Many people can agree that macaroni and cheese is an absolutely delicious dish that’s perfect if you want a warm, comforting dinner that the whole family will love.
However, some people spend hours upon hours making mac and cheese from scratch, as they have to grate all the cheese, mix it with the right amount of milk and butter, and bake it to perfection.
Some people even go as far as making their own noodles!
And while boxed mac and cheese brands have provided a quicker and more convenient way to eat this meal on a casual weeknight, even the boxed options can take an ample amount of time to cook well.
If you resonate with this struggle to get good mac and cheese and have the time to cook it on a busy night, then you’re in luck with this list of the 13 most popular grocery store frozen mac and cheese.
Our Favorite Frozen Mac and Cheese
I’ll cover the best frozen mac and cheese brands so that you can choose your favorite of the bunch, save ample time, and still enjoy a scrumptiously cheesy meal.
Stouffer’s Macaroni & Cheese
Stouffer’s Macaroni & Cheese uses 100% real cheese and zero preservatives to deliver a bold, cheesy, and creamy comfort dish that tastes as good as a home-cooked meal.
It takes only six minutes to cook in a microwave, but it is tastier when cooked in the oven for about 50 minutes.
Regardless of how you prepare it, you’ll be rewarded with 14 grams of protein and a very sauce-heavy mac and cheese.
I enjoy this mac and cheese, although I wish they included a better macaroni to cheese ratio.
I hate to say this, but it might be almost too cheesy sometimes!
Banquet Mac & Cheese
Banquet offers an excellent value mac and cheese frozen meal that is super simple and easy to make.
Although the flavor isn’t as robust as some of the other options on this list, it has a very creamy and somewhat runny sauce that pairs well with vegetables like broccoli or bell peppers.
That said, I would highly recommend the Banquet Mac and Cheese if you are preparing other food items to go with it or as a side dish.
If you are solely eating mac and cheese, however, I think there are slightly better options.
Marie Callender’s Vermont White Cheddar Mac & Cheese
White cheddar mac and cheese has a distinct flavor that some people prefer over regular cheddar mac and cheese, and Mari Callender’s frozen meal take on the dish is quite rich.
The sauce is thick and creamy, unlike other frozen dishes with a sauce that comes out pretty watery.
The consistency of the pasta in Marie Callender’s White Cheddar Mac & Cheese is also notable, as the pasta shells are tender but not too soft, squishy, or mushy.
Finally, the portion size of this frozen meal is lovely, as it provides enough food for two sizable dinner sides or a quick snack for three to four kids.
Blake’s Old Fashioned Mac & Cheese
Blake’s All Natural Foods offers a mac and cheese dish that uses not only organic pasta and rBGH-free cheddar cheese but also includes a tasty breadcrumb topping.
I love breadcrumb toppings on mac and cheese because it promotes a more dynamic consistency and takes a simple dish to the next level.
Plus, while many frozen mac and cheeses are up to 500 calories per serving, this all-natural frozen dish sits comfortably at 300 calories per serving.
Finally, this tasty mac and cheese comes in both original and white cheddar versions. You can try both and see which type you prefer.
Trader Joe’s Hatch Chile Mac & Cheese
If you visit Trader Joe’s, you’ll find a wide variety of options in their frozen dinner aisle, especially frozen mac and cheese options.
One of their best frozen mac and cheese options is the Hatch Chile Mac & Cheese, including green chiles from Hatch, New Mexico.
Green chile paired with macaroni and cheese is a classic, undeniably tasty combination.
However, I wish there was more green chile in the dish, as you’ll only find bits and pieces here and there.
Fortunately, you can still taste the green chile in each bite, and the cheddar is sharp, which complements the pepper flavor. That said, this mac and cheese is still well worth the purchase.
Amy’s Macaroni & Cheese
Amy’s Macaroni & Cheese uses plenty of favorable, organic ingredients such as organic macaroni (made with organic wheat flour) and organic low-fat milk.
These ingredients align with Amy’s Kitchen’s story, in which the founders Rachel and Andy created organic and vegetarian ready-made meals since they couldn’t find any on their own when Rachel was pregnant.
However, like most frozen meals, the sodium content is still quite high, sitting at 680mg per serving. Surprisingly, that is still about half as much sodium as some of its priced competitors, such as Stouffer’s mac and cheese.
Plus, they have a light sodium option if you are looking to really cut down on your sodium intake, and both versions are soy-free, tree nut-free, and kosher.
Lean Cuisine Favorites Macaroni & Cheese
Lean Cuisine offers various mac and cheese ready-made meals, including Vermont white cheddar and white cheddar & broccoli.
However, the fan-favorite is appropriately named Favorites Macaroni and Cheese.
It’s ready in a few minutes, and you can get 13 grams of protein from this meal, making this a great option for lunch before an afternoon workout.
It doesn’t have the thickest or richest sauce, but the flavor of this mac and cheese is nice and pairs well with salad or meat dishes.
365 Macaroni & Cheese
365 has a boxed mac and cheese, but their frozen mac and cheese option is an excellent choice for a quick meal or to take to work.
Similar to Amy’s Kitchen, 365 makes sure to use organic ingredients in their mac and cheese, and both the calorie and sodium levels of the box are lower than many of its competitors.
However, this is mainly one of the best options for people looking to have a healthier version. In terms of taste, flavor, richness, and creaminess, it does not fare well against other brands.
Alternatively, you can add your own herbs and spices to amp up the flavor a bit while maintaining a lower calorie count.
Evol Truffle Parmesan Mac & Cheese
Truffle has made a significant name for itself in the food world over the past decade, so it should come as no surprise that Evol’s Truffle Parmesan Mac & Cheese is one of the most popular grocery store frozen man and cheese dishes.
While many frozen mac and cheeses simply taste like cheddar and noodles, this dish is more of a gourmet option given its tasty and rich flavor with hints of shallot, garlic, and even mushroom.
It also uses Tubetti pasta instead of standard macaroni shells and includes panko breadcrumbs as an additional desirable touch.
Still, it maintains a reasonable price, perhaps due to its relatively smaller portion size.
That said, I like enjoying Evol’s mac and cheese for lunch more than dinner, and if I do eat it for dinner, it is as a side to the main dish.
Chili’s Bacon Mac ‘n’ Cheese
Bacon and cheese go almost just as well together like bacon and eggs, so I think it’s fantastic that the family-favorite restaurant Chili’s provides a delicious Bacon Mac ‘n’ Cheese frozen dish.
This way, people can enjoy their restaurant-style mac and cheese by easily warming up in the comfort of their own homes.
Not only does it include a creamy, rich, and bold cheese sauce and bits of savory bacon, but it also includes poblano peppers for a little bit of extra spice and flavor.
I love the taste of this mac and cheese, but I am mindful of the sodium content at a whopping 1010mg per serving. You can taste how salty it is as well, which can make it easily addictive.
Thus, I try to only buy this frozen dish every once in a while.
Michelina’s Macaroni & Cheese
Michelina’s Macaroni & Cheese is not organic, does not have the highest number of protein per serving, and does not have the boldest flavor.
However, it does win when it comes to staying on the lower end with calories and sodium content while maintaining a reasonably tasty and creamy cheese blend.
It also has a notably low price. Given the price and nutritional values, this is one of the best frozen mac and cheese brands for those looking for a cheap daily lunch to warm up at home or bring to the office.
Joe’s Diner Mac ‘n Cheese
For many popular grocery store frozen mac and cheeses, you’ll have the pick between regular cheddar and white cheddar.
But Joe’s Diner Mac ‘n Cheese uses a cheese blend that includes four different types of yummy, real cheeses—cheddar, havarti, gouda, and swiss.
This four cheese blend results in a more authentic, hearty, homestyle mac and cheese flavor that many people—including myself—find simply irresistible.
Trader Joe’s Reduced Guilt Mac & Cheese
If the Trader Joe’s Hatch Chile Mac and Cheese mentioned previously sounded delicious to your mind but nerve-wracking to your waistline, Trader Joe’s provides an alternative “guilt-free” mac and cheese option as well.
It’s a lighter option than the Hatch Chile and other Trader Joe’s mac and cheese options.
However, at 700 total calories, it is still not necessarily a “diet” food. And in my opinion, losing a lot of the taste and richness to reduce the calorie count is not worth it.
I would personally stick with the full-flavor mac and cheese and just eat less because the flavor is what mac and cheese is all about!
Our Favorite Frozen Mac and Cheese
- Stouffer’s Macaroni & Cheese
- Banquet Mac & Cheese
- Marie Callender’s Vermont White Cheddar Mac & Cheese
- Blake’s Old Fashioned Mac & Cheese
- Trader Joe’s Hatch Chile Mac & Cheese
- Amy’s Macaroni & Cheese
- Lean Cuisine Favorites Macaroni & Cheese
- 365 Macaroni & Cheese
- Evol Truffle Parmesan Mac & Cheese
- Chili’s Bacon Mac ‘n’ Cheese
- Michelina’s Macaroni & Cheese
- Joe’s Diner Mac ‘n Cheese
- Trader Joe’s Reduced Guilt Mac & Cheese
Frozen mac and cheese provides a more convenient and easy way to have an all-time favorite meal in just a few minutes.
There’s a variety of choices available when it comes to mac and cheese.
Options may include but are not limited to cheddar vs. white cheddar vs. a cheese blend; organic vs. non-organic; standard macaroni shells vs. a different type of macaroni; plain vs. additional ingredients like bacon, broccoli, or breadcrumbs, and more!
Whether you’re looking into one of the most popular grocery store frozen mac and cheese brands for your daily busy life, your work lunch, your kid’s dinners, or else, I hope that this list of the best frozen mac and cheese helps you find the best option for your needs.