How To Make Oven
Cook the pasta until tender and then drain it.
Mix all of the dry ingredients together and then set them aside.
Spray an oven-safe bowl or dish with cooking spray. Place half of the cooked macaroni inside.
Sprinkle half of the flour mixture over the top.
Then top it with half of the butter slices.
Sprinkle 1+1/2 cups of shredded cheese over the top.
Repeat the layering process again.
Pour milk over the entire macaroni and cheese casserole.
Cover with foil and bake at 350 for 35 minutes.
Remove foil and bake for an additional 10 minutes. Serve hot.
Everything Ive ever wanted in oven-baked mac and cheese is pictured right there!
A lot of people view this as a side dish but I confess, its been the entire meal on more than one occasion.
At this point, my son came in and said Ma, when is the macaroni and cheese gonna be done?.
I showed him this and his eyes got big as dollars as my grandmother would say!
Oh to be a kid again :).
How To Make Baked Mac And Cheese
The secret to this comfort food is selecting the key ingredients. Let’s start with the sauce, which gets its smoothness and creaminess from butter, flour, and two cups of milk.
Then it’s time to bring together the seasoning, a just-right sprinkling of salt, red pepper, and black pepper.
The superstar ingredient is the cheese, and after the Southern Living Test Kitchen tasted, tested, and retested, we found our winner: Cracker Barrel’s Extra-Sharp Cheddar Cheese. We’re sure you know it well.
The final step in masteringor messing upthis recipe is the pasta. In fact, one of the easiest mistakes when making macaroni and cheese is using the wrong kind of pasta. We suggest steering clear of long, thin, perfect-for-twirling varieties like spaghetti, fettuccini, and linguini. Choose pasta with a good shape and plenty of nooks to capture cheese pockets like shells, cavatappi, or our no-fail elbow macaroni.
Creamy Baked Mac And Cheese
The Chunky Chef09/30/2019
This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.
This baked mac and cheese is a family favorite recipe, loved by both children and adults. It uses a combination of cheeses, layered in the dish as well as melted into a rich and creamy cheese sauce, for the ultimate in cheesy deliciousness! Perfect for a comforting dinner or as a holiday side dish!
BAKED MAC AND CHEESE
Baked mac and cheese. Its nearly the universal comfort food, and there are SO many variations! In fact, I almost didnt post this recipe, as there are SOOOO many mac and cheese recipes available, and most people already have their favorite way of making it.
Of course, theres no right way or wrong way, so Im here sharing the way I like to make my mac and cheese .
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Making The Cheese Sauce
Transforming the roux into a cheesy sauce is a simple matter of adding milk and cheese. Technically, the mix of roux and milk is called a béchamel and adding cheese makes it mornay sauce use these terms if youd really like to impress your dinner guests, but otherwise calling it a cheese sauce works just fine!
Why Youll Love This Recipe
- Delicious! Its cheesy, creamy, and so tasty. The ultimate comfort foodand quite possibly the best homemade mac & cheese!
- Versatile. This side pairs perfectly with so many main entrees! Serve alongside anything from chicken and steak to pork chops. And, of course, be sure this has a place on the table during the holidays. It goes great alongside this slow cooker ham!
- Family-friendly. This easy and tasty cheesy pasta recipe will be loved by everyone. Kids and adults cant get enough!
- Easy to make. This is a simple and easy recipe that will be on the dinner table in 40 minutes. Other than grating the cheese, its pretty effortless.
Tips For The Best Baked Jalapeo Popper Mac And Cheese
- Using block cheese is the way to go when youre making mac and cheese. The pre-shredded cheese is coated and wont melt properly. Grate it yourself for the best results.
- Cook your pasta to slightly less than al dente, about one minute shy is perfect thats about 7 minutes for macaroni.The reason is that this is baked mac and cheese so the pasta will continue to cook in the oven.
- I used elbow pasta but really, any tubular, short pasta will work.
- The roux is super important to getting the creamiest cheese sauce. Three things to look for:
- The roux is whisked together until bubbly and golden.
- Whisk in cold milk not warm to prevent the flour from clumping.
- Cook the roux, stirring nearly constantly, until you see bubbles on the surface and then continue cooking for an additional 2 minutes before adding the cheese. This will keep the sauce from turning grainy.
Youll notice this recipe calls for two jalapeños. I removed the seeds and membranes before dicing which cuts down on the heat a bit. I mean, this is Jalapeño Popper Mac and Cheese so a little heat should be expected. If youre like whaaaat? Bring on the spicy! Keep the seeds and membranes intact and dice away OR add another jalapeño.
I further tame those spicy jalapeños by sautéing in butter. This also serves another purpose as it gives the cheese sauce amazing flavor. I add back in a little heat and lots of flavor by adding in some TABASCO® Sauce.
How To Make Soul Food Southern Baked Mac And Cheese
First, you need to have a lot of love and soul. Got that? Okay. Let’s move on.
Now, rub down an 8 by 11 or 9 by 13-inch baking dish with the butter. Give it a good, generous layer of butter.
Next, cook macaroni pasta in the chicken broth until just under al dente. It needs to be undercooked so that it doesn’t end up mushy and overcooked in the oven.
While your macaroni is cooking, shred your cheese but save half of the cheddar and colby jack to make that bubbly, delicious browned cheese crust that everyone will want to fight over because we all know that it’s the best part!
In a large bowl, mix in all of the different cheeses, the half-and-half and heavy cream, and your spices. A little mustard powder boosts the cheese flavor, salt and black pepper are a must, garlic and onion powder, and smoked paprika for that little extra somethin’.
You can find smoked paprika in any grocery store and its flavor is such a great, smoky addition to the mac and cheese. You will not regret having some smoked paprika in your life.
Mix in the cooked macaroni pasta into the cheese, then give it a taste for seasoning. Add a little salt if needed, or pepper or garlic, whatever you want to boost up in flavor. Make sure to always taste for seasoning before moving on to adding the eggs!
Then stir the eggs into the macaroni mixture. Get it nice and well-mixed before adding it to the buttered baking dish and spreading it evenly in there.
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Crock Pot Mac And Cheese
The Chunky Chef09/05/2019
This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.
Highly requested from my readers, this mac and cheese is made entirely in the slow cooker! No boiling pasta, no making a cream sauce, and no standing over a hot stove. Perfectly creamy and packed with flavor, this dish is great to take to a potluck, have as a holiday side dish, or even a fun family dinner!
CROCKPOT MAC AND CHEESE RECIPE
Here it is the recipe youve been asking for! Youve LOVED, and continue to love, my Baked Mac and Cheese recipe some of you have even won awards in cooking competitions using that recipe. But we all love a great slow cooker recipe, and Ive been busy developing the PERFECT crock pot mac and cheese recipe. One that yields an ultra creamy sauce, doesnt get too thick, and one that tastes every bit as delicious as the OG baked mac and cheese.
How Do I Store Leftovers
This Air Fryer Mac and Cheese recipe does make a good amount. If you have leftovers, be sure to put them in an airtight container and store them in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
Again, you can if you need to add a little cream or milk to the mac and cheese when reheating. You can reheat the leftovers in the microwave or in the air fryer. Freezing is not recommended because pasta does not always thaw nicely.
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Jalapeo Popper Mac And Cheese
The BEST Jalapeño Popper Mac and Cheese youll ever try! Extra creamy, loaded with bacon, cream cheese, jalapeños, and kicked up a notch with TABASCO® Sauce, this delicious and easy mac and cheese is sure to be a new favorite! Bacon lover? Make sure to try this Baked Bacon Cheese Dip and Slow Cooker Green Beans with Bacon!
Sponsored by TABASCO® Brand.
How To Make Crock Pot Mac And Cheese
- Add pasta and liquids to the slow cooker. Sprinkle in seasonings and stir.
- Cover and cook 1 hour. Stir. Cover and cook another 10 minutes.
- Stir in cream cheese and grated cheese. Cover and let sit for 5-10 minutes. Stir and serve.
How easy is that?! No fancy cream sauce to make just hands-off cook time so you can go relax!
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Best Cheese For Mac And Cheese
This homemade mac and cheese recipe uses a classic mixture of sharp Cheddar and Parmesan. Cheddar is a fantastic base, while Parmesan adds a more complex and salty flavor. Of course, you can adapt this recipe to suit your taste: Gruyere, Monterey Jack, and Gouda are all great options for macaroni and cheese.
Why Is Southern Baked Mac And Cheese Important To Black Culture
As previously stated, baked mac and cheese was a recipe spread throughout the antebellum South by the enslaved cooks’ word of mouth. Those recipes may have slightly been altered by the tastes of their traffickers or through that regional game of telephone, but at the end of the day, Black cooks kept the recipes for our own families once Emancipated.
A dish saved only for special occasions, full of many cheeses , and beloved for generations, it holds a special place in the hearts of black folks across the country.
Black people hold macaroni and cheese in high regard, it’s the pinnacle of black culinary accolades. It’s not just a favorite side dish…it’s THE favorite side dish.
It’s creation bestowed upon only those who can be trusted with the responsibility of making mac and cheese, because you are not messing up Thanksgiving with bland, dry, overcooked, sad mac and cheese.
Our mac and cheese is just as important as any main dish at every holiday it shows up at. Which is every holiday: Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter, Memorial Day, Juneteenth, 4th of July, birthdays, marriages, births, funerals. Everything.
If you bring any type of mac and cheese recipes made from a box or in a store, you will be roasted, ragged on, and not allowed to bring food again. Possibly exiled from all cookouts, depending on how bad you’ve disrespected the mac and cheese.
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Homemade Macaroni And Cheese: What Kind Of Cheese Should I Use
I honestly use different cheese combinations almost every time I make this mac and cheese recipe but the one I always come back to is sharp cheddar and Gruyere. If you cant find Gruyere, Jarlsberg Swiss cheese is the best substitute. Other cheese that work: mozzarella, jack cheese or pepper jack for a little zip, American and Velveeta as well for a creamier cheese sauce. This baked mac and cheese uses 6 cups of cheese so just
To add even more flavor to my homemade mac and cheese, I add Parmesan to the Panko topping so good!
To Bake Or Not To Bake:
You dont have to bake the mac and cheese in this recipe. Everything gets fully cooked and is essentially ready to eat after the cheese and noodles are added. However, I love the extra gooeyness that comes when the cheese is baked and I think baking it adds a level of sophistication you just dont get without.
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How To Make Sheet
1. Preheat oven to 375. In a small bowl combine breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, olive oil and a little salt and pepper. Set aside.
2. Cook macaroni to al dente and drain. In the same pot, melt butter in a large pan over medium heat. Add flour, whisk until smooth and cook for 2-3 minutes.
3. Slowly add in milk and whisk until smooth. Cook for 5 minutes until thickened and season with salt and pepper.
4. Remove from heat and add both cheeses, in batches. Whisk until smooth.
5. Add macaroni to cheese sauce and mix well. Transfer to baking sheet and sprinkle with panko topping.
6. Bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown and crunchy. Sprinkle with parsley and serve.
Baked macaroni and cheese is such a classic dish, but with a baking sheet, it just got a major upgrade when you have a crowd of hungry people to feed easily.
Should You Give Your Mac And Cheese A Topping
You can certainly top your mac and cheese with some Ritz crackers , or you can leave it ungarnished. But if you’re going to top that mac and cheese, it’s best to leave the dish without a topping in the oven to allow a crispy crust of cheese to form first, and then add the topping a few minutes before it’s done baking.
But to be honest, for this baked mac and cheese, we like it without a topping. The creamy interior is oh-so-satisfying with some crunchy corners and crisp bits.
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Variations Of Mac And Cheese
- Bacon if you love bacon, feel free to add some crispy, crumbled bacon to the topping, or even inside the mac and cheese as well!
- Stovetop if youd prefer not to bake this mac and cheese, you dont have to! Make sure you boil your pasta until al dente , and youll only need about 3 3 1/2 cups of cheese total. No need to layer the pasta and cheese, just add all the cheese to the sauce, then combine with the pasta.
- Different Toppings Im a huge fan of the cheese layer on top, since it gets nice and crispy, but we also love tossing 1 cup of panko with 2 Tbsp of melted butter and using that as a topping. 1 cup of crushed Ritz crackers with 2 Tbsp of butter work amazingly well too!
- Different Baking Times the recipe calls for a lower baking temperature and time, but most of the time I find myself adjusting that based on my familys tastes. I like to bake this mac and cheese at 350 F degrees for 30 minutes, then broil for 2-3 minutes to get that glorious cheesy crust.
What To Serve With Baked Mac And Cheese
Mac and Cheese is worthy of serving as a meal in its own right, served with just a fresh green salad or simple vegetable side. Nothing heavy because Macaroni Cheese is so rich as it is!
As a side dish, it will compliment virtually any non-Asian main dish. From simple Baked Pork Chops to Steak, a Roast Chicken to Crispy Garlic Chicken Thighs, the only things I probably would not serve with Mac and Cheese would be very light summery mains such as a Tuna Tartare just a little too much contrast.
And of course, festive gatherings! Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter alongside a grand Roast Turkey or your Herb & Garlic Butter Slathered Turkey Breast, the juicy Roast Pork with impossibly Crispy Crackling or your Prime Rib thats so perfectly blushing pink all the way through, it makes you want to weep.
Holidays would not be the same without this Mac and Cheese!! Nagi xx
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Ways To Dress Up Boxed Mac And Cheese
- Add sautÃ©ed onions, garlic, broccoli, and spinach to the mac and cheese to get your daily servings of veg.
- Add chopped pastrami to the mac and cheese, lay swiss cheese on top, and use rye bread for your topping for a Reuben mac and cheeseheck, I think Id even drizzle some Russian dressing on the top after I took it out of the oven!
- Add chopped tomato to the mac and cheese, crumble feta on top, and use pita bread or chips for your topping to make a Greek-style mac and cheese.
- Add leftover sliced steak and fried onions and peppers to your mac and cheese, top with provolone, and use hoagie rolls for your topping to make Philly cheesesteak mac and cheese. Dont forget the ketchup and hot sauce to dip bites into.
Cooking Tips For Baked Mac And Cheese
- Boiling the pasta cook the pasta less than you normally would. I like to boil my elbow pasta for between 4 and 5 minutes. The pasta will continue to cook in the oven, and you dont want it to get mushy.
- Use room temp liquids if you can cold liquids generally take longer to thicken than warmer ones. I usually set my milk and half and half out while the water for the pasta is coming up to a boil.
- The cheeses use your favorites! Our personal favorites are the cheddar and gruyere used in this recipe, but you can be very creative with the cheese selection here. Mozzarella, gouda, smoked gouda, swiss, monterey jack, colby jack, colby. There are plenty of reader comments down below the recipe that talk about the cheeses they used!
- Shred your own I know its a pain, and its SO tempting to use the pre-shredded cheese in the bags. But those bags of cheese contain a starchy substance that keeps the cheese from clumping which also prohibits it from melting as well as it should.
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