White Cheddar Macaroni and Cheese

White Cheddar Macaroni and Cheese

Macaroni and cheese has always been one of my favorite foods. And now that I have kids, I often get requests to make it. No one complains when I make the boxed version, but it really doesn’t take much more effort to make from scratch. And the resulting product is so much more delicious. This white cheddar macaroni and cheese is sure to satisfy adults and children alike!

I start with a basic roux of flour and butter, whisked together over medium heat, then slowly add the milk to make a thick sauce. Plenty of freshly grated cheese is added to ensure lots of cheesy flavor in every bite. I simply season this macaroni and cheese with salt and pepper to let the white cheddar stand out, but you can add a variety of seasonings to make it your own. And different cheeses, or combinations of cheeses, are fun to experiment with in this basic recipe.

   

A few tips when making macaroni and cheese:

  1. Adequately salt your pasta water and your sauce. Taste your finished sauce and adjust the salt level, if necessary. Add a little at a time, but be sure that your resulting pasta isn’t bland. The salt should bring out the flavor of the cheese, not be overwhelmingly salty.
  2. Cook your pasta al dente, or slightly firm when you bite into it. It may continue to cook a little once added to the sauce and become mushy otherwise.
  3. Add the cheese at the very end, over low heat, just until melted and incorporated into the sauce. Overcooking the cheese can create issues with the finished texture of your sauce.

This white cheddar macaroni and cheese really is such a simple dish that can open the doors for your own creativity. Replace the cheddar with pecorino romano for an alfredo-style sauce, or try a smoked gouda with bacon variation. Pour the pasta into a casserole dish to be baked with a buttery, cheesy, breadcrumb topping that will take the whole thing up a notch. The sky is the limit. 😉

 

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White Cheddar Macaroni and Cheese

Smooth, creamy, and incredibly cheesy! My favorite simple macaroni and cheese. 

Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 8

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. pasta elbows or similar shape
  • 4 Tb. butter
  • ¼ cup flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup half n half
  • 1 tsp. Salt or to taste
  • ¼ tsp. Pepper or to taste
  • 8 oz. white cheddar grated

Instructions

  1. Cook your pasta according to package instructions. Make sure to add plenty of salt to your cooking water. Drain pasta and return empty pot to stove.
  2. Over medium heat, melt butter, then stir in flour.
  3. Add milk and half n half, stirring frequently.
  4. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Once sauce has thickened, about 3-5 minutes, reduce heat to low and stir in cheddar until fully incorporated. Taste and add more salt, ½ tsp. at a time, if necessary.
  6. Remove from heat and gently stir pasta into the sauce. Serve immediately.


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