There are no two ways about it, macaroni and cheese is a delicious staple of the American diet and has been for decades.

But when things got a little bland or overdone, what do you add to it to spice things up a little bit?

I don’t really get too adventurous except for occasionally putting a little bit of Crystal hot sauce in there to make things a little bit more interesting.

What do you think is an underrated third ingredient to go along with that delicious macaroni and cheese?

Here’s what AskReddit users had to say.

1. Do it!


Once you discover smoked paprika finding new things you can add it to is the best.”

2. Spicy!

“Hatch chiles.

Green chile is actually underrated, unlike the other things here that are just rated.”

3. Yummy.


Come to Kansas City.

All the barbecue places have Mac and cheese here.”

4. Boom!

“Hot Sauce.

Franks Red Hot and a little garlic powder is my perfect bowl of box mac.”

5. I like it!

“Old Bay seasoning. Do it.

Good morning, Baltimore!”

6. Do what you gotta do.

“Lobster Mac and cheese is fucking incredible.

But for us poors, black pepper is really nice.”

7. Okay, okay…

“I try a lot of weird mac & cheese combos (we call it Kraft dinner up here in Canada).

Here are my top 5:

  1. Butter chicken

  2. on french fries with cheese curds (a poutine of sorts)

  3. Chorizo

  4. Flaked tuna

  5. Wieners.”

8. I’ll try that.


Pretty much any dairy based pasta sauce can be improved with an addition of broccoli, especially jarred Alfredo sauce.”

9. Whoa!

“You mean besides the macaroni and the cheese?

Dry mustard powder.”

10. It’s healthy, right?


My favorite part is how it turns the macaroni green and I can convince myself it is now a vegetable and I am very healthy.”

11. Worth it.

“I sometimes put a can of Tuna in.

You get a bit of protein so it’s a little bit healthier, and it’s not too expensive.”

12. Very strange…

“Sliced apples on the side.

Now I know this is weird but hear me out. Apple sauce mixed into Kraft mac’n’cheese. I don’t think it works as well with other brands or homemade or anything. I’ve stopped doing it in favor of hot sauce but when I was little with applesauce was the only way I would eat it lol.

Try it and let me know how it is. My sister was the only person to actually give it a shot and she liked it, I haven’t heard of anyone else doing it tho.”

13. Now I’m hungry.

“Depends on what you want.

Need some crunch? Croutons, crackers, etc work wonders. Especially if they’re flavored/seasoned.

For meat. Bacon goes excellent. Or even some left over chicken if you have any.”

14. Umami bomb.

“Mushrooms – umami bomb incoming.

You can also try different types of mushrooms for varying textures, and prepare them differently for unique flavor combinations.

I love finishing off mushrooms in soy sauce.”

15. The lowdown.

“Tapatío for when you want the burn.

Sriracha for when you want to thin out the sauce a little.

Frank’s/Sweet Baby Ray’s for when you want the sauce creamy.”

Okay, now we want to hear from you!

What do you like to add to your mac and cheese?

Fill us in in the comments!