dinner

Baked Macaroni & Cheese

Baked Macaroni & Cheese - cheesy and creamy baked macaroni topped with toasted breadcrumbs and fresh herbs. Comfort food at its finest!
Baked Macaroni & Cheese…

Creamy, cheesy and the ultimate comfort food. Not exactly healthy eating, but we feel very strongly about the “all-things-in-moderation” mantra.

Chicken Salad for dinner one night, roasted salmon and veggies the next…you deserve a night of Baked Macaroni & Cheese once in awhile. And this is the macaroni dish you’ve been waiting for…

It’s cheesy, it’s creamy, it’s covered in toasted breadcrumbs and topped with fresh herbs. This ain’t yo mama’s Kraft macaroni…

Baked Macaroni & Cheese - cheesy and creamy baked macaroni topped with toasted breadcrumbs and fresh herbs. Comfort food at its finest!
Speaking of mamas…my mom is a straight-up saint. Mainly because her love language is cooking food, and she never passes up an opportunity to bring a meal to a neighbor (or complete stranger) in need. This particular Baked Macaroni & Cheese was brought to a cute little family in our neighborhood who just had a baby. Might I say, they were in for a treat.

Baked Macaroni & Cheese - cheesy and creamy baked macaroni topped with toasted breadcrumbs and fresh herbs. Comfort food at its finest!
I have many childhood memories of hauling platters of food into people’s houses. My mom’s sick friend in need of some tomato soup, a neighbor who just had back surgery and desperately needed a homemade pizza to cheer them up, our window-washers who needed a chocolate chip cookie and some fresh lemonade to motivate them to finish the job (we had A LOT of windows…)

You get the point. Food = love to my mom, and let me tell you, none of us are mad about that. 😉 Especially when it involves this Baked Macaroni & Cheese.

Baked Macaroni & Cheese

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 50 minutes

Yield: 6-8

Ingredients

    Pasta
  • 16 ounces dried macaroni or other chunky pasta
  • 6 Tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 tsp. dried mustard
  • 1/2 tsp. paprika
  • 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
  • Several drops Tabasco sauce
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1/3 cup flour
  • 1 1/2 cups chicken stock
  • 4 cups half and half
  • 3 cups grated extra-sharp cheddar cheese (We use Tillamook Extra-Sharp White Cheddar)
  • 2 cups grated Mozzarella cheese
  • Topping
  • 3 Tbsp. butter
  • 2 cups panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 tsp. dried basil
  • 1/2 tsp. paprika
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh parsley or 1 tsp. dried

Instructions

  1. Heat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Boil pasta in salted water for about 5 minutes, until not quite al dente. Drain and set pasta aside.
  3. In the same pot, over low heat, melt butter and add garlic, mustard, herbs and salt and pepper. Add flour and stir for about 30 seconds, until flour is incorporated.
  4. Slowly add chicken stock, stirring well, and half and half, and stir over low heat until slightly thickened. Add cheeses gradually, stirring, until melted.
  5. Stir pasta into sauce and adjust seasonings as needed. Pour into a greased 9x13 pan and bake, covered with foil, for 20 minutes.
  6. While pasta is cooking, make topping: Melt butter and toss with breadcrumbs and herbs until well mixed.
  7. After the pasta has baked 20 minutes, remove from oven and top with breadcrumb mixture.
  8. Bake another 10-15 minutes, until cheese is bubbling and topping is browned.

Notes

*Can be made a day ahead and refrigerated. If refrigerated, set at room temperature for 30 minutes before baking, and add breadcrumb topping as usual during the baking process.

*This also freezes well for about a month. Thaw in the fridge before baking.

http://www.kiwiandcarrot.com/baked-macaroni-cheese/

Previous Post

No Comments

Leave a Reply