Creamy One Pot Macaroni and Cheese

This One Pot Macaroni and Cheese is so easy! Cook the macaroni right in the milk that helps to make the sauce. Ready in 15 minutes!

Creamy One Pot Macaroni and Cheese

Creamy One Pot Macaroni and Cheese

One Pot Macaroni and Cheese

I have all kind of macaroni and cheese recipes on the blog, and today I have a Creamy One Pot Macaroni and Cheese to add to the collection. This is a great recipe to make for lunch when your kids are in the mood for something simple, hot, and filling, and you need something that comes together in without any fuss. This recipe is so easy and we loved the extra creamy results.

This recipe is extra easy because you cook the macaroni right in the milk that helps to make the sauce. There’s no water to boil or noodles to rinse. You just cook it all in one pan and it’s done in about 15 minutes. This is literally just as easy as that blue box stuff, but it tastes like real food and doesn’t have a fluorescent orange glow to it. Trust me, that fake mac ‘n cheese is just gross once you start making your own.

Creamy One Pot Macaroni and CheeseMy other stove-top macaroni and cheese recipe is still a favorite, but I don’t always have canned milk on hand. The difference between the two is that this recipes makes a really thick and sticky macaroni and cheese (it almost has the texture and taste of baked macaroni to me), and the other recipe has almost a runny sauce to it. They are both excellent but different enough that I wanted to share both recipes.

What pasta is best for mac and cheese?

I prefer elbow macaroni but you can mix it up with bow tie, fusilli or penne pasta.

How do you fix runny mac and cheese?

If you end up having too much liquid in your macaroni and cheese, just simply  bring the contents back to a boil. Boil the milk down to the desired level. Make sure you stir constantly or the milk or cheese will burn on the bottom of your pot.

Can I use water instead of milk for macaroni and cheese?

You can use water instead, but your mac n cheese will lack in creaminess.

Creamy One Pot Macaroni and Cheese


Creamy One Pot Macaroni and Cheese

  • Author: Melissa Griffiths-Bless this Mess
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: serves 4 1x


This One Pot Macaroni and Cheese is so easy! Cook the macaroni right in the milk that’s used to make the sauce. Creamy, delicious & ready in 15 minutes!



  • 2 1/2 cups whole or 2% milk
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 2 cups dry elbow macaroni
  • 1 to 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • More salt and pepper to taste


  1. In a large pot add the milk, butter, and macaroni noodles. Turn the burning on to medium and bring the mixture to a simmer, stirring often. Reduce the heat if the milk seems to stick to the bottom of the pan and stir often until the noodles are cooked though, about 10 minutes. Stir in the cheese and salt until everything is melted.
  2. Depending on the type and sharpness of cheese you may want to add up to another cup of cheese. Taste it and see. I used a moderately sharp cheddar and liked it at about 1 and 1/4 cups of cheese. If I had used something milder I think I would have used more. I’ve made this a handful of times and each time I seem to use a different amount of cheese, depending on my mood and how much cheese I have in the fridge.
  3. Serve right away.

  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Stove-Top
  • Cuisine: American


  • Serving Size: Serves 4
  • Calories: 397
  • Sugar: 7.9g
  • Sodium: 268mg
  • Fat: 18.6g
  • Carbohydrates: 39.9g
  • Protein: 17.2g
  • Cholesterol: 53.9mg

Keywords: mac and cheese, mac n cheese, macaroni and cheese, homemade mac and cheese, best mac and cheese, easy mac and cheese recipe, how to make mac and cheese

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One Pot Macaroni and Cheese is so easy! Cook the macaroni right in the milk that’s used to make the sauce. Creamy, delicious & ready in 15 minutes!

One Pot Macaroni and Cheese

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about me

About Melissa

I have a lot going on, and I’d much rather spend my time enjoying my messes than fretting about what I’m going to make for dinner. Over the past few years, I’ve nailed down a few strategies that helped me keep my kitchen running like a well-oiled machine, so I started Bless This Mess to help other mess-loving parents solve the nightly dinner delimma—no stress, no drama, just really great food your whole family will love. Read more...

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I just can’t get the grainy texture out. Help!

Macaroni was tough after 10 minutes and needed more milk. Not much flavor in this recipe so I added ground mustard, paprika, and garlic salt like most macaroni and cheese recipes call for. Much better with those additions. Still wasn’t a fan of the chewy macaroni though. I would book the macaroni noodles in water for at least 5 minutes next time before adding to the milk.

I’m absolutely in LOVE with this!!! I’ve tried dozens of Mac and cheese recipes to complete our Friday movie nights but this one topped them all because it’s easy AND delicious.
I had loads of cream cheese packets in the fridge so I stirred those in too and it added to the creaminess.
Thank you thank you thank you!!!

Thanks so much for sharing this recipe. I made it tonight with no issues. Added some steamed cauliflower at the end. My husband loved it and had seconds. The 6 year old ate it with no fuss. Will definitely add this recipe to my recipe book.

This recipe looks so simple and delicious, exactly what I’m looking for for a quick mid week meal! Would it reheat well if I prepared the night before?

Saved me a trip to the store and the whole family is hooked on this now. Thanks!

Really cheesy and yummy! Made with friends on a Friday night. Easy to make in a short amount of time. Will make again!

Wow! This is great! I live cooking it in front if friends n watch the look on their faces!! Lol.

Just made this for my family. One kiddo had some dental work so needed something soft in a pinch. Even my picky 11 year old loved it! (She swore off M&C 8 years ago!) This one is rich in flavor as well as filling unlike the boxed stuff! Will keep and make again!

I made this and it tasted fine but the texture was kind of chalky? Almost as if there was flour in it.
Any suggestions?

I halved it, used half n half plus a little water when it got too thick. Used colby jack. The trick is SIMMERING, NO BOIL,and it will work out! Even used Tinkyada Gluten free pasta!! Thank you!! Super excited,and the kids are too! I can make 4x the amount that is in a box of Annies gf mac n cheese!!

Made this for lunch. Added corn with the macaroni and spinach with the cheese. Delicious!

Bless This Mess - About Me

I’m Melissa, and I want to help you feed your family wholesome food.

As a hobby farmer and mom of five, I’m all about keeping it simple in the kitchen. I want healthy meals that feed my family well, and then I want to get back to my (messy) life. Let’s work together to find something yummy for your dinner table.