Mama's Best Macaroni and Cheese
My kids say this is better than 'the blues' and gobble it up, even when I toss in a handful of cooked veggies like broccoli, peas, carrots, etc.... Make it a one dish meal with some tuna, cooked ham, etc... It is just as easy as the 'blue box' at least I think so and it is much healthier!
- Ready In:
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 1⁄4 teaspoon salt
- 1 dash pepper
- 1⁄2 teaspoon mustard powder
- 1 cup milk
- 1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
- 2 cups macaroni, cooked
- 1 pinch cayenne (optional)
- Make a roux by melting butter in pan and adding flour. Stir constantly and cook until it is the color of caramel candy. It burns easily so stir stir stir!
- Slowly and carefully add milk while stirring.
- When milk starts to steam add cheese and seasonings and stir until melted and well combined.
- Pour over cooked macaroni noodles and serve.
MY PRIVATE NOTES
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I think many folks here are having problems because they do not understand how to make a proper ROUX! If it came out watery and not thick, thats because you did not cook the roux long enough. Part of this, you should have the heat VERY low because butter will burn. I never even came close to medium, keeping mine at max medium low. I kept stirring and cooking it for about 5 minutes, which made a VERY Thick (perhaps even al ittle too thick! woops!) roux, and a very thick sauce. <br/>Also, yes, this isn't as 'cheesy' as boxed mixes... because this doesnt use additional flavorings, etc, its solely the cheese and spices you are tasting. I think it is delicious in a completely different way than boxed mac n cheese. If you prefer more flavorings, I like to add some worcestershire sauce to my mac n cheese, and hot sauce. I added some after I tasted mine, just because thats how i enjoy it normally :)<br/>also, if you dont have mustard powder, you can replace it with some brown mustard - do it to taste, since it wont convert identically. Just a little should do the trick, though!
Made this for lunch today and my five year old's verdict is that it's better than the boxed stuff but not as good as what we get at her favorite restaurant (Logan's) Considering it's probably got a fraction of the calories of either I think that's pretty good. I thought it was ok...not sure my husband would like it though...not nearly cheesy enough (but again...way better on the calories). I'll use a sharper cheddar next time for more cheese flavor and probably cut back on the mustard powder which I thought was a little overpowering.
Made this today and my 7 year old and twin 10 month olds loved it! My older son stirred peas into it and gobbled it down & wanted seconds. I was scared to make this as I haven't historically had good luck with "roux," but this seemed so easy! To up the creamy factor, I used half skim milk and half half-n-half (would've used fat free evap. milk, but didn't have any). Turned out very smooth and creamy, though I have to admit I thought the flavor was a little bland. Next time I will throw in some extra cheese. I kept the burner on medium-low the whole time so as not to burn the butter or milk.