Kraft chili mac and cheese is a pantry meal classic. I love pantry meals because they help you to be more creative in the kitchen. HA! Okay, now let's be serious. I love pantry meals because it means I don't have to go to the grocery store.
Today I offered to make dinner for Xavier last minute. The idea of going to the grocery store at 5 p.m. was the last thing I wanted to do. I racked my brain for a pantry meal I could make.
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I nearly had the ingredients for ziti. The minute I got home I started pulling ingredients.. pasta sauce, noodles, ground beef (from the freezer), cheese... wait... cheese? NO!
One thing I certainly have in abundance is Kraft Macaroni & Cheese. Xavier and I split a huge 12-pack from Sam's Club, and ever since I've been trying to come up with creative ways to use all of it.
Cooking with Kids?
This is a kid-friendly meal on several fronts. First, kids love boxed macaroni and cheese. Second, it's a very easy recipe to make with children.
Try Kraft chili mac and cheese for your kids' cooking night. Teach them how to boil and strain pasta and how to brown ground beef.
Tonight was the perfect night for that. I present to you, cheater's chili mac.
- boxed mac and cheese (plus butter and milk)
- ground beef
- black beans
- a blend of chili spices
Substitutions & Variations
To make this lighter, use skim milk (the nutrition was calculated using whole milk) and lean ground beef or ground turkey.
This recipe would also be great with pinto beans or even chili beans. If you use chili beans, you could add a little bit of the chili bean liquid from the can since it's full of chili spices.
Kraft Chili Mac and Cheese
- 1 box Kraft Original Flavor Macaroni & Cheese 7.25 oz box
- 2 tablespoon butter
- ¼ cup milk
- ½ pound ground beef
- ½ can black beans drained and rinsed
- 1 can Rotel drained
- ¼ teaspoon chili powder
- ¼ teaspoon cumin
- Prepare macaroni according to box directions, using butter and milk amounts listed above.
- While macaroni is cooking, brown the ground beef. Drain excess grease.
- Add ground beef, black beans, rotel, chili powder, and cumin and stir.
Note: Nutrition was estimated using WP Recipe Maker.
Looking for more pantry meal ideas?
Try a few of my quick and easy family meal staples: