On busy oven days or during the holidays when cooking space is limited, this Slow Cooked Three Cheese Mac and Cheese recipe is a tasty option. When it comes to slow cooking macaroni and cheese, there are literally 1000's of recipes. What do they have in common? Lots and lots of gooey cheddar cheese and this slow cooker variation is no exception.
Easy Slow Cooked Three Cheese Mac and Cheese Recipe
Do Slow Cookers Really Cook Macaroni and Cheese Differently? Oh yes, short answer is, they do. Cooking times can vary depending on the shape, size and age of the slow cooker you're using. The slow cooker I use to make this slow cooked mac and cheese, is a little different from the average slow cooker. The difference, is that the heat source is only on the bottom of the slow cooker. So, in the interest of full disclosure, I wanted to show you. When cooking in a conventional slow cooker, which is the type I most often use, the heat source is located on the bottom and the sides of the slow cooker. I've also prepared this in my conventional oval 6 quart slow cooker and it required very little to no adjustment in the cooking time.
How to Make the Best Slow Cooked Three Cheese Mac and Cheese Recipe
Because I make a special effort to make sure all of my recipes are presented in a way that you can be successful recreating my dishes, I wanted to mention a couple of differences between the two types of appliances.
- Ingredients you'll need: Elbow macaroni, sour cream, melted butter, sharp cheddar cheese, 1 cup sharp cheddar cheese, 1 cup medium cheddar cheese and 1 ½ cups white cheddar cheese, one can of cheddar cheese soup for creaminess, evaporated milk, butter, dry mustard, salt and black pepper and large eggs.
- Kitchen gadgets you'll need: Slow Cooker, mixing bowls, whisk, measuring cups and spoons, cheese grater, and pot to cook the macaroni.
- In this recipe I use combination of three cheddar cheeses. You can use a package of shredded cheddar cheese blend for a shortcut.
- How do you make crockpot mac and cheese? In this slow cooker with the heat source on the bottom only, my mac and cheese cooks in around 2-2 ¼ hours on low.
- So, in a conventional slow cooker, I recommend you cook on low for 2 hours, and check the center for doneness. It may be completely cooked in that time.
- After testing a tiny bit from the center sprinkle the remaining cheese on top and keep warm until it melts.
- If the macaroni and cheese isn't completely cooked, you may need to increase the time by 30 minutes to 1 hour, based on how your slow cooker cooks.
More Slow Cooked Mac and Cheese Tips
- When making this dish, you can certainly shake-up the flavor of the cheeses used.
- If you'd like to add a bit of heat, use pepper jack in place of one of the cheddars. You can also create your own flavor combination using your favorite types of shredded cheese.
- When whisking together the ingredients for the sauce make sure it's well blended and use a quality full fat sour cream for the best results. Don't be tempted to keep stirring or the sauce will break.
- Store leftover macaroni and cheese chilled in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Reheat in single servings in the microwave.
More Easy Slow Cooker Recipes to Make
- Easy Cheesy Slow Cooker Grits can be served at any meal.
- You can throw down a shrimp boil any night of the week with this recipe for a Slow Cooker Shrimp Boil.
- Slow Cooker Three Meat Lasagna for Italian night at home.
- Slow Cooker Queso Blanco Dip for snacking and game day.
- Slow Cooker Potato and Ham Soup will warm you up from the inside out.
- For your sweet tooth Crockpot Applesauce from Skinnytaste.
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Helpful Kitchen Items:
Slow Cooked Three Cheese Mac And Cheese
- 2 cups dry elbow macaroni
- 1 12 oz can evaporated milk
- 1 10 ¾ oz can cheddar cheese soup
- 8 oz sour cream Full fat works best
- ½ cup butter melted
- 3 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon dry mustard
- ¼-1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper adjust to taste
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
- 1 cup shredded medium cheddar cheese
- 1 ½ cups shredded white cheddar cheese
- (You can also use 3 ½ cups of a packaged shredded Triple Cheddar Cheese Blend)
- Set your slow cooker on the low setting, and spray the inside with cooking spray.
- Parboil the macaroni in salted water for 6 minutes. Meanwhile, shred cheese and toss together to combine.
- While the macaroni is cooking, in a small mixing bowl, whisk together, the melted butter, evaporated milk, cheddar cheese soup, sour cream, eggs, ground mustard, black pepper and salt. Whisk together until fully combined.
- After cooking the macaroni for 6 minutes, drain well. Add to the slow cooker.
- Pour the cheese sauce over the macaroni along with 3 cups of shredded triple cheddar cheese blend. (Reserve final ½ cup to sprinkle on top.)
- Stir all of the ingredients together until the macaroni is coated and the sauce is evenly distributed.
- Cover and cook on low for 2 hours. After 2 hours, remove the lid and check the middle for doneness. If needed, add additional cooking time in 20-30 minute increments or until the macaroni is tender. (Time may vary slightly depending on how your slow cooker cooks)
- Sprinkle the remaining cheese on top. Replace the lid and continue to cook for an additional 15 minutes to allow the cheese to melt.
- Keep warm until serving.
Not a big egg fan. Do have to use the 3 eggs? What exactly do they do?
Eggs serve as a binder in this dish.
This recipe is literally a major weakness for me. How can you say no to triple cheddar mac and cheese???
Talk about slow cooker goodness, this is coming to friendsgiving with me.
Toni | Boulder Locavore
A new favorite in our house! My whole family loved it!
I love how this turned out in the slow cooker. So good!
MY kids will love this, thank you
Mac and cheese never disappoint. I am drooling over these photos. So yummy.
Ashley @ Wishes & Dishes
This is the best and love that it frees up the oven!
You can't go wrong with triple cheese!
This is my go to mac and cheese recipe. I always get compliments. That being said... can you estimate what 1 serving is? I know it feeds 8-10 but am looking for a little more clarification. Is it 1 cup, 1/2 cup? I am trying to count calories right now and trying to be as exact as possible. Thank you!
I'm glad you're enjoying this one, Jennifer. For this recipe when I estimate it could serve 8-10 people, there are always variables depending on appetites. I'm not really referring to cups and measurements in this instance. That said, it can be divided into whatever size serving portion that you desire.
Lori @ RecipeGirl
I'm so in love with this recipe!
How do you measure dry pasta? Is it literally 2 cups or a 16 oz box. I have never been able to figure our how dry pasta measurements work.
It's literally 2 cups in this instance. Don't worry about being exact a little more is OK.
I have got to try this, I have struggled in making slow cooker mac and cheese. I end up with a pasty dish!
So cheesy!! Love how creamy and easy it is.
In love with all that cheese! Using the slow cooker makes it so easy!
I love that you used a variety of cheddars---plus the ease of using a slow cooker makes this mac and cheese a winner!
Look at all that cheese! I love it!
this recipe is great!
Cathy @ Noble Pig
Holy wow, this sounds and looks incredible.
Ohhhh gimme all the cheesy goodness. Love that it is made in a slow cooker with very little hands on time.