It does take a little more effort than box macaroni, but it's totally worth it. Besides, it doesn't really take any more time, because you make the sauce while the noodles cook!
The added cottage cheese keeps it creamy and cheesy even with less cheddar, no butter, and less oil. If you want to bake it, sprinkle some buttered bread crumbs on top and bake it in a greased dish at 350F for 30-35 minutes. I'm usually too much in a hurry to want to wait for it to finish baking, so stove top macaroni is king at our house!