I’m not going to claim that macaroni and cheese is any kind of diet food. It is, however, a family favorite!
These days, I try to eat clean and have reduced the amount of processed foods I buy, especially if it’s something I can easily make myself. I’ll admit, though, before I made that lifestyle change I bought many a box of mac and cheese with the powdered cheese mix, for the kids. I don’t even want to think about all the artificial colors, flavors and preservatives that were most likely in that. Plus, the powdered cheese never seemed to dissolve well.
But ingredients aside, in terms of quality and flavor there just is no comparison to hearty homemade mac and cheese, made with real cheddar. (In full disclosure, being lactose intolerant I don’t eat dairy, but I enjoy making it for my family.) This is also one of those dishes I can make a big batch of on a weekend and have on hand for the week’s dinners ahead.
I’ve included two options, regular (shown above) and a baked version (photo below). My family LOVES this recipe. Give it a try and let me know what yours thinks!
Note: To reduce calories/fat, use less butter; and use low-fat milk and cheese.
- 14 oz. (4 cups) uncooked elbow macaroni
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1/2 tsp. pepper
- 1/2 tsp. ground mustard
- 1/2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
- 4 cups milk
- 16 oz. block of cheddar cheese, cut into small cubes; or 4 cups shredded cheddar cheese
- Cook macaroni as directed on package. Then drain, rinse and set aside.
- Melt butter in a large pot over medium heat.
- Stir in flour, salt, pepper, mustard and Worcestershire sauce.
- Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until smooth and bubbly.
- Stir in milk.
- Heat to boiling, stirring constantly. Boil and stir 1 minute.
- Remove from heat. Stir in cheese until melted.
- Add macaroni and combine well.
- Optional final step – For baked macaroni: Spray large casserole dish with cooking spray. Add the cooked macaroni and cheese mixture. Bake uncovered for 25 minutes at 350 degrees.
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