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Easiest No-Boil Brie Mac and Cheese. Make this on nights when you need a recipe loved by all that takes almost no effort to make! You can’t mess this mac and cheese up! Dry pasta shells baked together with milk, 4 types of cheese, and a buttery Ritz cracker topping. No pre-boiling pasta or messing around with cheese sauce, simply bake and enjoy – so simple and so yummy. Everyone adores this special mac and cheese!

Easiest No-Boil Brie Mac and Cheese | halfbakedharvest.com

Did you know that mac and cheese is one of the most popular Thanksgiving side dishes aside from all the potatoes, sweet potatoes, and stuffing? Apparently, mac and cheese is right up there in the top 4 with green bean casserole just below or above depending on the state.

Who knew? Surely not me. I didn’t grow up with mac and cheese served at Thanksgiving, but geez, my brothers and I were really missing out. We would have loved a plate of mac and cheese over whatever it was we were eating (usually something “fancy” that we did not enjoy, like glazed carrots).

Easiest No-Boil Brie Mac and Cheese | halfbakedharvest.com

Anyway, when my cousin Abby mentioned to me that mac and cheese is one of her favorite Thanksgiving side dishes. That’s when I knew this year would be a good year to share this recipe.

It’s actually a rift off of a recipe I made back in 2013. It’s my creamy brie mac and cheese that I actually still make, even nine-ish years later!

I love that mac and cheese, but I had the idea to make it simpler. No boiling, no cheese sauce, nothing fancy. It’s what we NEED on Thanksgiving.

This turned out just so wonderfully delicious. It’s special, not like a classic mac and cheese, but better in its own way. Creamy, extra cheesy, and so yummy with cubes of brie cheese!

Easiest No-Boil Brie Mac and Cheese | halfbakedharvest.com

The details

Locate the perfect baking dish. I like to use something with lower sides so the top of the mac and cheese can become just a little crisp.

Then mix everything together. And I really mean pretty much everything. The dry pasta, cheeses, milk, sour cream, and seasonings. For the pasta use a smaller shape like elbow macaroni or shells. They’ll cook the best.

Cover the dish with foil, then bake. What happens is the milk bakes into the pasta while the cheeses melt. It works so well, you will be shocked, but pleased.

Easiest No-Boil Brie Mac and Cheese | halfbakedharvest.com

While the pasta is baking, mix the Ritz cracker up with a little butter and seasonings. Don’t skip the crackers, I think they make this mac and cheese really good!

Top the mac and cheese off with the remaining cheeses and sprinkle over the Ritz. Bake until everything is melted and the sauce is bubbling.

It’s going to smell delicious! The crackers really are the key though, I love them.

You can prepare this ahead of time, then just bake it off before you would like to serve. It’s the perfect easy Thanksgiving side or dinner!

If you’re looking to impress with a side dish, make this. As I’ve said, it’s loved by everyone. You can’t go wrong!

Easiest No-Boil Brie Mac and Cheese | halfbakedharvest.com

Looking for other Thanksgiving sides? Here are a few ideas: 

Bourbon Sweet Potato Casserole with Sweet ‘n’ Savory Bacon Pecans

Shredded Brussels Sprout and Prosciutto Salad

Hasselback Butternut Squash with Sage Butter

Crispy Parmesan Thyme Sweet Potato Stacks

Winter Pomegranate Salad with Maple Candied Walnuts

Citrus Avocado Salad with Orange Tahini Vinaigrette

Kale Caesar Salad with Sweet Potatoes and Crispy Chickpeas

Lastly, if you make this Easiest No-Boil Brie Mac and Cheese. be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Above all, I love to hear from you guys and always do my best to respond to each and every comment. And of course, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram! Looking through the photos of recipes you all have made is my favorite!

Easiest No-Boil Brie Mac and Cheese

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings: 8
Calories Per Serving: 436 kcal

Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.

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Ingredients

Instructions

  • 1. Preheat the oven to 375° F. Butter a 9×13-inch baking dish.
    2. To the baking dish, add the dry pasta, half of each shredded cheese, the milk, sour cream, ground mustard, cayenne, and 1/3 cup water. Season with salt and pepper. Stir to combine. Push the cubes of brie into the pasta. Tightly cover the baking dish with the foil. Bake for 25 minutes.
    3. Meanwhile, in a bowl, mix the Ritz with the butter, onion powder, garlic powder, and paprika.
    4. Uncover the pasta and sprinkle over the remaining shredded cheese. Top evenly with the Ritz. Bake another 15-20 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly. Remove from the oven. Dig in and enjoy!
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Easiest No-Boil Brie Mac and Cheese | halfbakedharvest.com

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Comments

  1. 1 star
    Hi,
    I made this for Thanksgiving and was really disappointed. I followed the recipe-except added 1.5oz more pasta (just to empty the bag) and it was dry and lacked flavor. I did not overcook it. Would adding the extra pasta ruin it?
    Thanks!

    1. Hi Mary,
      Thanks for giving the recipe a try and sharing your feedback. Adding the extra pasta definitely is what dried it out, you would have needed to add more liquids based on the amount of pasta you used. Let me know if you give it another try using the correct amount of pasta:) xx

  2. 5 stars
    I made this for Thanksgiving and it was absolutely delicious!! It will be a staple in my recipes now.
    Easy to prep ahead, and after cooking it in the oven I put it in the crockpot to keep warm. Worked out great! So much so that I had to pass the recipe along to everyone who came over.

  3. 5 stars
    This was SO good! I mixed everything the day before Thanksgiving, and then was able to just pop it in the oven the next day. I did add a little extra cheese to the top portion, because I wanted mine to be a little more gooey and cheesy than the recipe called for. But this turned out perfectly, and was a huge hit at Thanksgiving dinner! So creamy, delicious, and will be making again!

  4. 5 stars
    So easy, so quick, and so delicious!! This was a huge hit at our Thanksgiving feast. Followed directions exactly. Couldn’t have been better. This will be added to the holiday menu from here on out!

    1. Hey Vanessa,
      Happy Sunday!!⛄️ I truly appreciate you making this recipe and sharing your feedback, so glad to hear it was enjoyed! xxT

  5. 5 stars
    Made this for my in-laws at Thanksgiving and was a huge hit! Had to replace Havarti with Gouda and used GF shells but still absolutely delicious!

    1. Hi Rachel,
      Wonderful!! I love to hear that this recipe was a hit, thanks for giving it a try! Have a great weekend:)

  6. 5 stars
    This was so easy to make and really delicious. We subbed a couple of the cheeses to fit our tastes (used cheddar, comte, gruyere and brie), but kept everything else the same. Everyone loved it; someone even grabbed my printed recipe to take home.

    1. Hey Rachel,
      Wonderful!! I love to hear that this recipe was a hit, thanks for giving it a try! Have a great weekend:)

    1. Hi April,
      I’ve not made this one in the crockpot. I would follow the recipe as written and then transfer to the slow cooker to keep warm. I think that would work best for you! xx

  7. 5 stars
    Another Thanksgiving hit! Absolutely delicious. We cut the pasta to 2/3 lb and it was perfect. A new family favorite for sure!!

    1. Hey Abby,
      Wonderful!! I love to hear that this recipe was a hit, thanks for giving it a try! Have a great weekend:)

  8. 5 stars
    I made the recipe for Thanksgiving day exactly as written and it turned out great! I’m still hearing about how good it was, even from picky eaters!

    1. Hi Tina,
      Wonderful!! I love to hear that this recipe was a hit, thanks for giving it a try! Have a great weekend:)

  9. 5 stars
    I made this for Thanksgiving and it was a hit! So creamy and flavorful. I didn’t have cayenne so I used red pepper flakes and that was great. I’ll continue to make this recipe.
    By the way, my 11 yr old cat’s name is Teagan!

    1. Hey Marty,
      Thank you so much for making this recipe, I love to hear that it was a winner! I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving! Lol too funny! xx

  10. 5 stars
    WOW WOW! I followed this recipe to the ‘T’, made two separate dishes of Mac, and I had an amazing experience! Never have I ever not boiled my noodles before baking so not going to lie I was nervous…and even when you remove the dish to add the finale of cheese to finish baking I had slight doubt because the noodles we’re right before al dente still. I put my faith in Tieghan because I love all of her recipes and she truly is a master of her craft! The finished product was a perfectly cooked elbow noodle with a cheesy/creamy delicious Mac with a great top crisp from the ritz cracker! All of the cheeses in the recipe melt great which help the noodles cook perfectly during baking. I even stopped at step 3, refrigerated, and reheated with the crumbles on top for the next day and I had an awesome experience, so I can imagine this dish fresh!

    This recipe was seriously a game changer that did not disappoint! If you are short on time but don’t want to compromise flavor THIS is the mac you need. Thank you for yet another amazing recipe that was a crowd pleaser with BOTH houses that I went to for thanksgiving!

    1. Hi Gabrielle,
      Thank you so much for making this recipe, I love to hear that it was a winner! I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving! Thanks so much for your kind message! xx

  11. absolutely the worst macaroni and cheese you can make. followed to a T. Dry, terrible combination of cheeses. Voted worst dish at thanksgiving. if you want to have the worst dish at thanksgiving and make everyone question your general competency as a human, make this.

    1. Made this for Thanksgiving & the entire family thought it was really good! I added some more sharp cheddar cheese and some smoked paprika + crushed red pepper which gave the recipe a kick. Yum!

      1. Hi Emma,
        Thank you so much for making this recipe, I love to hear that it was a winner! I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving! xx

    2. 5 stars
      Can you read or follow instructions? Not sure how you can mess this up…Also not sure how you taste/observe your failed cooking attempts and still choose to bring your dish to the thanksgiving spread. I also question your general competency.

    3. Did the cheeses on yours all curdle too??? I was so excited to make this, but the consistency didn’t come out right. Totally could have been an error on my part though

    4. Damn Justin, weren’t you ever taught that if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all. Plus, all the other comments are saying how great it was.

  12. 5 stars
    I made this tonight and it was delicious! Its not your typical mac and cheese, so many wonderful flavors blended together. I will be making this again, next time for company.

    1. Hi Jacqueline,
      Thank you so much for making this recipe, I love to hear that it was a winner! I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving! xx

  13. Happy Thanksgiving!

    I have to bake this ahead of time-as there won’t be enough room in the oven until about 20 minutes before we eat. I’m baking it all the way through now, and my plan is to let it cool, pop it in the fridge, take it back out to warm to room temp, and then cover in foil and throw it in a hot oven for twenty minutes to re-warm. I hope it works! I did add about 1/4 c more milk hoping that’ll keep it from drying out. Any additional tips?

    1. Hi Sarah,
      I don’t think you need to keep it in the fridge, leaving it at room temp would be just fine:) I would cover with foil for the reheating. I hope this turned out well for you! xx

  14. I haven’t tried it yet, but I’m wondering if the people who had an odd texture followed the written directions and didn’t realize that you say 1/3 cup of water in the written directions, but in the ingredients it calls for 3 cups of milk. Maybe that’s the problem?

    1. Hi Danielle,
      Yes, you need to use 3 cups of milk plus the 1/3 cup of water. I don’t include water in the ingredients list because it doesn’t need to be purchased:) I hope you love the recipe!! xx

        1. Hi Heidi,
          I think this is best if you wait until baking, but if you bake ahead, I would have some extra milk on hand so it doesn’t dry out. I hope you love this recipe, please let me know if you have any other questions! xx

    2. This was so good!! Followed the directions but added a bit more of the cheeses and added 1/3 cup more milk. Also the store was out of traditional brie with the rind so I got the spreadable version and dollaped it in instead, it turned out perfect! For those that made it and didnt turn out, give it a retry just font forget the water and add more milk, youll be much happier with the end result! Thanks T, for another great recipe.

      1. Hey Kristyn,
        Thank you so much for making this recipe, I love to hear that it was a winner! I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving! xx