Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Any Day Everyday Baked Macaroni and Cheese

A creamy baked macaroni and cheese that uses a combination of cheddar and Velveeta and a buttery roux.
A creamy baked macaroni and cheese that uses a combination of cheddar and Velveeta and a buttery roux.

Any Day Baked Macaroni and Cheese

Okay, you probably wouldn't want to eat this every day, but what I mean by that is that this is my 'regular' mac and cheese recipe that can be used any day, as opposed to my special occasion mac and cheese, which is excellent, but very rich, decadent, loaded with eggs, butter with cheese. I finally got around to making this one, and it, on the other hand, is a little, well, more reasonable, and what you could serve any day of the week.

I don't like the gloppy, stringy texture of cheddar in macaroni and cheese on it's own, but I love the flavor of it. But combine that cheddar with a bit of Velveeta - yeah, that's right, Velveeta, the southern staple - and put that into a white sauce, and it makes a fantastic cheese base for the macaroni that is just right and cheesy. No need for additional salt generally, but be sure to take a taste before it goes into the oven and adjust as needed.

I know the kids love the 'box' and I don't deny having made more than a few of those myself in my lifetime - I even have a casserole using boxed mac and cheese here that is very yummy - but every once in awhile put away the 'box' and give this a try. It comes together pretty quick, and is creamy, homey, comforting, and just downright cheesy wonderful goodness, I'm tellin' ya!

Here's how to make my everyday mac and cheese! As always, you'll find the full recipe text with measurements, instructions and a printable document. Just swipe or scroll past these step by step pictures to get there.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 2 quart casserole dish with non-stick spray; set aside. I'm using my Copper Chef pan {affil link} that I can just transfer to the oven.

Cook the elbow macaroni in very generously salted boiling water according to lowest recommended time on package directions. I'm using my Fasta Pasta {affil link} to cook the macaroni.  Drain and set aside.

Melt the butter over medium heat in a large saucepan. Add the onion and saute until soft. Stir in the flour and cook over medium heat for 3 to 4 minutes to cook it through; slowly add in the milk, stirring constantly until fully incorporated.

Season with the pepper and Cajun seasoning; add the Velveeta and cheddar; stir over a medium low heat until blended. Stir in elbows.

Transfer to prepared casserole and bake, uncovered, at 350 degrees F for 20 to 25 minutes. Let rest 5 minutes before serving.

A Facebook reader suggested adding a topping of crushed saltines before baking, then top with slices of butter in the last few minutes. I think that sounds fantastic, so thanks for that suggestion!

For more of my favorite mac and cheese recipes, visit my page on Pinterest!

If you make this or any of my recipes, I'd love to see your results! Just snap a photo and hashtag it #DeepSouthDish on social media or tag me @deepsouthdish on Instagram!

Unable to view the printable below on your device? Tap/click here.

Posted by on July 28, 2009

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