This meal is every kid’s dream. Forget about store-bought ready-to-make mac and cheese, this is the real deal, and your kids will love it. Paula Deen Crockpot Mac and Cheese is easy to make, cheesy, and delicious.
There’s something about slow-cooking food that makes it taste better than food cooked on the stovetop.
- The best thing about mac and cheese is that you can add anything to it, and it will taste amazing. Lobster, shrimp, jalapenos, you name it.
- The best thing about crockpot mac and cheese is that you don’t have to keep an eye on it, and unless you forget about it, you can’t burn it. You can vary the amount of milk to make it more or less cheesy.
So make some Paula Deen Slow Cooker Macaroni and Cheese and enjoy the smiles, hugs, and kisses from your kids.
Mac and Cheese Ingredients
- Elbow pasta – is the classic pasta shape for mac and cheese, but you can use any small pasta shape you like.
- Butter – help melted cheese not to become hard again. The extra fat makes it more meltable. Don’t worry if it doesn’t fully combine with the cheese.
- Cheddar cheese – I like to use sharp cheddar and shred it myself. Pre-shredded cheese has added fillers that make it not melt properly. Please buy a block of cheese and shred it yourself.
- Mozzarella cheese – doesn’t provide much flavor, but it does provide that delicious cheese pull because mozzarella melts differently than cheddar. You can omit it if you don’t like it.
- Sour cream – adds creaminess to the dish and makes the flavor a bit mellower.
- Cheddar cheese soup is very useful for providing flavor and helps keep the mac and cheese from becoming too hard and stuck together.
- Milk – its use makes mac and cheese-less or more cheesy. For a softer, more runny result, add more milk, and for a more heavy and cheesy result, add less milk.
- Mustard and paprika – add flavor and color to mac and cheese. Mustard adds a lot of flavors, and paprika adds a beautiful orangey color.
The full recipe and amounts can be found in the recipe card below.
How Do You Make Paula Deen’s Crockpot Macaroni and Cheese?
- First, cook the elbow pasta according to package directions. Do not overcook the pasta. Keep it al dente.
- While the pasta is cooking, in a large skillet, melt the butter, cheddar, and mozzarella cheeses. Do not worry if they don’t completely incorporate and make a homogenous mix. It’s ok if the fat separates a bit.
- Add the cheese/butter mix, the cheddar soup, and sour cream to the crockpot. Mix them.
- Mix in the cooked pasta, milk, mustard, salt, and paprika. Stir all ingredients together and cook on low for 2 hours.
What To Serve With Mac and Cheese?
For a healthier chicken dish, check out How to Make Oven Baked BBQ Chicken Wings or Cilantro Lime Chicken. If they are in the mood for beef, Cracker Barrel Meatloaf Recipe is a great option. They love Easy Tex Mex Meatballs.
Additional Add-ins & Toppins
- Make it grownup style by adding chopped lobster meat or shrimp and adding a bit of cayenne pepper.
- Chopped red and green bell peppers and jalapenos with taco seasoning makes for a great Mexican-style mac and cheese.
- Italians-style breadcrumbs and Parmesan cheese are a great topping for a more crunchy version.
Can Mac and Cheese Be Made Ahead?
You can add all ingredients into the crockpot (including butter and cheeses) and keep it in the fridge the night before.
On the day you plan to serve the dish, cook it on low for 3 hours but give everything a good mixing after the first half-hour of cooking. Mix the cheeses with the soup and milk first, so they disperse and don’t clump up.
How Long Does Crockpot Mac and Cheese Last?
You should serve it immediately for best results, but you can store leftovers for up to 4 days in the refrigerator.
- Shred your cheese. I can’t stress this enough. Pre-shredded cheese does not melt properly.
- A few minutes before the two-hour mark, check the consistency of the mac and cheese. Add a bit more milk if you feel it’s getting too sticky.
- Always check for seasoning and add salt accordingly.
- Serve immediately. As time goes by, it will harden and stick together.
Paula Deen’s Crockpot Mac and Cheese
- 2 cups uncooked elbow pasta
- 3 ½ tablespoons butter
- 2 cups grated cheddar cheese
- ½ cup mozzarella cheese
- ½ cup sour cream
- 1 - 10 ¾ oz can cheddar cheese soup
- 1 ¼ cup milk
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon mustard powder
- ½ teaspoon paprika
- Cook elbow pasta according to package instructions and drain. While pasta is cooking, using a large skillet, melt the butter and cheeses
- Place cheese and butter mixture, cheddar cheese soup, and sour cream into the pot of the slow cooker
- Add the cooked macaroni pasta, milk, mustard, salt, and paprika to the pot. Stir everything until well combined and cook on low for 2 hours.