KING RANCH CHICKEN MAC AND CHEESE is a delicious twist on a classic. This pasta loaded with creamy cheese, spicy tomatoes, chunky chicken, and so much more will be a family favorite from the first time you make it.
YAY! This recipe for KING RANCH MAC AND CHEESE makes me soooo happy (and fat) and I just know you’re going to love it as much as we do. Growing up King Ranch Chicken was one of the recipes we would request Mom make time and time again. I just love the creaminess, flavor combo, and little touch of spicy. Haters of King Ranch Chicken like to complain that it has Velveeta (check) and cream of mushroom soup (check check) but you guys…sometimes that’s okay. I want you to embrace it.
The Velveeta makes this extra cheesy with minimal effort and canned cream of mushroom really is okay with me. I’m not the girl who is going to make homemade cream of mushroom soup. If you know this blog…you know that by now. So let’s go ahead and just enjoy this King Ranch Chicken Mac and Cheese because it’s AMAZING and oh so crave worthy. No guilt here folks!
Traditional King Ranch Chicken has bits of tortillas baked in, so we thought it would be fun to add a layer of crushed tortilla chips while baking this mac and cheese. The little bit of crunch and texture goes a long way. This recipe was a hit even when I tasted it still cold. Yes I have been known to do that. It was even way more delicious straight out of the oven! Winner winner King Ranch Chicken Mac and Cheese dinner!
Don’t you want to just face plant in this goodness? I recommend it. This will be on repeat at our house FOR SURE. Too much yum not to make it time and time again.
See the recipe card below for details on how to make King Ranch Chicken Mac and Cheese. Enjoy!
King Ranch Chicken Mac and Cheese
- 8 oz. pkg. small elbow macaroni
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 medium sweet yellow or yellow onion diced
- 1 green bell pepper diced
- 1 10 oz. can diced tomatoes w/green chilies (hot or mild), undrained
- 8 ounces Velveeta cheese cubed
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 10 ¾ oz. can cream of mushroom or chicken soup
- ½ cup sour cream
- 3-4 cups cooked chicken cubed (rotisserie works well)
- 1 cup crushed tortilla chips
- 2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese divided into 2 (1-cup) portions
- fresh cilantro chopped
- more tortilla chips
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a 2-quart baking dish with cooking spray.
- Cook pasta per package directions to al dente and drain.
- While pasta cooks, heat butter and oil in a large Dutch oven, over med-high heat. Sauté onion and green bell pepper until pepper is tender and onion is translucent.
- Stir in the undrained can of tomatoes, Velveeta, chili powder and cumin. Cook and stir 1-2 minutes over medium-low heat until cheese melts.
- Remove from heat and add the creamed soup, sour cream, chicken, 1-cup shredded cheese and strained hot pasta. Stir well.
- Pour the prepared pasta mixture into the greased casserole dish. Cover with crushed tortilla chips. Sprinkle 1-cup shredded cheese on top and bake at 350°F 30-40 minutes or until casserole is bubbly in the middle.
- Remove from oven and allow the casserole to rest 5 minutes.
- If desired, garnish with drained green-chili tomatoes, chopped cilantro and more crushed tortilla chips.