Mac and Cheese

Mac and Cheese

Classic Mac and Cheese Recipe

Macaroni and cheese is a beloved comfort food that combines tender pasta with a rich and creamy cheese sauce. This classic recipe is easy to make and perfect for any occasion.


For the Pasta:

  • 1 lb elbow macaroni (or any short pasta)

For the Cheese Sauce:


  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups milk (whole milk recommended)
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder (optional)
  • 2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup shredded Gruyère cheese
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

For the Topping (optional):

  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter


1. Cook the Pasta:

  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
  • Add the macaroni and cook according to package instructions until al dente. Drain and set aside.

2. Make the Cheese Sauce:

  • In a large saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat.
  • Add the flour and whisk constantly for about 2 minutes, until the mixture is lightly golden and bubbly.
  • Gradually add the milk and heavy cream, whisking continuously to avoid lumps.
  • Continue to cook, whisking frequently, until the sauce thickens and begins to bubble.
  • Reduce the heat to low and add the salt, black pepper, garlic powder, and onion powder.
  • Stir in the shredded cheddar, Gruyère, and Parmesan cheeses until fully melted and smooth.

3. Combine Pasta and Cheese Sauce:

  • Add the cooked macaroni to the cheese sauce and stir until the pasta is evenly coated with the sauce.

4. (Optional) Bake with a Topping:

  • Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C).
  • Transfer the mac and cheese to a greased 9×13-inch baking dish.
  • In a small bowl, combine the panko bread crumbs and melted butter. Sprinkle the mixture evenly over the top of the mac and cheese.
  • Bake in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and the cheese is bubbly.
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5. Serve:

  • Remove from the oven and let it cool slightly before serving.
  • Enjoy your mac and cheese hot, as a main dish or a side.

Tips for Perfect Mac and Cheese

  1. Cheese Selection: Use high-quality cheeses for the best flavor. A combination of sharp cheddar, Gruyère, and Parmesan adds depth and richness.
  2. Creaminess: For an extra creamy sauce, use whole milk and heavy cream. You can also add a little cream cheese for added richness.
  3. Seasoning: Adjust the seasoning to your taste. A pinch of cayenne pepper or a dash of hot sauce can add a nice kick.
  4. Topping: The panko bread crumb topping adds a crunchy contrast to the creamy mac and cheese. For extra flavor, mix in some grated Parmesan or finely chopped herbs with the bread crumbs.
  5. Make-Ahead: You can prepare the mac and cheese ahead of time and refrigerate it. Just add a few extra minutes to the baking time if baking straight from the fridge.
  6. Leftovers: Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat in the oven or microwave, adding a splash of milk to keep it creamy.

Enjoy this classic mac and cheese as a comforting and satisfying meal that everyone will love!



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