A hearty and flavorful ground beef recipe that is a cross between classic chili and macaroni and cheese. This is a tasty meal that can feed many on a smaller budget.
Do you love beef chili and mac and cheese? Then you’re going to love this delicious ground beef chili mac and cheese recipe! It’s the perfect comfort food for a chilly winter night. Best of all, it’s easy to make – just whip up a quick batch of chili and mix it in with some cooked macaroni. You’ll have a tasty dinner that the whole family will love!
If you are familiar with American Chop Suey, or Cheeseburger Casserole this recipe is similar but with a Mexican-inspired flair. It is the perfect recipe to use for one pound of ground beef because the vegetables, and beans help maximize the smaller amount of beef.
How to Make Chili Mac
Making Chili Mac is not too hard, but does have some typical prep work involved. My best advice is to prep all the cans, and dice/chop your veggies ahead of time to make mealtime easier.
Add in chili seasoning, beef stock, tomatoes, chilis, and beans; simmer for 10 minutes stirring occasionally to slightly reduce the mixture.
While the meat and vegetable mixture is simmering, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, and cook the pasta until al dente, then drain it.
In a Dutch oven, add the drained pasta, beef, and veggie mixture; stir. Add half the cheese and mix until combined.
Top the meal with the remaining cheese and cover the pot.
Bake for 25 minutes at 350°F. Uncover the pot and bake for an additional 5 minutes. Garnish with cilantro, and serve with optional toppings like sour cream.
Beans – You can use black beans, kidney, or chili-style beans for this recipe.
Seasoning – I used chili seasoning, but you can also use taco seasoning if that is what you have on hand.
Proteins – Lean ground beef is the easiest to use since there really will not be any grease to drain. You can also use meatless crumbles, ground chicken, turkey, bison, or venison.
Tomatoes – I used standard diced tomatoes, but you can use Mexican spiced tomatoes if you wish (Ro*Tel). There is no need to drain the cans before adding.
Add-ins – I used a small can of diced green chilis for more flavor. You can also add some corn for a Southwestern flair.
Stocks – I had beef stock on hand, but you can use chicken or vegetable stock as well.
If you want to store your Chili Mac & Cheese, just follow these easy steps.
- Refrigerator – Simply put the lid on the cooled pan (never hot), and store it in the refrigerator for up to 3 days for best taste.
- Freezer – Freeze up to 3 months in an airtight bag or freezer safe container for freshness after thawing. – Keep frozen until ready to use then defrost overnight in fridge before reheating on stovetop or microwave.
More Ground Beef Recipes to Try Today
- French Onion Ground Beef Casserole
- Corn Chip Pie Casserole
- Baked Beef Chimichangas
- Slow Cooker Taco Beef Dip
- American Goulash a.k.a Chop Suey
Delicious Ground Beef Chili Mac & Cheese
- 5-quart stock pot to boil pasta
- 6-quart Dutch Oven to bake pasta
- large, deep-walled skillet to pan-fry/simmer beef mixture.
- cutting board & knife
- Colander to drain pasta
- wooden spoon
- 2 cups elbow macaroni cooked until al dente, drained
- 1 pound ground beef
- 3 cloves garlic pressed
- 1 cup green bell pepper diced
- 1 large yellow onion diced
- 4.5 ounces green chilis chopped
- 28 ounces tomatoes canned, diced *do not drain
- 15.5 ounces chili beans *can also use kidney or black beans
- 1.25 ounces mild chili seasoning mix
- ½ cup beef stock
- 12 ounces shredded yellow cheddar
- In a large skillet, brown the ground beef, onion, garlic, and diced pepper. Cook until beef is no longer pink. Drain any excess grease.1 pound ground beef, 3 cloves garlic, 1 large yellow onion, 1 cup green bell pepper
- Add in chili seasoning, beef stock, tomatoes, chilis, and beans; simmer for 10 minutes stirring occasionally to slightly reduce the mixture.4.5 ounces green chilis, 28 ounces tomatoes, 15.5 ounces chili beans, 1.25 ounces mild chili seasoning mix, ½ cup beef stock
- While the meat and vegetable mixture is simmering, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, and cook pasta until al dente; drain.2 cups elbow macaroni
- In a Dutch oven, add in the drained pasta, beef and veggie mixture; stir. Add half the cheese and mix.12 ounces shredded yellow cheddar
- Top with remaining cheese and cover the pot. Bake for 25 minutes at 350°F. Uncover the pot and bake for an additional 5 minutes. Garnish with cilantro, and serve with optional toppings like sour cream.12 ounces shredded yellow cheddar