Classic Mac & Cheese has got to be the ultimate in comfort food. Its such an easy meal to make with simple ingredients and is so much better than packaged versions.
When making mac & cheese that I tend always use good quality cheddar cheese as I usually always have that on hand, but that it is also a time to use up other cheeses. For this recipe, I have used an old cheddar, parmesan, and in this case a very creamy nippy cheese.
The key is in the sauce which is smooth and creamy made with butter, flour, mustard, onions, and milk with just a little kick of hot sauce. In this recipe I toss the cooked pasta in the creamy sauce and then place half of the coated pasta in the greased baking dish, top with grated cheese, then top with remaining pasta and finish with grated cheese.
Classic Mac & Cheese
- 2 cups uncooked macaroni
- 5 tbsp butter divided
- 1 /2 tsp chopped garlic
- 1 small onion finely chopped
- 3 tbsp flour
- 1 tsp dry mustard
- 1/2 tsp salt - or to taste
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- 2 cups milk
- 2 cups grated cheddar
- 2 tbsp soft nippy cheddar
- 3 tbsp grated parmesan cheese
- 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
- Preheat over to 350 degrees
Prepping the macaroni
- Put a large pot of water on to boil and cook macaroni according to package directions. Drain and set aside back into the large pot. Add 1 tablespoon of butter and chopped garlic. Mix into pasta and set aside.
Making the cheese sauce
- In a separate medium-sized saucepan add 3 tablespoons butter and bring to medium heat. Once melted, add finely diced onions and cook until slightly transparent, Add in dry mustard, salt, and pepper. Mix well.
- Add flour to onion mixture and whisk until well blended.
- Add milk gradually and stir continuously with your whisk to ensure the sauce is smooth. Add in 1 cup grated cheddar, 1 tablespoon parmesan and old nippy cheddar and continue stirring.
- Once the sauce is thickened pour directly into your prepared macaroni and toss until evenly coated.
Preparing for baking
- Toss together the remaining cup of cheddar and parmesan. Pour half of the macaroni mixture into a pre-greased casserole dish. Top with half of the grated cheeses. Pour remaining macaroni on top and finish topping with remaining grated cheese.
- Optional: For the topping melt 1 tablespoon of butter in a small dish. Add bread crumbs and 1 tablespoon of parmesan, and salt and pepper to taste. Mix together. Sprinkle bread crumb topping evenly over the top of the casserole.
- Cover with foil and cook for about 35 minutes. To crisp up the topping remove the foil and cook for about 10 more minutes or until bubbling. Remove from the oven and let sit for about 10 minutes and then serve.