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This Mac and Cheese is easy to make on the stovetop and it’s ready in just 15 minutes. Skip the box and make the good stuff! 

Bird's eye view of mac and cheese in a ceramic pot with a metal spoon in it.

It’s easy to make your own delicious mac and cheese at home in under 15 minutes. Boil your pasta in one pot and in another make a simple cheese sauce. The sauce starts with a traditional roux (flour whisked into butter and cooked). Salt, white pepper, onion powder, and ground mustard are whisked in to add flavor. Milk is then poured in and as it comes to a simmer the roux slowly mixes in. The roux acts as a thickening agent and just as small bubbles appear for the simmer, your mixture should already be thickened. The heat is turned off, shredded cheese is stirred until melted, and then all that is left to do is stir in the drained al dente pasta from your other pot. You’ll never use a boxed mix again!

Can I use pre-shredded cheese to make mac and cheese?

Pre- shredded cheeses are mixed with either potato starch, powdered cellulose, and natamycin or a combination of the three to prevent clumping. These agents have an impact on how the cheese melts. The best mac and cheese uses freshly shredded cheese as they melt better, but pre-shredded cheese can also be used as a time saver. The results may not be as velvety smooth, but it’ll still taste delicious.

Can I use other kinds of cheese to make mac and cheese?

Classic mac and cheese is made with a good sharp cheddar cheese, but you can also switch things up and use another kind of cheese, or a combination of cheeses. You want to be sure that whatever cheese you use is a good melting cheese. Gouda, brie, provolone, goat cheese, mozzarella, guyere, taleggio, raclette, fontina, and asiago cheese are all commonly found cheeses that are good for melting.

If you like this recipe, you may also be interested in these other macaroni and cheese recipes:

Watch the video below where Rachel will walk you through every step of this recipe. Sometimes it helps to have a visual, and we’ve always got you covered with our cooking show. You can find the complete collection of recipes on YouTube, Facebook Watch, or our Facebook Page, or right here on our website with their corresponding recipes.

Bird's eye view of mac and cheese in a ceramic pot with a metal spoon in it.
This Mac and Cheese is easy to make on the stovetop and it’s ready in just 15 minutes. Skip the box and make the good stuff! 
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Ingredients
  • 1 pound elbow noodles
  • 1/2 cup salted butter
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon ground mustard
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon white pepper
  • 3 cups milk whole, 2%, or 1%
  • 8 ounces shredded sharp cheddar cheese
Instructions
  • Fill a large saucepan with water, and bring to a boil. Stir in the macaroni; cook until al dente. Drain well. 
  • Meanwhile in another large saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Stir in the flour, salt, pepper, onion powder, and mustard powder and cook 1-2 minutes. 
  • Pour in milk and whisk until smooth. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, for 3-5 minutes until the sauce starts to thicken. Turn off the heat and whisk in cheese until melted.
  • Pour cooked pasta into the cheese sauce and stir well to combine. Serve hot. 
Notes

Nutrition

Calories: 697kcal | Carbohydrates: 72g | Protein: 25g | Fat: 33g | Saturated Fat: 20g | Cholesterol: 94mg | Sodium: 823mg | Potassium: 404mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 1080IU | Calcium: 456mg | Iron: 1.8mg
Course: Main Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Mac and Cheese
Bird's eye view of mac and cheese in a ceramic pot with a metal spoon in it.
This Mac and Cheese is easy to make on the stovetop and it's ready in just 15 minutes. Skip the box and make the good stuff! 
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Ingredients
  • 1 pound elbow noodles
  • 1/2 cup salted butter
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon ground mustard
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon white pepper
  • 3 cups milk whole, 2%, or 1%
  • 8 ounces shredded sharp cheddar cheese
Instructions
  • Fill a large saucepan with water, and bring to a boil. Stir in the macaroni; cook until al dente. Drain well. 
  • Meanwhile in another large saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Stir in the flour, salt, pepper, onion powder, and mustard powder and cook 1-2 minutes. 
  • Pour in milk and whisk until smooth. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, for 3-5 minutes until the sauce starts to thicken. Turn off the heat and whisk in cheese until melted.
  • Pour cooked pasta into the cheese sauce and stir well to combine. Serve hot. 
Notes

Nutrition

Calories: 697kcal | Carbohydrates: 72g | Protein: 25g | Fat: 33g | Saturated Fat: 20g | Cholesterol: 94mg | Sodium: 823mg | Potassium: 404mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 1080IU | Calcium: 456mg | Iron: 1.8mg
Course: Main Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Mac and Cheese
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