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Macaroni and Cheese Muffins

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Super cheesy mac and cheese muffins are baked in single serve sizes in a cupcake tin. This recipe is perfect for lunch or a really fun side dish.

Plate with two baked macaroni and cheese muffins on it.

Grabbing your own macaroni and cheese muffin comes with its own special kind of anticipation.  They are loaded with cheese and pasta like you would expect but are way more fun than your standard baked macaroni and cheese

They make a fun finger food for lunchboxes or an exciting side dish for dinner. Make some to see for yourself.

Two macaroni and cheese muffins on a small plate, ready to eat.

It is back to school time! With all of the extra worries that involves this year, I thought I’d help take the worry of what to give the kids for lunch off your table.

This super fun mac and cheese recipe is quick and versatile. It’s perfect whether you are packing their lunchbox or feeding them at home.

In fact you could make a batch in the evening and serve them as a fun side dish for dinner. When dinner is over, bag up the leftovers and toss them in lunches throughout the week.

They are great hot but still yummy at room temperature.  Plus they can be eaten as a finger food so you don’t have to worry about silverware.

If you are eating them at home, they reheat well.  About twenty seconds in the microwave is all it takes!

Muffin pan with wells filled with mixture of cooked elbow macaroni, milk, cheese, and egg, ready to go in the oven.

Additions and Alterations

We love these muffins as they are. It is hard to beat a simple but delicious mac and cheese.

However there are countless ways you could mix up this base recipe to make it different. That way you can keep making them over and over without getting bored

One of the easiest ways to change it up is changing the type of cheese. We used cheddar and colby jack for a traditional kind of flavor.

Doing a mix of Parmesan cheese and mozzarella would be a fabulous way to give them an Italian twist.  Other great options would include gruyere, swiss, gouda, pepper jack or Monterey jack.

You could also change it up by stirring in fun add-ins. For instance, diced ham would be a perfect addition.

Maybe try peas or broccoli for added veggies. If you like the idea of adding vegetables but don’t want them to be so obvious, try shredded carrots or a little bit of acorn squash or pumpkin puree.

Muffin pan with baked macaroni and cheese muffins showing the cheese melted and everything being held together by the egg and cheese mixture.

It may sound odd, but I have been successful sneaking it in with my guys who both refuse to think they like pumpkin. They didn’t even question it when I served them acorn squash mac and cheese or a pumpkin pepper jack macaroni recipe.

Shredded chicken would be another fun addition. Even a little leftover bbq chicken would be amazing!

You could even jazz them up with fun toppings.  Butter bread crumbs baked on top would be a classic option.

French fried onions would be fun and flavorful. Even crunched up cornflakes or crackers would be yummy on your pasta.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why would you put eggs in macaroni and cheese?

The eggs in this recipe help to hold the mac and cheese together in it’s muffin form. That makes these mac and cheese cupcakes portable and extra fun.

What’s the best cheese for mac and cheese?

There are a lot of great options for making macaroni and cheese. Cheddar, gruyere, monterey jack, colby jack, and gouda are all great options. A mix of cheeses is always nice as well.

Hand holding a cupcake sized baked macaroni and cheese portion.

More Fun Ways to Make Mac & Cheese

If you like trying different varieties of mac and cheese, we have options for you! For a super easy version try making Instant Pot macaroni and cheese.

That is a great recipe that involves almost no prep.  The noodles cook in the pressure cooker before you stir in a few extra ingredients to make a cheesy sauce.

 Or for another no muss no fuss recipe, try slow cooker mac and cheese with corn.  It is a dump and cook recipe that is made in the slow cooker.  

The corn adds some extra nutrition, flavor and fun to the dish.  It is a great kid friendly side dish or would make a fun meatless meal. 

Love this recipe? Give it a ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ review in the recipe card below!

Plate with two baked macaroni and cheese muffins on it.

Mac and Cheese Muffins

Servings: 12 Muffins
Author: Carlee
Grabbing your own little macaroni and cheese muffin comes with its own special kind of anticipation. They are loaded with cheese and pasta like you would expect but are way more fun than the casserole version. They make a fun finger food for lunchboxes or an exciting side dish for dinner. Make some to see for yourself.
4.71 from 17 ratings
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes

Ingredients
 

  • 2 cups elbow macaroni uncooked
  • 1 Tablespoon butter
  • 1 egg lightly beaten
  • 2 cups shredded cheese*
  • cups milk
  • ¾ teaspoons salt
  • ¼ teaspoons ground pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon paprika

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 350° F. Grease 12 muffin wells.
  • Boil pasta in salted water until al dente. Drain.
    2 cups elbow macaroni
  • Toss hot pasta with the butter to melt the butter and coat the pasta. 
    1 Tablespoon butter
  • Add remaining ingredients and stir to combine.
    1 egg, 2 cups shredded cheese*, 1½ cups milk, ¾ teaspoons salt, ¼ teaspoons ground pepper, ¼ teaspoon paprika
  • Scoop into prepared pan (an ice cream scoop or large cookie scoop works well for this.) 
  • Bake 30 minutes or until set. Allow to cool for at least 10 minutes before removing from the pan.

Notes

Use your favorite melting cheese or a mixture of cheeses. Cheddar, colby Jack, Monterey Jack, gouda, or gruyere are all good options. 

Video

Nutrition

Serving: 1ServingCalories: 139kcalCarbohydrates: 8gProtein: 7gFat: 8gSaturated Fat: 5gPolyunsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 39mgSodium: 285mg

Nutritional Disclaimer

“Cooking With Carlee” is not a dietitian or nutritionist, and any nutritional information shared is an estimate. If calorie count and other nutritional values are important to you, we recommend running the ingredients through whichever online nutritional calculator you prefer. Calories and other nutritional values can vary quite a bit depending on which brands were used.

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4.71 from 17 votes (17 ratings without comment)
Recipe Rating




Kathy

Friday 12th of January 2024

I thought the recipes listed under "17 best LEFTOVER mac & cheese" were for using mac & cheese that was left over from a previous meal. Not starting from scratch. I had to rewrite the recipe since what I was a pan of mac & cheese left from another meal and wanted some creative ways to use it instead of just heating it up.

Carlee

Friday 12th of January 2024

Where was it listed as a good way to use leftover mac and cheese? I certainly never advertised it as that. Though you could probably add an egg and some milk to leftover mac and cheese to make muffins.

Julia

Friday 21st of August 2020

I'm certain that I wouldn't be able to share any of these with anyone else before I gobbled them all up! YUM!

Carlee

Saturday 29th of August 2020

I wouldn't blame you one bit!

Debbie

Thursday 20th of August 2020

Hi Carlee, I love this idea. I like to have nibbles in the fridge and these would do well as a hiking picnic too! Your sauce is so much easier than mine too. I always make a basic white sauce and add cheese and bits . Will have to try yours for sure!

xx

Carlee

Saturday 29th of August 2020

They are so easy to make and super tasty. I hope you enjoy them!

Andrea Nine

Wednesday 19th of August 2020

These are so fun and look so yummy!

Carlee

Saturday 29th of August 2020

Thank you!