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Creamy Stovetop Mac and Cheese Recipe

This homemade mac and cheese is no-frills and super easy to make. It takes about 20 minutes from start to finish and can be made in one pot on the stovetop (cutting down on those dinner dishes!).
Course Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 8 servings
Calories 456kcal
Author Elizabeth Walling



  • In a large pot, cook macaroni until al dente or desired tenderness. Strain and let sit while you prepare the cheese sauce.
  • Place the empty pot back on the stove over medium heat. Melt butter until it starts to bubble. Whisk in the flour. Allow the flour and butter mixture to simmer for 1-2 minutes, stirring frequently.
  • Slowly stir in the milk. Add hot sauce, mustard powder, and sea salt. Cook over medium heat just until the mixture starts to thicken.
  • Reduce heat to low. Stir in the shredded cheese until it just starts to melt. Stir in cooked macaroni, and slowly turn the pasta over in the sauce mixture until cheese is completely melted. Remove from heat and let stand for 5 minutes.
  • Serve warm as a side dish or a main dish with a side of steamed veggies.



Substitution Ideas:
I wrote up this stovetop mac and cheese recipe the old-fashioned way with no specialty ingredients, but it's very adaptable.
For instance, I love to use Einkorn flour and Einkorn pasta -- they're made from heirloom wheat. (Read more about Einkorn wheat here.)
Want to go gluten free? Use corn elbow macaroni or quinoa rotelle. Replace the all-purpose flour with arrowroot powder.
Also, feel free to experiment with blending different cheeses for more complex flavors. Colby, gouda, parmesan... get creative and have fun.


Calories: 456kcal | Carbohydrates: 47g | Protein: 19g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Cholesterol: 60mg | Sodium: 323mg | Potassium: 228mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 630IU | Calcium: 370mg | Iron: 1.2mg