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 garnished with green onions and set on a yellow dish towel on a wooden table


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.

A series of four photos showing how to make a cheese sauce from scratch

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.


A close up of Old Fashioned Skillet Macaroni and Cheese garnishes with green onions



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!

A black cast iron pan filled with Old Fashioned Skillet Macaroni and Cheese set on a wooden table with a yellow dish towel

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.

5 from 1 vote
Old Fashioned Skillet Macaroni and Cheese
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
30 mins
Total Time
40 mins
This mac and cheese can be made in a skillet or a 9x13 baking dish.
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: comfort food, kid-friendly recipes, weeknight dinner
Servings: 6 servings
Author: Linda Spiker
  • 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
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees and place rack in center position
  2. Start water to boil and cook pasta to package instructions
  3. While water heats, grate cheddar and slice onions
  4. Place milk in a small pot on medium heat to warm
  5. In skillet melt butter on med/high. If not using a skillet melt in a medium sized pot
  6. When butter is melted add a 1/4 cup green onions and sauté for 2 minutes
  7. Add flour and whisk until smooth about one minute. This is a roux. A roux thickens your cheese sauce
  8. Slowly pour warm milk into roux with one hand while whisking with the other
  9. Add 4 cups cheese one handful at a time whisking between additions (reserving one cup of cheese for later)
  10. Whisk until all cheese is melted and sauce is smooth
  11. Season with salt and pepper
  12. 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)
  13. Top with remaining cheese and bake for 20-25 minutes or until cheese is crispy
  14. Garnish with remaining green onions, serve


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