The BEST Buffalo Chicken Mac and Cheese

Yes I said it…the BEST! I have played around with a lot of mac and cheese recipes over the years and have never fell in love with any of them. I try the kind where you make a roux, add in the cheese, bake it, and it just never turns out how I expect it to. The best, and easiest way to a creamy, gooey, luscious mac and cheese is to add the golden goddess of cheese, that’s right, our friend Velveeta. It gives you that saucy consistency without the curdle that you can sometimes get with a roux based cheese sauce. My recipe includes two other amazing cheeses that are just perfect for this dish, garlic white cheddar and fontina, yum! Topped off with garlic toasted bread crumbs…you’ll never make it any other way again!

Not a buffalo chicken fan, or maybe not a spicy fan? You can easily omit the buffalo sauce and chicken, and you’re left with simply amazing garlic white cheddar mac and cheese! I like to use medium shell pasta because it just cradles the cheese sauce like a newborn baby. Elbow, spiral (cellentani) or small shells would also work great!

The BEST Buffalo Chicken Mac and Cheese

Author Laura Doerr


  • 16 oz medium shell pasta
  • 10 oz Velveeta cheese cubed
  • 1+ cup garlic white cheddar cheese shredded
  • 1+ cup fontina cheese shredded
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 cups rotisserie chicken chopped
  • 1/2 cup buffalo sauce

Breadcrumb mixture

  • 1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 tbsp melted butter
  • dash garlic powder


  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook pasta according to package instructions to al dente. Reserve some of the pasta water just before draining.

  2. While water is coming to a boil, and pasta is cooking, combine chopped chicken and buffalo sauce in a medium sauce pan, and heat over medium heat until chicken and sauce are warmed through. Keep warm until ready to add to mac. 
  3. Grate the garlic white cheddar and fontina cheeses, keep them separate from the cubed Velveeta.
  4. In a small bowl combine the breadcrumb mixture ingredients and set aside.
  5. Once pasta is finished cooking, drain and put back in the large pot on the stove on med-low heat. Add the butter, milk, and Velveeta. Sir until cheese is almost all melted. Stir in the other two cheeses, garlic powder, and salt and pepper to taste. Stir until melted. Stir in the buffalo chicken mixture. Make sure everything is hot and warmed through. You can always add more milk and/or reserved pasta water if more moisture is needed.

  6. Lightly grease a medium baking dish, and pour the mac and cheese mixture into the dish. Sprinkle with breadcrumb mixture over the top. Place under the broiler for about 5 minutes or until golden brown. Watch it closely to avoid burning!

Recipe Notes

The garlic white cheddar and fontina cheeses are sold in block form in the specialty cheese area of the supermarket. Regular white cheddar is just fine too!

If you are not a spicy fan or buffalo fan you can omit the buffalo sauce all together and you still have a delicious mac and cheese dish. Chicken or no chicken, it's still great!

The 1/2 cup of buffalo sauce really only adds a hint of buffalo flavor, it's definitely not an overwhelming buffalo kick. Like it more spicy? Add more buffalo sauce or sriracha!

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