Quick and easy stovetop macaroni and cheese is so much better than the box!
Growing up I used to eat boxed mac & cheese fairly often. When I first moved out, a 60 cent box of macaroni and cheese was a decent dinner for me. The Mr., however, hates boxed macaroni so I haven’t bought it in years. This recipe comes together really quickly and tastes really good. It is creamy and cheesy, almost like the kind you can find at Panera, but I use cheddar because I like it better than American cheese. Real cheese is better than powdered cheese any day.
I contemplated adding Sriracha to the mix but skipped it this time. I think I’ll give it a shot next time. I served it with a lemon & oil salad.
Creamy Stovetop Macaroni & Cheese is so much better than the box!
- 1/2 lb whole wheat pasta (I used shells)
- 3 Tb butter
- 3 Tb flour
- 1 1/2 cup milk (I used 2%)
- salt & pepper, to taste
- pinch of red pepper flakes
- 1 1/2 cup sharp cheddar, shredded
- 1/2 cup three cheese blend, shredded (or whatever cheese you have on hand & like)
- In a large pot, bring salted water to boil and cook your noodles.
- Drain noodles and set aside.
- Using the same pot (or a new one if you like to do dishes), melt the butter over medium high heat until bubbly. Whisk in the flour, one tablespoon at a time, making sure to fully cook each addition.
- Cook the flour until it is no longer raw. The mixture (a roux) should be thick and pale yellow.
- Add in the milk, while whisking. Continue cooking until the mixture thickens and is creamy.
- Season with salt, pepper and red pepper flakes. Remove from heat and stir in your cheese(s). Stir until fully melted and incorporated.
- Add your drained pasta to the cheese mixture and stir to fully coat.
- I seasoned mine with more freshly ground black pepper. Next time, I think I'll add some panko breadcrumbs to the top and bake it for a few minutes. I was too eager to eat this batch to wait.
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