There’s a time and a place for boxed macaroni and cheese: 2:00 in the morning on the couch. But when it comes to dinner, you can do better than a powdered packet of cheese.

By F&W Editors
Updated May 24, 2017

Here, 11 easy-to-make, insanely creamy recipes for stovetop mac and cheese, both classic and upgraded.

1. Easy Stovetop Mac and Cheese

This classic mac and cheese is made with sharp cheddar.

2. Spicy Easy Stovetop Mac and Cheese

Fresh jalapeños add a spicy twist to this classic stovetop mac and cheese.

3. Smoked Gouda Mac and Cheese

For a more sophisticated take on classic mac and cheese, swap in smoked gouda for the traditional cheddar.

4. Kale Mac and Cheese

Tender kale is a terrific, healthy addition to creamy mac and cheese.

5. Rajas Con Crema Macaroni and Cheese

This quick stovetop mac and cheese is based on rajas con crema, a classic Mexican dish of roasted green chiles sauteed with onion and finished with cream.

6. Green Pea Mac and Cheese

Sweet bites of green pea take this cheesy dish to the next level.

7. Sausage Mac and Cheese

Adding sausage transforms mac and cheese from a side dish to into an entrée.

8. Corn Mac and Cheese

Fresh sweet corn is amazing with the creamy cheddar cheese sauce.

9. Three-Cheese Mac and Cheese

Mozzarella and fontina join cheddar in this indulgent pasta.

10. Green Chile Mac and Cheese

Green chiles give mac and cheese a bright, spicy kick.

11. Spinach Mac and Cheese

Get your daily dose of greenery from the earthy spinach in this dish.