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The Best Mac and Cheese Recipes

There is no such thing as too much cheese
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Some like it baked, some like it strictly stovetop but everyone likes it hot, creamy and oh-so cheesy. Here are 25 gooey, melty, irresistible recipes for our favorite comfort food — macaroni and cheese.

Freezer-Friendly Mac and Cheese

Freezer-Friendly Mac and Cheese
Courtesy of Karrie Truman, Happy Money Saver

The trick to maintaining a desirable texture in this freezer-friendly mac and cheese is a combination of sharp cheddar and colby jack, a generous pour of heavy cream and chicken broth in the sauce. With just a handful of ingredients and a few easy steps, it's a great dish to make and freeze ahead of a busy week.

For the Freezer-Friendly Mac and Cheese recipe, click here.

Gooey, Creamy Mac and Cheese

Gooey, Creamy Mac and Cheese
Jacqui Wedewer/The Daily Meal

With Taleggio cheese, fontina, Gouda and cheddar, this mac and cheese lives up to the title of gooey and creamy. The dish is from Murray's Cheese in New York City, but it’s simple enough to make at home as long as you have good quality ingredients and a little bit of time. 

For the Gooey, Creamy Mac and Cheese recipe, click here.

Cheese and Macaroni Pie

Cheese and Macaroni Pie
Carolyn Menyes/The Daily Meal

While there are countless macaroni and cheese recipes out there, many of them don’t include one ingredient that’s a total game-changer: cream cheese. This cheese and macaroni pie is made with cream cheese, a can of evaporated milk, regular milk and eggs for a tangy, creamy casserole. 

For the Cheese and Macaroni Pie recipe, click here.

Instant Pot Mac and Cheese with Ricotta

Instant Pot Mac and Cheese with Ricotta
Courtesy of Corrie Cooks

This might just be the easiest recipe on the list. All you do is add oil, pasta, salt and four cups of water to your Instant Pot and cook on the high pressure setting for six minutes. After you carefully release the Instant Pot lid, simply stir in ricotta cheese, cheddar and any herbs you like. Then, it’s time to dig in.

For the Instant Pot Mac and Cheese with Ricotta recipe, click here.

Instant Pot Cauliflower Mac and Cheese

Instant Pot Cauliflower Mac and Cheese
Liliya Kandrashevich/Shutterstock

Using cauliflower in your mac and cheese is a great way to get some vitamins you may be missing. This recipe uses both cauliflower and whole wheat pasta as the macaroni base, and the sauce comes together with butter, cream cheese, cheddar and evaporated milk. 

For the Instant Pot Cauliflower Mac and Cheese recipe, click here.

Taco Mac and Cheese

Taco Mac and Cheese
Courtesy of McCormick

Tacos are one of the best-ever Mexican dishes, so why not fuse them with mac and cheese? By using a taco seasoning packet, you can shortcut your way to that spicy Southwestern flavor that goes so well with a sharp cheddar cheese sauce. 

For the Taco Mac and Cheese recipe, click here.

Instant Pot Mac and Cheese with Garden Veggies

Instant Pot Mac and Cheese with Garden Veggies
Liliya Kandrashevich/Shutterstock

You can make dinner, lunch and breakfast in your Instant Pot. This multicooker recipe uses ricotta cheese, which gives the macaroni dish a richness you might not get with heavy cream and cheese alone.

For the Instant Pot Mac and Cheese with Garden Veggies recipe, click here.

Hamburger Mac and Cheese

Hamburger Mac and Cheese
Brent Hofacker/Shutterstock

Sure, you can cook up some of the best-ever burger recipes — or you can make the best of both worlds with this hamburger mac and cheese. It’s beefy, cheesy and full of spices like garlic powder, smoked paprika and cumin.

For the Hamburger Mac and Cheese recipe, click here.

Skillet Chicken Mac and Cheese

Skillet Chicken Mac and Cheese
Courtesy of Perdue

Mac and cheese is one of those things you didn’t know you can make in a cast-iron skillet, and this method means your dish can be placed right under the broiler to get golden brown and crispy on top. The grilled chicken is made separately and added to the pasta and sauce right before being baked.

For the Skillet Chicken Mac and Cheese recipe, click here.

Monterey Mac and Cheese

Monterey Mac and Cheese
Courtesy of Perdue

This Monterey mac and cheese has Mexican-style corn, a can of diced tomatoes, black olives, ground chicken, taco seasoning and of course, one of the best melty cheeses, Monterey jack. It’s the perfect home-cooked meal.

For the Monterey Mac and Cheese recipe, click here.

Crispy Chicken Mac and Cheese

Crispy Chicken Mac and Cheese
Courtesy of Perdue

This recipe uses boxed macaroni and cheese, but there is no shame in that game. Everyone could use a time-saving meal, and by using a box of mac and cheese as a base, you can spend more time cooking the chicken to perfection.

For the Crispy Chicken Mac and Cheese recipe, click here.

Buffalo Chicken Macaroni and Cheese

Buffalo Chicken Macaroni and Cheese
Courtesy of Perdue

Buffalo chicken is one of those iconic game day foods, and it’s a great addition to mac and cheese. Sriracha sauce, fire-roasted tomatoes, jalapeños, Gruyere, blue cheese and smoked mozzarella give this mac tons of smokiness and heat.

For the Buffalo Chicken Macaroni and Cheese recipe, click here.

White Cheddar Mac and Cheese

White Cheddar Mac and Cheese
Courtesy of McCormick

You can short-cut your way to scrumptious mac and cheese without using any cheese at all. This recipe enlists a white cheddar mac and cheese seasoning mix to bring the sharp flavors without any shredding. The results are similar to boxed mac and cheese, one of those guilty pleasure foods we won’t apologize for loving

For the White Cheddar Mac and Cheese recipe, click here.

Lobster Mac and Cheese

Lobster Mac and Cheese
Courtesy of Chef Lance Knowling

You don’t have to go to one of America’s best seafood shacks to get lobster. You can make a decadent lobster mac and cheese at home easily with this recipe.

For the Lobster Mac and Cheese recipe, click here.

Macaroni and Cheese Primavera

Macaroni and Cheese Primavera
Courtesy of McCormick

Pasta primavera is a great way to use the vegetables from your garden. And it gets a contemporary twist by being turned into mac and cheese. 

For the Macaroni and Cheese Primavera recipe, click here.

Beer and Bacon Mac and Cheese

Beer and Bacon Mac and Cheese
Courtesy of McCormick Gourmet

This recipe is loaded with America’s favorite things — creamy macaroni and cheese, beer and smoky thick-cut bacon. The warming flavors of coriander and cumin make this a terrific dish for fall. 

For the Beer and Bacon Mac and Cheese recipe, click here.

Macaroni and Cheese Stuffed Vegetable Boats

Macaroni and Cheese Stuffed Vegetable Boats
Courtesy of McCormick

This is the way to go if you’re looking for a healthier mac and cheese recipe. The cheese sauce is made with evaporated lowfat milk, and there is essentially no added salt. All the flavors come from mustard, basil, oregano and black pepper. The pasta is spooned into hollowed-out zucchini boats for a trendy end result.

For the Macaroni and Cheese Stuffed Vegetable Boats, click here.

Bacon Mac and Cheese Grilled Cheese

Bacon Mac and Cheese Grilled Cheese
Courtesy of King's Hawaiian

Out of all the fun spins on grilled cheese, this twist with bacon and mac and cheese is definitely worth trying. And it’s just as it sounds — creamy mac and cheese is sandwiched between buttery bread and crispy slices of bacon.

For the Bacon Mac and Cheese Grilled Cheese recipe, click here.

Ham and Swiss Mac and Cheese

Ham and Swiss Mac and Cheese
Courtesy of McCormick

The beloved combination of ham and Swiss cheese works great in this mac and cheese recipe. The Swiss adds a soft, nutty flavor to the cheese sauce and the ham adds a meaty, salty bite. 

For the Ham and Swiss Mac and Cheese recipe, click here.

Slow Cooked Pulled Pork Mac and Cheese Sliders

Slow Cooked Pulled Pork Mac and Cheese Sliders
Brent Hofacker/Shutterstock

Similar to stuffing a pile of mac of mac and cheese inside a grilled cheese sandwich, you can do the same with a pulled pork slider. This fun dish is one of the best meals you can cook with your kids.

For the Slow Cooked Pulled Pork Mac and Cheese Sliders recipe, click here.

Mac and Cheese Hotdogs

Mac and Cheese Hotdogs
Alice Day/Shutterstock

Mac and cheese hotdogs continue the theme of stuffing deliciously gooey macaroni and cheese into bread. With simple ingredients like store-bought hotdogs and soft rolls, this recipe’s addition of chives and bacon takes it to another level. 

For the Mac and Cheese Hotdog recipe, click here.

Mashed Potatoes and Macaroni

Mashed Potatoes and Macaroni
Courtesy of Idaho Potatoes

This recipe is one of the best ways to use leftover mashed potatoes. The warm, soft potatoes act as the “sauce” as the cooked macaroni is tossed right into the mashed potatoes for the ultimate comfort food.


For the Mashed Potatoes and Macaroni recipe, click here.

Vegan Mac and Cheese

Vegan Mac and Cheese
Courtesy of Idaho Potatoes

Yes, you can 100% make a vegan mac and cheese. This creamy plant-based sauce recipe is made with starchy potatoes that have been cooked and pureed with carrots and softened cashew nuts. You can top it with crispy curried breadcrumbs for even more flavor.

For the Vegan Mac and Cheese recipe, click here.

Spanish Mac and Cheese

Spanish Mac and Cheese
Courtesy of Idaho Potatoes

With spicy chorizo, paprika, green olives, Monterey and manchego cheeses, this recipe is everything a Spanish-inspired mac and cheese should be. The addition of shredded potatoes and bell peppers works well too. 

For the Spanish Mac and Cheese recipe, click here.

The Ultimate Baked Mac and Cheese

The Ultimate Baked Mac and Cheese
George Dolgikh/Shutterstock

You’re either a baked mac and cheese person or you’re not, but this recipe might win the latter over. The issue with baked macaroni is generally that the sauce dries out in the oven. However, this recipe’s three cups of heavy cream and a generous addition of mascarpone cheese ensures that it will not. Once you’ve mastered your favorite classic recipes, you can add some of these unexpected ingredients that go great with mac and cheese.

For the Ultimate Baked Mac and Cheese recipe, click here. 

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