Main Dish | October 10, 2019

Creamy Mac and Cheese Recipe

100% this is my go-to best selling creamy mac and cheese recipe. I reach for it every time we have company over, going to bbq’s or just need a comfort food weeknight type of meal. It’s creamy underneath + stringy crispy cheesy perfection on top. For a little add fun for the kids we make stripes with the cheese and call it our zebra mac and cheese!

spoon pulling out cheese mac and cheese

KEY INGREDIENTS FOR CREAMY MAC AND CHEESE RECIPE

What makes this mac and cheese better than others? We know how to create the ultimate creaminess with perfect balance of flavor. Let me tell you how.

  • Cream cheese (if needed can sub sour cream)
  • SHARP cheddar cheese
  • Mozzarella
  • Chicken Broth
  • butter, flour and milk

pasta, cheese and broth plus other ingredients for creamy mac and cheese recipe

THE SECRET INGREDIENT FOR THE ULTIMATE MAC AND CHEESE

Repeat after me… SHARP CHEDDAR CHEESE. Let sharp cheddar cheese be your BFF when making dishes like mac and cheese, cheesy soup or anything that involves a roux+cheddar (like this Wisconsin cheddar cauliflower soup). WHY? because by the time you make your roux, add your milk, broth and cheese the cheddar flavor will be quite flavorless.

CAN I MAKE THIS GLUTEN-FREE?

YES! Use gluten-free pasta (like pictured above) cook it just till it is al dente according to package. For the roux use a gluten free flour like cup-4-cup flour. I’ve tested this out and it works amazing. No one will even know it is gluten-free. Infact the photos are all made with gluten-free ingredients.

HOW TO MAKE CREAMY CHEDDAR MAC N CHEESE

SO easy, and pretty darn fast. Let me tell you how.

  1. Start by melting your butter on medium heat and whisking in your flour. Whisk and let cook until the flour butter mixture (the roux) has bubbled for about minute. (this helps the flour taste to cook out)
  2. While whisking stir in your broth. PROTIP: I like to use bouillion and water, it tends to have a little more salt and herbs to flavor your mac n cheese.
  3. Add in your cream cheese and let it melt. If you are in a pinch you can sub cream cheese with sour cream. 
  4. Continue storing until cream cheese melted into roux and it smooth.

THE CREAMY SAUCE

  • Now that you have your base lets add the cheese!
  • Stir over medium heat, careful to NOT LET THE SAUCE BOIL. Stir until the cheese melted and combined with base.
  • Dump in your cooked noodles!

BAKING YOUR MAC AND CHEESE

Do you have to bake this recipe?

No! on many occasions I’ve stopped right here with the recipe and served it straight from the pan. IS INCREDIBLE!

But what’s also incredible? Adding a bit more cheese on top and browning it juuuuust right. SO GOOD.

Add you mac and cheese to a 9×13 pan (or individual bake proof dishes) and top with cheese. If you’re making zebra mac and cheese alternate the cheddar and mozzarella.

Place in the oven and BAKE! Bake just till the noodles are warm inside and the cheese is melted. For a little extra crispiness broil the dish for a few minutes.

5 from 1 vote
spoon dishing cheesy mac and cheese
Creamy Mac and Cheese Recipe
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
30 mins
Total Time
40 mins
 

A super delicious, cheesy and comforting mac n cheese with a fun twist!

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Baked Macaroni Cheese, Mac and Cheese
Servings: 10 servings
Calories: 522 kcal
Author: Desarae
Ingredients
  • 1- pound elbow pasta cooked in equal parts chicken stock and water, or all chicken stock - this is a must!!
For the sauce
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup cream cheese
  • 4 cups grated sharp yellow cheddar cheese
  • Salt and pepper
For the topping
  • 1 cup grated sharp yellow cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup grated sharp white cheddar cheese
Instructions
  1. In a large saucepan, melt the butter. Once melted, add the flour and cook for about 2 minutes (this is called a roux). Slowly whisk in the milk and chicken broth. When the milk begins to steam, whisk in the cream cheese until smooth.
  2. Turn off the heat and add the cheddar, stirring until melted and smooth. Pour the sauce over the pasta and stir until thoroughly mixed. Add salt and pepper to taste
  3. Put the macaroni into small, individual oven-proof pans or ramekins. Top each ramekin with the yellow and white grated cheeses, alternating each to create a striped 'zebra' pattern.

  4. Place the ramekins under a broiler or in a warm oven until the cheese is just melted. (Don't let it sit too long, or the cheese will run together).
  5. Cook it on 350 for about only 15 minutes, then put the oven on broil for just a few minutes to brown the top....it's the best part!! Now go make it!
Recipe Notes

Do you have to bake this recipe? 

No! on many occasions I've stopped right here with the recipe and served it straight from the pan. IS INCREDIBLE! 

THE SECRET INGREDIENT FOR THE ULTIMATE MAC AND CHEESE

Repeat after me... SHARP CHEDDAR CHEESE. Let sharp cheddar cheese be your BFF when making dishes like mac and cheese, cheesy soup or anything that involves a roux+cheddar (like this Wisconsin cheddar cauliflower soup). WHY? because by the time you make your roux, add your milk, broth and cheese the cheddar flavor will be quite flavorless. 

CAN I MAKE THIS GLUTEN-FREE?

YES! Use gluten-free pasta (like pictured above) cook it just till it is al dente according to package. For the roux use a gluten free flour like cup-4-cup flour. I've tested this out and it works amazing. No one will even know it is gluten-free. Infact the photos are all made with gluten-free ingredients.

Nutrition Facts
Creamy Mac and Cheese Recipe
Amount Per Serving
Calories 522 Calories from Fat 270
% Daily Value*
Fat 30g46%
Saturated Fat 19g119%
Cholesterol 92mg31%
Sodium 577mg25%
Potassium 234mg7%
Carbohydrates 38g13%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 3g3%
Protein 25g50%
Vitamin A 941IU19%
Vitamin C 2mg2%
Calcium 538mg54%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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5 thoughts on “Creamy Mac and Cheese Recipe

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  1. Where does a person find the recipes? I’ve looked at several dishes posted but nothing about ingredients or directions.

  2. Nice seeing you the other day. Sounds like things are going well for you guys. Thanks for sharing all your secrets for mac and cheese. Whenever my kids eat boxed kind they always come home from a friends place and say “mum your home made mac and cheese is way better than the box” and it makes me happy. Adding the stock is a great idea that I’ll add to my recipe. Xx