Slow Cooker Macaroni and Cheese

Slow Cooker Macaroni and Cheese

Are you looking for a Slow Cooker Macaroni and Cheese recipe that is going to take your taste buds on a ride? You’re going to love the ease and flavor of this great recipe!

crock pot mac and cheese

It’s no secret that we love our Slow Cooker. Not only does it do all the work for us, but it allows us to literally just add in the ingredients and walk away. What’s not to love about that?!

This gives us time to do some errands, get to work, do some cleaning or honestly, kick my feet up and relax a bit. And if I do happen to leave and come home while it’s cooking, the smells that greet me at the front door just can’t be topped! 

slow cooker mac & cheese

If you’re looking for a truly simple and easy crockpot recipe, this is the one for you. Say goodbye to making your mac and cheese on the stove top and let your slow cooker do all the hard work.

Not that there is anything wrong with stove top macaroni and cheese. We love that also. But this is so easy and quick! You just throw it all in the slow cooker and let it do all throw work.

This Slow Cooker Macaroni and Cheese recipe is the ultimate mac & cheese recipe. It is super cheesy and creamy. And who doesn’t love that combination?

This recipe is my go to Macaroni and Cheese recipe when I don’t have oven space and I want a recipe I know  everyone will love.

It’s easy to assemble and is a creamy, comfort food for weeknight dinners or potlucks. Just toss it in the crock pot and your good to go. Made entirely in the slow cooker, saves so much time. 

crock pot mac & cheese

What happens if I don’t grease the slow cooker before adding in the ingredients?

All that really means is that there is going to be a lot of cleaning for you to do afterward. It won’t change the taste at all but it could change the texture.

If the noodles are starting to stick, you’re going to really have to scrape and scrub to get them off. This could break the noodles and cause them to look less than pretty. I highly suggest you grease the slow cooker. 

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Slow Cooker Macaroni and Cheese

Slow Cooker Macaroni and Cheese

Slow Cooker Mac & Cheese

How to make slow cooker macaroni and cheese:

  • Add salt to a large pot of boiling water and cook macaroni pasta for about six minutes.
  • Strain and rinse to cool pasta. Grease the bowl of a slow cooker with cooking spray and combine all ingredients in the slow cooker, reserving 1/4 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese.
  • Stir to combine all ingredients and place the lid on the slow cooker. Cook on HIGH for 2-3 hours, stirring twice during the cook time. Sprinkle with reserved shredded sharp cheddar cheese and cover until cheese has melted before serving.

ingredients for mac and cheese

Can I use almond milk or skim milk in this recipe?

While I have actually never tried this, I did do a bit of research on this and found that many of the comments stated that the addition of almond milk wasn’t advised for this recipe.

If at all possible, stick to the listed ingredients as close as you can. 

This way, you’ll ensure that you get the best tasting slow cooker macaroni and cheese possible. After all you want it ti be rich and creamy and super hearty!  

What about the cheese used in this recipe? 

I would suggest grating your own cheeses. I know it’s a pain in the you know what but it’s worth it.

It’s so much easier to open a bag of pre-shredded cheese and that cheese is ok for certain things.

But most pre-shredded cheeses are coated in cellulose, which keeps the cheese from clumping together in the bag. That coating prevents the cheese from  melting down properly.

So you won’t get as gooey of a cheese sauce and it can leave your cheese sauce a bit on the gritty side. This recipe comes out best with cheese that you grate yourself believe me on this! 

Slow Cooker Mac & Cheese

What toppings would you serve on this slow cooker macaroni and cheese?

Anything and everything! The first answer that came to mind was MORE cheese! But if you like a bit of spice, you can always add some fresh jalapenos and hot sauce as well.

Just make certain that you’re seasoning up your own bowl so that everyone can enjoy the taste and flavor as it was originally cooked. 

Best Mac and Cheese

There you have it! Some simple answers to questions before you start the recipe. Now that you know a bit more about this slow cooker recipe, let’s get down to the details of how to make this delicious Slow Cooker Macaroni and Cheese!

Slow Cooker Mac and Cheese

OTHER SLOW COOKER RECIPES YOU MIGHT LIKE:

Slow Cooker Chicken and Gravy

Crock Pot Elvis Pudding Cake

Slow Cooker Asian Chicken Noodle Soup

Crock Pot Reese Peanut Butter Lava Cake

Slow Cooker Poblano Salsa Chicken

Slow Cooker Gingerbread Cake

Slow Cooker Macaroni and Cheese

Are you looking for a Slow Cooker Macaroni and Cheese recipe that is going to take your taste buds on a ride? You're going to love the ease and flavor of this great recipe!

4.01 from 830 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours
Servings: 8 Servings
Calories: 516kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. macaroni pasta, uncooked

  • 1 tbsp. Sea salt
  • ½ tsp. ground black pepper

  • 6 tbsp. salted butter

  • 1 (12 oz.)  can evaporated milk

  • 2 ½ cups  cups milk

  • 1 lb. shredded sharp cheddar cheese

  • 1 ( 8oz.) Velveeta cheese
  • 1 ( 8 oz.) package cream cheese, softened

  • ½ tsp. dry mustard powder

Instructions

  •  Add salt to a large pot of boiling water and cook macaroni pasta for about 6 minutes.
  • Strain and rinse to cool pasta.
  • Grease the bowl of a slow cooker with cooking spray and combine all ingredients in the slow cooker, reserving 1/4 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese.
  • Stir to combine all ingredients and place the lid on the slow cooker. Cook on high for 2-3 hours, stirring twice during the cook time. Making sure noodles aren't over cooked!
  • Sprinkle with reserved shredded sharp cheddar cheese and cover until cheese has melted before serving.

Notes

Check pasta after 2 hours to see if it is cooked. You don't want it over cooked and mushy. 
Any nutritional data I provide is an approximation and actual dietary information can vary based on ingredients and proportion sizes

Nutrition

Serving: 8g | Calories: 516kcal | Carbohydrates: 47g | Protein: 21g | Fat: 32g | Saturated Fat: 19g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 0.4g | Cholesterol: 90mg | Sodium: 1221mg | Potassium: 168mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 972IU | Vitamin C: 0.02mg | Calcium: 501mg | Iron: 1mg
4.01 from 830 votes (818 ratings without comment)

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63 Comments

  1. Marsha McKlveen says:

    Only 1 Tablespoon of Sharp Cheddar cheese?

    1. Hi Marsha it’s 1 lb. not 1 tbsp.

      1. Can I use bagged shredded cheese or actually shred the block of cheese?

        1. Shredding your own is always better as bag cheese has ingredients in it to keep it from sticking together. But you can use bagged if you want

  2. Hello
    Can I put this in slow cooker on low if so how long do you think it would take?

    1. Hi Kim we have never made it on low so I’m not quite sure. The recipe calls for 2-3 hours on high so I would say to try for 5 but watch it

    2. This recipe calls for 3-4 hours on high. We have never made it on low. If you want to try it I would say maybe 5 hours but I would watch it carefully

  3. 5 stars
    This recipe sed to have a lot of flavor. So delicious

  4. How many does this recipe feed? I am looking to make this for a party.

    1. It depends on the serving. It’s one pound of pasta so I would say 8 if there is a lot of other food and people don’t want seconds.

  5. Can I make this without cooking the noodles at all first?

    1. I’ve never made it any other way. I don’t know how long you would need to cook the pasta in the crockpot along with the sauce because the cheese
      sauce only cooks for a certain amount of time.

      1. 5 stars
        I took this to a family reunion picnic and it was a hit. I hesitated on the velveeta cheese, but went ahead and followed the recipe. It was cheesy and delicious. I thought it got done in like an hour instead of two to three hours. It ended up sitting on warm for a long time. Next time I won’t let it cook so long. It wasn’t dry, and was delicious, but a lot of the creaminess was cooked out.

        1. Sharon since we make this so often we have found that it really depends on what slow cooker you are using. Some cook very fast others cook much slower. We have one I would never use for this because it really just cooks too quick.

        2. Amanda Clay says:

          5 stars
          This is my go to Mac and cheese! I will never make it another way. I have made it for every holiday! Everyone loves it! Especially the littles!

          1. It is always a bi hit!!

  6. Ashley Mullen says:

    Could you double this recipe in the crockpot and cook for same amount of time? Do you think it would fit doubled in a standard size crockpot?

    1. I’ve never made a double recipe in a standard size crockpot. I would use a larger one since this recipe fits this crockpot perfectly.
      If using a larger crockpot I would check to see if it is done at the suggested cooked time.

    2. 5 stars
      I made one and a half times the recipe. It all fit perfect in a 6qt casserole. I doubt doubling it would fit. I took it to a reunion of about 45 people and there was enough since most everyone just took a spoonful.

  7. 5 stars
    I eliminate to salt and add bacon. Everyone loves it.

    1. That’s great Karla! Glad you all liked it!

  8. 5 stars
    Made this today for Thanksgiving! It came Out PERFECT!!!!

    1. That’s so great to hear! glad you enjoyed it!

  9. Can you use more real cheese to substitute for Velveets.

    1. You could use any cheese you normally use in a crockpot mac and cheese. After trying many recipes we found we loved this one best.

  10. Please tell me how you add cooked hamburger to this to make it Hamburger Mac N’ Cheese???

    1. Hi Peggy I would just cook it on your stovetop and add it after draining. You can add it the last 20-30 minutes of cooking since it’s already cooked.

  11. Have you done everything as directed put in crockpot but not started cooking for a couple hours?

    1. I think you should be able to do that. We never have but if everything cold I don’t see why not.

  12. Instead of using the slow cooker, how long would you put this in the oven?

    1. We have never made it in the oven only in the slow cooker but I would think the same as any mac and cheese recipe.

  13. Could you use shell pasta instead of the macaroni?

    1. Of course! We have used small shells and it comes out perfect

      1. Can I use the shredded cheese that’s already shredded in a bag?

        1. Yes that should be fine.

      2. I am wondering how long to cook it in the oven as well. This is the first Mac and cheese recipe I have seen that doesn’t require adding an egg. I also wonder if you could substitute American cheese for the cheeses. I am trying to remember my mom’s recipe. TIA

        1. We have never cooked it in the oven but I would say about 35-40 minutes at 350. I have never used just American cheese for Mac and Cheese

  14. Sounds like a lot of salt!

    1. If 1 tbsp. Sea salt in the pasta water is too much for you use less.

      1. 4 stars
        Rob my only thing is this I actually never ever cook my noodles the time the box says bc of it getting mushy anyway so I did it half the time on the noodles and I used 1lb ex sharp cheddar 8oz Gouda cheese and 8 cream cheese I was outta heavy whipping cream but I usually use that instead of milk .

        1. I get it! We sometimes change things around when we are cooking and use what we have on hand. This recipe has been made many different ways. But we posted the one everyone loves the most. Feel free to change things up so it works for you!

  15. Ginger Harris says:

    5 stars
    This is the bomb

    1. Thank you Ginger so glad you loved it!

  16. 5 stars
    I made two crocks full yesterday. It turned out so good! Creamy and full of cheesy strings. Unfortunately, when I set it up at the party, someone turned it up to high, so by the time we ate it was overcooked and mushy… So be careful!

    1. So glad you liked it Phyllis. Sorry about turning it on high! That sure does ruin the whole thing!

  17. Oh my goodness! This turned out sooooo good! Thank you for sharing your recipe.
    PS. Only cooked it for 2 hours on high & stirred it twice.

    1. So glad you liked it!! 🙂

  18. What size slow cooker?

  19. 5 stars
    Best Mac & cheese I’ve ever made…get so many compliments and it’s so easy!

    1. So happy you like this mac & cheese recipe! We love this easy recipe!! 🙂

  20. Susan Cameron says:

    Can I put this in a 7 court crockpot?

    1. The one we use is a 7 quart slow cooker

  21. I need to triple the servings…is tripling the numbers ok or would it be more or less???

    1. I would triple every thing to keep it cheesy and creamy

  22. 5 stars
    I made the Mac N Cheese recipe for a family Christmas dinner. Everyone loved this Mac N Cheese! Since there were going to be 12 people and it said it served 8 I added half a recipe to it. I had way more than I needed. Makes more than you think. It was so good I will be making this recipe again!

    1. So glad everyone loved it! We usually make this as a main dish that’s why the serving for 8 and leftovers are always good

  23. I’m making this for the first time. I’m excited to see how it comes out. Question: The recipe calls for 1 (8 oz.) package of Velveeta, but the smallest Velveeta package is 16 oz. Do I use the whole package or just half?

    1. It’s 8 oz Velveeta so half of the 16 oz package

  24. Sherri Metz says:

    5 stars
    This is the most delicious Mac and cheese recipe. Thank you for sharing!!

    1. So happy you liked this recipe. It’s one of our favorites 🙂

  25. Have you ever made this using one of those slow cooker bags to help with clean up?

    1. You can use it if you want to. We normally don’t