Low Carb Cheddar Mac and Cheese Muffins

Low Carb Cheddar Mac and Cheese Muffins

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What’s not to love about mac and cheese on the go? These low carb mac and cheese muffins make a perfect snack or appetizer for guests. Not to mention, they make portion control for my fellow mac addicts. 

Each one of these cheddar-stuffed muffins has 8 grams of protein and just 9 grams of carbs and 94 calories. That means you can eat at least, like, four to seven of these things. 

two photos of mac and cheese muffins

Ingredients for Mac and Cheese Muffins

With a slightly longer ingredient list, I won’t do a full rundown of everything you need here. I’ll just touch on the ingredients you might have substitution questions for. 

The Pasta

I used Barilla Protein Plus pasta here, but I’m sure other pasta options would work fine. My bbq pork mac and cheese recipe uses Banza chickpea pasta elbows, which I highly recommend. This option would also save a few extra carbs. 

And if you wanted to save some time, you could use something like Barilla Ready Pasta like in my garlic parmesan mac and cheese with chicken

cooked pasta on top of cheese sauce in a glass mixing bowl

The Cheeses

These mac and cheese muffins really pack in the cheese with four ingredients. 

  • fat free cream cheese
  • shredded mozzarella
  • shredded parmesan
  • shredded cheddar (optional topping – not in the cheese sauce)

I buy fat free cream cheese at Walmart or Kroger but if you can’t find it, 1/3 fat cream cheese should work just fine. 

the final batter for mac and cheese muffins before adding to the muffin mold

For the other cheeses, you could get creative here. As long as they melt the same (see above photo for consistency comparison), you should be fine. 

Cheddar Powder

Think: powdered peanut butter. Cheddar powder is dehydrated cheddar cheese that can be reconstituted to make cheese sauces or add cheddar flavor to recipes like these muffins. 

If you have it, use it. But if you don’t, these mac and cheese muffins will be fine without it. Though you might need to adjust the amount of milk used to avoid over hydrating. 

holding a mac and cheese donut

For an example of a minimal cheese sauce, check out my jalapeño popper mac and cheese donuts.

Breadcrumbs

You can use all kinds of stuff here. Ground pork rinds or chicharrones could be a low carb, gluten free alternative. And they even make gluten free breadcrumbs now. 

I wouldn’t skip this ingredient, if possible. If you do, reference my mac and cheese donuts recipe for a look at cheese and liquid ingredient ratios without a structural ingredient like breadcrumbs. 

holding a mac and cheese muffin with a bite taken out of it

Final Recipe Notes

I have an Amazon list with all the kitchen tools and products I use, in case you’re wondering about the muffin mold I use. I always like to mention that different muffin tins or molds may be sized differently or affect bake time slightly. So keep an eye on things. 

holding a mac and cheese muffin

And if you have any questions about the recipe, drop a comment below the recipe card. 

Okay, you’re ready to go! I’d love to see your mac and cheese muffins. Tag me on Instagram @mason_woodruff or join my free Facebook group and share your recipe re-creation with the Proton Party. 

holding a mac and cheese muffin with a bite taken out of it
3.6 from 5 votes
Print

Cheddar Mac and Cheese Muffins

Super simple 4-cheese baked macaroni cups.

Course Appetizer, Main Course, Snack
Cuisine American
Keyword cheddar powder, muffins
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Servings 12 muffins
Calories 94 kcal
Author Mason Woodruff

Ingredients

  • 4 oz (dry) Barilla Protein Plus Elbows or Banza elbows (chickpea pasta)
  • 4 oz Fat Free Cream Cheese
  • 1/2 C (56g) Shredded Mozzarella
  • 1/4 C (28g) Shredded Parmesan
  • 1/4 C (60mL) Skim Milk
  • 1/4 C (56g) Fat Free Greek Yogurt
  • 1/2 C (123g) Liquid Egg Whites
  • 1/4 C (28g) Cheddar Powder
  • 1 tsp Chili Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Black Pepper
  • 1/2 C (56g) Breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 C (28g) Shredded Cheddar

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400F and spray a 12-muffin tin or silicone mold with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.

  2. Cook the pasta in salted water.

  3. Add the cream cheese, milk, mozzarella, and parmesan to a large bowl. Microwave for 60-90 seconds or until you can mix everything together evenly.

  4. Once the cheeses are evenly melted, add the liquid egg whites, Greek yogurt, cheddar powder, breadcrumbs, and spices. Stir well.

    cooked pasta on top of cheese sauce in a glass mixing bowl
  5. Drain the cooked pasta and add to the cheese sauce, gently folding everything together.

    the final batter for mac and cheese muffins before adding to the muffin mold
  6. Transfer the mixture to the muffin mold, filling each slot roughly all the way to the top. Top the muffin batter with the shredded cheddar.

  7. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until the muffins are cooked through and are golden brown on top. Let the muffins cool before removing from the muffin mold.

Recipe Notes

Each muffin has 3 Smart Points.

Nutrition Facts
Cheddar Mac and Cheese Muffins
Amount Per Serving (1 muffin)
Calories 94 Calories from Fat 27
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 3g 5%
Total Carbohydrates 9g 3%
Protein 8g 16%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

More Healthy Mac and Cheese Recipes You Might Like

If you’re looking for an option with a bit more protein, my chicken bacon ranch mac and cheese is the move. 

lower carb chicken bacon ranch mac and cheese

And if you’re looking for a more unique mac and cheese option, my breakfast mac and cheese is a personal favorite. 

the breakfast mac and cheese with a corner cut out of it in the baking dish



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