Slow Cooker Mac and Cheese

Slow Cooker Mac and Cheese is super creamy and cheesy with no boiling or pre-made noodles and no velveeta or condensed soups!

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: Slow Cooker Macaroni and Cheese is SUPER creamy and easy to make,

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.

The easiest creamiest and cheesiest Slow Cooker Macaroni and Cheese!

Looking for more great cheesy pasta dishes?

Looking for more side dishes?

Ready to cook in five minutes! Perfectly cheesy Slow Cooker Macaroni and Cheese!

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.

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Slow Cooker Mac and Cheese

Slow Cooker Mac and Cheese is super creamy and cheesy with no boiling or pre-made noodles and no velveeta or condensed soups!
Yield 8 Servings
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 35 minutes
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Author Sabrina Snyder

Ingredients
 

  • 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

Instructions

  • 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.

Nutrition

Serving: 1g | Calories: 288kcal | Carbohydrates: 23g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Cholesterol: 49mg | Sodium: 387mg | Potassium: 135mg | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 565IU | Calcium: 204mg | Iron: 0.5mg
Keyword: Slow Cooker Mac and Cheese
Slow Cooker Mac and Cheese is super creamy and cheesy with no boiling or pre-made noodles and no velveeta or condensed soups! #cheese #macandcheese #slowcooker #recipe
Slow Cooker Mac and Cheese is super creamy and cheesy with no boiling or pre-made noodles and no velveeta or condensed soups! #cheese #macandcheese #slowcooker #recipe
Slow Cooker Mac and Cheese is super creamy and cheesy with no boiling or pre-made noodles and no velveeta or condensed soups! #cheese #macandcheese #slowcooker #recipe

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the upcoming cookbook: Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients which is being published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

Dinner, then Dessert, Inc. owns the copyright on all images and text and does not allow for its original recipes and pictures to be reproduced anywhere other than at this site unless authorization is given. If you enjoyed the recipe and would like to publish it on your own site, please re-write it in your own words, and link back to my site and recipe page. Read my disclosure and copyright policy. This post may contain affiliate links.

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Comments

  1. 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!

  2. 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!

  3. 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?

  4. 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.

  5. If I want to make the entire box (16oz), would you double all the ingredients or just certain ones?
    Thank you!

  6. 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?

  7. 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?

  8. Made this tonight for book club! It was tasty. Grated the cheese myself (vs prepackaged) Doubled the recipe in a 6 qt slow cooker. At 90 minutes I didn’t think it would be ready in time for my guests but 2 hours did the trick. Had crushed parmesan crisps (which I definitely suggest trying as a swap for a panko crust), broccoli, and bacon available as optional garnishes. Easy, delicious crowd pleaser!

  9. I made this dish for dinner and it turned out absolutely amazing! It had a gooey yet creamy consistency. I didn’t have whole milk, I had 2%, so that’s what I used. My boyfriend raved about it as well as my younger brother. I am definitely making this macoroni and cheese again! 🙂

    1. So sorry to hear that! It sounds like your slow cooker ran too hot. If you decide to make again, I would cut down the cooking time.

  10. What would happen if I used almond milk instead of whole? I don’t often have any real dairy milk around the house just for flavor preference. Any ideas if it’ll work or anything else I can add to supplement the almond milk?

    1. You’ll have to make sure to keep stirring it occasionally. The only thing I would worry about is the texture if you left it for too long. Good luck!

    1. Your recipe calls for 8 oz. of pasta. Do you mean one box or 16 oz.? When I used a full box and doubled the rest of the ingredients, it came out as cheese dip with some macaroni in it. ?

      1. Oh no, sorry to hear that. My original recipe calls for 8oz of pasta. I’m not sure what box size you had, but if you are doubling the recipe, be sure to use 16oz of pasta. Best of luck if you try again!

        1. I use (one box) 16 oz of pasta. If I use the 8 it calls for, it comes out like soup. Perfect cheese to noodle ratio with a whole box.

  11. I doubled recipe but used 2 cups of milk and 1 can evaporated milk (what I had on hand). Used cavettapi pasta. It goes from undercooked to perfect to undercooked fast. Serve it when it perfect and it is delicious. Not a great make ahead and keep for hours on warm dish.

  12. A little goopy — could have used some stock or water to thin it out a bit. But easy to make and the pasta turned out perfect in my slow cooker (100 min on Low = al dente).

  13. How long can this sit on the “warm” setting before it begins to change the texture? My pot runs a little hot but I’d like to double the recipe for a big crowd so I need to leave extra time to cook.

    1. It starts to change pretty quickly. If you plan on letting it sit, I would make sure to stir frequently to try and keep the texture the same for as long as possible. Good luck!

  14. Quadrupled the recipe for a work cookout and used my biggest crockpot. It took longer to cook than I expected, so I had to crank it up to high. But it turned out really good. I substituted one jar of Ragu cheddar cheese sauce for one of the cans of evaporated milk. It’s mostly gone — just enough left for supper tonight. Thanks for the great recipe!

  15. I wasn’t terribly impressed with this recipe. It was quick and super easy which was great but it had a very sweet taste unlike most Mac and cheese and wasn’t very creamy by 90 minutes. I used the exact ingredients and measurements it called for.

  16. I want to make this for a large party. I have an 8 qt. mealthy pot. How do I adjust the ingredients to make as much as possible? Also, will this keep and not become mushy if I set the mealthy pot to warm when it is done? THANK YOU!

    1. The biggest batch I would recommend is doubling it. To keep it on warm, you’ll want to stir it frequently because the texture will start to change the longer it cooks. I hope this helps!

  17. Could I make this faster in my electric pressure cooker ( ninja foodie )? If I were to do this, how should I adjust the ingredients?

    1. I’ve not tested this recipe using one so I’m not comfortable giving a recommendation. You might be able to find a recipe online with similar ingredients using one and use that as a guideline. Good luck!

  18. This recipe calls for whole milk, which I rarely have on hand because we use 1 per cent for almost everything. I do usually have half and half, though, and a lot of times if a recipe calls for whole milk I’ll mix a little of the half and half in to boost the fat content of the milk. I don’t remember ever having a bad outcome doing that….do think that would work in this recipe? It sounds so good, and I have a THING for mac ‘n’ cheese….at times I really crave it!

  19. Do you think these ingredients, sans pasta, would do well in a freezer-meal prep situation… trying to find some make ahead meal/freezer meal ideas.

  20. I tried this for a potluck today. Doubled the recipe and all ingredients except the salt. It was getting dry at 90mins so I added a 1/4c of water, aside from that I followed the recipe verbatim. It was a big hit with everyone! Thanks Sabrina! 2 things I would pass along to those looking to try it:
    1) Grate your own cheese. In my experience the pre-shredded does not work well in these kinds of dishes and turns out grainy.
    2) This recipe goes from undercooked to cooked quickly. I cooked a total of 2 hours (for a double batch). At 90mins the noodles were still crunchy, at 2 hours it was very well cooked – any longer and it would have been overcooked. All slow cookers are different, so just keep a close eye on it after 90mins. No one likes mushy macaroni.

  21. This Mac and cheese was perfect! I didn’t have evaporated milk so I used 2.5 cups of milk instead. I also used Mexican shredded cheese as well and I added a little extra cheese to the recipe. Turned out perfect! I ended up cooking it on high for the last 30 minutes because it looked too watery at that point. Flavor was great! Definitely saving this recipe to use for the future. Super easy!

  22. Tested this recipe before Easter dinner as a side dish. Excellent! Macaroni was cooked, flavor was great and super easy. Done in exactly 2 hours. Only change I made is did not have evaporated milk so used milk instead making it a total of 2 cups milk. Will be making for Easter! Will also be making this in the future for pot lucks.

    1. Can you make this the night before, fridge it and reheat it in the crock pot again the next day when were ready to eat it. I have a work party and can’t cook it during work. But I can reheat it on warm.. will that work?

      1. I’d be worried about the texture of the noodles in reheating. They might become a bit mushy from sitting. If you decide to try, I’d love to know how it turns out.

    1. Yes, you just may need an additional 30 minutes of cook time. I would check it at the normal time and keep an eye on it until it’s done so it doesn’t get overcooked. Enjoy!

    2. 8oz of pasta? 1 cup? That doesn’t seem to make sense. Cooked or uncooked? My box of pasta is 32oz.

      1. You’ll be adding 8 ounces of uncooked pasta which when cooked ends up being around 4 cups of cooked noodles. You can always use a food scale if you’re feeling unsure about the correct amount. Enjoy!

      2. 8 oz of pasta is the weight, not the liquid volume equivalent. Imagine a cup of feathers vs. a pound. You would need a garbage bag to fit the pound. This is one of the shortcomings of not using the metric system in the US.

  23. This recipe was really easy, but incredibly dry and bland. Followed everything exactly and yeah, it needs improvement to actually be good.

  24. Made this tonight and very disappointed. Doubled the recipe and followed instructions but ended up with glop – macaroni mush. Sorry – but don’t bother with this one.

  25. I should have looked at the reviews prior to trying it. Most of theee 5 star reviews are from people who didn’t make this recipe. Well I made it and it didn’t turn out at all. The pasta clumped on the bottom and the sauce was just oily. I would probably look for another recipe.

  26. This Mac and cheese looks amazing! Have you doubled the recipe? I’ve got a big group and want to make sure it’ll turn out. Thank you!

    1. It might take an additional 30 minutes to cook when doubled. Just check it at the normal cook time and keep an eye on it so it doesn’t over cook. Good luck!

  27. This was delicious and so easy…my family loved it ! Perfect after 2 hours. Don’t do any longer or it will dry out a bit. Super easy and frees up oven space. Would definitely make this again.

  28. Phenomenal!! I have finally found a Crock-Pot mac and cheese recipe that my whole family loves! And it couldn’t be easier to make!

  29. I didn’t like the ingredients in the evaporated milk, so the second time I made it, I substituted the same amount (24 ounces) of whole milk for the evaporated and it came out great! A lot of milk, but it tasted delicious!

  30. I used pre shredded Mexican mix cheese, and added garlic as well. I am liking the no pre boiling the pasta.

  31. This recipe has become a go to for us! Everyone in the house loves it and we’ve made many different variations of the recipe, it’s so versatile! I work nights, but moms never get a break, especially when it comes to dinner… this is an absolute life saver ??

  32. This is the best mac and cheese I EVER had…. And I am 72 years old…I just made it for a party I’m going to today….I know it will be a huge hit….?

  33. do you need to cook the pasta beforehand and is it alright to use other pasta if I don’t have elbow pasta?:

    1. No need to cook the pasta beforehand, just toss it in the slow cooker. When it comes to pasta, you can use whatever shape you’d like just make sure it’s around the same size as elbow pasta or that could affect cook time. I hope this helps!

  34. I made a double batch for a potluck at work. It was great, but ever so slightly sweet. I think the evaporated milk might have been the culprit. I think I’ll leave it out next time I make this.

  35. Have you tried doubling noodles in recipe? if so, do you double everything else as well or just the cheeses and butter?

  36. If you are doubling for a potluck. Make sure to leave extra time as i did 2 hours on low and it was nowhere near done, runny and pasta wasnt cooked. I did another hour and a bit on high and it finally cooked and soaked up. Also i found it needed lots more salt pepper then the recipe called for and i added garlic powder .

  37. I made this recipe for my husband’s surprise party because he loves mac and cheese. I quadrupled the recipe and then divided it in half. One half I made just like the recipe here, the other half i made with Monterey Jack cheese. They both turned out really well and everyone loved it. It was completely gone. The one with the Monterey Jack cheese was a little more soupy, but the other one turned out perfect. And I would say it was about 2 hour cook time. I actually had people asking for the recipe, so I would totally recommend it.

  38. This recipe is so easy and incredibly delicious! Wow! I made it as a side at thanksgiving and everyone raved about it. And now I don’t have to make the boxed kind for my kids to save time- this is so much better!!

  39. Doubled the recipe for Thanksgiving. Cook time was the same. Although tasty, the pasta seemed to disintegrate. Kids didn’t like it. Adults said it was okay.

  40. Great recipe! Thank you so much for sharing it! I’m so glad I found it. I had a recipe for Mac n cheese but not one for the crock pot. The family loved it! My kids went for seconds and I think my oldest may have gotten a third helping. I can’t wait to make it again. I had a little too much liquid, my fault, so I did put it on high for about 45-60 minutes to “burn” it off. I didn’t use all the ingredients either, just the cream cheese, milk, creamer (I didn’t have evaporated milk and I found the recipe right before starting to cook my turkey dinner. Good thing my husband doesn’t get flavored creamer. Lol.), butter, and I used generic Velveeta cheese. It’s a little salty so I plan on getting the cheeses you have in the recipe next time. I also loved I didn’t have to make the noodles first too. I’d share a picture of it but I don’t know how and it’s partly gone anyway. Happy Thanksgiving!!

      1. This recipe is my go-to I’ve used it multiple times for parties and yesterday for a Memorial Day picnic. I too added the garlic powder sans the salt and still good! Can’t wait to have it leftover for lunch today!

  41. I want to make this for my friends but I’m a college student so I don’t have the money or time to buy different kinds of cheeses. If I use store-bought pre-shredded cheese would it taste the same or at least come close?

    1. You really want to shred your own because the pre-shredded type causes a grainy texture and it’s very good. Most times, the block cheese is cheaper to buy. Good luck!

  42. Has anyone tried making this recipe with white cheese instead? Thinking about using cream cheese, Mozzerella, and Monterey Jack but not sure if that will mess anything up. Also thinking about adding a splash of white wine. I guess I’ll keep everyone updated on how it comes out …

    1. I haven’t tested it so I’m not sure. I know sometimes GF pasta can come off a bit grainy in texture. If you decide to try, I’d love to know if it worked out for you and what brand you used. Thanks!

  43. This recipe is delicious! I doubled it, and cooked about an hour 50 mins. Could you please quadruple this recipe for my giant family??

    1. You’re best bet is cooking it in 2 slow cookers. I’m afraid if you put too many noodles in at once, it’ll be hard to ensure the middle is cooked through.

    1. I haven’t tried it so I’m not sure if the ingredients would be compromised by sitting together without cooking. If you decide to try, I’d love to know how it turns out.

  44. Does this call for evaporated milk or condensed milk? You pointed out that they are different, which they are. Most are saying condensed. I am going to use evaporated milk.

  45. I’ve made this a few times for work potlucks and it’s a huge hit. The best part is that I can just bring in all the ingredients and my crock pot and make it at the office. Adding a little salsa or green chilies is popular as well.

  46. Doubled the recipe in a 5 QT for our annual campfire cookout on the river and I should have quadrupled it! Gone! And people raved about it!

  47. 4 stars for taste, two for the directions. I can tell I’d like this if it was made right. I followed your recipe to a tee. However, not all of your readers are experienced cooks. I’m a divorced, single Dad who recently discovered the benefits of the slow cooker. My mac-n-cheese came out with the mac clumped together in big mushy chunks. Logic tells me it’s because it needed to be stirred a couple times during the cooking, but your recipe doesn’t say that and your “tips” specifically say to avoid lifting the lid during cooking… so mine sat unopened and unstirred for 90 minutes and my double batch wound up as several big hunks of cheesy pasta mush. My bad for assuming the directions would say “stir” if I should stir (I even debated whether I should put the lid on the crockpot since the instructions didn’t say it, but I figured out it must supposed to be on since the “tip” mentioned above said to not open the lid during cooking). I’m disappointed because I think this could have been really good. I’ll probably try again at some point, but I hope you can think about us novice cooks the next time you write recipe/instructions.

    1. Yeah you’re the only one who had this problem and all you need to do is read the directions for the slow cooker to know you should keep the lid on. Her recipe was perfect, you shouldn’t give her a hard time bc you messed it up.

  48. This was very tasty! I cannot eat gluten / wheat, so I was worried about how well the gluten free elbows would cook. At 90 minutes, I had to add a little more milk and cook for another half hour, but that did the trick. I didn’t have evaporated milk on hand, so I used 1 cup half and half. I would like to try again soon with evaporated milk to see if it changes / improves the consistency. My baby ate a ton of it up! Thanks for the FLOUR-FREE recipe!

  49. It was absolutely delicious! However, I just made it for the first time and it turned out soupy. Did anyone else have this problem?

    1. It was too soupy for my taste too. I followed the recipe exactly, but I quadrupled it. After 3 hours, it still wasn’t finished. It was pretty good though when it finally finished (I think it was close to 4 hours), just too runny, in my opinion.

  50. This was very easy to make! Directions were easy to follow. I found it a touch too creamy and thick but overall the taste was great. Didn’t have any leftovers! Thank you for sharing this recipe.

  51. I’m making this for work and am unsure if I should cook in the morning, unplug, and then put on warm when I get there or if I should just mix everything and cook at work?

    1. I know this response is a little late. I’m browsing through the comments before I make this recipe! I have made Mac and cheese in the slow cooker before for the sole purpose of freezing it in small quantities for lunches and I’ve never had a problem. I haven’t tried it with this recipe, but it’s always worked for me before! I just let it thaw before I want to eat it and heat it up in the microwave.

  52. Hi – can this recipe be tripled? I’m excited to try this for a backyard party we’re having next weekend with a lot of kids!

  53. This was good, but it did come out quite thick and even after two hours the noodles were still a bit under cooked. I am curious how you would adjust the recipe to make a bit more creamy (more milk or evaporated milk). I did stir the Mac and cheese about four times during the cook.

  54. I made this exactly as per the recipe but it turned out too sweet.  It must have been the evaporated milk.  It’s nowhere near as good as my usual stovetop and baked version.  What a disappointment.  That’s what I get for trying a shortcut!

    1. Did you, by chance, use condensed milk rather than evaporated milk. That would definitely make it sweet and the cans can be mixed up on the store shelf, so it would be an easy mistake.

  55. Do you find any differences in the quality of macaroni generic brand versus higher-priced? Have you made this with whole-grain pasta?

    1. I prefer Barilla pasta but you can use whatever your preference is. I haven’t made it with whole-grain before but I’d love to know what you think if you decide to try it.

  56. Made this tonight! First crockpot Mac & Cheese I have ever made! It was a big winner with the Hubby & Kids! I Will Definitely Make This Again! Thanks Sabrina For Sharing!

  57. Made this for a company lunch. Doubled the recipe and it all went; was delicious and easy. Had to print the recipe for several co-workers! Highly recommend for a yummy and easy mac n cheez!!

  58. Thanks for this great recipe. This was my first slow cooker meal but it came out pretty good. I tripled the recipe so we can have enough for 20-30 guests. It took about 2 hours and I stirred it every half hour to make sure it cooked evenly. I used Kraft shredded triple cheddar with smoked Gouda that I shredded myself. The flavor was great! I added bacon which paired well with the smoke flavor of the Gouda. Like others said, it was a little grainy probably because of using pre-shredded Kraft and not as stringy since I didn’t use mozzarella. But still great and I’d definitely make it again. 

  59. I made this for a cookout potluck at my work. I doubled the recipe and it was ok. It got really thick, I added some water. But then when it was time to eat, someone had unplugged my crockpot and moved it, so the mac and cheese wasnt that warm. (I know thats not the recipes fault!)
    Even with being kinda thick and not very warm, it was still gone by the end of the hour!

  60. Hi! Question-I do you think shells would work as well? I don’t want them to breakdown.
    Thanks!

    1. It would depend on the thickness of the shells. I’m afraid if they’re thinner, they would breakdown and fall apart.

  61. Any ideas on how to not make the sauce grainy? Followed exactly and it tastes AMAZING but our sauce came out a little grainy 

    1. So glad to hear you loved the taste!! Usually graininess comes from bagged pre-grated cheese. Try grating your own next time. That should help. 🙂

  62. I made double this recipe for work, it went over well… My only question is I cooked it for a little over 2 1/2 hours and the noodles never actually got softer, they still had a little bit of chew. Any suggestions for next time?

    1. It gets harder to figure out timing when you double it because generally the noodles closest to the outside will cook faster than the noodles that are in the middle of the slow cooker. It’s just a lot of noodles at once. You can try and stir it throughout the cooking process but that would affect the cook time as well because you’re continually taking off the lid and releasing heat. Maybe just make it in two separate slow cookers to avoid the issue all together for next time. I’m so glad you enjoyed it though.

    1. I haven’t tested it but my gut is telling me it might make it “soupy”. I would recommend substituting the condensed milk with 1/2 cup milk and 1/2 cup half and half instead. I’d love to know how it turns out if you decide to try.

  63. I made this – it was super easy! However, I felt like it was more of a soup consistency than mac & cheese should be. It also tasted a little different to me me than a boxed mac & cheese- maybe due to the mozzarella cheese. Will still enjoy it! 🙂

    1. I’m so glad you enjoyed it! It sounds like it needed to simmer longer to thicken up. Try that for next time. 🙂

  64. Made this tonight for dinner and OMG… best Mac and cheese I’ve ever had! I’m a terrible cook so I was surprised with how well this turned out. I think next time I will add a little more milk and cream cheese. It lost a little bit of its creamy texture as it cooled but the flavor was still an A+! Thank you!

    1. I haven’t tested it but as long as the noodle is thicker, you should be ok. If it’s thinner, it’ll breakdown in the slow cooker and turn to mush.

  65. How long can I leave this on low once it’s cooked without the pasta getting mushy or drying out  With family coming and not knowing exactly what time we are eating. Thank you 

    1. Yes, you’ll want to double up on everything. It may even take about 1/2 hour longer. Just watch it at the end so it doesn’t go too long though.

  66. I made this today and I am very pleased. It was probably finished after 90 minutes but I was out and didn’t check until the 2 hours were up. I think it would have benefited from being stirred halfway through but I stirred it as soon as I lifted the lid when it was done and all was well. I used mostly sharp cheddar cheese as that was what was one hand. I am sure I will keep this recipe as the template for future mac and cheese meals and experiment with the cheeses. What won me over from all of the other crockpot recipes is that this one doesn’t require making the pasta ahead of time and that everything can be made right in the pot.

  67. The grandkids are coming for a week (5 & 7) and I’m going to make this mac & cheese, but sneak in some fresh spinach! Thoughts?

    1. I love being sneaky too!! I would recommend using well drained frozen spinach because fresh spinach will release too much liquid while cooking down.

  68. Thanks for this super easy recipe! I made a double batch of this for a potluck and it turned out so delicious! It disappeared in 10 minutes. I’m usually lazy and buy pre-shredded cheese, but knew I shouldn’t take a shortcut for this recipe. Grating it myself was definitely worth it. Followed the recipe exactly except I bumped up the spices a bit and used smoked paprika. Done after 2 hours – probably could’ve done an hour and 45 minutes too. My only suggestion is to spray the pot with cooking spray first, to hopefully make clean up easier.

    1. I’m so glad you guys enjoyed it! It is a bit more work but glad you were able to see that it was worth it! Thanks for coming back to let me know!

  69. Hi Sabrina. I am going to make this on Saturday for a holiday party! Is the pasta amount correct? 8 ounces doesn’t seem like a lot of pasta so I wanted to double check. Thanks!

    1. Yes, half a box! But for a party you may want to double. Also since doubling I recommend stirring after every hour.

      1. Half a box of pasta was not enough for the serving size stated. Also, there was so much sauce in comparison to the noodles. I had to boil the rest of the box and add. The recipe should list the 16oz box in the ingredients not 8.

  70. Hey Sabrina! I’m excited to make this recipe. Question for you about cooking time if I double the recipe. Do I up the time to 180 min to 4 hours or still keep it at 2 hour max?

    1. Check it at the 2 hour mark and if it needs to go longer, give it another half hour max. Sorry it took me awhile to respond. The holidays are crazy around here!!

  71. Have you doubled this recipe? Planning to make this for a potluck, wasn’t sure how long it would take – guessing 3-4 hours if doubling but wanted to ask just in case you have 🙂

    1. It will take about the same cook time, possibly a half an hour extra when doubling this recipe. It’s such a great dish to take to a pot luck! Good decision with doubling the recipe to make sure everyone gets some because this one goes quickly!

    2. I have doubled this recipe! It took me 1 hour extra to get it where I thought it was set up enough. But I took liberties on evaporated milk substitutions while doing it too. I boiled down left over whole milk from the recipe, and used our half-and-half we use for coffee to substitute for the extra evaporated milk I needed. If you followed exact, it might take an extra thirty, but we left it a little longer to absorb the extra liquid from my substitution. I was worried at first but told myself to forget about it and just wait and see while I wrapped presents, and it ended up scrumptiously. * So, about 1 hour extra when doubled for me, 2.5 hours total.

  72. GIRL!!! It’s like you know the way into my soul!!!! This looks DEVINE! I haven’t found a slow cooker mac and cheese I love, so I am SO trying this…like tonight. Thanks!

  73. We have out-of-town family coming to visit this weekend, this will be perfect! Everyone loves mac and cheese and I love easy!!