Healthier Mac & Cheese in a Mug

The first thing I knew how to make as a kid was Mac & Cheese.


Of course, I’m not talking the bread crumbs, three-cheese grandmother-style mac and cheese you only have once or twice a year. I’m talking Kraft Mac & Cheese.

Actually, to be more accurate I’m talking Great Value Mac & Cheese; I preferred it to Kraft as a child.

Boil the water. Add the Macaroni. Cook, then strain. Melt butter in a pan, then add cheese packet and milk. Add pasta and stir. (Do NOT pour cheese sauce over macaroni- if you mix it all together in a separate bowl you’ll lose much of the cheese in the process. I had very strong feelings about this as a child… And still do. ;))

Well, now that I’m older (and healthier) I’m a little wary of ingesting as large an amount of ingredients I can’t pronounce as in a typical box of Mac & Cheese. Ever heard of sodium tripolyphosphate? Yeah, neither have I.

Also, I can’t trust myself with a whole box of Mac and Cheese. Because given the chance, I will eat the whole thing, no matter how many servings it claims to make.

This Mac and Cheese is just about as easy as Easy Mac, and can be made in the microwave in less than 10 minutes. Not to mention, the result is a super-cheesy bowl of heavenly Mac & Cheese that’s whole wheat and contains whole ingredients. And with a dash of paprika, oregano, and pepper, this version of Mac has the classic taste of Mac & Cheese, without the questionable ingredients.


There’s nothing questionable about this Mac & Cheese. Except for: how is it that good!?

Healthier Mac & Cheese in a Mug

  • 1/3 c dry whole wheat pasta (I used Rotini)
  • 2/3 c water
  • 1/4 c shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 tsp olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp paprika
  • 1/4 tsp oregano
  • dash of pepper
  • gluten free breadcrumbs for topping

Add pasta and water to a large mug and microwave for 7 minutes, or until pasta is al dente. Add cheese, milk, coconut oil (or butter), paprika, and oregano and stir until combined. Sprinkle with breadcrumbs, if desired. Enjoy!

Nutrition Information (from

Calories: 184

Fat: 10g

Carbs: 14g

Protein: 9g

(Yields 1 serving)

Nutritional information calculated using Great Value Whole Wheat Rotini and will vary depending on what kind of pasta you choose to use. Without the pasta, the cheese sauce nutritional information is as follows: 114 calories, 10g fat, 0g carbs, 7g protein.


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