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One-Pot Mac and Cheese

Total Time

Prep: 5 min. Cook: 30 min.


10 servings

Updated: Jan. 09, 2023
Who likes cleaning up after making mac and cheese? Not this girl. This one-pot mac and cheese is a family favorite, and my 3-year-old is thrilled to see it coming to the dinner table. We love to add sliced smoked sausage to this creamy mac recipe! —Ashley Lecker, Green Bay, Wisconsin
One-Pot Mac and Cheese Recipe photo by Taste of Home


  • 3-1/2 cups whole milk
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 package (16 ounces) elbow macaroni
  • 4 ounces Velveeta, cubed
  • 2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground pepper


  1. In a Dutch oven, combine milk, water and macaroni; bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat and simmer until macaroni is tender and almost all the cooking liquid has been absorbed, 12-15 minutes, stirring frequently. Reduce heat to low; stir in cheeses until melted. Season with salt and pepper.

One-Pot Mac and Cheese Tips

What is the best cheese to use for mac and cheese?

The best cheese for mac and cheese is a classic sharp cheddar. Other cheeses like gruyere, Monterey Jack and gouda work well, too. It's best to shred your own, but in a pinch you can certainly use packaged shredded cheese. It may not give you the classic mac and cheese texture and consistency you're looking for.

What can you add to plain mac and cheese?

You can add bacon crumbles, grated or shredded cheese or bread crumbs to plain mac and cheese to add additional layers of flavor. We've got plenty of other recommendations to jazz up your mac and cheese.

How can you make homemade mac and cheese healthier?

To make your homemade mac and cheese healthier, you can throw in some fresh veggies and sources of protein like chicken or turkey. You can also use whole wheat or a legume-based pasta to cut down on empty carbs and increase your daily protein intake. Check out our other tips for making your mac healthier.

How can you make homemade mac and cheese creamier?

You can make homemade mac and cheese creamier by cooking your pasta in milk. Try adding cream or yogurt to add in additional creaminess.

Nutrition Facts

1 cup: 344 calories, 14g fat (8g saturated fat), 42mg cholesterol, 450mg sodium, 39g carbohydrate (6g sugars, 2g fiber), 16g protein.

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