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Greek Yogurt Macaroni and Cheese

This Greek Yogurt Macaroni and Cheese is a lighter alternative to a comfort food favorite!

It’s been years since I tasted it for the first time, and I’m still head over heels with greek yogurt. I’m waiting for the honeymoon phase to end. Every time I think to myself “I’ll add yogurt to this, but it probably won’t work the same…”–BAM! It proves me wrong. I’m okay with being proved wrong when it leads to delicious results.

This Greek Yogurt Macaroni and Cheese is a lighter alternative to a comfort food favorite!

What makes this recipe magical is that the yogurt replaces the high calorie white sauce that would typically fill the mac and cheese. I went ahead and included nutrition facts for this recipe just so that you can see what a difference using the greek yogurt makes. For frame of reference I always use my family’s favorite traditional recipe (Patti LaBelle’s Over the Rainbow Mac and Cheese), which has 631 calories, 38 grams of total fat, 23 grams of saturated fat, and 153 mg of cholesterol per serving. Let’s cut those numbers in half with our giant sword of awesomeness, shall we?

4.6 from 17 reviews
Greek Yogurt Macaroni and Cheese
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 6
  • ½ lb. dry elbow macaroni (brown rice or whole wheat works great)
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 1 T. All-Purpose Flour
  • ½ c. Milk - Reduced fat, 2%
  • 1 t. Salt
  • ¼ t. Pepper
  • ¾ c. Shredded Monterrey Jack Cheese
  • 1 c. Plain Greek Yogurt
  • 1 c. Shredded Cheddar Cheese
  • 2 T. panko breadcrumbs (optional)
  1. Cook the pasta according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
  2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  3. In a medium saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat until it shimmers.
  4. Add in the flour and stir briskly with a whisk to form a roux. Let the roux cook for about 1 minute while constantly stirring.
  5. Slowly pour in the milk, stirring constantly with the whisk.
  6. When the sauce is completely smooth, add in the salt, pepper, and monterrey jack cheese.
  7. Stir until the cheese is melted and the mixture is very smooth.
  8. Remove from heat and let the cheese cool slightly before adding in the greek yogurt and whisking together until very smooth.
  9. With the pan still off the heat, add the cooked pasta and ½ c. of the cheddar cheese to the sauce. Stir with a spatula until all the pasta is coated in sauce and shredded cheese.
  10. Pour mixture into a greased baking dish.
  11. Top with remaining shredded cheddar and panko breadcrumbs.
  12. Bake in preheated oven just until the cheese on top is completely melted, about 10 minutes.
  13. Serve and enjoy!
Nutrition Information
Calories: 318 Fat: 14 Saturated fat: 7 Cholesterol: 37

This Greek Yogurt Macaroni and Cheese is a lighter alternative to a comfort food favorite!

I want to share a quote that I read online recently that really struck me. The author wrote that “Southerners savor their comfort food– they seem like they refuse to fret about the impact it’ll have on their physique or their health. This philosophy, of course, may have its downsides. But it’s also a comforting reminder to the quinoa-munching, juice-cleansing, yuppie rest of the nation that it’s okay to follow our taste buds.” The article is definitely supposed to be comedic, but I took it a little more seriously when I read it. It’s SAD that the rest of the country assumes we don’t care about our health, and it’s even more sad that people equate comfort food with food that will make you obese and kill you. I could write a novel in response to that quote (if you think the south has no yuppies then you haven’t been to Atlanta), but instead I will just say that you can have your cake mac and cheese and eat it too. I may refuse to “fret” but I also refuse to stop enjoying my favorite foods just because I value my health! A dish doesn’t have to contain a week’s worth of saturated fat in order to be delicious. *steps off soapbox*

This Greek Yogurt Macaroni and Cheese is a lighter alternative to a comfort food favorite!

Most importantly, this tastes incredible. I don’t know how the yogurt transforms itself so well into a sauce, but it just works. Jason loved it and said that it tasted so rich, which is ironic considering it’s so much lighter than our traditional version. In terms of taste, this is my FAVORITE of all the mac and cheese recipes I’ve made.

This Greek Yogurt Macaroni and Cheese is a lighter alternative to a comfort food favorite!I’ve been staring at these pictures for so long that now I’m dying to have it again for lunch! I’m headed straight for the fridge after I press that ‘publish’ button. 😀


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{ 65 comments… add one }

  • Lee April 8, 2014, 7:49 pm

    This looks amazing!
    Lee recently posted…Double the FestivalsMy Profile

    • Lauren @ Dash of Soul April 9, 2014, 9:17 pm

      Thanks, Lee! :)

  • Valerie | From Valerie's Kitchen April 8, 2014, 9:26 pm

    This is my first time to your site and I know we just met but I think I’m in love with your macaroni and cheese. Yep, pretty sure about it. I LOVE Greek yogurt and what a clever way to put it to use. Lovely!

    • Lauren @ Dash of Soul April 9, 2014, 9:17 pm

      Thank you so much! So glad you found me!

  • Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes April 9, 2014, 6:04 am

    The perfect comfort food, I can see why this would be addictive.

  • Lisa@CreoleContessa April 9, 2014, 12:00 pm

    I love it, pinned and shared!
    Lisa@CreoleContessa recently posted…Smothered Creole Brussels Sprouts with BaconMy Profile

  • Lauren April 9, 2014, 12:11 pm

    I think mac and cheese might be my favorite guilty pleasure. But looks like you’ve found a way to make it not so guilty :) I’ve been on a huge Greek yogurt kick and have been buying a big tub of it every week or so. I just pinned this and can’t wait to try it!
    Lauren recently posted…Weekends LatelyMy Profile

  • CakePants April 9, 2014, 12:19 pm

    I would not have thought to use Greek yogurt in mac and cheese, but this looks incredible!! Your photos are making me hungry all over again, and I *just* finished lunch!!
    CakePants recently posted…Southwestern Sloppy JoesMy Profile

  • dominique April 17, 2014, 1:35 pm

    I found this recipe on Pinterest and decided to mosey on over to your website, so glad I did! I’m a Veggie, so, love your plant based recipes! Can’t wait to try this one! See you around the A!

  • Lauren April 21, 2014, 3:52 pm

    Hi Lauren,

    What size baking dish did you use for this? Thanks in advance :)
    Lauren recently posted…Easter Weekend ThingsMy Profile

    • Lauren @ Dash of Soul April 23, 2014, 1:34 am

      I used a rectangular Pyrex dish, I think it’s 8 X 10. Let me know how you like the recipe if you try it! :)

  • Lauren May 7, 2014, 11:48 am


    We made this last night (minus the panko and baking part because we had zero patience :P) and it was incredible! Thanks for an amazing recipe :)
    Lauren recently posted…How To Make a Grocery List Like a ProMy Profile

    • Lauren @ Dash of Soul May 9, 2014, 1:25 am

      YAY!!! I’m so glad Lauren! Thank you so much for coming back to tell me. :)

  • Emily May 30, 2014, 1:35 pm

    The 317 calories is per serving?

    • Lauren @ Dash of Soul May 30, 2014, 2:02 pm

      Yes, that’s for one serving.

  • Lisa September 28, 2014, 6:03 pm

    This was SO good! I had a hard time with the roux… make sure to add the milk slowly. I used whole wheat shells. It was so delicious. Thanks for the recipe!

    • Lauren @ Dash of Soul October 13, 2014, 2:36 am

      I’m SO glad you liked it! Great idea to use whole wheat pasta! :)

  • Geetha October 4, 2014, 8:17 pm

    Made this tonight with some spicy oven fried drumsticks– I definitely neglected the chicken to gobble more of this up :-) Thanks for the awesome recipe!

    • Lauren @ Dash of Soul October 13, 2014, 2:37 am

      So glad you enjoyed it! :)

  • Katie October 6, 2014, 4:04 pm

    This recipe is so perfect. Such an indulgent treat for half the calories. This recipe is so much simpler than the on you referenced. Not to mention the greek yogurt makes it so rich and creamy.

    • Lauren @ Dash of Soul October 13, 2014, 2:38 am

      Thank you so much, I’m so glad you liked it! Don’t you just love greek yogurt? :)

  • lisa November 8, 2014, 7:18 pm

    This is the best mac and cheese recipe, that I have tried! Thank you for sharing!

    • Lauren @ Dash of Soul December 9, 2014, 11:34 am

      So glad to hear it Lisa! I love it too! :)

  • Michelle November 21, 2014, 6:41 pm

    This didn’t work for me at all. Frustrated at a waste of expensive ingredients. It tastes too tangy like plain yogurt. I doubled the cheese to see if it would help. It didn’t. It also had a weird yogurt texture instead of being creamy. It looks beautiful. I served it up thinking maybe I was just picky. My kids made pickle faces. Throwing it out. Its edible but no one will enjoy eating it.

    • Lauren @ Dash of Soul December 9, 2014, 11:30 am

      Hi Michelle! Sorry to hear the recipe didn’t work out for you! I find this strange because I’ve made it several times (and it is reader tested, see comments above) and it always comes out perfectly delicious. The only thing I can think of is that you perhaps cooked the sauce too long? Again, sorry that it wasn’t what you expected.

  • Courtney November 26, 2014, 11:59 am

    I’m about to attempt your recipe but i have a question about the cooking temperature. Is it 400 degrees F or C?

  • Talica November 30, 2014, 12:23 am

    What’s the serving size?

    • laura December 12, 2014, 12:28 pm

      Has the serving sized been answered?

      • Lauren @ Dash of Soul December 19, 2014, 11:07 pm

        Laura it’s about 2/3 c. per serving. :)

    • Lauren @ Dash of Soul December 19, 2014, 11:05 pm

      Hi, Talica! Serving size is roughly 2/3 cup. :)

  • yass December 14, 2014, 1:30 am

    Really appreciate the Tlc you have for your food

    • Lauren @ Dash of Soul December 19, 2014, 11:08 pm

      Thank you so much, what a sweet comment!

  • Dari December 16, 2014, 12:25 am

    This was really very tasty! A full minute was too long on the roux for me (burnt it the first time), but I moved faster the second time around, and from there, it was just easy stirring and melting. Great recipe!

    • Lauren @ Dash of Soul December 19, 2014, 11:08 pm

      So glad you liked it Dari!

  • Elizabeth December 16, 2014, 10:38 am

    Hosting girls night tonight and I’m making this! It was recently listed on “21 Mac& cheese recipes that are better than a boyfriend” ha, perfect!
    Do you think if I 1.5 the recipe it’ll fill out a 9×13 pyrex baking dish?

    • Lauren @ Dash of Soul December 19, 2014, 11:06 pm

      Yeah I think that size pan will work great! Hope you and your ladies enjoy it, Elizabeth! :)

  • Sarah January 6, 2015, 11:14 am

    So yummy! Made it when I realized I was out of milk and only had Greek yogurt in the fridge. Thanks so much for posting this delicious recipe!!

    • Lauren @ Dash of Soul January 8, 2015, 12:54 am

      So glad you liked it, Sarah! :)

  • Julie January 10, 2015, 12:13 am

    Does anyone know the sodium amount?

  • Jenny January 17, 2015, 8:00 am

    Making this later today! Could I make it ahead and refrigerate for a few hours before baking? I’m doing another cooking project this morning and am hoping to minimize the mess and whatnot. Thanks!

    • Lauren @ Dash of Soul January 17, 2015, 6:12 pm

      Yeah I think it would definitely work, might need a couple extra cooking minutes though! Let me know how you like it! 😀

  • Tina January 23, 2015, 11:32 pm

    I made half this recipe tonight cause there is only two of us but wish I had made the whole thing. We had sirracha yogurt dip (Costco) I used instead of the yogurt and topped with some leftover crumbled bacon to complement the sirracha smokey taste so good!

  • Kim Summers February 9, 2015, 6:25 pm

    Just made this tonight. Wanted the comfort of Mac and cheese without too many calories. Didn’t bake it due to time constraints and had to add a little more milk as the sauce was too thick. I agree with the previous commenter that its a little tangy, but I’m thinking its the combo of maybe using sharp cheddar cheese and yogurt, but its the best Greek yogurt Mac and cheese I’ve tried

    • Lauren @ Dash of Soul February 10, 2015, 12:24 am

      Good point about the sharp cheddar! I LOVE sharp cheese but the tang might be too much for some taste buds.

  • Jennifer February 18, 2015, 6:36 pm

    I was so excited to make this, but it was very tangy for me as well. I used almond milk because that’s the only milk I keep in the house and only had sharp cheddar cheese so that was the only cheese I put in it. I’m sure it’s wonderful, but was too “yogurty” tonight (and I LOVE Greek yogurt!) I ended up steaming up some broccoli and mixing that into the Mac and cheese and that made it taste a lot better! Thanks for sharing :)

    • Lauren @ Dash of Soul March 3, 2015, 2:36 am

      Hi Jennifer! I’m sorry this didn’t turn out as you were expecting. But I bet that if you made it according to the recipe (with monterrey jack which is nice and mild and just regular cheddar cheese) you might have enjoyed it better. The milder cheeses help to balance out the tanginess of the yogurt. Hope that helps! :)

  • Dennish March 6, 2015, 7:49 pm

    This mac n cheese was absolutely delicious! I used 6 Italian cheese and shred. cheddar. Also, I added some red pepper flakes and it was great! Thanks for sharing this recipe.

    • Lauren @ Dash of Soul March 6, 2015, 8:09 pm

      SO glad you liked it, I love it too! 😀 Thanks for letting me know! The red pepper flakes are a great idea.

  • Cheryl Larson March 9, 2015, 7:41 pm

    Is it a 1/2 cup of milk or two cups?

  • Haley March 23, 2015, 9:35 pm

    After baking it, my consistency wasn’t as “curdly” as it looks in your pictures. Any suggestions?

  • Katie March 31, 2015, 5:11 pm

    This recipe is so good!!! I used mozzarella instead monterey jack just because I like that better. It was still delicious. I also added a few handfuls of pasta to the noodles so I can pretend it’s even healthier! =]

    • Lauren @ Dash of Soul March 31, 2015, 5:16 pm

      😀 SO glad to hear it Katie! Using mozzarella sounds AMAZING, I’ll have to try that next time!

  • Katie April 1, 2015, 4:41 pm

    Ha! Meant to say I added a few handfuls of SPINACH to the noodles. Whoops.

  • Pamela April 28, 2015, 7:33 pm

    Your blog is awesome! This recipe is amazing!

  • Megan September 23, 2015, 5:08 am

    Can this be prepped ahead of time(night before) and still turn out as good as everyone is saying?

  • Ariel Keeley December 1, 2015, 5:22 pm

    Very tangy

  • Stephanie February 5, 2016, 12:02 am

    This recipe was SOOO good! I actually like the tang that others did not. I usually use extra sharp cheddar so the tang from the Greek yogurt gave that effect for me. I don’t think I will ever be needing another recipe.

  • Andre March 1, 2016, 4:10 pm

    Thank you for this recipe I made it for my family this last time we all got together and they loved it. The only change that I made to your recipe was that When I cooked the shelles I added liquid smoke to the water. It was an absolutely amazing twist on an already awesome recipe!

  • Denee bex March 27, 2016, 4:24 pm

    So delicious! I made it today and I would have to say its better than traditional Mac. I am a little bised in that I like the slight tang yogurt has, but even my yogurt-hating husband loved it. I will cut down on the salt next time.

  • Tina Shaw June 18, 2016, 5:59 pm

    Love this! I was afraid of too much tang for kids as was noted in previous post, so added 1/2 can of healthy request cheddar cheese soup, and added 1/2 cup of 2% milk to rue to thin. Also used smart balance instead of olive oil. Adds approx 18 calories per serving, based on six for entire dish. Recipe curdled nicely, not quite as thick as pictures. Used whole grain elbows ( not sure if calorie difference there). Does need salt on plate for my taste. …and most important, kids LOVED it! Thank you so much for posting this wonderful recipe!

  • Meghan July 7, 2016, 11:43 pm

    This recipe is amazing! So rich and creamy, no one ever guesses it is lightened up. Took a chance and made this as a Christmas side dish, and has become a dinner fav!

  • Brittaney @ Hudson&Co. July 10, 2016, 10:50 pm

    Lauren, I have to tell you, we LOVE this recipe. It has become a serious family favorite. I got a little crazy and added bacon and chicken to it and we call it 2x a month (at least!) meal! Seriously, thank you for sharing this recipe. My hubby is forever thankful for it!!! 😉

  • Timbi September 20, 2016, 2:36 am

    Great! But someone stole your recipe and put it on Dr Oz …

  • Kathryn Francisco March 12, 2017, 4:31 pm

    For me this was wayyy too salty. If I make it again, I’ll add the cheese first then season to taste instead of blindly following a recipe. I can see this being good with tweaks. I may reduce the cheddar for more mont jack too.

  • Christina V. Retzer April 4, 2017, 1:11 pm

    I made this for a cookout. It was EXCELLENT and so easy! My boys are still taking the leftovers to school for lunch and loving it. Thank you for sharing this recipe!

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