Baked Macaroni and Cheese Recipe

A creamy, cheesy, and comforting baked macaroni and cheese dish, perfect for family dinners or potlucks.

Ingredients:

  • 16 oz (450g) elbow macaroni
  • 4 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 4 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups milk (whole or 2%)
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 2 tbsp melted butter
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese (optional)

Instructions:

A creamy, cheesy, and comforting baked macaroni and cheese dish, perfect for family dinners or potlucks.

Ingredients:

  • 16 oz (450g) elbow macaroni
  • 4 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 4 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups milk (whole or 2%)
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 2 tbsp melted butter
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese (optional)

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the Oven: Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Grease a 9×13 inch baking dish and set aside.
  2. Cook the Pasta: Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the macaroni and cook until just al dente according to package instructions. Drain and set aside.
  3. Make the Cheese Sauce:
    • In a large saucepan, melt 4 tablespoons of butter over medium heat.
    • Stir in the flour and cook for about 2 minutes, until bubbly and lightly golden.
    • Gradually whisk in the milk and heavy cream, ensuring there are no lumps.
    • Continue to cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens, about 5-7 minutes.
    • Reduce the heat to low and stir in the garlic powder, onion powder, smoked paprika, salt, and pepper.
    • Gradually add the cheddar and mozzarella cheeses, stirring until completely melted and smooth.
  4. Combine Pasta and Sauce: Add the cooked macaroni to the cheese sauce, stirring to coat evenly. Pour the mixture into the prepared baking dish.
  5. Prepare the Topping:
    • In a small bowl, combine the panko bread crumbs, melted butter, and grated Parmesan cheese (if using).
    • Sprinkle the bread crumb mixture evenly over the macaroni and cheese.
  6. Bake: Bake in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and the cheese is bubbly.
  7. Serve: Allow the baked macaroni and cheese to rest for 5 minutes before serving. Enjoy!

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