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Easy Pumpkin Mac and Cheese Recipe

by on January 17, 2012 · 30 comments


We have served this twice, both led to friends and family asking for our pumpkin mac and cheese recipe. So, how could we not share it with you!? It shouldn’t be too much of a surprise, but mac and cheese is an absolute contender on our list for what we would choose as our last supper. We added pumpkin to this one mainly because we had half of a can to use up in the fridge, but once we tasted it we might just add that pumpkin every time we make macaroni and cheese in the future. You see, it doesn’t taste like pumpkin per-see, it just tastes rounded, creamy, velvety and rich.

 Pumpkin Mac and Cheese Recipe

Add a Twist to Macaroni and Cheese & Make Pumpkin Mac and Cheese

Start by melting some butter in a large pot (we used out dutch oven) then stirring in flour. By combining the two, butter and flour that is, we are making a roux. All that means is when we add all the good stuff like milk, cheese and pumpkin, the cheese sauce will thicken and become velvety smooth.

Mac and Cheese Recipe

After cooking the butter and flour for a minute or so, pour in some milk. While stirring, bring the milk to a simmer. You will notice that it will become thicker.

Macaroni and Cheese

Now, add in some flavor! Keeping it simple, we added some Dijon mustard, salt, pepper and ground nutmeg.

Macaroni and Cheese

Now, add some canned pumpkin to the sauce.

Macaroni and Cheese

Next, stir in some shredded cheddar cheese. If at this point you can resist licking the spoon, we salute you!

Mac and cheese

Toss a whole box of cooked pasta with the sauce.

Then, slide all the good stuff into a baking dish. Again, if you actually manage to resist stealing a few spoonfuls, you are our hero.

Mac and cheese

Just because you can never have too much cheese, sprinkle some shredded cheddar on top. Then, bake in the oven until bubbly and the top is a golden brown.

Mac and cheese

We created this recipe for Betty Crocker and are so happy to share it with you!

4.5 from 4 reviews

Easy Pumpkin Mac and Cheese Recipe
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
This macaroni and cheese uses canned pumpkin puree, adding an earthy flavor to the cheddar cheese sauce. We used canned pumpkin, but you could certainly uses homemade pumpkin puree. If you do decide to buy the puree, make sure you opt for the plain pumpkin puree and not the “pumpkin pie mix” can, often found next to it. The mac and cheese can be kept tightly covered in the refrigerator for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 3 months.
Created By:
Yield: 6
You Will Need
  • 1 16-ounce box uncooked elbow macaroni
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin puree
  • 2 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
Directions
  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook macaroni as directed on package. (Usually between 7 and 10 minutes).
  3. While macaroni is cooking, melt butter in a medium saucepan over low heat. Stir in flour and cook while stirring, 1 minute. Remove from heat and stir in milk. Place back onto heat and bring to a simmer. Simmer and stir 1 minute until thickened.Pumpkin Mac and Cheese Step 1
  4. Stir in salt, pepper, nutmeg, mustard and pumpkin puree. Add 2 cups of cheese then cook, stirring occasionally, until cheese is melted.
  5. Drain macaroni. Add macaroni into cheese sauce and stir until coated.Pumpkin Mac and Cheese Step 2
  6. You could serve the macaroni and cheese now, or bake in the oven with extra cheese. To bake in the oven, pour into a 3-quart casserole dish then top with remaining 1/2 cup of shredded cheese.Pumpkin Mac and Cheese Step 3
  7. Bake uncovered 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown on top.
Notes and Tips
Don’t forget to watch our Easy Pumpkin Macaroni and Cheese Recipe Video on our YouTube page.
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About the Author

Joanne

I'm Joanne Gallagher and alongside my husband, Adam, I develop, test and share favorite recipes from our kitchen. I'm completely in love with food and you'll most likely find me covered in flour, chocolate or both.

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30 Comments

1 Heather January 18, 2012 at 8:40 am

So delish!! I’m lucky to have you two as fam ;)

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2 Joanne January 18, 2012 at 2:55 pm

ditto!
love, jo

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3 Miri Leigh January 19, 2012 at 6:00 pm

Oh my gosh, this looks like it’s to-die for! How perfect for a cold winter day.

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4 L.. LaPalme January 30, 2012 at 4:01 pm

Sure cannot wait to make the pumpkin Mac and cheese. It sure looks and sounds good

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5 Joanne January 30, 2012 at 4:41 pm

Awesome! Hope you enjoy it!
-Joanne

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6 j alexander January 30, 2012 at 6:53 pm

I found your pumpkin mac and cheese recipe on pinterest. Looks wonderful. You don’t have the milk measurement listed. Can you tell me how much milk should go in your recipe?

Thank you

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7 Joanne January 30, 2012 at 8:06 pm

fixed now! thanks for letting us know!
-joanne

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8 Nancy D. February 12, 2012 at 5:50 pm

I just made this dish today and it was a big hit. I love the flavors!

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9 Thebluestbutterfly March 16, 2012 at 3:38 am

So we finally had and enjoyed the Pumpkin Macaroni and Cheese. It was not overly greasy like some of the baked macaroni and cheeses get. Nothing to cough on like the little egg bits in some of the baked dishes. Creamy. A subtle, unusual taste and it smelled good. Husband said he would like to have salt and some onions in it.

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10 Jen June 25, 2012 at 12:25 am

A great idea to use pumpkin- I will have to try it out soon. I know they say it is summer but I guess the weathere here is not cooperating LoL

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11 Barbara October 14, 2012 at 12:28 pm

Very tasty. I used skim milk and it was still good. I used extra sharp cheddar cheese. Next time I would try the whole 2 cups of cheese in the mixture and then an additional half cup on top of casserole before baking. It could have been more cheesy tasting.

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12 Joanne October 18, 2012 at 12:26 pm

We’re always up for adding more cheese!

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13 Kim October 17, 2012 at 11:34 am

Delicious!

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14 TINA November 15, 2012 at 1:14 pm

Instead of the Nutmeg I always add some Ginger to my Mac and Cheese…..yummmmy!

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15 Arielle November 21, 2012 at 6:58 am

Hey, can I use Skim milk in this recipe? It looks quite delicious – I wouldn’t want to ruin it for Thanksgiving dinner :)

Thanks

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16 Adam November 21, 2012 at 9:59 am

We usually use 2%, but skim will be fine. The cheese and pumpkin are rich enough.

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17 andrea November 22, 2012 at 9:23 am

Great recipe! Thanks! I pinned this for Thanksgiving and am using it today! It is delicious! I think the family will love it!

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18 sarahlee December 31, 2012 at 2:54 pm

Absolutely love this recipe. I doubld the sauce though, extra creamy!!! I made it for Thanksgiving and am making it again now.

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19 Marilyn May 30, 2013 at 6:47 pm

Made this for dinner tonight (used sharp cheddar) Beautiful color and I loved the taste. Surprisingly Creamy, but not heavy! So easy and fast! This is the third recipe from your site (found site via foodgawker.com) that I have tried this week! Excellent x Three

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20 Adam May 31, 2013 at 8:22 am

Hi Marilyn, So glad you found us :) The pumpkin mac and cheese is a family favorite around here :)

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21 Jessica January 3, 2014 at 12:58 pm

Deeeelicious recipe! Made it today to warm up this snowday from Hercules and it was a HUGE hit!!!! Used skim milk and gluten-free pasta (gluten sensitivity here), baked for 15 min at 350 then turned the oven off and let it bake for another 5. The family loved it and there was not a single bite leftover. I will definitely make this again, thanks for sharing!

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22 Joanne January 7, 2014 at 11:21 am

So glad you and your family loved the mac and cheese — this is a family favorite for us, too!

Reply

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