Easiest Oven-Baked Mac and Cheese (Dump-and-Bake!)

the top view of a small wooden bowl of macaroni and cheese with a fork sticking out of it

4.8 from 5 reviews

This oven-baked mac and cheese is creamy, cheesy, and comes together with minimal effort in just one pan!



  • 12 ounces dried elbow pasta
  • 3 cups milk
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 4 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 3 cups shredded cheese, divided
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 F.
  2. Add the pasta, milk, and salt to a 9×13 inch, or other 3-quart baking dish, and stir to combine. Then, slice two tablespoons of butter and place over top of the macaroni.
  3. Cover the dish with a fitted lid or aluminum foil as tightly as possible, then bake for 30 minutes.
  4. While the macaroni bakes, combine 2 tablespoons of melted butter with the breadcrumbs, parsley, and garlic powder.
  5. After 30 minutes, remove the macaroni from the oven and very carefully take off the foil. Stir in the pepper, heavy cream, and cream cheese until it is fully melted, then stir in two cups of shredded cheese.
  6. Sprinkle the remaining cup of cheese over top of the macaroni, followed by the breadcrumbs, then return to the oven and bake, uncovered, for 15 minutes, until the breadcrumbs and cheese are browned on top.


  • To make this gluten-free: use gluten-free elbows and gluten-free breadcrumbs. We used this pasta and these bread crumbs.

Keywords: macaroni and cheese, mac and cheese, baked mac and cheese