I was a picky eater growing up, especially picky about my macaroni and cheese. I was a blue box kid. No Velveeta or even homemade mac and cheese for me. I only wanted Kraft. Fortunately my tastes have matured. That’s not to say I don’t ever reach for a box of Kraft when I’m tired, but now I usually make my mac and cheese from scratch.
Macaroni and cheese is one of my all time favorite foods, so I set out to find the perfect macaroni and cheese recipe. I tried a lot of them, and thought I’d found it… until I tried this. This is the best macaroni and cheese I’ve ever had!!
My boyfriend likes it so much he asked me to teach him the recipe so he could cook it for himself. This recipe, slightly adapted from Beecher’s Famous Mac and Cheese recipe (readily available on the internet), is sure to please. It’s creamy, gooey, and cheesy and has a golden, crunchy crust. Plus, it’s simple so you can easily put it together for a weeknight meal. Your quest for a go-to macaroni and cheese recipe is over!
World’s Best Macaroni and Cheese
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 25-30 minutes
4 oz. Elbow Macaroni
Beecher’s Flagship Cheese
Monterey Jack Cheese
1 tbsp. Butter
4 tsp. Flour
3/4 c. Milk
1/8 tsp. Salt
Generous 1/8 tsp. Chipotle Powder
Pinch Garlic Powder
1. Grate 1 c. of Beecher’s Flagship and 1/4 c. of Monterey Jack. Set 2 tbsp. of each aside for later.
A note on Beecher’s Flagship: It’s a blend of cheddar and gruyere. So if you’re not fortunate enough to have Beecher’s in your store, you could substitute a 1:1 white cheddar and gruyere mix.
2. Cook macaroni for two minutes less than directions (It will cook more in the sauce later).
3. While the macaroni is cooking, melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. I’ve had this with real butter and with a butter substitute, and I couldn’t tell a difference so use whichever you prefer. Once the butter is melted, whisk in the flour. Allow to brown 2-3 minutes.
4. Slowly whisk in milk. As with the butter, I’ve had this with whole and skim milk and couldn’t taste a difference.
I add the milk a little at a time and mix until smooth between each addition. Once you’ve mixed in all your milk, allow the sauce to cook until it bubbles and thickens. (This usually only takes a few minutes).
5. Remove the sauce from the heat and whisk in the remaining cheese, salt, chipotle powder, and garlic powder.
6. Pour the cheese sauce over your macaroni and mix.
7. Transfer macaroni to a baking dish (I use a Pyrex 7″x3″) and top with the cheese you set aside in step 1. Then sprinkle with panko crumbs. This will give your macaroni a wonderful crunch!
8. Bake at 350°F for 10 minutes. Then turn on the broiler and bake until the panko crumbs turn golden brown. Keep an eye on it to make sure it doesn’t burn! It can go from perfectly golden to black in a hurry.
Yum!! Now you’re ready to serve it up. Grab a fork and enjoy the rich, gooey goodness!
After you’ve had this mac and cheese, you’ll toss out your old macaroni recipe. Yes, it’s THAT good! And so easy to make. Enjoy! If you’d like to try a healthier version of mac and cheese, check out our Quinoa Macaroni and Cheese with Spinach.