Traeger Smoked Mac and Cheese – Recipe and Cooking Guide

Hey Smokers, and welcome to my post where we will run through my Traeger smoked mac and cheese – recipe and cooking guide. As you may or may not know, this site is all about cooking on my Traeger Pro Series 22 Pellet Smoker and seeing where we can take things.

Traeger Smoked Mac and Cheese – Header

Today’s cook comes from the only request my 12 year old has made in regards to the smoker – mac and cheese. Sure, he likes the stuff I dish up from it, but he just tries it as it comes out. This time however – there was a direct request, so how can I refuse?

Let’s get started!

Traeger Smoked Mac and Cheese: What You’ll Need

Ok, so below is what I used to cook me some Mac and Cheese on my Traeger pellet smoker:


  • 1 pound elbow macaroni
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 4 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • Optional: chopped cooked bacon or jalapeños for extra flavor (we didn’t do this)

We also added some Philadelphia cheese and mashed sweet potato (gotta get those veges in) as well.


  • Pellet smoker
  • Large pot for boiling pasta
  • Medium saucepan for the sauce
  • Large mixing bowl
  • 9×13 inch baking dish

The Cooking Process

This is what I did and when:

Prep the Ingredients:

  1. Cook the Pasta: In a large pot of salted boiling water, cook the elbow macaroni until just al dente. Drain and set aside.
  2. Preheat the Smoker: Preheat your pellet smoker to 225°F (107°C) using your choice of wood pellets for flavor. Hickory or applewood pellets are great options for mac and cheese.

Make the Cheese Sauce:

  1. Roux: In a medium saucepan, melt 4 tablespoons of butter over medium heat. Stir in the flour and cook for about 1 minute, stirring constantly to create a roux.
  2. Add Dairy: Gradually whisk in the milk and heavy cream, ensuring there are no lumps (something I cannot manage to master I must admit). Cook until the mixture is thickened and begins to simmer.
  3. Add Cheese: Lower the heat and add 3 cups of cheddar (and cream cheese if uses) to the saucepan. Stir until the cheese is completely melted and the sauce is smooth. Season with smoked paprika, garlic powder, salt, and pepper.


  1. Mix Pasta and Cheese Sauce: In a large mixing bowl, combine the cooked pasta and cheese sauce. Stir until the pasta is evenly coated. If using, fold in the optional ingredients like bacon or jalapeños here.


  1. Prepare Breadcrumb Topping: In a small bowl, mix together the panko breadcrumbs, melted butter, remaining 1 cup of cheddar cheese, and grated Parmesan cheese.
  2. Assemble: Transfer the mac and cheese mixture to a greased 9×13 inch baking dish. Evenly sprinkle the breadcrumb topping over the mac and cheese.
  3. Smoke: Place the baking dish in the preheated smoker. Smoke for about 2 hours, or until the topping is golden brown and the edges are bubbly.


  1. Rest: Let the mac and cheese rest for a few minutes after removing it from the smoker.
traeger mac and cheese - mac and cheese

My Results

I smoked the mac and cheese for around an hour and found that whilst it was all but ready, it needed just a little more. So I increased the smoker temp to 121°C /250°F for another half hour.

After this time, the consistency was perfect and there was a nice, smokey flavor to it as well. My only critique was that after this time, the breadcrumb mixture on top was still quite ‘crumbly’. Next time I will probably add a little more cheddar to the breadcrumb mix to bind it all a little more

At the end of the day however, I did get a thumbs up from my 12 year old – which is not easy feat, trust me!


  • For a deeper smoky flavor, consider adding a teaspoon of liquid smoke to the cheese sauce.
  • Keep an eye on the smoker’s temperature to ensure it stays consistent for even cooking.
  • Experiment with different types of cheese to find your perfect blend.


So there you have it, my recipe and cooking guide for some Traeger mac and cheese. I hope it has been of assistance but as usual, if you have any questions please do not hesitate to reach out by commenting below. I would also love to hear of your own experiences, preferences or suggestions here as well.

Are there any other products you have been looking at but want to know more about? If so, please comment below and I will do my best to get some details for you.

Until next time

Have fun and get smoking!


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