Thursday, February 24, 2011

Best Ever Mac N' Cheese

     I feel like if you are going to eat Mac N' Cheese as the main course of a meal, it should include meat and vegetables. Usually, the standard add-ins at our house are ham and broccoli. As I was eating this amazing dish, I thought, the next time I'm going to add bacon instead, turkey bacon to be exact. Don't get me wrong the ham was fabulous, but bacon would be amazing. Isn't bacon amazing with just about everything anyhow?
     The best part about this super cheesy dish, besides the taste, is that it's made with real cheese that isn't processed. I feel like that has to be healthier. I bought blocks of cheese at the store and shredded my own. You could certainly buy more expensive, fancy cheese too. This recipe has been adapted from this recipe.

2Tbl unsalted butter
3-1/2 Tbl flour
1-1/2 c whole milk
7 oz extra sharp cheddar (1-3/4c)
1 oz Jack cheese (1/4 c)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/8 tsp garlic powder
6 oz penne
1oz (1/4 c) extra sharp cheddar
1oz (1/4 c) jack
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/2 bag frozen broccoli
1/2 lb ham
  • To prepare sauce, melt butter in a heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat and whisk in the flour. Continue whisking and cook for 2 minutes. Slowly add milk, whisking constantly. Cook until sauce thickens, about 10 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove from heat. Add cheeses, salt, chili powder and garlic powder. Stir until cheese is melted and all ingredients are incorporated, about 3 minutes. Set aside.
  • Preheat oven to 350F. Butter or oil an 8-inch baking dish. Cook penne 2 minutes less than package directions. (It will finish cooking in the oven.) Rinse pasta in cold water and drain well.
  • Combine pasta and sauce in a medium bowl; mix carefully but thoroughly. Add ham and broccoli. Scrape the pasta into the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle top with cheeses and then the chili powder.
  • Bake, uncovered, 20 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.


  1. I love anything that says 'best ever'. This looks great! LOVE mac and cheese, thanks!

  2. that looks pretty good! the only thing that i had close is the one that is the instant mac and cheese! so i better try this out one day

  3. You won't be disappointed; try it out.
    Debbi, I'm with you. I always try "best ever" recipes.


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