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One Pot Baked Spinach and Artichoke Mac and Cheese.

You know those fallback recipes? The ones you make over and over again? Well, this One Pot Baked Spinach and Artichoke Mac and Cheese is mine. It’s the easiest and best mac-and-cheese recipe. It uses just one pot, and the ingredients and methods are simple. My trick is to first boil the pasta in just enough water to start the cooking process, then add milk and cream cheese. That means there’s no boiling and draining the pasta, and no fussing around with making a roux either. Plus the cream cheese creates a light and creamy sauce without having to add any additional flour-like in a béchamel.

What’s really great about this recipe is just how adaptable it is. When my brothers are around, I omit the veggies, but I include a few chipotle peppers in adobo, and I use half pepper jack and half cheddar cheese. It’s one of their favorites!

Looking for other easy one pot pastas? Here are my favorites: 

One Pot Creamy French Onion Pasta Bake

Slow Cooker Saucy Sunday Bolognese Pasta

One Pot Creamy Cauliflower Mac and Cheese

Lastly, if you make this One Pot Baked Spinach and Artichoke 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!

One Pot Baked Spinach and Artichoke Mac and Cheese

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings: 6

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

  • 6 tablespoons salted butter, at room temperature, plus more for greasing
  • 1 (1-pound) box short-cut pasta, such as macaroni
  • 2 cups whole milk (see Note)
  • 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, cubed
  • 3 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • Ground cayenne pepper
  • 2 cups packed fresh baby spinach, chopped
  • 1 (8-ounce) jar marinated artichokes, drained and roughly chopped
  • cups crushed Ritz crackers (about 1 sleeve) (about 1 sleeve)
  • ¾ teaspoon garlic powder

Instructions

  • 1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Grease a 9x13 inch baking dish.
    2. In a large saucepan, bring 4 cups of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta and cook, stirring occasionally, for 8 minutes. Stir in the milk and cream cheese and cook until the cream cheese has melted and the pasta is al dente, about 5 minutes more.
    3. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in 2 cups of the cheddar and 3 tablespoons of the butter. Season with salt, pepper, and cayenne. Stir in the spinach and artichokes. If the sauce feels too thick, add ¼ cup of milk or water to thin it.
    4. Transfer the mixture to the prepared baking dish. Top with the remaining 1 cup of cheddar.
    5. In a medium bowl, stir together the crackers, the remaining 3 tablespoons of butter, and the garlic powder. Sprinkle the crumbs evenly over the mac and cheese.
    6. Bake until the sauce is bubbling and the crumbs are golden, about 20 minutes. Let cool for 5 minutes and serve. Store any leftovers refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

Notes

Note: Have a little extra milk or water on hand. Once you’ve added everything, you can decide whether you’re happy with the consistency. If you need to thin the sauce out a bit, simply add more liquid.
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Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Made this recipe last night for my family. It was a big hit! A great alternative to traditional Mac n Cheese. I did a few changes. I boiled my noodles in chicken broth, added 1/2 cream cheese and 1/2 Boursin cheese, added 1 cup of parmesan cheese and topped the dish with Doritos. One pot cooking made cleanup so easy.

    1. Hey Kathryn,
      Wonderful!! Thanks a lot for giving this recipe a try, I love to hear that it was a winner! xTieghan

  2. 5 stars
    Fantastic and easy recipe, turned out better than I expected (and I had very high expectations). Went a little heavier on the spinach than called for. Also, seasoned to taste with salt, pepper and cayenne since amounts aren’t listed. Only other change was I used panko instead of ritz crackers for the topping. Will definitely make again, thanks Tieghan

    1. Hey Geoff,
      Wonderful!! Love to hear that this recipe was a hit, thanks a lot for giving it a go:) xTieghan

  3. 5 stars
    I made this tonight and the only change I made to the recipe was I added more artichoke hearts. This is a fantastic and quick meal to fix!!!

    1. Hey Heidi,
      Awesome!! I am thrilled to hear that this recipe was a winner, thanks a bunch for making it! xTieghan

  4. 5 stars
    I loved this and so did my husband!!! Easy to make and very satisfying. Do not omit the garlicky buttery cracker topping bc it really makes the dish. I will def be making again!! Thanks HBH!!

    1. Hey Kristin,
      Awesome!! I am thrilled to hear that this recipe was a winner, thanks a bunch for making it! xTieghan

  5. Hi! I have a 10oz frozen bag of spinach on hand I’d like to use. As long as I defrost and wring out the extra liquid, it should work right?

    1. Hey Molly,
      Totally, that will work well for you! I hope you love the recipe, please let me know if you give it a try! xTieghan

  6. 5 stars
    This recipe was so simple and SO delicious. It also makes for great leftovers. I look forward to making this again!

    1. Hey Nicole,
      Wonderful!! I am so so glad to hear that this recipe was enjoyed. Thanks a bunch for making it! xT

  7. Hello! Is this something I can make ahead of time and just bake a little later in the day? Either way can’t wait to make this, thank you!

    1. Hey Allie,
      Totally, that will work well for you. I hope this recipe turns out amazing, please let me know if you give it a try! xTieghan

  8. 5 stars
    This was a great, easy meal! I doubled the spinach, and will probably add more next time. It was also great straight from the pot without the additional bake time!

    1. Hi Sara,
      I really appreciate you giving the recipe a try, so glad to hear that it was enjoyed! Have a great week! xxT

    1. Hey Katie,
      Awesome! Thanks a lot for making this recipe. I love to hear that it was enjoyed! Happy Thursday❄️ xxT

  9. 5 stars
    I made this yesterday and it came out perfect! We all loved it and will be making this again and again! So delicious! My family thinks it’s better than a popular deli we go to for macaroni and cheese. They prefer this one now!

  10. I want to make this as a side for Christmas dinner. Do you think making it right up until the point of baking it and then putting it in the fridge the night before would work?

    1. Never mind! I see Sarah’s comment below! Planning on doing it the way she described, looking forward it – I love this recipe!

    2. Hey Lindsey,
      Yes, that will work well for you! I hope you love this recipe, please let me know if you give it a try! xTieghan

  11. 5 stars
    I love this recipe! Do you think there’s a way to make it in a crockpot? Just curious for the sake of a party. Thanks!

    1. Hey Sam,
      Happy Friday! I am thrilled to hear that this recipe was enjoyed. You could probably do the crockpot, the only issue is getting the golden top. Thanks so much for making it and happy holidays!❄️ xTieghan

    1. Hi Jean,
      I haven’t but that will work well for you. Please let me know if you give the recipe a try, I hope you love it! xTieghan