Hearty One Pot Chili Mac Recipe

This hearty, one pot chili mac recipe is the ultimate comfort food. Easy and quick to make, it’s the weeknight meal choice for your family!

one pot chili mac recipe in blue cast iron dutch oven

When my mom began cooking for two, after my brothers and I had left home, she made a few dishes that she never made for our family. One of those dishes was a pot of chili. She put her own spin on it by leaving out the beans (because they really didn’t like them) and she added pasta instead. So what she was actually making was chili mac. The one pot chili mac recipe I’m sharing today is hearty and filling. It’s a simple meal that makes the perfect weeknight dinner or Sunday supper. This is a great recipe to serve to young children. It’s not too spicy, and you can use some sort of fun pasta such as zoo animals or ABC’s.

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one pot chili mac recipe with cheese fi

One Pot Chili Mac Recipe

This hearty, one pot chili mac recipe is the ultimate comfort food. Easy and quick to make, it's the weeknight meal choice for your family!
5 from 2 votes
Course: Main Dish
Cuisine: American
Servings: 6 servings
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes


  • olive oil
  • Small sweet onion chopped
  • 1 1/2 lbs. ground chuck
  • 23 oz. can Campbell's tomato soup
  • 1 soup can water
  • 14.5 oz. can petite diced tomatoes
  • 2 cups tomato juice
  • 1 package chili seasoning mix
  • 1 c. mini pasta I used mini penne
  • shredded cheese


  • Swirl olive oil in a large soup pot. Add onion and cook for a few minutes.
  • Add ground chuck. Cook until done.
  • At this point you can drain your meat if desired.
  • Add tomato soup, water, canned tomatoes, and tomato juice.
  • Bring to a boil.
  • Add pasta.
  • Add 2 teaspoons chili seasoning. Add more until the chili has the taste you desire.
  • Simmer on low heat for 30 minutes.
  • Serve with shredded cheese.


Beans can be added if desired. 
If chili becomes too thick after pasta is fully cooked, add more tomato juice, followed by more chili seasoning. 
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One Pot Chili Mac Recipe Tips:

  • Of course you can add beans if desired. A traditional chili mac recipe includes kidney beans so feel free to add them.
  • After the 30 minute simmering time, the pasta may take on a life of its own. If the chili mac gets too thick, add more tomato juice. If more tomato juice is added, taste again and add more chili seasoning if necessary.
  • This one pot chili mac recipe can be easily doubled to feed a crowd. You will need quite a big pot though!
  • It lasts in the refrigerator for up to five days. The leftovers are wonderful.

one pot chili mac recipe with cheese

My mom cooked dinner every single night when we (I have three brothers) were growing up. I have no idea why she never made this chili mac recipe! It’s delicious topped with shredded cheese and served with a thick, crusty piece of bread

Click {HERE} for my favorite cast iron dutch oven.

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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    I made this today – it is absolutely delicious!!!

  2. Shirley Graham says:

    Going to try this as has all ingredients I love. Thanks!
    Love your blog & always look at yours first. Your style of decorating is something I like.

  3. I love your emails and variety of information they contain.
    For this recipe, I have a question regarding ‘chili seasoning mix’. I would like to know what brand is used or what spices are in it. I live in Canada and have never seen a pre package spice for chili. I live in a border city with Michigan so I could obtain whatever brand you use.
    Thank you

    1. Ann Drake says:

      Hi Anita! The brands for chili seasoning mix are McCormick or Lawry’s. It’s in the aisle with the gravy. I shop at Kroger, and usually just buy their brand. If you can’t get it, you could use chili powder too. I’m not sure of the amount, so start small and add. Enjoy!

  4. Making it tonight! On the stove simmering now… looks 😋!

  5. Looks yummy and leftovers are the best.

  6. That should say I don’t eat meat😊

  7. Thanks for this easy recipe. I don’t wear meat, so I will just skip that part ! Thanks!!!

  8. susan cogan says:

    Do you not put red chili beans in your recipe?

    1. Ann Drake says:

      No…we do not! You can add them though if you want to.

  9. Oh, yum! This is what I call a “comfort food,” and it is certainly a dish that satisfies on a cold winter night! I think the leftovers taste even better when warmed the next day. Thanks Ann, for your version!

  10. Thanks for this recipe, Ann. I’m always on the lookout for kid friendly recipes that feed a bunch. My family comes for dinner most weekends. There are 11 of us-4 adults and 7 children, sometimes more if my oldest daughter and family are in town. This will be perfect! I’ll double the recipe, and make it this weekend. Btw, we all got snowbound here one weekend a month or so ago. I had no idea what I was going to serve to 11 hungry folks. I found a roast in my freezer, and made your Mom’s pot roast recipe. Fortunately, I had all the ingredients on hand to make it. That recipe saved the day! They all loved it. Thanks!

  11. This looks delicious and easy. I even ordered the pot!

    1. Ann Drake says:

      Thank you so much…you will love the pot!

  12. Charmaine says:

    This recipe brings back memories from my childhood! My mom made a similar version when we were kids. Sometimes, though, she left out the meat and we just had the beans and at other times it was just the tomatoes and pasta. There were eight of us kids, all with different food preferences, not to mention a very tight budget since my mom did not work outside the home. I still make a version of mom’s recipe every now and then when my husband and I just want some plain and simple comfort food.

  13. Thanks for the recipe! I prefer to eat at home but struggle with dinner ideas. I think I shall try it tonight! It sounds delicious!!

  14. Oh that sounds really good. I’ll bet the addition of the Campbell’s tomato soup really makes it good and as you said not too spicy. I don’t mind not having beans…after all it has pasta! I like pasta of any kind with my chili, too. I even put chili on top of mac and cheese. Thanks for sharing. I’m going to make this next time I make chili.

  15. Lavender Dreams says:

    I love making a dish like this! It’s hearty but a nice change, too! Thanks for sharing your recipe!

  16. That sounds so delicious Ann!! I love pasta and this is such a great twist on chili. Can’t wait to try it! :-)

  17. Nana Diana says:

    That is how my hubby likes his, too. It is kind of a Midwest thing here to add pasta…but also add the kidney beans. Then they top it with raw onions, sour cream and cheddar cheese- How FATTENING do you think a big bowl of THAT is? Your recipe looks great!!!! xo Diana

  18. My Mom cooked everynight, and I cooked everynight when my kids were growing up,and when we had the Grandkids when they were little plus my Mother-in law.. Good memories of sharing ang laughing.. I still cook everynight for my husband and myself, but it is not the same as when you have your family at home. Love Thanksgiving and Christmas.

  19. What a great alternative to beans in the chili! Can’t wait to try this recipe! :)

    Thanks for sharing!

  20. Yur recipe sounds good and easy. Never heard of this recipe usiing tomato soup, interesting. Growing up, I always ate chili with my family, but never ate the beans. Now today, I have a liking for the beans!

  21. I’ve never heard of chili with pasta. I planned to make chili tomorrow, so may give this a try. Thanks for the recipe!

  22. Brenda Kula-Pruitt says:

    What a wonderful looking recipe, and a wonderful memory to go with it.

  23. Adventuresindinner says:

    Oh! I love this type of chilli. So comforting C:

  24. Oh my husband loves piling on chili with spagetti. I kid him and tell him “chili 20 ways!’

  25. I made chili with beans several days ago and have been eating leftovers. I think I am about tired of chili for awhile.

  26. Great memory, my mom also cooked every night. I was a kid that begged for a TV dinner. All my friends were having them, why didn’t our family? Now I look back and know why she wasn’t feeding us that stuff. I do the same and make dinner every night for my family, in hope some day they will look back and have treasured memories.
    By the way, I love that you make the recipes printable. Great idea.