One Pan Cheeseburger Mac

Today I have a super easy and super tasty dinner recipe for you to try out! Enter Cheeseburger Mac, a-la homemade Hamburger Helper! I found this recipe on the Spend With Pennies blog while I was searching for a quick dinner to make on a busy Wednesday night. Boxed Cheeseburger Mac was one of my favorite meals growing up, so I was excited about trying this simple recipe for a homemade version of my childhood favorite. This recipe makes plenty to feed a family of four, is guaranteed to please even picky eaters, and uses mostly ingredients you will already have laying around! Sounds like a win-win to me, so let’s get to it!


First, toss your ground beef (or turkey, if you prefer!) and diced onion into a large skillet. Cook on medium heat until meat is completely cooked, then drain the excess fat.

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Make sure you cook your meat until no pink is left, then drain the excess fat off.

While your meat and onions are cooking, you will need to make your flavoring mix. In a small bowl, combine your spices and cornstarch (this is the thickening agent for the sauce), mix together, and set aside for later.


After the meat is finished cooking and the fat has been drained, add the milk, chicken broth (or water), macaroni and spice mix to the skillet. Stir well to combine. Just as with boxed cheeseburger mac, bring the concoction to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for about 15 minutes.

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As the pasta cooks, it will absorb the extra liquid in the pan.

When the noodles are fully cooked, remove the pan from the heat and stir in 1.5 cups of the cheese. Serve sprinkled with the leftover cheese and enjoy!

So there you have it: a 20-minute, one-pan, cheap and easy dinner for all ages to enjoy!

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Look at all that cheesey glory!

PS: I love serving this with a fresh Caesar salad, so don’t forget to pick up those ingredients while you’re at the store!


4 from 1 reviews
One Pan Cheeseburger Mac
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
This easy one pan meal is a great homemade (and healthier) version of the classic boxed Hamburger Helper of our childhoods!
Recipe type: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Serves: 4 servings
  • 1 lb 93% lean ground beef (or turkey)
  • 1 sweet onion, diced
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth (or water)
  • 2 cups milk (any variety will work!)
  • 8 oz uncooked macaroni (1/2 box)
  • 1 Tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  1. Place onions and ground beef in a large skillet and cook until beef is no longer pink. Drain excess fat.
  2. While beef is cooking, combine cornstarch, garlic powder, sugar, paprika and pepper in a small bowl and mix together. Set aside.
  3. After draining the fat from the meat and onions, pour milk, chicken broth, macaroni and spice mixture into skillet and stir to combine. Bring to boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes or until macaroni is fully cooked.
  4. Remove from heat and stir in 1.5 cups of cheddar cheese. Enjoy while hot, topped with the remaining cheddar cheese.


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