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Baked macaroni with tomatoes is a childhood favorite that you never outgrow. If you didn’t eat this dish as a kid, there’s no time like the present to give it a try! This family-friendly recipe is bound to be a hit with the kids.

This recipe is pretty simple as it is, but every family has their own traditions about how to make it. You can take the recipe as a base and doctor it up however you choose, or you can stick to the basics. One thing is for sure: if this dish isn’t already in your rotation, it should be.

Baked Macaroni Recipe

Almost everyone loves pasta of any shape but macaroni is a special favorite with kids. Who hasn’t taken their kids to a fancy restaurant, only to have the kid's order macaroni and cheese?

This recipe is still kid-friendly but isn’t quite as ho-hum as mac and cheese.

If you’re a fan of chili mac or spaghetti, you’ll love baked macaroni with tomatoes. My mom called it “goulash” when I was growing up, but it also had ground beef in it. Come to think of it, my mom’s goulash recipe was basically like chili mac without the chili spices!

Goulash is another adaptable recipe that almost always contains tomatoes and macaroni as well in most modern American interpretations. But the history of goulash is of a stew that contains tomatoes and paprika, which usually has some type of meat like beef, pork, or lamb.

Most traditional goulash recipes can contain random vegetables like carrots or parsnips.

This is comfort food at its best. I always look for meals that I can fix in 30 minutes or less because I would rather spend time with my family than standing over the stove. Warm, hearty, and delicious, it can be on the table in a hurry to feed your hungry family.

Macaroni and Sweet Tomatoes

The really great thing about this dish is that you can make it as simple or as fancy as you like.

You can subtract the green peppers if your family doesn’t like it. Or you can sneak in extra vegetables, like shredded zucchini, corn, or mushrooms.

You can easily add ground beef to this recipe if you want. It will still be just as good with or without meat. Ground beef just adds a little bit of extra protein. If you’re trying to make a kid-friendly meal, choose whatever you think your kids will like better.

You can make it more of a creamy version as well. Try adding 2 tablespoons of flour and 1 ½ cups of milk, and add the cheese to it to create a cheesy sauce and add the tomatoes for extra flavor.

Of course, you can also change the kinds of cheese you use, as well. The recipe calls for cheddar cheese, but the flavors of the dish also go well with mozzarella and parmesan instead of cheddar. If you want to make it more of an Italian-inspired dish, use mozzarella and parmesan and add a teaspoon of oregano flakes.

Another good thing about this recipe is that it’s pretty budget-friendly. I’m always looking for ways that I can feed my family a quick, homemade meal that doesn’t cost a fortune. The A-1 steak sauce is the most expensive ingredient in this dish.

Having dinner together as a family is one of my most important values. Eating dinner together is where our family has some of our best conversations. And I always feel great knowing that I’m serving a home-cooked meal. This one is a winner because it’s easy and cheap and the kids love it.

If you enjoyed this recipe, make sure to check out our Tater Tot Casserole Recipe and our Ham and Potato Casserole Recipe.

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Baked Macaroni with Tomatoes Recipe

  • Author: Moms Who Think
  • Total Time: 35 minutes


If you’re a fan of chili mac or spaghetti, you’ll love baked macaroni with tomatoes. My mom called it “goulash” when I was growing up, but it also had ground beef in it.


  • ½ lb. uncooked macaroni
  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • 1 sliced, peeled, medium onion
  • 1 Tablespoon minced, seeded, green pepper
  • ½ teaspoon bottle thick A1 sauce
  • 1 1/3 cups canned tomatoes
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • ½ cup cheddar cheese, grated


  1. Cook macaroni, arrange in greased 1 quart casserole.
  2. Melt butter in skillet, and add onion, green pepper and A1 sauce. simmer 5 minutes.
  3. Add tomatoes, salt and pepper. Heat through.
  4. Pour mixture over macaroni, toss well.
  5. Sprinkle cheese on top. Bake in hot oven of 400°F, 20 minutes, or until cheese melts.
  • Prep Time: 10 Minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 Minutes
  • Category: Side Dish
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: baked macaroni recipe, macaroni and sweet tomatoes