Älplermagronen (Swiss Alpine Macaroni Pasta)

Älplermagronen Swiss Pasta Bake

Super Simple Swiss Macaroni and Cheese Recipe

Älplermagronen Swiss Pasta Bake

Looking for a delicious pasta bake like no other? Bored of traditional mac & cheese? Try making this Swiss pasta bake/mac & cheese! It’s a signature dish in Switzerland that tastes amazing!  

What Is Älplermagronen?

Älplermagronen is one of the tastiest and simplest pasta dishes you can make! It’s a Swiss dish similar to your typical Mac & Cheese but so much better! “Älpler” means mountain and “magronen” means macaroni in Swiss German.

In English, this dish is often known as “Swiss alpine macaroni”. It differs from your traditional mac & cheese because it also consists of cubed potatoes, bacon and onions. Expatica covers a list of the best Swiss dishes to try and Älplermagronen is definitely one of them!

Switzerland is filled with various dialects in different regions, so it’s not uncommon to find variations of this dish. Some regions serve Älplermagronen with chopped sausages instead of bacon, some use different types of cheese and some serve the dish with caramelised onions or fried crispy onions.

How To Make Swiss Alpine Macaroni:

To make this Swiss Mac and Cheese, you’ll need:

  • Macaroni pasta
  • Bacon
  • Brown Onions
  • Potatoes
  • Garlic
  • Gruyère Cheese
  • Cooking Cream
  • Butter      

To make this dish more traditional, you can serve it with some apple sauce (apfelmus) or caramelised onions/fried crispy onions.

Ingredients needed to make this Älplermagronen Dish

Alternative ingredients:

Pastas — This Swiss pasta bake is usually served using Elbow Macaroni pasta. But you other pastas available to you, such as penne, fusilli, rigatoni or farfalle pasta. The type of pasta won’t make a big difference to this dish.

Potatoes — There’s a large variety of potatoes you can choose from. I like using Maris Piper potatoes as they generally cook faster. 

Cheese — I’ve tried making this dish with loads of different cheese. The most common cheese used in Switzerland is Gruyère Cheese and Emmentaler cheese. I personally prefer using Gruyère Cheese. However, in the UK I’ve found it difficult to find Gruyère cheese so I tend to make this dish using cheddar cheese instead.

Meat — I recommend using bacon bits in this pasta bake. However, there are different regions in Switzerland that like to use chopped sausages instead.


Why I like this dish:

Älplermagronen is a very Swiss dish. I personally prefer it over a typical mac & cheese because it’s less cheesy and consists of more ingredients. I’ve been eating this dish at restaurants for years but never found the perfect recipe for it. Every restaurant makes their own variation of this dish, so I decided to make my own version too.

How To Eat This Swiss Alpine Macaroni Dish

Whenever I visit the Swiss alps, I find the locals serving Älplermagronen in a large pot. With the dish you can find apple sauce (apfelmus) being served with it. It’s a weird combination of sweet and savoury but it still tastes really good. Some restaurants serve this dish with some caramelized onions on top.

Over time, I started to grill my Swiss pasta bake – it makes the outer layer nice and crispy but keeps the dish creamy and delicious. I rarely serve it with caramelised onions or apple sauce but it is a popular side dish.  

How To Store Älplermagronen:

This Alpine baked pasta is best served fresh. If you do have leftovers, you can simply refrigerate this pasta bake in an airtight container for a maximum of 2 days. To reheat, you can bake the pasta for 15-20 minutes or reheat it in a saucepan for 5-10 minutes. You might need to add some water to help loosen the pasta after it was refrigerated. 

Hints And Tips To Make The Perfect Älplermagronen Dish:

  • If you’re low on time, you can eat the dish after mixing all the ingredients in the pot. You don’t necessarily have to grill it and make it crispy.

  • If you’re low on pots and pans, you can boil both the pasta and the potato cubes together. However, the potatoes may take longer to soften than the pasta.

More Simple Dishes:

Cook the macaroni pasta and cubed potato pieces.
Fry the bacon, garlic and onions.
Once the garlic, bacon and onion is cooked, add the cooked pasta and potatoes.
Add the grated cheese, butter and cream to the dish and stir.

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Recipe by YvonneCuisine: SwissDifficulty: Easy


Prep time


Cooking time



This is a delicious and simple Swiss Alpine Macaroni Recipe! It’s a crowd-favourite and so easy to make!


  • 300g pasta

  • 200g bacon bits

  • 2 medium onions

  • 2 small-medium potato

  • 2 garlic cloves

  • 100g gruyere cheese

  • ¾-1 cup cream (depends on how creamy you like it)

  • 1 tbsp butter


  • Peel and cube potatoes (about 1cm wide).
  • Boil pasta for 8-10 minutes or until cooked. They shouldn’t be too soft.
  • Boil the potato cubes for 5 minutes or until soft.
  • Slice or cube the onions, finely chop the garlic and grate the cheese.
  • Drain the pasta and the potatoes.
  • Fry the bacon, onions and garlic in a pot until cooked (about 3-5 minutes).
  • Add the pasta and potatoes to the pot.
  • Add the cream, grated cheese and butter to the pot and mix thoroughly, ready to serve.
  • (Optional) You could grill the Älplermagronen for 10 minutes or until golden brown.
    (Optional) Serve the Älplermagronen with crispy fried onions and/or apple sauce (Apfelmus).

Recipe Video


  • The potatoes shouldn’t be too soft, otherwise they will fall apart when you stir in all the ingredients.

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