May 11, 2010

Mac n Cheese - Fresh n Tasty!

This is a quick version of Mac n cheese the whole family can enjoy! Its way better than the boxed version - and definitely without all the preservatives that come with the yellow powder.

This is made with fresh ingredients and that shows when you take a bite into it. Try this sometime and I'm positive you'll love it!

I made two versions of this - one's a classic, just mac and cheese. The other is a kicked up version - just the way I love my pasta - with lots of broccoli! Like I always say - congress should pass a law that pasta should always be served with broccoli  - its a match made in heaven and human race should not interfere with it. Go show your people power somewhere else. Not here.

Let's get on with the recipe.

I used a little seashell pasta for this dish. You could use the regular mac noodles or even farfalle or penne for this dish.

Take about 2 cups of pasta and add to boiling water with a pinch of salt. Cook for about 7-8 mins - make sure they are al dente and not too soft. We will be baking these again so they cook in the oven too. Its ok if they are a little underdone too.

Once they are done, wash the pasta with cold water in a colander. Set aside.

In a small saute pan, add 2 tbsps of regular unsalted butter. Melt over medium heat.

When the butter is all melted, add 1 tbsp all purpose flour to the butter and whisk together well so that there are no lumps in there.

Now add 1 cup of milk to the butter flour mixture. Mix well.

When the milk is heated up, add 1 cup of fresh cheese to the milk. I used a cheddar and jack cheese mix. You could use just sharp cheddar too for a strong flavor.

When all the cheese is melted and a thick sauce is formed, remove it from the heat and add it to the washed and drained pasta.

Whisk the sauce with the pasta well. I divided this whole batch of pasta into two portions so I could make both the versions.

Move the pasta to a baking dish. Top off with a little cheese.

Next step would be to top off the pasta with bread crumbs.

To make this, just toast a couple of slices of bread. And then grind it to a coarse powder. Then, fry it for a min in a saute pan.

Add the bread crumbs to the top of the pasta.

Cover the pasta completely with the crumbs.

And now for the kicked up grown up version. Blame my indian genes, but I like to spice up everything I eat. So, here's me adding some red chilli flakes. And some dried oregano and basil to the pasta. Just sprinkle as much as you'd like.

Add fresh broccoli to the pasta. This was what I was going to eat - so my broccoli is probably more than the pasta itself! I love broccoli that much! Mix well.

Add a little bit of cheese on top.

I covered the grown up version with wheat bread crumbs.

Move the baking dishes to a preheated oven at 350F. Bake for about 8-10 mins or until the top starts to get golden.

Like this. Remove from the oven. Serve immediately and bring a smile to the hungry souls waiting patiently around you and your oven!

Does that look good? Not too cheesy. Not too difficult. Fresh mac n cheese for all in the family!

Try it out sometime and let me know how you liked it.

Here's another obsession shot, of course.

I do have another version of mac n cheese that is much more detailed. Its got onions and eggs and what not in it. Will make it some other time and share with you guys. Until then...

Enjoy! Peace out!


  1. really delicious both version looks so yummy..i prefer the second one with broccoli its really yummy

  2. Both the versions looks super yummy. I have never tried to bake mac-n-cheese. Will try it next time :)

  3. Wowww tempting dishes, both version looks truly delicious and cheesyyyy!!

  4. Both the versions looks delicious....

  5. Very nice. step by step version helps.

  6. This is sooo good.. so the broccoli is cooked only in the oven? that is good.. I too looove broccoli.. especially in soups. I will certainly try the spiced up version, the regular mac and cheese is a tad bland for my palette. The only reason I have never tried making it is because it needs too much cheese and butter (yummy!) but sadly it is very unfriendly to my waist :(.. but broccoli may give me the push to make it.. thanks for the recipe.

  7. LOVE this!! i am making it very soon :)

  8. Cool pics..Awesome au gratin pasta...yummmm

  9. first time here. nice presentation. mac n cheese is my favorite

  10. gooood finger-licking delight!!!sure to be a kid fave n with adults too...

  11. Wooow!!! Anu ,, pasta looks very good different version dear i like both the versions dear esp with bread crumbs looks delicious.

  12. Looks Yummy, will surely try the one with Brocolli.... Good work, Keep it up. Thanks a lot for sharing it with us.

  13. Delicious looking mac!! I love broccoli too!! Could add it to just about anything.

  14. Lovely version...I too make something similar and my daughter loves it :-)

  15. YYYYYYYYYuuuuuuuuuummmmmmm!!!!!!!! Will not say no to this anytime.. Always he asks for ma and cheese. U have great patience anu .. ur step pictures are simply superb and hats off. I too love to add crunchy veggies while making pasta its really wonderful combo with soft noodles or pasta..

  16. U have exceptionally delicious Mac n Cheeses and i simply love them both...

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  17. I love homemade mac & cheese... I like both the versions you have here!

  18. Hi,
    I tried this recipe tonight. I used Sargento low-fat shredded cheddar cheese and the cheese sauce turned out clumpy and not thick and smooth as yours. What cheese did you use?


  19. Hi Shanthi - I used Kraft cheese - but Sargento should work good too. You will have to whisk the cheese in swiftly as soon as you add it so that it dissolves easily. You can also try adding a little bit more milk - that will also help it to not be lumpy. Do try one more time - hopefully should work good for you.

  20. luks yummy....would love to try out this recipe soon...


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