One-Pot Chili Mac and Cheese

One-Pot Chili Mac and Cheese

Looking for a quick and satisfying dinner that’s a breeze to make? Dive into our delectable “One-Pot Chili Mac and Cheese,” a mouthwatering combination of two beloved comfort foods.

This easy dinner recipe not only saves you time but also tantalizes your taste buds with its rich and zesty flavors.

Imagine tender pasta, hearty chili, and creamy cheese all harmoniously mingling in one pot, and you’ve got a dinner winner that’ll become a family favorite.

In just about 30 minutes, you can whip up this delicious dish that’s perfect for busy weeknights or a cozy weekend meal.

Whether you’re a novice in the kitchen or a seasoned chef, this recipe will make you look like a culinary pro. Let’s explore the ingredients and steps to create this One-Pot Chili Mac and Cheese masterpiece.


  • Ground beef: 400g (14 oz)
  • Onion, diced: 1 medium-sized
  • Garlic cloves, minced: 3 cloves
  • Chili powder: 15g (1 tbsp)
  • Cumin powder: 5g (1 tsp)
  • Paprika: 5g (1 tsp)
  • Red kidney beans: 400g can (14 oz can)
  • Crushed tomatoes: 400g can (14 oz can)
  • Elbow macaroni: 250g (1 1/2 cups)
  • Chicken broth: 750ml (3 cups)
  • Cheddar cheese, grated: 200g (2 cups)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Fresh cilantro, for garnish

Recipe Instructions:

  1. Heat a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the ground beef and cook, breaking it apart with a wooden spoon, until it’s browned and no longer pink. This should take about 5-7 minutes.
  2. Add the diced onions and minced garlic to the pot. Sauté for 2-3 minutes until the onions are translucent and the garlic is fragrant.
  3. Stir in the chili powder, cumin, and paprika. Cook for another 2 minutes, allowing the spices to bloom and infuse their flavors into the meat.
  4. Add the red kidney beans (drained and rinsed) and crushed tomatoes to the pot. Stir everything together, letting it simmer for a few minutes.
  5. Pour in the elbow macaroni and chicken broth. Give it a good stir, and then bring the mixture to a boil.
  6. Once it’s boiling, reduce the heat to medium-low and cover the pot. Let it simmer for about 10-12 minutes or until the pasta is tender, stirring occasionally.
  7. Stir in the grated cheddar cheese until it’s fully melted and the sauce is creamy.
  8. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Remember, the cheese and canned ingredients might already have salt, so adjust accordingly.
  9. Remove the pot from heat and let it sit for a few minutes to thicken.
  10. Garnish with fresh cilantro for a burst of freshness.

Your One-Pot Chili Mac and Cheese is ready to serve! Enjoy this delicious and easy dinner recipe with your loved ones.

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 4
Calories per Serving: Approximately 560 calories

Pros and Cons of Ingredients:

  • Ground beef: Rich in protein, iron, and B-vitamins, but high in saturated fat. (Reference: Healthline)
  • Onion and Garlic: Packed with antioxidants and immune-boosting properties. (Reference: MedicalNewsToday)
  • Chili Powder and Spices: Low in calories, add flavor, and may boost metabolism. (Reference: The Spruce Eats)
  • Beans: Excellent source of fiber and plant-based protein. (Reference: Mayo Clinic)
  • Tomatoes: High in vitamins and antioxidants, may reduce the risk of chronic diseases. (Reference: WebMD)
  • Macaroni: Good source of carbohydrates, but should be consumed in moderation. (Reference: The Healthy)
  • Chicken Broth: Low in calories and a great base for soups and stews. (Reference: Cooking Light)
  • Cheddar Cheese: Rich in calcium and protein, but high in saturated fat and calories. (Reference: Healthline)
  • Cilantro: Adds freshness and may have antioxidants and anti-inflammatory benefits. (Reference: MedicalNewsToday)

Kitchen Accessories Needed:

  • Large pot
  • Wooden spoon
  • Knife
  • Cutting board
  • Grater


  1. Can I make this recipe vegetarian?
    • Yes, simply omit the ground beef and use vegetable broth.
  2. Is there a gluten-free option for the macaroni?
    • You can use gluten-free macaroni for a gluten-free version.
  3. Can I use other types of beans instead of kidney beans?
    • Yes, black beans or pinto beans work well too.
  4. How can I make it spicier?
    • Add more chili powder or a dash of hot sauce to your liking.
  5. Can I use pre-shredded cheese?
    • Absolutely, pre-shredded cheddar cheese will save you time.
  6. Can I freeze the leftovers?
    • Yes, this dish freezes well for future meals.
  7. What can I serve as a side dish with this recipe?
    • A simple green salad or garlic bread complements it nicely.
  8. Is this suitable for kids?
    • You can adjust the spice level to suit children’s tastes.
  9. Can I use ground turkey instead of beef?
    • Yes, ground turkey is a leaner option.
  10. What’s the best way to reheat leftovers?
    • Heat in the microwave or on the stove with a splash of water to prevent dryness.


Easy Dinner Recipes don’t get better than our One-Pot Chili Mac and Cheese. A flavorful, family-friendly dish that’s quick to make and satisfies all your comfort food cravings. Give it a try, and you’ll have a new go-to meal in your recipe collection. Enjoy!

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