Cheesiest Macaroni and Cheese

Cheesiest Macaroni and Cheese is a little bit of heaven! No lie. This fabulous mac & cheese dish uses three different cheeses so it’s loaded. L-O-A-D-E-D! Just the way you want your mac & cheese to taste. It’s superb comfort food for any occasion, but it’s a super duper recipe to make up on those days that are gloomy and dreary outside and you need something to perk you up!

One of the things about making a good macaroni and cheese is NOT to skimp out on ingredients by trying to make it healthier or less calories. I mean, really? Why would you want to do that? If you’re going to bother to make it at all, use real cream, real cheese (not fat-free versions), and just go for it. Even if that means using bacon, butternut squash or Cajun seasoning. Treat yourself to R-E-A-L mac & cheese. Even though I have a gluten free version, I don’t pare down ingredients to try to pass it off as healthy! This is one of those foods you need to splurge on every now and then without worrying about calorie content!

Last month I made a meal for a young family in our church who have been providing foster care for a couple of children. After having the children for about a year (along with their own biological children), they decided to adopt these siblings. They were expecting to be in court all day so I brought them a meal. Cheesiest Macaroni and Cheese was kid-friendly and not overly difficult for me either. I added some of my homemade Honey Whole Wheat Bread and Sea Salt Caramel Chip Brownies with Caramel Icing. They got three of the best comfort foods in this world and I received the enjoyment of being able to give.

One of the things I love about food blogging is the opportunity to follow other blogs and make recipes that look absolutely mouthwatering. I guess you could call me a food blog “drooler.” I’m not the greatest photographer (although I try really hard), but I sure do appreciate good photography on other blogs when I see it. Plus, I get the opportunity to try lots of new recipes. Something I really enjoy a lot.

I follow hundreds of food bloggers every day always pouring over juicy looking, glorious pictures of food. One in particular is called The Food Charlatan. I love Karen’s stuff and I’ve made a few of her recipes. So when my eyes caught, “Literally The Best Mac and Cheese I’ve Ever Had,” I decided that I had to check it out. Oh, my. Take a deep breath. Yes, it’s really a great mac & cheese recipe. About the only thing I changed was to add several drops of hot sauce to the cheese sauce to perk up the flavor just a tad. I thought the macaroni and cheese was wonderful, certainly one I would make on a regular basis.

If you need a dose of comfort food this weekend, then look no farther than Cheesiest Macaroni and Cheese. Just open your mouth and shovel spoon it in! Close your eyes and salivate over every mouthful. Sigh. Yum.

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Cheesiest Macaroni and Cheese is heavenly.

Cheesiest Macaroni and Cheese | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen | heavenly comfort food that uses 3 #cheeses & topped with #panko bread crumbs. #Macaroni&Cheese #pasta #MeatlessMonday

If you need a meal for Meatless Mondays, this is terrific.

Cheesiest Macaroni and Cheese | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen | heavenly comfort food that uses 3 #cheeses & topped with #panko bread crumbs. #Macaroni&Cheese #pasta #MeatlessMonday

This cheesy mac and cheese is the real deal!

 

Here’s what I did.

Cheesiest Macaroni and Cheese | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen | heavenly comfort food that uses 3 #cheeses & topped with #panko bread crumbs. #Macaroni&Cheese #pasta #MeatlessMonday

I used these ingredients. I didn’t have any regular elbow macaroni on hand, so I used radiatore instead.

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Before making sauce, fill a large stock pot with hot water. Bring to a boil and add noodles. Cook according to package directions.

While you are waiting for the noodles to cook, melt 1/4 cup butter (half stick) in a large saucepan. Add flour and whisk for one minute, whisking continuously.

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Add heavy whipping cream about 1/4 cup at a time whisking in cream after each addition.

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Add shredded mozzarella and cheddar cheeses.

Cheesiest Macaroni and Cheese | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen | heavenly comfort food that uses 3 #cheeses & topped with #panko bread crumbs. #Macaroni&Cheese #pasta #MeatlessMonday

Add salt, pepper, and hot sauce and continue whisking as sauce thickens.

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Stir frequently until the cheese melts. Mixture will be very thick. Set aside. (My sauce was ready before the macaroni). 

Cheesiest Macaroni and Cheese | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen | heavenly comfort food that uses 3 #cheeses & topped with #panko bread crumbs. #Macaroni&Cheese #pasta #MeatlessMonday

Add remaining melted butter to Panko bread crumbs and set aside. Slice block cheese; set aside.

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Add cooked macaroni to cheese sauce. Stir gently to combine.

Cheesiest Macaroni and Cheese | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen | heavenly comfort food that uses 3 #cheeses & topped with #panko bread crumbs. #Macaroni&Cheese #pasta #MeatlessMonday

Pour half of the macaroni mixture into a greased 8×12″ oval baking dish.

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Top with ALL of the cheese slices. Yes, it’s a lot, but you need the gooeyness from all of it.

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Pour remaining macaroni mixture over top of cheese slices. Sprinkle with Panko bread crumbs. (I didn’t use all of the crumbs).

Cheesiest Macaroni and Cheese | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen | heavenly comfort food that uses 3 #cheeses & topped with #panko bread crumbs. #Macaroni&Cheese #pasta #MeatlessMonday

Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes or until macaroni is hot and bubbly.

Cheesiest Macaroni and Cheese | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen | heavenly comfort food that uses 3 #cheeses & topped with #panko bread crumbs. #Macaroni&Cheese #pasta #MeatlessMonday

I served Cheesiest Macaroni and Cheese with a batch of my homemade Honey Whole Wheat Bread.

Cheesiest Macaroni and Cheese | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen | heavenly comfort food that uses 3 #cheeses & topped with #panko bread crumbs. #Macaroni&Cheese #pasta #MeatlessMonday

If you enjoy macaroni and cheese, this recipe needs to be on your “to make” list!

Cheesiest Macaroni and Cheese | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen | heavenly comfort food that uses 3 #cheeses & topped with #panko bread crumbs. #Macaroni&Cheese #pasta #MeatlessMonday

I actually liked the bulk of the radiatore rather than using regular elbow macaroni.

 

Here’s the recipe.

CHEESIEST MACARONI AND CHEESE

(Recipe adapted from The Food Charlatan)

Print Recipe
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This fabulous mac & cheese uses 3 cheeses, a little hot sauce to give it zip and panko bread crumbs as a topping. Great comfort food.
Cheesiest Macaroni and Cheese | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen | heavenly comfort food that uses 3 #cheeses & topped with #panko bread crumbs. #Macaroni&Cheese #pasta #MeatlessMonday
Course Pasta
Cuisine American
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Passive Time 15 minutes
Servings
Ingredients
Course Pasta
Cuisine American
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Passive Time 15 minutes
Servings
Ingredients
Cheesiest Macaroni and Cheese | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen | heavenly comfort food that uses 3 #cheeses & topped with #panko bread crumbs. #Macaroni&Cheese #pasta #MeatlessMonday
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  2. Grease an 8x12 or large oval glass baking dish.
  3. In a large stock pot, boil the pasta according to package instructions.
  4. Drain water and return pasta to the stock pot.
  5. Meanwhile in a medium-sized saucepan, melt 1/4 cup butter.
  6. Whisk in flour and cook 1 minute whisking continuously, until mixture is bubbly.
  7. Slowly stir in the cream adding about ¼ cup at a time.
  8. Add salt, pepper and hot sauce and stir 1 more minute.
  9. Turn heat to low and gradually stir in the mozzarella and shredded cheddar cheese.
  10. Stir frequently until the cheese melts completely.
  11. Sauce will be very thick.
  12. Remove from heat.
  13. Stir the drained macaroni into the cheese sauce.
  14. Pour half of the mac and cheese mixture into the prepared baking dish.
  15. Layer all of the cheese slices over top of the macaroni.
  16. Top remaining half of the mac and cheese over cheese slices.
  17. In a microwavable glass, melt remaining 1/4 cup butter in microwave.
  18. Stir in the panko crumbs.
  19. Sprinkle the bread crumb mixture over top of the mac and cheese.
  20. I used about half of the Panko bread crumb mixture).
  21. (Bake for 20-25 minutes at 350°, or until mixture is hot and bubbly.
Recipe Notes

NOTE: If your cheese sauce is not ready at the same time the pasta is cooked, add 1-2 teaspoons oil so your pasta doesn't stick.)

NOTE: I used less than half of the Panko bread crumbs/melted butter mixture to sprinkle on the top of the casserole, and that was more than sufficient.

NOTE: Layer ALL of the cheese slices over top of the first layer of macaroni, even if they overlap.

Recipe adapted from The Food Charlatan.

Cheesiest Macaroni and Cheese | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen | heavenly comfort food that uses 3 #cheeses & topped with #panko bread crumbs. #Macaroni&Cheese #pasta #MeatlessMonday

You will find every forkful of Cheesiest Macaroni and Cheese absolutely delectable.

Cheesiest Macaroni and Cheese | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen | heavenly comfort food that uses 3 #cheeses & topped with #panko bread crumbs. #Macaroni&Cheese #pasta #MeatlessMonday

Seriously, once you start eating this mac & cheese, you won’t want to put your fork down!

Cheesiest Macaroni and Cheese | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen | heavenly comfort food that uses 3 #cheeses & topped with #panko bread crumbs. #Macaroni&Cheese #pasta #MeatlessMonday

Cheesiest Macaroni and Cheese will perk you up on those cloudy, dreary winter days when you’re ready for spring and summer to begin!

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Cracked Out Bacon Macaroni and Cheese

Cracked Out Bacon Macaroni and Cheese | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen

 

Gluten Free Macaroni and Cheese

Gluten Free Macaroni and Cheese | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen

 

Southern-Style Macaroni and Cheese

Southern-Style Macaroni and Cheese | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen

You may find these items helpful in making this recipe.

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2 Replies to "Cheesiest Macaroni and Cheese"

  • comment-avatar
    Deb March 11, 2017 (5:54 pm)

    This Cheeesiest Macaroni & Cheese looks so delicious! I sure wish I had a big plate of it now! Thanks for sharing the recipe, Teresa!

    • comment-avatar
      Teresa March 12, 2017 (5:07 pm)

      Hi, Deb! I wish I had a bowl right now too! 🙂 It really is delicious and worth making anytime you need a macaroni & cheese fix. Thanks for stopping by.

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