the ground beef with the diced onion on the sauté setting until it is no longer pink. Then drain off any excess grease.
  • Then add in red bell pepper, Italian Seasoning, salt, pepper, tomatoes, milk, broth, and pasta.
  • Stir to combine from the bottom of the pot and make sure the pasta is completely covered.
  • Add the lid and set to sealing position.
  • Set to high pressure for 3 minutes.
  • Do a quick release after the cook time and stir the homemade hamburger helper to make sure it is not stuck to the bottom.
  • White hot stir in the shredded cheese until melted.
  • Serve immediately.

Recipe Notes

*Refrigerate the leftovers in an air tight container for up to 5 days. 
*After the pasta is cooked make sure to release the pressure immediately after the cook time so that the pasta does not get over cooked in this recipe.  

Nutrition Facts

Calories 627kcal, Carbohydrates 27g, Protein 37g, Fat 40g, Saturated Fat 19g, Cholesterol 134mg, Sodium 962mg, Potassium 743mg, Fiber 2g, Sugar 8g, Vitamin A 1150IU, Vitamin C 24.3mg, Calcium 461mg, Iron 3.8mg

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More Instant pot ground beef recipes:

Homemade instant pot hamburger helper recipe gets dinner on the table in just minutes. Try Instant Pot Hamburger Helper Recipe for a meal to impress. This Pressure Cooker Hamburger Helper is better than the boxed stuff! #eatingonadime #instantpotrecipes #beefrecipes

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About the Author

Hi, I’m Carrie. Welcome to Eating on a Dime!

I’m on a mission to help you cook delicious meals without busting your budget. Together we are going to cook real food… for real families!

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Recipe Rating


  1. Liza B says:

    5 stars
    My whole family loved this. Including my 3 super picky eaters. I will never buy the boxed hamburger helper again.

  2. Terre says:

    5 stars
    Super quick and easy and everyone liked it

  3. Cheryl says:

    5 stars
    I have a Very picky teenager and she approved! Very tasty. We have had this several times now!

  4. Beverly Thompson says:

    5 stars

  5. Lisa says:

    5 stars
    Was very good. I received the teenager nod of approval. 🙂