Indulge in the ultimate comfort food with our Homemade Mac and Cheese recipe. This classic dish, perfect for serving four hungry souls, is a celebration of creamy, cheesy goodness and childhood nostalgia. With its tender pasta and velvety cheese sauce, this mac and cheese is a delightful, homestyle masterpiece that’s sure to warm your heart and satisfy your taste buds. Join us as we dive into the art of making this beloved dish from scratch.
- 2 cups elbow macaroni (or your favorite pasta)
- 4 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
- 2 cups milk (whole milk for creamier results)
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt (adjust to taste)
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon paprika (optional, for added flavor)
- 1/4 cup bread crumbs (for topping, optional)
Step 1: Prepare the Pasta
- Cook the elbow macaroni or your chosen pasta according to the package instructions until it’s al dente. Drain and set it aside.
Step 2: Make the Cheese Sauce 2. In a saucepan, melt the unsalted butter over medium heat.
- Stir in the all-purpose flour to create a smooth roux. Cook for a minute or two, whisking constantly.
- Gradually add the milk while continuing to whisk the mixture. Cook until it thickens and becomes a creamy base.
- Add the shredded sharp cheddar cheese to the sauce, reserving a small portion for topping. Stir until the cheese melts, and the sauce is smooth and velvety.
- Season the cheese sauce with salt, black pepper, and paprika. Adjust the seasoning to your taste.
Step 3: Combine Pasta and Cheese Sauce 7. Combine the cooked pasta and the cheese sauce in a large mixing bowl. Gently fold them together until the pasta is well coated with the cheese sauce.
Step 4: Bake the Mac and Cheese (Optional) 8. If you prefer baked mac and cheese, transfer the mixture to a baking dish. Sprinkle the reserved shredded cheddar cheese and bread crumbs on top for a crispy, golden crust.
- Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C) and bake the mac and cheese for about 20-25 minutes or until it’s bubbly and the top is golden brown.
Step 5: Serve and Enjoy 10. Allow the mac and cheese to cool slightly, then serve it to your eager guests. Each spoonful is a delicious, homestyle hug in a bowl.
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