Easy Oven Baked Mac and Cheese

This is the only homemade baked mac and cheese recipe you'll ever need! It has an easy creamy sauce and crispy breadcrumbs on top. Made with low fat cheese, almond milk, and nutritional yeast, it's also secretly healthy and kid friendly.













For the Mac and Cheese

  • 1 lb. Cavatappi pasta noodles (gluten-free if necessary)
  • ½ C reserved pasta water
  • 4 Tbsp Country Crock 8% Butter Spread
  • ¼ C all-purpose flour (gluten-free if necessary)
  • 2 C unsweetened almond milk
  • 1½ C reduced fat shredded Mexican-style cheese
  • ¼ C nutritional yeast (or more cheese)
  • ¾ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp red chili flakes
  • ½ tsp ground black pepper

For the Breadcrumbs

  • 2 slices multigrain bread (gluten-free if necessary)
  • 1 Tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 tsp fresh oregano
  • 1 tsp fresh thyme
  • ½ tsp Everything But The Bagel seasoning


  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F and spray a 9x13 baking dish with cooking spray. Set aside.
  2. Prepare the pasta according to package instructions. Reserve ½ cup of pasta water after boiling, then drain and rinse the pasta. Set aside.*
  3. To make the cheese sauce, melt the butter over medium heat, then sprinkle 2 tablespoons of flour over the butter. Whisk the flour into the melted butter until a paste has formed. Whisking constantly, add in ½ cup of milk and combine until smooth. Repeat this process until all the flour and milk have been incorporated and the sauce is smooth. Stir in the cheese, nutritional yeast, and seasonings. Turn down the heat to low and allow sauce to thicken, stirring occasionally.
  4. To make the breadcrumbs, toast the slices of bread until lightly toasted. Break the toast into pieces, then add in a food processor or blender with remaining bread crumbs ingredients. Pulse (don't blend) until breadcrumbs have formed.
  5. In a very large bowl (or the empty pasta pot), combine the cooked pasta with the cheese sauce. Slowly add in 2 tablespoons of pasta water at a time until the sauce has thinned and reaches desired consistency.** Pour the mac and cheese into the prepared baking dish and top with the prepared breadcrumbs.
  6. Bake for 15-20 minutes until the top is crispy and the cheese is bubbling up the sides. Serve warm with your favorite protein!


*I like adding the pasta back into the empty pasta pot to save dishes!

**I usually use between 1/4 cup and 1/3 cup pasta water during this step. Note that the mac and cheese will become much thicker after refrigeration, so the thinner the sauce is before baking, the better the leftovers will be.

Nutrition facts are a calculated estimate of 1/8 of the prepared pan of baked mac and cheese, including the breadcrumbs.


Calories: 342 / Fat: 7.8g / Saturated Fat: 3g / Sodium: 235mg / Carbohydrates: 50.4g / Fiber: 3.1g / Sugar: 2.3g / Protein: 15.8g

The Well Nourished Mama logo