11 Delicious Mac & Cheese Recipes That Are Way Better Than Packaged

1 Spicy Macaroni and Cheese with Jalapeños and Prosciutto

Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

Give your macaroni and cheese a big boost by giving it some spice. Between the spiciness of the jalapeños and the smokiness of the prosciutto, this recipe is packed with flavorful ingredients that are sure to satisfy. And unlike many macaroni with cream and butter, this recipe starts with a béchamel sauce, which is made with butter, flour and milk – a low-calorie alternative.

2 Healthy Mac and Cheese Recipe

Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

This mac and cheese recipe is a lighter version of the classic comfort food, with a low-fat béchamel base, extra sharp cheddar cheese, parmesan and Greek yogurt. And what homemade mac and cheese dish would be complete without a golden brown layer of crunchy bread crumbs?

3 Mac and Cheese With Spinach, Ham, and Tomato

Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

Give your macaroni and cheese a nutritional boost by adding some vegetables and protein. This recipe calls for spinach, ham, and cherry tomatoes, but you can adapt it to your own tastes by using broccoli instead of spinach, turkey instead of ham, and so on. When it comes to macaroni and cheese, there really are no rules!

4 <strong>Crumb Topped Macaroni and Cheese Recipe</strong>

Waterbury Publications, Inc.

Who said muffins were only for desserts? These individually portioned macaroni appetizers provide some extra nutrition by replacing the regular noodles with vegetable macaroni. For an extra burst of veggies, feel free to sprinkle some greens in the cups.

5 Copycat Cracker | Barrel Mac and Cheese<br>

Kiersten Hickman/Eat This, Not That!

Cracker Barrel’s mac and cheese is a favorite menu item, but why leave your house to go to the restaurant when you don’t have to? Made with a creamy Colby cheese sauce, this dish is so iconic we had to recreate it at home.

6 Copycat Cheesecake Factory Fried Mac and Cheese

Courtesy of Lil Luna

Cracker Barrel is not the only restaurant chain with a cherished mac and cheese dish. This copycat version of The Cheesecake Factory’s Fried Mac and Cheese bears an uncanny resemblance to the original. Crispy on the outside and creamy on the inside, these deep-fried mac and cheese balls are best served with a side of marinara or Alfredo sauce for dipping.

7 Creamy Instant Pot Cauliflower “Mac” and Cheese

Kiersten Hickman/Eat This, Not That!

Cauliflower has been on the rise for a few years now, and for good reason. It’s a high-fiber, low-carbohydrate, versatile ingredient that can be used in countless recipes. While this is not technically macaroni and cheese, it is a satisfying alternative for anyone who wants to reduce their carbohydrate intake and still enjoy something cheesy.

8 Macaroni and Cheese with Chard and Sage Bread Crumbs

Just because you don’t eat gluten doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy macaroni and cheese. This gluten-free version is made with aged gruyere, parmesan and chard and is garnished with gluten-free breadcrumbs and fresh sage for extra flavor and texture.

9 Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese

Courtesy of Flour On My Face

If you’re looking for another recipe that seamlessly incorporates a vegetable, this recipe is for you. This mac and cheese combines silky butternut squash with cheddar and parmesan cheese for an easy-to-make comfort meal.

10 The BEST Vegan Mac and Cheese

Courtesy of Ambitious Kitchen

For a vegan twist on the cheese dish, make this plant-based “cheese” sauce, which is made with raw cashews, nutritional yeast, Dijon mustard, almond milk and spices. To spice up the sauce, you can add one jalapeño pepper.

11 Buffalo Chicken Mac and Cheese

Courtesy of The Cozy Cook

Buffalo chicken meets mac and cheese in one perfect dish. From the shredded chicken tossed in creamy blue cheese dressing to the buffalo sauce, cheddar cheese, and spices, this mac and cheese is layered with tangy and savory flavors.

Eliana Brown is a writer/reporter at's interesting news department in Los Angeles. She publishes daily updates on celebrity news, human interest pieces, and packaged visual galleries. Before joining the HollywoodLife team, Erin…

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