How many calories is a whole box of Velveeta mac and cheese?

Velveeta mac and cheese is a classic American comfort food that many people love. However, it is also high in calories, fat, and sodium. For those watching their health and waistline, it’s important to pay attention to portion sizes of indulgent foods like Velveeta mac and cheese. In this article, we will break down the nutrition information and calorie count for an entire box of Velveeta Shells & Cheese.

Serving Size

The first thing to look at on a nutrition label is the serving size. This gives you a standardized amount that the rest of the nutrient information is based on. For Velveeta Shells & Cheese, the serving size is 1 cup (prepared). This is after cooking the pasta and mixing in the cheese sauce packet.

Servings Per Container

On a box of Velveeta Shells & Cheese, there are about 8 servings per container. This means there are 8 cups of mac and cheese in a single box. So if you eat a whole box yourself, you are consuming 8 servings.

Calories Per Serving

Each 1 cup serving of prepared Velveeta Shells & Cheese contains:

  • 250 calories

So for 1 serving of 1 cup, you get 250 calories.

Macronutrients in Velveeta Mac and Cheese

In addition to calories, Velveeta Shells & Cheese contains the following macronutrients per serving:

  • 10g total fat
  • 5g saturated fat
  • 460mg sodium
  • 29g total carbohydrates
  • 2g dietary fiber
  • 2g sugars
  • 12g protein

As you can see, a single serving packs 10g of total fat and 5g of saturated fat, which is about 20% and 25% respectively of the daily value. The sodium is also very high per serving at 19% DV.

On the positive side, Velveeta does contain 12g of protein and 2g of fiber per serving.

Total Calories in a Whole Box

Now that we know there are about 8 servings per box of Velveeta Shells & Cheese, let’s do the math:

  • Servings per box: 8
  • Calories per serving: 250 calories
  • Total calories per box = Calories per serving x Servings per box
  • Total calories per box = 250 x 8 = 2,000 calories

So for the entire box, you would consume around 2,000 calories. That’s a pretty hefty amount from just one food item!

To put this in perspective, the recommended daily calorie intake for an average adult is around 2,000 calories. So eating the whole box of Velveeta would fulfill your complete daily calorie needs.

Daily Value Percentages

Looking at the daily value percentages can also give you a sense of how just one serving stacks up nutritionally:

Nutrient Per Serving Per Box (8 servings)
Calories 13% DV 104% DV
Total Fat 20% DV 160% DV
Saturated Fat 25% DV 200% DV
Sodium 19% DV 152% DV
Total Carbohydrates 12% DV 96% DV
Protein 12% DV 96% DV

Eating the whole box blows way past the recommended daily limits for calories, fat, saturated fat, and sodium. The total carbs and protein are the only nutrients that stay close to 100% DV for the day.

Nutrition Compared to Other Meals

To give more context, here’s how the nutrition in a full box of Velveeta compares to some other common meals:

Velveeta Shells & Cheese (whole box)

  • 2,000 calories
  • 20g protein
  • 160g total fat
  • 70g saturated fat
  • 3,680mg sodium

Big Mac Combo with Large Fries and Coke

  • 1,340 calories
  • 43g protein
  • 60g total fat
  • 26g saturated fat
  • 2,320mg sodium

Chipotle Burrito Bowl with Chicken

  • 710 calories
  • 53g protein
  • 13g total fat
  • 4g saturated fat
  • 1,620mg sodium

As you can see, the Velveeta has significantly more calories, fat, and sodium than typical fast food meals. The protein is lower as well. So while it may be delicious comfort food, eating a whole box of Velveeta Shells & Cheese does pack a powerful caloric punch.

Tips for Healthier Eating

Here are some tips if you want to enjoy Velveeta mac and cheese without going overboard:

  • Stick to the standard 1 cup serving size.
  • Split a box with others instead of eating the whole thing yourself.
  • Make it with low-fat milk and limit the amount of butter or oils.
  • Increase veggies by adding broccoli, tomatoes, or spinach.
  • Top with lean protein like grilled chicken breast or shrimp.
  • Substitute whole grain pasta for the white shells.
  • Compare sodium levels and choose lower sodium cheese options.
  • Dilute the cheese sauce with extra milk to reduce thickness.
  • Limit portion size to 1/2 cup and pair with a salad or veggies.

With some simple substitutions and paying attention to portions, you can still enjoy mac and cheese without breaking the calorie bank. Just be mindful of your overall eating patterns and balance indulgent foods with healthier choices.


Velveeta Shells & Cheese is a nostalgic and crave-worthy comfort food for many. However, a full box contains around 2,000 calories and high amounts of fat and sodium. Eating an entire box yourself would meet your calorie and nutrient needs for the whole day. To lighten it up, stick to 1 cup servings, bulk it up with veggies, and use lower fat ingredients. Pay attention to your hunger cues and stop eating when satisfied rather than cleaning your plate. By being mindful of portions, you can still enjoy the occasional mac and cheese fix.

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