I'm continuing my efforts to share easy, from-scratch, recipes that can be made quickly with simple pantry ingredients. These are perfect for families who don't have much time, young adults trying to figure out how to cook (think college students) or those of us who feel like empty nesters because our kids just are never home!
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Macaroni and cheese is something my kids have loved since they were really young. It's always a favorite and is, essentially kid comfort food.
I like that this recipe uses both cheese and milk. Have you looked at the ingredients on your milk container? No crazy ingredients - just milk, vitamin A and vitamin D. Milk contains a total of 9 essential nutrients. Plus, of course, milk is a good source of calcium and an 8oz serving is a high-quality complete protein. What kid doesn't need that protein to keep going throughout their day!
A mom tip. If you serve your kids milk with their meal, they happily drink it!
16 oz macaroni elbows (a typical 'box' of pasta)
½ cup butter (1 stick)
¼ cup flour (measure it!)
1 ½ cups milk
2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese (that's how much is in the package)
½ teaspoon garlic salt
pepper (optional, to taste)
This first piece of advice is important. The recipe comes together quickly. Make sure you have all your ingredients ready and premeasured. Then you aren't scrambling. Notice how on all the cooking shows, cooking is relaxing and fun? It's because all the prep work is done!
In a large pot, boil macaroni according to package directions. Make sure to salt the water and do NOT over cook the pasta!
When noodles are almost done, drain and set aside.
In the pot you boiled the noodles, melt butter. Keep the heat on medium-low, you don't want to scorch your butter. Then whisk in about ½ of the milk. Then ½ of the flour. Repeat whisking in both the milk and flour. If you don't have a whisk, use the biggest fork you have. Whisk until there are no lumps and it should be smooth and bubbly.
Then add ½ cheese and whisk until cheese is melted. Repeat. Adding your ingredients this way helps everything mix easier and not end up lumpy.
Add garlic salt (and optional pepper)
Add your pasta back into the pot.
Stir well enough to have sauce cover pasta.
Make sure to serve it with colorful veggies! Color on your plate makes food look more appetizing!
For when you just want to keep the basic recipe or have a one-page printable, here is your printable recipe.
Easy Macaroni and Cheese (scratch) recipe.
- 16 oz macaroni elbows a typical 'box' of pasta
- ½ cup butter 1 stick
- ¼ cup flour measure it!
- 1 ½ cups milk
- 2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese that's how much is in the package
- ½ teaspoon garlic salt
- pepper optional, to taste
- In a large pot, boil macaroni according to package directions. Make sure to salt the water and do NOT overcook the pasta!
- When noodles are almost done, drain and set aside.
- In the pot you boiled the noodles, melt butter. Keep the heat on medium-low, you don't want to scorch your butter. Then whisk in ½ milk, alternating with ½ flour. Repeat. If you don't have a whisk, use the biggest fork you have. Whisk until there are no lumps and it should be smooth and bubbly.
- Then add ½ cheese and whisk until the cheese has melted. Repeat. Adding your ingredients this way helps everything mix easier
- dd garlic salt (and optional pepper)
- Add your pasta back into the pot.
- Stir well enough to have sauce cover pasta.
- Make sure to serve with colorful veggies! Color on your plate just makes food look so much yummier!
Nutrition information is an estimate only provided as a courtesy using an ingredient database. Garnish and optional ingredients are not included in the calculations.
Try this recipe! You will be surprised how easy it is. No need to buy that box of Mac and Cheese anymore.