Meatless Monday: “Revolutionary” Macaroni and Cheese

March 18, 2013 · 16 comments

in pasta,quick and easy,vegetarian

Macaroni and cheese is probably my ultimate comfort food. We don’t eat it very often because it’s really not terribly good for you, but every once in a while, you just have to have some macaroni and cheese. Homemade macaroni and cheese is pretty easy and straightforward, but it can take a while and, depending what kind you’re making, can also dirty quite a few pots.  The reason this particular macaroni and cheese is “revolutionary” is because the pasta cooks in the milk, so there’s no need to make a roux/cheese sauce, and everything is done in one pot, which always wins me over. I added a little more milk (umm…and cheese) to the recipe, but otherwise just followed directions and was left with a quick and creamy macaroni and cheese that is a little healthier for you than the standard versions.

While this is not my favorite macaroni and cheese recipe (that would be reserved for baked mac and cheese with a buttery, crispy topping), it definitely has its place as a good, quick, and easy macaroni and cheese. You can use pretty much any cheese, really, and it barely takes any more time or effort than making macaroni and cheese from a box—but it definitely tastes better and you can feel better about its nonprocessed-ness. :) The pasta takes slightly longer to cook, just because it’s cooking at a slow simmer rather than a rapid boil, but you can shred the cheese while it’s cooking, and it’s all done really quickly, making it easy for weeknight dinners. I would definitely recommend buying a block of cheese and shredding it yourself, because the pre-shredded kind generally includes cornstarch and other things to keep it from clumping, and those things can make the texture of macaroni and cheese very gritty. I used a combination of extra sharp cheddar (for flavor) and leftover fontina (melts beautifully). The whole family liked this, and I’ll gladly add a super quick macaroni and cheese recipe to my cookbook!



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{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar March 18, 2013 at 5:03 am

Love how simple this is! Delicious!


Joanne March 18, 2013 at 5:28 am

Ooo I definitely how low easy this is!! I always dirty about five million pots and pans when I make mac and cheese so having it all done in one vessel sounds good to me! It really is my ultimate comfort food too.


Hezzi-D March 18, 2013 at 8:11 am

Wow! I love how easy this recipe looks and how there are only a few ingredients. Perfect for a quick weeknight meal.


Kate March 18, 2013 at 10:48 pm

You know I love the one-dish meals!


Donna March 19, 2013 at 12:52 pm

I love macaroni & cheese but a dairy allergy makes it difficult. I’m going to try your simple take on it with soy milk and cheese, thanks!

Best wishes for a speedy delivery and healthy mom and baby this week, Elly!


Kelsey March 20, 2013 at 10:12 am

I keep seeing this recipe. Why haven’t I tried it? It looks so, so good. Since it’s so easy to make, it really would be perfect for a busy night when you really need some comfort.


Wendy March 23, 2013 at 10:48 pm

Love this! I used some leftover half and half (from the s’mores pie recipe) and topped it off with skim milk. I also used half colby jack and half extra sharp cheddar. I really like a crumb topping, so when it was ready, I topped it with some bread crumbs and stuck it in the oven for a few minutes. Everyone adored it!


elly March 24, 2013 at 1:25 pm

Happy to hear that, Wendy!


Anne April 19, 2013 at 12:04 am

This was not very good! Much better homemade Mac n cheeses recipies out there!


elly April 19, 2013 at 7:09 am

Sorry you didn’t like it. We like it, as do many others.


Trish June 7, 2013 at 11:30 am

I made it! Easy as it looks and I was happy with how it turned out. A cleaner, healthier substitute for processed choices. Very good!!! To the complainers, it is supposed to be an easy, tasty recipe….not a duplicate of a baked macaroni & cheese!


Ella June 13, 2013 at 10:26 pm

Really good! I used old cheddar and medium cheddar. I also added bacon and hot sauce, and baked it with panko breadcrumbs! Will be making this again!


Kanella February 4, 2014 at 9:21 am

This is my new favorite mac n cheese recipe. I love the ease of not dealing with a roux. I used a mix of fontina and sharp cheddar as well. Perfectly creamy without all the hassle.


elly February 4, 2014 at 10:51 am

Glad you like it, Kanella! I agree, it’s so easy (maybe too easy).


Lara January 26, 2015 at 5:15 pm

Scaled this down by half and used veggie pasta with colby jack/cheddar. The directions were spot on with the stirring! Maybe the veggie pasta is starchier but it really got thick after only 8min. I ended up adding about half a cup of water but when the cheese was added it was a bit too sticky and thick. I never said that about mac and cheese before. It wasn’t un-eatable, just not creamy.


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