ooey gooey delicious mac + cheese.
Nothing compares. Pick your favourite pasta, then blanket the noodles in the richest, creamiest and EASIEST sauce ever! Top with buttered breadcrumbs and you will NOT want to share this with anyone! Mac and cheese seconds anyone?
The great thing about this mac and cheese recipe is that you have so many variations. Just the yummy mac and cheese. Buttered breadcrumb topping mac and cheese. Buffalo chicken mac and cheese. Or what about a GOURMET version, topped with shallot thyme buttered breadcrumbs?
The options are endless!
TIP: You can also make this in a cast iron skillet, for easy clean up! If not, a 9×13 baking dish works just fine!
Go ahead, get creative and have fun! There are no limits when it comes to having fun in the kitchen!
Homemade Mac + Cheese
- pasta pot
- cast iron skillet or baking dish (9 x 13)
- 2 c pasta (dry) pick your favourite pasta!
- 1/2 c butter
- 2 tbsp flour
- 1 tsp mustard powder optional
- 2 c milk evaporated works too!
- 2 c shredded cheese any kind
- 1 c breadcrumbs plain or italian seasoned ones work too
- 1/4 c melted butter
GOURMET BREADCRUMB TOPPING
- 1/2 small shallot OPTIONAL
- 1/2 tsp thyme optional
- 1/4 c melted butter
- 1 c panko breadcrumbs plain or italian seasoned ones work too
IF YOU WANT TO MAKE A BUFFALO CHICKEN MAC + CHEESE!
- 2 chicken breasts
- oil for frying the chicken breasts
- 1/4 c butter
- 1/4 c Franks Hot Sauce
IF YOU'RE MAKING BUFFALO CHICKEN STYLE
- Cut your 2 chicken breasts into small 1 inch chunks.
- In a large frying pan, heat 2 tbsp oil and cook your chicken breasts on medium high until cooked through and juices run clear.
- Once your chicken is cooked, using a slotted spoon or tongs, get all your chicken chunks into a bowl.
- In the same frying pan, add your butter and franks hot sauce until melted and combined.
- Add your chicken back in, toss to coat then pour back into the bowl.
- Give the pan a wash, because you'll now need it for the cheese sauce.
COOK YOUR PASTA
- In a large pasta pot, fill with water and shake in some salt (2 tbsp)
- Turn on high and get your pot boiling. Add your pasta noodles and stir often until they're cooked *approximately 10 mins, follow directions according to the type of pasta/package. Drain and set aside.
- In frying pan (or cast iron skillet) on medium heat, add 1/2 c butter, 2 tbsp flour, 1 tsp of mustard powder and whisk together until it's melted, then comes together ike a thick paste. Cook for 1-2 minutes stirring/whisking constantly.
- Whisk in 2c milk and 2c shredded cheese. Keep stirring, if it gets too thick you can switch from whisk to a spatula
- Add salt, pepper and taste the sauce. This is where you can adjust. Needs more salt? More pepper?
- Add the pasta noodles back into the cheese sauce and stir to coat.
- If you're going to finish the whole thing in the cast iron skillet, leave it all in the pan.
- If you've used a regular frying pan, this is when you get the baking dish (9×13, rectangular dish). Spray really well with nonstick spray. Carefully transfer all your mac n cheese from the pan into the baking dish.
REGULAR BREADCRUMB TOPPING
- In a small pot melt your butter. You can also microwave in a pyrex measuring cup or mug. Then add your breadcrumbs. TOP your mac and cheese with buttered breadcrumbs and broil on high for 1-2 minutes, do NOT look away from the oven! TAKE OUT and enjoy!
GOURMET TOPPING OPTION
- In a small pot melt your butter. Add 1/2 diced shallot and 1/2 tsp thyme. Cook for 1-2 minutes then blend into the breadcrumbs. TOP your mac and cheese with buttered breadcrumbs and broil on high for 1-2 minutes, do NOT look away from the oven! TAKE OUT and enjoy!