Easy One Pot Stove Top Mac and Cheese

Easy One Pot Stove Top Mac and Cheese is the easiest way to make homemade stove top mac and cheese, and there’s only one pot to wash!

Easy One Pot Stove Top Mac and Cheese is the easiest way to make homemade macaroni and cheese! It's creamy, cheesy, and you've only got one pot to wash! @FlavortheMoments

I grew up eating homemade mac and cheese and had never had the boxed kind until I was in my early 20’s.  My roommate and another friend scoffed at me when I told them I’d never had the stuff in the blue box.  

I ate plenty of it from then on, because I was way too busy with extra curricular activities to cook much back then.  Still, my mom’s homemade mac and cheese was way better than that boxed stuff.

I’ve made plenty of boxed mac and cheese for my kids when they were little (normally the Annie’s Home Grown brand), but homemade has always been where it’s at.  

This one pot stove top mac and cheese recipe has morphed over time. 

It’s not the only one pot mac and cheese I’ve got on this site, as I figure there’s always room for more.   See my one pot baked mac and cheese, which was one my earliest recipes on this site.

Easy One Pot Stove Top Mac and Cheese is the easiest way to make homemade macaroni and cheese! It's creamy, cheesy, and you've only got one pot to wash! @FlavortheMoments

One Pot Stove Top Mac and Cheese

This easy stove top mac and cheese recipe is a revelation.  There are no powdery cheese packets with ingredients that you can’t pronounce, and your family is guaranteed to forget all about the boxed kind.  

This stove top mac and cheese is creamy, rich and cheesy, and you only have one pot to wash!  This truly is the best mac and cheese.

How do you make stove top mac and cheese?

Normally, homemade mac and cheese requires two pots.  One pot is used to boil the macaroni, and the other is used to make the béchamel sauce.

In this one pot mac and cheese recipe, the pasta cooks in the béchamel sauce, which results in even creamier pasta.

  • Start by melting the butter over medium heat in a medium to large saucepan.
  • Add the flour and ground mustard to the melted butter and whisk until combined.  Continue whisking until the flour smells like shortbread, about 1 minute.
  • Remove the pan from heat and add half of the milk a little at a time, whisking constantly until smooth.  Once smooth, add the remaining cup of milk and whisk well.  Bring to a boil over medium heat, whisking constantly to prevent lumps.
  • Once boiling, add the pasta, water and salt to taste.  Reduce the heat to medium low and cook, stirring occasionally, until the pasta is tender and has absorbed most of the liquid.
  • Remove from heat and stir in the cheese, and add salt and pepper to taste.

Easy One Pot Stove Top Mac and Cheese is the easiest way to make homemade macaroni and cheese! It's creamy, cheesy, and you've only got one pot to wash! @FlavortheMoments

How can I add flavor to mac and cheese?

There are a number of ways to add flavor to your mac and cheese!   

  • Spice it up with hot sauce, chili peppers or cayenne pepper.  See this spicy baked mac and cheese.
  • Use cheese with more flavor, such as sharp cheddar, gruyere, or smoked mozzarella.  
  • Top it with crumbled bacon as I’ve done here, or add sautéed greens or cooked veggies like broccoli or peas.
  • Add pumpkin or butternut squash purée!  See my butternut squash mac and cheese for inspiration.

Recipe tips and substitutions

  • Use whole wheat elbow pasta or shells to make this recipe whole grain.
  • Make the béchamel richer by substituting part or all of the milk with half and half.
  • Make this a healthy mac and cheese recipe by using low fat or skim milk, less cheese, and whole wheat pasta.

Easy One Pot Stove Top Mac and Cheese is the easiest way to make homemade macaroni and cheese! It's creamy, cheesy, and you've only got one pot to wash! @FlavortheMoments

What to serve with this stove top mac and cheese:

Pan seared steak

Pressure cooker short ribs

Slow cooker drumsticks

Spatchcock chicken

Turkey meatloaf

 

One Pot Stove Top Mac and Cheese

Yield: 6 servings
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Easy One Pot Stove Top Mac and Cheese is the easiest way to make homemade stove top mac and cheese, and there's only one pot to wash!
One Pot Stove Top Mac and Cheese

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground mustard (optional)
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 8 ounces uncooked elbow macaroni
  • 2 cups grated cheddar cheese

Instructions

  1. Heat the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Once melted, add the flour and ground mustard and whisk until combined. Continue to whisk until the roux is bubbly and smells like shortbread, about 1 minute.
  2. Remove from heat and add half of the milk a little at a time, whisking constantly, until the roux forms a smooth paste. Add the remaining milk all at once and whisk until there are no lumps. Place back on the stove top and cook over medium heat. Bring to a boil and add the water and elbow macaroni, stirring occasionally to keep the pasta from sticking. Cook 8-10 minutes or until the pasta is tender and most of the liquid has been absorbed.
  3. Remove from heat and stir in the cheese until smooth, and add salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Serve as-is or top with breadcrumbs or bacon if desired. Enjoy!

Notes

  • Use whole wheat elbow pasta or shells to make this recipe whole grain.
  • Make the béchamel richer by substituting part or all of the milk with half and half.
  • Make this a healthy mac and cheese recipe by using low fat or skim milk, less cheese, and whole wheat pasta.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

6

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 297 Total Fat: 18g Saturated Fat: 11g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 6g Cholesterol: 54mg Sodium: 292mg Carbohydrates: 19g Fiber: 1g Sugar: 0g Protein: 14g
Nutrition information is mean to be an estimate only. The numbers will vary based on the quantity consumed, brands used and substitutions that are made.

 

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