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One-Pot Cheesy Beef Macaroni |

One-Pot Cheesy Beef Macaroni

  • Yield: 6-8 servings 1x


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 1 medium onion, finely diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, finely diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning (or dried basil and oregano)
  • 2 teaspoons sugar (optional – I like to add a touch of sugar when using tomato paste)
  • 2 cups baby spinach, lightly chopped
  • 1 ½ cups milk
  • 2 cups low-sodium beef broth
  • 1½ cups marinara sauce (I just used jarred to keep this simple but you can definitely use homemade!)
  • 3 cups dried macaroni noodles (or other short pasta)
  • 2½ cups shredded cheddar or mozzarella cheese
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Fresh parsley, chopped (for garnish)


  1. To a large skillet or shallow pot, add the olive oil and place over medium-high heat. Add the ground beef, crumbling it in the pan with a spoon/spatula, and cook until browned. If there is an excess of fat, drain it off.
  2. Add the onions, pepper, and garlic to the beef and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently.
  3. Add in the tomato paste, red pepper flakes, dried herbs, and sugar and stir to combine. Add in the spinach and cook until it is wilted.
  4. Add the milk, beef broth, and marinara and stir to combine. Add the macaroni noodles and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook, stirring frequently, for 10-12 minutes or until the pasta is cooked through and the mixture is thickened.
  5. Add in the cheese, mixing well to combine. The mixture should be creamy and cheesy. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper. Garnish with a little chopped parsley and serve.