This is the Mac n cheese that you will be making from here on out. It tastes gourmet so both kids and adults will love it. Nothing beats creamy cheesy goodness with perfectly cooked pasta. It is one meal that will always bring you joy. It makes for a crowd-pleasing side dish at any potluck, especially next to turkey on a Thanksgiving table. Both kids and adults alike love this mac and cheese!
I have had my share of Mac and cheese, and this recipe is at the top. You get creamy, cheesy, and crunch all in one bite. What more can you ask for?
Try this easy homemade Mac and cheese for yourself! If you make any of my recipes, please tag me on Instagram and be sure to follow along with all my social media for even more content!
Easy Homemade Mac and Cheese
- 16 oz Cavatappi or Elbow Pasta cooked, al dente according to package instructions
- 3 cups Sharp Chedder grated fresh
- 1.5 cups Gruyere grated fresh
- 1.5 cups Smoked Gruyere or Smoked Gouda grated fresh
- 5 tbsp Butter
- 1/3 cup All-purpose flour
- 4 cups Whole Milk
- Salt & Pepper to taste
- 1 tbsp Spicy Mustard or Yellow Mustard
- 1/2 tbsp Garlic Powder
- 1 tsp Smoked paprika
Panko Topping (optional but recommended)
- 1 cup Panko Breadcrumbs, seasoned
- 1/2 tbsp Dried Italian Seasoning
- Flaky salt & fresh ground black pepper
- 1/4 cup Butter, melted
- In a large pot, add the butter and flour. Stir until this turns into light brown color and slightly thick just like a roux.
- To this, add the milk. Keep stirring for about 5 minutes until the mixture starts to thicken.
- Once this mixture starts boiling, start adding in the cheeses. Add a total of 4 (2 cheddar and 2 gruyere mixed).
- Add the cheeses 1 cup at a time. Leave the remaining 2 cups layer into the pasta before baking. Stir until creamy in consistency. Add the mustard, paprika, garlic powder, salt and pepper.
- To this, add the cooked pasta and mix it all together.
- In a large baking pan (roughly 9×13) which has been buttered, add half the pasta topped with 1 cup of cheese then the remaining pasta with the rest of the cheese on top followed by the panko.
- Bake in a 350 F oven for about 25 minutes then broil for 1a minute until the top is lightly browned. Enjoy warm!
What goes best with Mac and Cheese?
Fried Chicken (ultimate comfort meal) Check out my oven-baked crispy tenders for a healthier option without missing out on that crunch!
Meatloaf – I have a delicious turkey meatloaf recipe that you should check out!
Any sort of BBQ or Roast whether chicken or beef
Can this be made gluten-free?
Most definitely. Just use your favorite gluten-free pasta but be sure to pick up one that is tubular in shape so it holds the creamy sauce.
Can the cheese choices be switched?
Yes, while I believe this is a great blend of cheeses that makes for a delicious baked mac n cheese there can be adjustments made. Cheddar, however, is a must!
A good substitute for the cheeses can be Velveeta, Mozzarella, and/or Monterey Jack. All of these are readily available in any supermarket.
For a Vegan Mac and Cheese, check this butternut squash version out!