Outback Steakhouse Mac and Cheese

Outback Steakhouse Mac and Cheese is so popular because it’s creamy, comforting, and a wonderful side dish for steak and chicken. This copycat mac and cheese recipe is always asked about and requested. It only takes about 30 minutes to make at home.

overhead view of copycat Outback mac and cheese in a bowl.

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What Makes the Outback Mac and Cheese So Good? 

Outback Steakhouse serves many fantastic menu items, so who would order the macaroni and cheese? Plenty of people. And why not, when it tastes this amazingly rich and creamy.

But if you don’t want to skip your tried and true favorites on the next visit to the restaurant, try making this Outback macaroni and cheese recipe at home.

Why This Recipe Is the One You Must Try 

When it comes to homemade mac n cheese recipes, you can’t get any easier than this copycat Outback mac and cheese. By using Velveeta cheese instead of the more traditional shredded cheddar, you don’t need to worry about uneven melting. The creamy Velveeta cheese sauce is velvety and coats the pasta nicely.

The heavy cream helps create the ideal consistency for this dish. Once you have tried this recipe, you won’t ever want to make boxed mac & cheese again. One bite and you’ll taste how good it is!

Outback Steakhouse Mac A Roo and Cheese

If you have ever been to the Outback Steakhouse with kids, you have noticed Mac A Roo and Cheese as one of the kid’s menu items. But why should children have all of the fun? When I order takeout, I will always add an order of Mac a Roo so I can have it at home. It’s that good.

Outback Mac and Cheese Ingredients

To make steakhouse mac and cheese Outback style, you’ll need:

  • Short Pasta or Macaroni
  • Velveeta Cheese
  • Heavy Cream

That’s it!  You will love this recipe as much as your kids do.

Ingredients for the Outback Steakhouse and cheese.

Ingredient Notes

Penne, shells, elbow macaroni noodles, and rigatoni pasta are popular choices, but you can use any short pasta you prefer.  

You may want to swap the heavy cream for half-and-half or even milk to save on fat and calories. 

How to Make Outback Steakhouse Mac and Cheese

To make Outback Steakhouse mac and cheese:

  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil. 
  2. Cook the pasta according to the package’s instructions. You may want to add 30 or 60 seconds to the cooking time since this recipe works best when the pasta is a little softer than al dente. 
  3. While the pasta is cooking, chop the Velveeta into small cubes. 
  4. Set a small saucepan over low heat on the stovetop to warm. 
  5. Add the Velveeta cheese cubes into the saucepan.
  6. Pour in the heavy cream.
  7. Stir or whisk continuously until the cheese fully melts. 
  8. Drain the cooked pasta in a colander and return the drained pasta to the large pot. 
  9. Pour the sauce over the pasta and stir to combine. 
  10. Serve hot. 
Homemade copycat Outback Steakhouse mac and cheese in a stainless steel pan.

Recipe Notes

  • Be sure to cut the Velveeta into small pieces to make it easier to melt in the saucepan.
  • While melting the cheese and heavy cream together, keep the heat on low to prevent it from boiling or burning.
  • Make a big batch of the Mac and Cheese because it reheats nicely for other meals.

Recipe Variations 

When it comes to customization, there are unlimited possibilities for making this dish your own. Get as wildly creative as you want, but here are a couple of easy ways you can adapt the basic recipe:

  • When you are starving, add a little meat to the recipe to make it a main dish. You can use any precooked meat you have on hand. Add some leftover bacon or sausages from breakfast or any extra cold cuts in the fridge. 
  • Kick the flavor up a notch with a bit of extra seasoning. Hot sauce and chili powder are options. Or take your mac ‘n cheese in a new direction with a couple of tablespoons of Pickapeppa or BBQ sauce. 

What to Serve with Mac and Cheese

This Outback mac and cheese recipe works as both a side and the main course. Pair with fried chicken or grilled meat for a hearty meal, or enjoy with a side salad or steamed vegetable for something a little lighter

Leftover Mac and Cheese Recipe

Are you wondering what to do with leftover Outback macaroni and cheese? Try making Fried Cheesy Mac Patties:

  1. Form the cold mac and cheese into hamburger-sized patties and place them on a wax paper-lined baking sheet. 
  2. Put the tray in the freezer for 20 minutes. 
  3. Dip the semi-frozen mac and cheese patties in an egg wash and then coat with Panko breadcrumbs. 
  4. Fry in 375°F oil until golden brown, about a minute per side. 
  5. Serve with your favorite pasta sauce. 

How to Store Mac and Cheese

You can keep Outback Steakhouse Mac and Cheese in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to five days. If you want to save it for longer, try freezing leftovers for up to three months.

A good hint is putting the mac and cheese in a single-serving microwavable container and then wrapping well in plastic and aluminum foil. Doing this will make the macaroni and cheese much easier to reheat. 

How to Reheat Mac and Cheese

The easiest way to reheat this macaroni and cheese is in the microwave.

Add a splash of milk to the thawed mac and cheese and stir. Cover with a paper towel and heat on HIGH for 60 seconds. Stir and check the temperature. If the mac n cheese isn’t warm enough, heat for another 30 seconds, and repeat as necessary. 

closeup of copycat Outback Steakhouse mac and cheese.

Do you love Outback Steakhouse? Make your favorites at home!

Be sure to check out these copycat Outback Steakhouse recipes that taste just like they do at the restaurant.

More Cheesy Side Dish Recipes

Because everyone loves cheese!

Take a look at more of my copycat Outback Steakhouse recipes and easy side dish recipes too.

What do you like to eat with your Mac ‘N Cheese? Let us know in the comments below.

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overhead view of copycat Outback mac and cheese in a bowl.

Outback Steakhouse Mac and Cheese

You can make Outback mac and cheese at home with this easy copycat recipe.
5 from 26 votes
Print Pin Rate Add to Collection
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Outback Mac and Cheese, Outback Steakhouse Recipes
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 4
Calories: 339kcal


  • 2 cups dry penne pasta
  • 8 ounce Velveeta cheese cut into small pieces
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream


  • Cook pasta according to package directions.
  • Cut the Velveeta into small cubes so it can melt easily.
  • In a small saucepan, combine cubed Velveeta cheese and heavy cream.
  • Turn the heat to low. Cook and stir until all the cheese is melted.
  • Reduce the heat to simmer until you are ready to combine with the pasta.
  • Once pasta is done, drain and pour it back into the pot where it was cooked.
  • Add the cheese sauce to the pasta and stir to coat the pasta with the sauce.



  • Make sure you cut the Velveeta into small pieces to make it easier to melt in the saucepan.
  • While melting the cheese and heavy cream together, keep the heat on low.  You will not want this to boil or burn.
  • Make a big batch of the mac and cheese – it will never go to waste and it re-heats nicely for other meals.


Calories: 339kcal | Carbohydrates: 29g | Protein: 15g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Cholesterol: 64mg | Sodium: 912mg | Potassium: 284mg | Fiber: 0g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 995IU | Calcium: 351mg | Iron: 0.5mg

About Stephanie Manley

I recreate your favorite restaurant recipes, so you can prepare these dishes at home. I help you cook dinner, and serve up dishes you know your family will love. You can find most of the ingredients for all of the recipes in your local grocery store.

Stephanie is the author of CopyKat.com's Dining Out in the Home, and CopyKat.com's Dining Out in the Home 2.

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Reader Interactions


  1. Kjl

    This one is one of your few that is wrong for the side of Mac and cheese. It has bread crumbs and more seasoning. This may be the kid re open but it’s not what comes as a side.

  2. Christa

    5 stars
    Thank you for having the old school recipe!!! I’m 27 and as a kid the Mac and cheese was always my favorite, it used to come in a huge bowl, now it’s only on the kids menu, and so much less. I was absolutely devastated when I took my son there and found they change it. So thank you for the REAL recipe and the nostalgia. It was delicious, and so much better then what they have now!

  3. Ashley

    5 stars
    Yes!!! This is the old recipe and we made it and were so excited. It tastes exactly like the one from when I was little. Makes me think of my childhood.

  4. paul gilpin

    well i ate at the outback on 71st in tulsa for 14 years. saw the prices go up and the portions go down. i also had seniority over the manager.
    funny though, they called this “kidsmac”.

  5. Sunny

    5 stars
    I worked at outback for 13 years, and my husband was the kitchen manger. This is exactly how they made it. Nothing spicy, etc!

  6. Leslie

    Taking anything out of waitstaff pockets is a nasty form of robbery. If you can’t leave a 20% tip don’t eat out!

    • Lana

      Well a 20% tip is something that should be earned. Don’t have the attitude that you deserve 20% right off the bat. I agree that people shouldn’t be leaving no tip but it’s obnoxious to expect 20%, regardless of service. I tip based on service (10%- poor; 15%- average; 18%- good; 20%- excellent).

  7. carol

    Sorry this receipe is not correct….They hardly put a ton of cheese and they put this distinct seasoning on it to make it spicy but it delicious. The mac and cheese did not look like there was velveeta cheese nor heavy cream on it. I was there last week.

    • Katie

      That is because this is the old BETTER recipe. I have been a customer at Outback since I was 4 and I am now 20 and am very disappointed that they changed the recipe.

      • Dominique Raye

        5 stars
        Exactly, Katie!
        It was my favorite food up until they changed it.
        Very disappointed with the new mac and cheese…

        Can’t believe the recipe is so simple!
        Why would they change it when it was already amazing and I’m sure way simpler than the new stuff?!?!

        Anyway, thanks Stephanie!
        You a have restored a very small but important piece of my childhood. ♡

      • Jessica McCarthy

        Order the kids macaroni the new one is indeed different. But the kids Mac a roo ni is what you’re thinking of.

      • Gen

        Same! This recipe is THE classic old school Outback mac a roo n cheese that I remember. Outback circa late 1990s-early 2000s. Thank you!

    • Shelby

      This is the old recipe! My dad used to own an Outback Steakhouse and this is exactly how it was made! Way better then

  8. 20st11

    This recipe is great. I salt the water to add a bit of flavor to the noodles. I also found the sauce was a little thick for my liking so I added a bit of milk, and it is great! Thanks for posting.

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