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Slow-Cooker Mac and Cheese

What could be more comforting (or easy!) than a Crock-Pot mac and cheese? Nothing! This classic casserole is a rich and cheesy meatless main dish, and I've never met anyone who didn't ask for second helpings of the cheesy slow cooker dish. —Bernice Glascoe, Roxboro, North Carolina
  • Total Time
    Prep: 15 min. Cook: 3-3/4 hours
  • Makes
    10 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 package (16 ounces) elbow macaroni
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 4 cups shredded cheddar cheese, divided
  • 1 can (12 ounces) evaporated milk
  • 1 can (10-3/4 ounces) condensed cheddar cheese soup, undiluted
  • 1 cup 2% milk
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 1/8 teaspoon paprika

Directions

  • Cook macaroni according to package directions; drain. Place in a 5-qt. slow cooker; add butter. In a large bowl, mix 3 cups cheese, evaporated milk, condensed soup, 2% milk and eggs. Pour over macaroni mixture; stir to combine. Cook, covered, on low for 3-1/2 to 4 hours or until a thermometer reads at least 160°.
  • Sprinkle with remaining cheese. Cook, covered, on low until cheese is melted, 15-20 minutes longer. Sprinkle with paprika.

Slow-Cooker Mac and Cheese Tips

Can you put uncooked pasta in a Crock-Pot?

Yes, you can put uncooked pasta in a Crock-Pot, or any other slow cooker, though you may need to add additional liquid for the macaroni noodles to absorb. This is a great tip for those who prefer firmer noodles in their mac and cheese.

Can you put cheese in a slow cooker?

Yes, you can. However, if you're encountering issues with cheese separating, reserve cheese for the last 15-20 minutes of cook time. Keep this tip in mind when you're trying other slow-cooker recipes.

What cheese makes the best macaroni and cheese?

Cheddar is the most classic choice for mac and cheese. Gruyere, gouda, brie and parmesan work well, too. Want more cheesy goodness? Check out our best mac and cheese recipes.

What can I add to my slow-cooker mac and cheese?

The gooey goodness of mac and cheese makes the perfect base for any vegetable. Try adding cooked broccoli, zucchini or spinach to your dish. Additionally, crumbled bacon, cooked kielbasa and fresh herbs like parsley or cilantro bring a touch of flavor.

Help! Any substitutes for evaporated milk?

No evaporated milk? No problem. Swap in 12-ounces of half-and-half instead. Wondering what the difference is between the two? We've got the answer for you.
Nutrition Facts
1 serving: 502 calories, 28g fat (18g saturated fat), 131mg cholesterol, 638mg sodium, 42g carbohydrate (7g sugars, 2g fiber), 21g protein.

Reviews

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Average Rating:
  • cparmenter
    Jun 30, 2020

    I have been making this recipe for years and was surprised to see so many negative reviews. My boys love this and got the leftovers out last night to finish off as their evening snack! It has worked perfectly for me every time. A few suggestions to avoid trouble: 1. Cook your macaroni to al dente. It will continue to cook so if you overcook it in the beginning, it could be mushy. 2. Only buy the highest quality cheddar cheese and shred it yourself. Some pre-shredded cheddar in the bags has an anti-caking agent that causes it to separate and become oily. I'm guessing that is what caused 90% of these issues. 3. Stir partway through. If it's a little dry, add additional milk or half and half to keep it moist. Different crock pots will cook at different temps so it might need a little more milk. 4. I add a little salt.

  • John
    Jun 3, 2020

    Loved this! Crowd pleaser and leftovers for the chef. ;)

  • asnunez
    Dec 30, 2019

    We will NOT use this recipe again, EVER. Seriously overcooked pasta was mush after first cooking it and then spending that much time in the crock-pot. The cheese turned into an oily glob of unpleasant mess. Definitely not a good experience. Conceptually, a good idea, just an extremely poor outcome. Back to the drawing board on this one.

  • Marth
    Sep 6, 2019

    Love this recipe. People request frequently. I have made it for years. Like my mom's!

  • MLS112
    Apr 25, 2019

    Far too dry; will use only half the macaroni if I make it again.

  • Kim
    Mar 25, 2019

    Was very blah, not much flavor. I thought that with all the shredded cheese and cheese sauce it would be very cheesy. Will have to think about modification to give it a little more flavor.

  • Diane Glover
    Nov 17, 2018

    Was not smooth or creamy. Cheese and/ or milk curdled. Was greasy, did not need so much butter? Will not make again.

  • Robyn
    Apr 1, 2018

    Love this for dinners

  • khegeman
    Mar 28, 2018

    Very good, but I wish it was creamier.

  • Gretchen
    Jan 24, 2018

    Why do people put eggs in macaroni and cheese. There is no need for it.