Air Fryer Mac And Cheese

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Air Fryer Mac And Cheese. How to air fry mac and cheese so that it tastes better than any baked mac and cheese that you have ever tried. Using 3 main ingredients air fryer mac and cheese is a game changer and an addiction you will soon follow.

This air fryer baked mac and cheese recipe features dried macaroni, skimmed milk and grated cheese.

With lots of useful tips showing you how to transform your air fryer mac and cheese based on favourite cheese, favourite seasonings and if you want to transform it into a mac and cheese casserole with a wonderful parmesan crust.

Heads up! This mac and cheese recipe is so so popular with our air fryer readers that they asked us to feature it in our air fryer beginner’s cookbook called Air Fryer Easy Everyday. You can get a copy here.

Air Fryer Mac And Cheese Recipe
Air Fryer Mac And Cheese Recipe

Air Fryer Mac And Cheese

This air fryer mac and cheese post is an update from a baked macaroni cheese recipe that we originally shared with you in September of 2016. We hope you enjoy our updated version.

Our air fryer mac and cheese has been a long time coming. We have always meant to show you how to make mac and cheese in the air fryer, but another recipe has come up and it has got forgotten about.

Which is just so, so wrong as I am a HUGE mac and cheese fan and its been on my favourite food list since I was a small child.

Though for me, this mac and cheese would always be known as air fryer macaroni cheese, as that’s what us Brits would always call it.

I remember watching Friends as a teen and it always referenced mac and cheese and that’s when I realised that outside of Britain it had a totally different name to it.

Whether you do call it air fryer macaroni cheese or air fryer mac and cheese, it tastes so good and will be one of those air fryer meals that you will want to eat time and time again.

In the Milner house you always know which air fryer recipes we are addicted to the most, as those are the ones we keep on cooking and testing before we share them with you.

Just because we need to air fry mac and cheese another time and another, just to taste test it again for you! Even though it was perfect on attempt 2!

Can You Make Mac And Cheese In A Air Fryer?

Absolutely! Air Fryer Mac and Cheese is like making baked mac and cheese in the oven. There is no macaroni to boil, there is no cheese sauce to make and everything happens in one dish.

When you first make mac and cheese in an air fryer, it will be like one of those moments when you wondered why you didn’t do this years ago.

Air Fryer Mac And Cheese in bowl

Why Cook Mac And Cheese In The Air Fryer?

The beauty of cooking mac and cheese in the air fryer, is the small amount of ingredients and how it all comes together like magic. There is no hassle and it is perfect for if you want a quick air fryer dinner.

You start off with the 3 main ingredients (macaroni, cheese and milk) and you can vary it depending on favourite pasta flavours.

What Ingredients & Gadgets Go Into Air Fryer Mac And Cheese?

Air Fryer Mac And Cheese Ingredients

There are 3 main ingredients that go into air fryer mac and cheese:

As well as this we used the Philips Air Fryer XL as well as a quality baking pan that perfectly fits into the air fryer.

Its important that your chosen baking pan is deep enough to hold your mac and cheese, as well as not being too big that it doesn’t fit into your air fryer basket.

You can choose whichever brand of dried macaroni pasta that you wish. But try to keep to a similar size of pasta as what we have demonstrated in this mac and cheese recipe.

Otherwise the cook times may vary if your pasta is much smaller or bigger than ours.

Skimmed milk is important. Because of the way your mac and cheese bakes, you don’t want anything but fat free, or almost fat free milk.

Skimmed milk is much thinner than semi skimmed or full fat milk and by using this it will stop your macaroni from sticking and help with the correct thickness of your macaroni cheese.

Grated cheese comes down to what your favourite cheese is. There are so many cheese variations that you can do in your air fryer macaroni cheese. In ours we used our favourite gouda cheese as well as some cheddar cheese.

But you could use any type of grated cheese that cooks well. Though try to avoid mozzarella because it is so stringy that it will make it difficult to stir.

Air Fryer Mac And Cheese Tips:

  • Its like science – Just like when you bake a cake, you want to make sure you get your measurements spot on for the ratio of pasta to milk. Otherwise you can end up with a watery sauce, dried out pasta or way too thick.
  • It MUST be stirred – Even though you can dump the ingredients into the air fryer and the air fryer will do the hard work, you still need to stir it regularly. This will stop it from sticking and makes sure that everything is well cooked. We stirred 3 times at 6 minutes, 12 minutes and at 18 minutes.
  • Set the air fryer to just 6 minutes – Use the air fryer beep as your signal to mix your air fryer mac and cheese, then click for another 6 minutes. It will save you having to remind yourself and as the air fryer keeps its last time makes it so much easier.
  • Variations are key – We all have different flavours and seasonings we like so do mix and match your air fryer mac and cheese. Add in ham or bacon or pepperoni for a meat kick. Add in coconut cream at the end to make it creamier or add dried onion or breadcrumbs to turn it into a casserole.
  • The air fryer baking pan will be full – When you add the dried pasta, the milk and cheese it will be almost overflowing. This is why its better once it has cooked for a bit and you have stirred it, to add in additional ingredients and not at the start.

How To Air Fry Mac And Cheese?

Air Fryer Mac & Cheese step by step

Cooking mac & cheese in the air fryer is so simple:

  • Load the ingredients – Add your pasta, milk and cheese to the air fryer baking pan and give it a quick stir.
  • Stir the beeps – Each time it beeps give it another stir and use the 2nd beep to add in extra ingredients so that it can cook with it.
  • Add the crust – Finish off by adding your parmesan and breadcrumb topping and cook for the last 2 minutes and then serve.
Air Fryer Mac and Cheese

More Air Fryer Dinner Recipes

Here at Recipe This we love an air fryer dinner. Being working parents to three children and them all demanding their home cooked food, means the air fryer is ideal for lazy dinners.

Here are a few more air fryer dinner recipes beyond our air fryer mac and cheese recipe for you to try out next:

We also have a lot more air fryer recipes for you to check out and find some new ideas for planning your meals. As well as this we have our air fryer archives, which is full to bursting with all our air fryer recipes in one big PDF ebook. You can order it on this link or click on the banner below.

Air Fryer Mac And Cheese

Air Fryer Mac And Cheese. How to air fry mac and cheese so that it tastes better than any baked mac and cheese that you have ever tried. Using 3 main ingredients air fryer mac and cheese is a game changer and an addiction you will soon follow.
Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time18 minutes
Total Time23 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Air Fryer
Servings: 4
Calories: 623kcal


Air Fryer Mac And Cheese Ingredients:

Additional Air Fryer Mac And Cheese Ingredients:


  • Place into your air fryer baking pan the main 3 ingredients and mix well.
  • Place the air fryer on 160c/320f for 6 minutes.
  • After 6 minutes when it beeps stir and add in seasonings. Press the button again so it will do a further 6 minutes.
  • After 12 minutes, stir and add in the rest of the ingredients.
  • After its final 6 minutes and a total of 18 minutes, give it a final stir and it is ready to be served.
  • If adding a parmesan crust, mix in a bowl breadcrumbs with 50g of parmesan cheese and load onto the top of your baking pan once it has had a final stir at 18 minutes. Layer it so that there are no gaps and cook for a last 2 minutes at 180c/360f.


The total cooking time is 18 minutes if you are not adding a parmesan topping, or 20 minutes with one.
Avoid high fat milks or creams in the initial 3 ingredients. This is because it is too thick and will ruin the consistency of the pasta/cheese/milk combination.
Each time I set the time to 6 minutes as it is easier to keep track of needing to stir it at 6 minutes, 12 minutes and when it is cooked at 18 minutes.
The main 3 ingredients are your base ingredients. You can add in with your favourite other ingredients.
For bacon bits I cooked 3 bacon rashers in the air fryer first in the air fryer baking pan.


Calories: 623kcal | Carbohydrates: 58g | Protein: 40g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Cholesterol: 72mg | Sodium: 1125mg | Potassium: 536mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 885IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 861mg | Iron: 2mg
Nutrition InfoPlease Note: Nutrition values are our best estimate based on the software we use at Recipe This and are meant as a guide. If you rely on them for your diet, use your preferred nutrition calculator.
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Air Fryer Mac & Cheese
Recipe This

Hi! I am Sam and along with my chef hubby Dom we love sharing with you easy everyday recipes using kitchen gadgets. We are also the authors of The Complete Air Fryer Cookbook, an amazing air fryer cookbook filled with 140+ everyday air fryer recipes. Beyond the air fryer we also love the instant pot, slow cooker, soup maker, ninja foodi, pie marker and several other kitchen gadgets. CLICKING HERE →

3 thoughts on “Air Fryer Mac And Cheese”

    • Hi Lynn,

      We have not actually tried this recipe in the air fryer oven yet, but if you were going to try it, we have found that most recipes would need a longer cook time up to 20% longer in an air fryer oven so please bare that in mind 🙂


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