Light and Creamy Macaroni and Cheese Bake

Macaroni and cheese in baking dish, close up
Jean-Francois Rivi??re / Getty Images
  • Total: 40 mins
  • Prep: 10 mins
  • Cook: 30 mins
  • Servings: 6 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
671 Calories
49g Fat
43g Carbs
16g Protein
See Full Nutritional Guidelines Hide Full Nutritional Guidelines
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6
Amount per serving
Calories 671
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 49g 62%
Saturated Fat 29g 147%
Cholesterol 140mg 47%
Sodium 463mg 20%
Total Carbohydrate 43g 16%
Dietary Fiber 6g 21%
Protein 16g
Calcium 315mg 24%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

This creamy macaroni and cheese recipe is made with Cheddar cheese sauce, cooked macaroni, and seasonings.

Less cheese makes this macaroni and cheese lighter than most, but feel free to add up to 2 cups of Cheddar for a cheesier dish.

Top this macaroni and cheese with buttered bread crumbs, if you wish.


  • 5 cups cooked macaroni (about 8 ounces uncooked)
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 pepper, or to taste
  • 2 cups milk or light cream
  • 3/4 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese (or more)
  • Optional: paprika

Steps to Make It

  1. In a saucepan or saucier, melt butter over medium-low heat.

  2. Stir flour into the butter until smooth and bubbly. Stir in salt. Gradually add milk, stirring constantly.

  3. Continue to cook, stirring constantly, until thickened. Add cheese and continue to cook and stir until melted.

  4. In an 8 x 10-inch baking dish, alternate layers of macaroni and cheese sauce. Sprinkle with paprika, if desired.

  5. Bake in a preheated 350 F oven for 20 minutes, or until hot and bubbly.