Colder weather means it’s time for comfort food. And I can’t think of a meal more comforting than good Old Fashioned Skillet Macaroni and Cheese!
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Old Fashioned Skillet Macaroni and Cheese: Look At That Crispy Cheesy Top!
So let’s just agree that those boxed substitutes made with orange powder just can’t come close to the real thing! This Mac and Cheese is made with whole milk and sharp cheddar cheese, then baked in the oven to crispy perfection. You just can’t get that from a box.
Swoon. Sigh. Drool.
The great thing about a skillet mac and cheese is that the bottom and edges get crispy too, not just the top! But you can also bake this in a baking dish if you don’t have a skillet.
MAKE IT GLUTEN FREE AND JUST AS GOOD:
If you live without gluten you don’t have to miss out on exceptional pasta! Jovial gluten free elbow macaroni is the best I have found. I am lucky enough to live by a store that carries it, but if you aren’t as lucky, you can order it here. The best thing about Jovial pasta (besides the taste and texture) is that the grains are soaked for easy digestion. That’s a really great and rare thing for a store bought pasta!
Love Mac and Cheese and Need More Recipes?
Try my Baked Penne with a Kick or my Baked Penne with Italian Sausage!
The Recipe: Old Fashioned Skillet Macaroni and Cheese
Tips and what you will need: a large skillet (or baking dish)and a good whisk is just about all you need! If you live gluten free, I recommend using Jovial gluten free elbow macaroni.
- 12 oz macaroni or whatever curly pasta you choose, cooked to package instructions
- 1/2 cup sliced green onions, divided
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 2 cups whole milk
- 5 cups grated sharp cheddar cheese, divided
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Preheat oven to 375 degrees and place rack in center position
Start water to boil and cook pasta to package instructions
While water heats, grate cheddar and slice onions
Place milk in a small pot on medium heat to warm
In skillet melt butter on med/high. If not using a skillet melt in a medium sized pot
When butter is melted add a 1/4 cup green onions and sauté for 2 minutes
Add flour and whisk until smooth about one minute. This is a roux. A roux thickens your cheese sauce
Slowly pour warm milk into roux with one hand while whisking with the other
Add 4 cups cheese one handful at a time whisking between additions (reserving one cup of cheese for later)
Whisk until all cheese is melted and sauce is smooth
Season with salt and pepper
When pasta is ready (do not overcook!) add to skillet with cheese sauce and stir until well incorporated. (If baking in a baking dish, pour pasta into baking dish and then pour cheese sauce over)
Top with remaining cheese and bake for 20-25 minutes or until cheese is crispy
Garnish with remaining green onions, serve
MAY I PLEASE ASK A FAVOR?
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Oh I want to make this! I have never made anything but a stovetop type mac n cheese and really wanted to try it baked!
Mac ‘n cheese is one of my weaknesses. Serious comfort food here… Gonna give it a try with gf noodles. Hopefully they don’t fall apart!
I could just dive right into that pan, and I love how simple the recipe is! Tis the season for comfort food!
Have not had Mac n Cheese in years. Not because I don’t just love it! THE ultimate comfort food!
Thank you for the inspiration. Looks SO good!!
Mmm, this is one of our favorite dishes to make when we want something warm and comforting! Sometimes we brown up some ground beef and add it for a homemade hamburger helper-type meal! Super easy!
Oh my goodness Linda this looks amazing! Mac and cheese is my go-to comfort food. I’m up late working on a deadline tonight and I really wish I had a bowl of this deliciousness right now. Those crispy cheesy edges!!! Swoon!
Good luck with your book Emily!
Single, hungry guy here. Your recipes look great – simple, easy, and delicious. I can’t wait to try out the baked mac and cheese on my kids. I do have one idea for you. I heard this on the radio – The Splendid Table Show. Since then, I’ve made it a bunch of times. It’s fabulous, easy, real cheese, mac&cheese. You start by cooking your pasta like you normally would. Then reserve about a cup of the boiling pasta water when you go to drain it. The pasta goes into a bowl with the grated cheese of your choice on top. I like sharp cheddar and maybe some ricotta. Then slowly, pour the pasta water over the cheese and stir it in. The heat from the boiling water melts the cheese and the residual starches from the pasta serve to thicken the cheese sauce. And you can dress it or add to it however you like. It’s simple. It’s quick. My kids love it.
Very cool! I have never seen that method. Thanks for the heads up!
Hi there. I was wondering how many oz of cheese would be 5 cups of cheddar as I only have an 16 oz block on hand. :/ Thank you!
Hmmm I am not sure Pam. The next time I make this I will sure to monitor that so I can add it to the recipe. In the mean time maybe google will have the answer!
A cup of shredded cheese is about 4 oz, so for this recipe you would need 20 oz. Hope that helps.
What size cast iron skillet please? 10 or 12 inch ?
You could probably use either but mine is 12″
8 oz in 1 cup
So, 40 oz for 5 cups…
You would need about 2 blocks of cheese and a little extra! 🙂
Best mac and cheese ever! And so easy! This will be a regular in our household from now on.
This makes me so happy!! Thank you:)