Slow Cooker Mac and Cheese is super creamy and cheesy with no boiling or pre-made noodles and no velveeta or condensed soups!
SUPER CHEESY Slow Cooker Mac and Cheese
Slow Cooker Mac and Cheese has gone through a number of different methods and recipes in our house before we settled on this one. We’ve made versions with fully cooked noodles, half cooked noodles, noodles added at the end and finally non-cooked noodles. We’ve used a huge variety of soups/cheeses/cornstarch/cream cheese and more.
THIS IS THE RECIPE.
A LOT of people make Slow Cooker Mac and Cheese with Velveeta, but I use cream cheese to keep the mixture from separating. No cornstarch or flour is needed and this recipe is a hit every single time. Plus this dish is SUPER EASY.
Did I mention easy? It’s a dump the ingredients in, mix and cook sort of recipe:
Tips for the Slow Cooker Mac and Cheese:
- Know your slow cooker. Does it run hotter than other recipes call for? If so check this a half hour early since you don’t want the pasta to turn to mush.
- Make sure things are mixed well before starting the slow cooker.
- Don’t keep opening the slow cooker to check on the pasta, it totally throws off the cooking/the steam built up/the moisture helping to keep the pasta from drying out.
- You can swap out the cream cheese for Velveeta or American cheese if you’d like.
- You can add in a can of Cheddar Cheese Soup (Condensed) instead of cream cheese if you’d like.
- Slow Cooker Mac and Cheese with Bacon: Top with 6 slices of crumbled bacon on top just before serving. Adding during cooking will make the bacon soggy.
- Slow Cooker Jalapeno Popper Mac and Cheese: Add half of a jalapeno (minced) to the slow cooker before cooking. Top with the remaining half of finely minced jalapenos and stir before serving.
Can I make this Mac and Cheese on the stovetop?
This recipe may not be right for the stovetop, but you’ll love this one pot mac and cheese I made on the stovetop.
Looking for more great cheesy pasta dishes?
- Bacon Cheeseburger Hamburger Helper
- Cheesecake Factory Louisiana Chicken Pasta (Copycat)
- Cheesy Taco Pasta
- Philly Cheesesteak Hamburger Helper
- Chicken Bacon Ranch Pasta Bake
Looking for more side dishes?
- Ultimate Slow Cooker Mashed Potatoes
- Slow Cooker Mushroom Rice
- Slow Cooker Creamed Corn
- Roasted Garlic Butter Mushrooms
- How To Cook Spaghetti Squash (The Ultimate Guide)
Tools used in this Slow Cooker Mac and Cheese Recipe:
3 Qt. Slow Cooker: The perfect size for side dishes for 10-12 people, this slow cooker is an absolute bargain and a workhorse.
Evaporated Milk: Different than condensed milk, evaporated milk is actually milk with half of the water content removed. This makes for a thicker, creamier milk but without the high fat content of heavy cream. Condensed milk is similar to evaporated milk in that the water is removed from the milk, but the difference is about 40% of the content of that can of condensed milk is sugar. Not the best fit for this recipe.
- 8 ounces elbow macaroni
- 1 cup whole milk
- 1 12- ounce cans evaporated milk
- 2 ounces cream cheese diced
- 1 cups cheddar cheese grated
- 3/4 cup mozzarella cheese grated
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon paprika
- 1/4 teaspoon ground mustard
- 1/4 cup butter diced
- Add all the ingredients into a slow cooker and mix well.
- Cook on low for 90 minutes to 2 hours (If your slow cooker runs hot, check at 90 minutes).
- Stir gently and serve.
Talk to me about the mozz? I am loathe to use a stringy cheese in my mac n cheese. Convince me. Mayyybe gouda in its place? Muenster?
I can see why using a stringy cheese might not sound good; however, in a slow cooker you will find it yummy and a consistency that is gooey and creamy!
Could I use heavy cream and skip the evaporated milk?
Sounds rich and amazing!
Can you use heavy cream instead of whole milk?
Hi, do you cook the macaroni first?
Not sure what we did wrong…followed recipe and let cook for 2 hours but still really soupy…
I love this recipe and have made it multiple times!! This time though, I added ranch seasoning and swapped out cheddar and used a Mexican blend of cheeses!
Holy cow on a stick! This is the best recipe I’ve ever tried. Put it this way, I never leave reviews. It was both easy & mouthwatering. Will be a regular recipe in our house from now on!
Okay I love that review. Thank you so much! So glad you enjoyed it!
I accidentally cooked this on high and didn’t catch it until I checked on it at 90 minutes. The texture was all off and the noodles were mushy, so needless to say, I ruined it 🙁 I wonder how it would have turned out for me if I’d done it correctly. As another review noted, though, it seemed to have a slightly sweet flavor? The only change I made from the recipe is not adding dried mustard because I didn’t have any. I used evaporated milk, not condensed. Maybe it had something to do with the lack of dried mustard or accidentally cooking it on high. Oh well!
Can whole milk be replaced with 2%
I want to double this but accidentally only bought one can of evaporated milk. What will happen if I double everything else but not the evaporated milk?
If it seems dry, try adding some whole milk in to help make it creamier. Good luck!
Great taste, and easy to make! I struggled with a few important things though:
After 90 minutes, it came out clumpy, not creamy (I tried cooking it for the full two hours, but that just made it worse). I made it again and added an extra 1/4 cup of milk, which was a little better, but still not “creamy.”
Side note: It says, “eight servings.” So, I was expecting to get at least 3 meals out of it. Instead, I will get barely two (I’m a mid-thirties man cooking for himself). This might simply be something I should be aware of in the future.
If I want to make the entire box (16oz), would you double all the ingredients or just certain ones?
Double it all and give it an extra 30 minutes of cook time.
I followed the recipe and let it cook for 2 hrs. However, the macaroni is really chewy and under done. I added another half cup of milk and are letting it cook a little longer. Hopefully that will soften the macaroni. Any other suggestions?
How did it turn out once you added the extra milk?
going to try to make this tomorrow
But wanted to add some veggies to this — was curious if I could just throw in the broccoli too or would I need to cook it first?
I would cook it first but make sure it has some firmness still to it and toss it in in the end. Enjoy!
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