So here’s to watching the food network one Saturday with my husband. We have both been craving this homemade macaroni & cheese. So when cheese was on sale I finally purchased, sharp cheddar cheese and we were ready to make this recipe! Years ago I remembered making a recipe from America’s Test Kitchen, so I decided to combine the two recipes with what we enjoy most. Extra cheese sauce for me and breadcrumbs on top for my husband. This recipe was really quick to come together and very delicious. My favorite part about making this for dinner was being at the park with my family and my husband says, “Kids it’s time for dinner…let’s go home and have Macaroni & Cheese!” I started laughing because it sounded so classic for a family to have macaroni & cheese for dinner! Little did those other moms and kids at the park understand how delicious this homemade mac & cheese really was! Enjoy.

Baked Macaroni and Cheese
Ingredients
  1. 4 cups dried macaroni (I used 1 1/2 lbs. uncooked pasta)
  2. 1 whole egg
  3. 1/2 stick (4 tablespoons) butter
  4. 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  5. 3 1/2 cups whole milk
  6. 2 heaping teaspoons dry mustard (more if desired)
  7. 2 pounds sharp Cheddar, grated (not pre-grated cheese)
  8. ¾ cup seasoned bread crumbs
  9. Salt
  10. Seasoned salt
  11. 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  12. Optional spices: cayenne pepper, paprika, thyme
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Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Cook the macaroni until still slightly firm. Drain and set aside.
  3. In a small bowl, beat the egg. In a large pot, melt the butter and sprinkle in the flour. Whisk together over medium-low heat. Cook for a couple of minutes, whisking constantly. Don't let it burn. Pour in the milk, add the mustard and whisk until smooth. Cook until very thick, about 5 minutes. Reduce the heat to low.
  4. Take 1/4 cup of the sauce and slowly pour it into the beaten egg, whisking constantly to avoid cooking the eggs. Whisk together until smooth. Pour the egg into the sauce, whisking constantly. Stir until smooth. Add in the cheese and stir to melt. Add 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt and the pepper. Add any additional spices if desired. Taste the sauce and add more salt and seasoned salt as needed! DO NOT UNDERSALT.
  5. Pour in the drained, cooked macaroni and stir to combine. Serve immediately (while it's still very creamy) or pour into a buttered 9x13 baking dish, top with extra cheese and seasoned breadcrumbs. Bake until bubbly and golden on top, 20 to 25 minutes.
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Serve it creamy like this…

 

or baked with more cheese and crunchy breadcrumbs on top…Enjoy!