When I think of comfort food, macaroni and cheese is the first thing that pops into my mind… I mean come on, it’s a classic! Who doesn’t love a generous serving of homemade mac and cheese with a baked bread topping? The first time I tried making macaroni and cheese, I used pre-shredded cheese, thinking it would melt very nicely a into a smooth and creamy sauce. Um, no… I ended up with clumps of cheese that wouldn’t seem to ever melt. So I did some research and found that you want to go with blocks of cheese and shred them yourself. The pre-shredded cheeses are combined with starch and other additives that prevent the cheese from becoming creamy. Wait it doesn’t stop there… you need to buy block of “good quality” cheese. Shredding good quality cheese will not only give you a better taste, but also a very creamy (clump free) sauce. For this recipe I used Cracker Barrel cheese, but I’ve heard Cabot cheese works well too.

 

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Ingredients:

For the crouton topping:
1/2 stick French bread
2 tbsp butter
1 clove zested Garlic

For the macaroni & cheese:

1box elbow macaroni+ 1 heaping tbsp salt
2 cups extra sharp cups Cheddar
2 cups sharp cheddar
1 cup Swiss cheese
6 tablespoons butter
6 tablespoons of flour
1 1/2 tsp Salt
1/4 tsp white pepper
1/2 tsp garlic powder
4 cups cold milk

Instructions:

1. Cut the French bread into small cubes and combine with 2 tbsp melted butter and 1 clove zested garlic.

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2. Mix the bread cubes well with your hands and transfer to a baking sheet. Bake at 370 degrees for about 6 minutes or until golden brown. Then set aside.

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3. Cook the macaroni according to the package, making sure to salt the pasta water. After the macaroni is cooked al dente, strain the water out and pour it into a 9×13 inch baking dish.

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4. Shred the extra sharp cheddar, sharp cheddar, and Swiss cheese and set aside for the sauce.

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5. In a saucepan, melt 5 tbsp of butter with 5 tbsp of flour over low heat. Then add the salt, garlic powder, and white pepper.

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6. Slowly pour the milk into the saucepan, making sure to stir constantly. Keep it over medium high heat for about 5 minutes.

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7. Remove the saucepan from the heat then add in the shredded cheeses.

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8. Once the cheese is all melted, pour the sauce over the macaroni.

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9. Mix the macaroni around with a spoon to distribute the sauce evenly. Then spread the croutons over the top. Bake at 370 degrees for 13-14 minutes.

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Macaroni and Cheese
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 8
Ingredients
  • For the crouton topping:
  • ½ stick French bread
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 clove zested Garlic
  • For the macaroni & cheese:
  • 1box elbow macaroni+ 1 heaping tbsp salt
  • 2 cups extra sharp cups Cheddar
  • 2 cups sharp cheddar
  • 1 cup Swiss cheese
  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 6 tablespoons of flour
  • 1½ tsp Salt
  • ¼ tsp white pepper
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • 4 cups cold milk
Instructions
  1. Cut the French bread into small cubes and combine with 2 tbsp melted butter and 1 clove zested garlic.
  2. Mix the bread cubes well with your hands and transfer to a baking sheet. Bake at 370 degrees for about 6 minutes or until golden brown. Then set aside.
  3. Cook the macaroni according to the package, making sure to salt the pasta water. After the macaroni is cooked al dente, strain the water out and pour it into a 9x13 inch baking dish.
  4. Shred the extra sharp cheddar, sharp cheddar, and Swiss cheese and set aside for the sauce.
  5. In a saucepan, melt 5 tbsp of butter with 5 tbsp of flour over low heat. Then add the salt, garlic powder, and white pepper.
  6. Slowly pour the milk into the saucepan, making sure to stir constantly. Keep it over medium high heat for about 5 minutes.
  7. Remove the saucepan from the heat then add in the shredded cheeses.
  8. Once the cheese is all melted, pour the sauce over the macaroni.
  9. Mix the macaroni around with a spoon to distribute the sauce evenly. Then spread the croutons over the top. Bake at 370 degrees for 13-14 minutes.