Mac and Cheese Appetizer

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This baked mac and cheese appetizer packs all the creamy, cheesy flavors of your favorite dish in bite-sized form. With just 5 minutes of prep time, it’s the perfect way to kick off your next game day party!

A hand holding the mac and cheese appetizer held over the platePinPin

Cheesy goodness

The flavor of these mac & cheese bites is so delicious. What I love about them is that you can either eat them straight out of the muffin cups or eat them with a fork. I like eating them straight from the cup.

And talk about satisfying.

I love that this recipe calls for pre-made cheese sauce. This sauce is so good that I can eat it by the spoonful. It has a wonderful combination of cheddar, parmesan and Romano cheeses.

They make for the perfect game day appetizer. I also love these beef appetizers in phyllo cups. They make for the perfect snacks.

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Another great thing about this recipe is you can prepare it ahead of time and cook it right before you want to serve it.

How to make this appetizer

Pre step

Fill a stockpot with water and set it on to boil. And line a muffin tin with baking cups.

Step one

Gather the ingredients – elbow macaroni pasta, cheddar sauce, and crumbled Ritz crackers.

Elbow macaroni, cheddar sauce and muffin tins in the backgroundPin

Step two

Once it comes to a boil, salt it and add the elbow macaroni to the pot of salted water. Stir and set the timer to 8 minutes.

Step three

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Set a colander in the sink and drain the macaroni and place it in a metal mixing bowl.

Elbow Macaroni cooked, and cheese sauce in the background with muffin tinsPin

Step four

Time to pour the cheddar on the macaroni. Look at how thick and creamy that is!!

A hand pouring cheese sauce in the cooked elbow macaroniPin

Step five

Fold the cheese in and mix it with the macaroni with a rubber spatula or large spoon until it coats all the pasta mixture!

The elbow macaroni mixed with the cheese sauce in a metal bowl with muffin tins in the backgroundPin

Mmm. I let the messiness of the bowl stay just as it is, because we love keeping it real here on Dishes Delish.

Step six

Fill each muffin cup with the cheesy macaroni.

The mixed cheese covered macaroni in the muffin cups with the bottle in the background as well as ritz cracker crumbsPin

Step seven

Time to sprinkle the crushed butter crackers on top.

a muffin tin filled with the mac and cheese ready to go in the ovenPin

Step eight

Bake for 15 minutes. Remove the mac and cheese cups out of the pan to a serving platter.

A blue plate with muffin cups filled with the appetizerPin

I pick one up and take a bite, but you’ve seen that one already!

A hand holding the mac and cheese appetizer held over the platePinPin

So delicious!  When you serve these at your next game day party, all you are going to hear are people saying, “Mmmmm!”

I hope you enjoyed this mac and cheese appetizer recipe!

And as always, may all your dishes be delish!

If you’ve tried this recipe, I’d love the know what you thought about it in the comments below. I love hearing from you! You can also FOLLOW ME on FACEBOOKTWITTERINSTAGRAM and PINTEREST to see more of my delicious food and delightful cocktails!

A hand holding a mac and cheese in a muffin cup with a bite taken out of itPin

Easy Baked Mac & Cheese Appetizer

This baked mac and cheese appetizer packs all the creamy, cheesy flavors of your favorite dish in bite-sized form. With just 5 minutes of prep time, it’s the perfect way to kick off your next game day party!
5 from 19 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Appetizers
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: mac & cheese, mac and cheese appetizer
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 28 minutes
Servings: 12 pieces
Calories: 76kcal


  • 1/2 pound elbow macaroni
  • water to boil
  • salt for water
  • 1/2 jar RAGÚ® Double Cheddar Sauce or more
  • 1/4 cup crushed butter cracker crumbs or bread crumbs


Make it

  • Set water on to boil
  • Salt water
  • Place elbow macaroni in boiling water
  • Time for 8 minutes until al dente
  • Preheat oven 350 F
  • Drain elbow macaroni and place in a mixing bowl
  • Pour as much RAGÚ® Double Cheddar sauce as you want over the macaroni
  • Mix to combine
  • Fill 12 muffin cups with mac & cheese
  • Sprinkle butter crackers on top of mac & cheese
  • Bake 15 minutes
  • Plate
  • Eat
  • Smile
  • Enjoy
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If you used a lot of this delicious sauce, you can serve the muffin cups with spoons if the mac & cheese is too gooey


Serving: 1pieces | Calories: 76kcal | Carbohydrates: 14g | Protein: 2g | Sodium: 12mg | Potassium: 42mg | Calcium: 6mg | Iron: 0.3mg
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Recipe Rating


  1. Oh. My. Goodness. Not only are these adorable, but they look SO good, too! Appetizer, though? I think I’d rather call them dinner. 😉

  2. These look so delicious and pretty!! I bet they would go quickly once served… al that warm cheesy goodness n that also baked is definitely a Hit!

  3. You just can’t beat Mac and cheese – it’s classic comfort food. I love that this is perfect party food size.

  4. Mac n Cheese is good in EVERY way, shape and form. What a fun little party app this would be. I know they would not last long on the tray either. Double batch for sure.

  5. Simple and mess free eating. These would make a fun replacement for regularold mac & cheese at cookouts and parties.

  6. I love the sound of these, I don’t have much of a sweet tooth and savoury is always my mojo… I reckon I could even do these as a “dessert” 😉 😮

    1. Hehe Brian! I’d rather some cake for dessert but hey, they are so delicious that you’d be satisfied having these for dessert. 😉

  7. Oh my goodness! Those look AMAZING! and what a fantastic idea to serve them in muffin cups so they can be eaten without utensils… wicked smaht! 😉

  8. Oh how I love mac and cheese! Any kind of mac and cheese is great with me! I’d love to pack a couple of these portable cups in my lunch! Thanks for sharing!

  9. Such a great idea to put the mac and cheese into a muffin paper. Your cheese ragu sounds fantastic and I would put it on everything. I am a cheese fanatic, you know

  10. That is so clever making these in the muffin pan, so convenient. I am a big cheese head so saving this for maybe tomorrow if its not too late. Thanks for sharing your recipes!

  11. I find that alot of mac & cheese appetizer cups are baked until they resemble mac & cheese pucks, but these look nice and soft and saucy – just how I like it!

  12. I never thought of myself as a “big” eater, but there’s something so satisfying about eating a bunch of these cups as opposed to a pile of mac n’ cheese on a plate that I have to wonder! Fun recipe and great appetizer.

    1. I’ve used both paper and foil. Foil does seem to hold up better but either will do. I’ve never had to worry about keeping them warm as they usually go real fast. I have seen people use an electric griddle and set it on low with the individual mac and cheese cups on them, but I’ve never done it myself. Let me know what you came up with. Thanks for your question Kim.

    1. Brenda, I’ve never had to do that as I make them right before I serve them. I’m thinking you could keep them warm on 200 degrees Fahrenheit for a half hour. I hope this helps.