The Cozy Cook

Paula Deen’s Macaroni and Cheese

Paula Deen’s Macaroni & Cheese can be baked in the oven or in the Slow Cooker! Made extra creamy with eggs, cream cheese, and 2 other cheeses!

Love Paula Deen recipes? Be sure to try her corn casserole and green bean casserole next!

Overhead Shot of a big pot full of creamy macaroni and cheese with a spoon scooping it out of the pot.

Paula Deen’s Macaroni and Cheese

If you’re looking for some delicious Southern-style Macaroni and Cheese, then look no further, this is IT!

Being a Northerner, I had never actually made mac and cheese with eggs before trying this recipe, and I have to admit, I was skeptical at first. But it adds this really creamy element to the dish that my family loves.

The ingredients are simple, it’s easy to throw together, and you can make it fully on the stove top, bake it like a casserole, or even let it cook in the Crock Pot. Let’s do it.

Ingredients

  • Elbow Macaroni
  • Unsalted Butter- You can also use salted butter and skip the salt seasoning.
  • Half and Half
  • Eggs– Used for a thicker, creamier consistency.
  • Sour Cream
  • Cheddar Cheese– Purchase a block and grate your own at home for creamiest consistency. Heluva Good! Orange Sharp Cheddar is my preferred brand, it melts really well and tastes great.
  • American Cheese– Velveeta orange packaged slices work well
  • Cream Cheese
  • Cayenne Pepper 
  • Salt/Pepper

PRO TIP: The half and half, sour cream, and cheeses should be close to room temperature prior to being added to the macaroni.

Ingredients to make Paula Deen's Mac and Cheese on a white Surface

How to Make it (Baking Method)

Boil the macaroni until al dente, according to package instructions.

Combine the melted/softened butter, half and half, eggs, sour cream, half and half, and salt/pepper/cayenne. Whisk until combined. It will be a little lumpy.

Drain the macaroni and return it to the warm pot you boiled it in.

Cream sauce and boiled macaroni to make Paula Deen's Mac and Cheese

Add the cream cheese, cheddar, and American cheese. Use a silicone spatula and stir to combine.

Cheese being added to Elbow Macaroni Noodles

Add the creamy egg mixture and stir to combine. (Paula Deen pours it over the top of the cheesy macaroni once it’s in the casserole dish, either way works.)

Cheese and cream sauce being added to Macaroni to make Mac and Cheese

Transfer to a greased 9×13 casserole dish. Bake at 350° for 40-45 minutes. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

A casserole dish filled with Macaroni and Cheese before and after baking.

Macaroni and Cheese with Eggs

Southern-Style macaroni and cheese recipes such as this one may call for using eggs. The purpose of the eggs is to create a custard-like consistency. This method is used instead of creating a roux.

Be warned that some people love the eggs, and others aren’t a fan of the texture.

To skip the eggs and make this recipe with a roux:

  • Use an extra cup of half and half. (2 cups total)
  • Melt 3 Tablespoons unsalted butter in a saucepan over medium heat.
  • Add 3 Tablespoons of flour and whisk until the consistency is that of a paste.
  • Slowly add 1/2 cup half and half. Whisk until combined. Gradually add the remaining 1/2 cup until combined.
  • Continue to heat, whisking occasionally for about 10 minutes to allow it to thicken.
  • Remove from heat, combine with remaining ingredients, add to warm macaroni and bake.

Make-Ahead Method

The following make-ahead tips apply to both the Oven and Crock Pot:

  • Cook the Pasta no more than Al Dente.
  • Immediately rinse the cooked pasta with cold water to halt the cooking process and rid it of extra starch.
  • Combine all remaining ingredients (minus the macaroni) in a saucepan and whisk together over medium heat until well-combined and smooth. Let it cool until it’s just warm to the touch.
  • Combine the cooled macaroni and sauce.
  • Store in the fridge for up to two days, covered.
  • Add it to a casserole dish or Crock Pot and proceed as instructed. Note that you may have to cook it a tad longer since its starting off cold.

Crock Pot Method

  • Boil the macaroni for 1-2 minutes less than instructed on package.
  • Combine the melted/softened butter, half and half, eggs, sour cream, half and half, and salt/pepper/cayenne. Whisk until combined. It will be a little lumpy.
  • Drain the pasta and return to the warm pot you boiled it in. Combine with the cream cheese, American Cheese, and cheddar.Add the creamy egg mixture and stir to combine.
  • Transfer to a lightly greased Crock Pot.
  • Heat over low heat for 2-3 hours, stirring occasionally. Then switch to warm until ready to serve.

Pro Tips

  • You can also combine 1 cup of crushed Ritz crackers + 2 TBS Butter and bake that on top for the last 10 minutes.
  • If you prefer not to use all 4 eggs, you can substitute 1/4 cup half and half for every egg that you choose to leave out.

Storage

  • Let the mac and cheese cool and store it in an airtight container. Refrigerate for up to 3 days.
  •  This recipe doesn’t freeze well as the dairy tends to separate when reheated.

Cooked macaroni and cheese in a casserole dish.

 

Try These Next

Creamy macaroni and cheese on a white plate topped with chopped parsley.

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Paula Deen's Macaroni and Cheese

4.78 from 18 ratings
Paula Deen's Macaroni & Cheese can be baked in the oven or in the Slow Cooker! Made extra creamy with eggs, cream cheese, and 2 other cheeses!

Ingredients

  • 2 cups uncooked elbow macaroni, *Not a pound*
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened or melted. Equal to 1/2 stick.
  • 1 cup half-and-half
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, optional
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 8 oz. cheddar cheese, grated
  • 13 slices American cheese, cut into cubes, Velveeta packaged slices work well. (equal to 8 oz.)
  • 4 oz. cream cheese, softened

Instructions

  • Note: The butter, half and half, sour cream, and cheeses should be close to room temperature prior to being added to the macaroni.

Oven Baked Method:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Boil the macaroni until al dente, according to package instructions.
  • Combine the melted/softened butter, half and half, eggs, sour cream, half and half, and salt/pepper/cayenne. Whisk until combined. It will be a little lumpy.
  • Drain the macaroni and return it to the warm pot you boiled it in. Add the cream cheese, cheddar, and American cheese. Use a silicone spatula and stir to combine.
  • Add the creamy egg mixture and stir to combine. (Paula Deen pours it over the top of the cheesy macaroni once it's in the casserole dish, I like to mix with the macaroni first.)
  • Transfer to a greased 9x13 casserole dish. Bake for 40-45 minutes.
  • Let it stand for 10 minutes prior to serving.

Crock Pot Method:

  • Cook the macaroni for 1-2 minutes less than instructed on package so the macaroni doesn't become mushy.
  • Combine the melted/softened butter, half and half, eggs, sour cream, half and half, and salt/pepper/cayenne. Whisk until combined. It will be a little lumpy.
  • Drain the macaroni and return it to the warm pot you boiled it in. Add the cream cheese, cheddar, and American cheese. Use a silicone spatula and stir to combine.
  • Add the creamy egg mixture and stir to combine.
  • Transfer to a lightly greased Crock Pot. Heat on low for 2-3 hours hours, then switch to warm, and serve! Stir occasionally as it cooks if you're able.

Notes

Make-Ahead Method For Baked OR Crock Pot Mac and Cheese:

  • Cook the Pasta no more than Al Dente.
  • Immediately rinse the cooked pasta with cold water to halt the cooking process and rid it of extra starch.
  • Combine all remaining ingredients in a saucepan and whisk together over medium heat until well-combined and smooth. Let it cool until it's just warm to the touch.
  • Combine the cooled macaroni and sauce.
    Store in the fridge for up to two days, covered.
Add it to a casserole dish or Crock Pot and proceed as instructed. Note that you may have to cook it a tad longer since its starting off cold.

Using Eggs in Macaroni and Cheese

Southern-Style macaroni and cheese recipes such as this one typically call for using eggs. The purpose of the eggs is to create a custard-like consistency. This method is used instead of creating a roux. 
Be warned that some people love the eggs, and others aren't a fan of the texture.
To skip the eggs and make this recipe with a roux:
  • Use an additional cup of half and half to make 2 cups total.
  • Melt 3 Tablespoons unsalted butter in a saucepan over medium heat.
  • Add 3 Tablespoons of flour and whisk until the consistency is that of a paste.
  • Slowly add 1/2 cup half and half. Whisk until combined. Gradually add the remaining 1/2 cup until combined.
  • Continue to heat, whisking occasionally for about 10 minutes to allow it to thicken.
  • Remove from heat, combine with remaining ingredients, add to warm macaroni and bake.

You can also combine 1 cup of crushed Ritz crackers + 2 TBS Butter and bake that on top for the last 10 minutes

If you don't have unsalted butter, you can use salted butter and skip the salting step.

Nutrition

Calories: 472kcal, Carbohydrates: 14g, Protein: 19g, Fat: 37g, Saturated Fat: 22g, Cholesterol: 189mg, Sodium: 946mg, Potassium: 190mg, Sugar: 1g, Vitamin A: 1260IU, Vitamin C: 0.4mg, Calcium: 579mg, Iron: 1mg

Recipe Source: PaulaDeen

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87 comments on “Paula Deen’s Macaroni and Cheese”

  1. Hello I curious how far in advance can I make this (uncooked). Doing it for a wedding and I don’t want to have to rush the day of or even the day before. Thanks

    • Hi Charlene, if you check out the recipe post, there are some fairly detailed instructions entitled “Make-Ahead Method” which outlines how you would go about it, I would normally paste it here for you but there is a bit too much to include 🙂

  2. It tasted ok but the 4 eggs is way to much, makes it almost like a cheese custard and that takes away from the cheesiness of what you expect from baked mac cheese. You know with out a doubt there is a lot of egg in this when in mac and cheese you don’t want to taste egg at least I don’t.

    • Hi Brian, I’m not sure if you noticed but in the blog post there is a section that talks in detail about the addition of the eggs, why they’re used, the consistency that it creates, and how to omit them and use a roux instead. I figured you might want to check that out if you missed it!

  3. Made this recipe and added bacon to it. Was absolutely delicious 😋 

    • Bacon sounds like a such an amazing idea! I bet the little bit of smokiness from the bacon goes perfectly with all this cheese!😋 Thanks so much for taking the time to comment!

  4. This recipe for Macaroni and Cheese is one of the best I’ve experienced. I only use this one😁

    • I’m so happy to hear that Consuela! This is my go to for mac and cheese too! I love seeing the kids gobble it up too! Thanks so much for taking the time to comment!❤️

  5. If I double this, will it need more time in the slow cooker?

  6. what is half and half?

  7. Hi Stephanie, what is half and half, i am not familiar with the term
    Zelda

  8. Is the serving size for 1 cup?

  9. I made this recipe for Christmas Dinner and it was a absolute hit! My family loved it. Thank you for sharing!😋

  10. Is it okay to use salted butter and skip the salt portion? I ran out of unsalted butter. 

    • Yes! That’s what I normally do, and I debated making that change in the recipe but since this is Paula Deen’s recipe, I left it as-is! But you are good to go with using salted butter and skipping the salting step.

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