Best Ever Homemade Mac & Cheese


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Best Ever Homemade Mac & Cheese | Macaroni & Cheese | Mac and Cheese Recipe | Easy Macaroni and Cheese | Cheesy Macaroni | Baked Macaroni and Cheese | Pasta Recipe

Mmmmmm….is there any comfort food quite as, well, comforting, as homemade mac & cheese?  Sure it’s a little more effort than, say, that stuff in the blue, but oh man is it worth the extra time!


Meal planning eliminates dinnertime stress and overspending. Rather than navigating weeknight meals without a plan, go in with a plan and dinner is served. Simple!


The best part about this recipe is that it will either feed a crowd or make enough to freeze half of it for an easy meal later.  Twice the reward for the same amount of work?  I’ll take it!

Best Ever Homemade Mac & Cheese ingredients

Here is what you need:

16 ounces macaroni pasta
1 pound sharp cheddar cheese
8 ounces gouda cheese
5 tablespoons butter
4 tablespoons flour
2 cans evaporated milk
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/4 teaspoon ground mustard
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
bread crumbs (optional)
2-3 tablespoons melted butter (optional)

Shred cheese into a bowl and set aside for later.

Step 1:  Shred cheese into bowl; set aside.

Cook pasta for about 6-7 minutes, be careful not to over cook!

Step 2: Bring large pot of water to a boil; add pasta and cook until just barely al dente, 6-7 minutes.  Do not overcook!

Drain cooked pasta and set aside. Step 3:  Drain pasta and set aside.

Mix flour and butter in a medium saucepan until golden brown.

Step 4:  In medium saucepan, melt 5 tablespoons butter over medium heat.  Whisk in flour to make a roux.  Stir for 30 seconds more.

Slowly add evaporated milk to flour mixture.

Step 5:  Slowly add one can of evaporated milk, whisking constantly, until mixture begins to bubble and thicken.  Add second can of evaporated milk, whisking constantly, until mixture again begins to bubble and thicken.

Add cream and seasonings to mixture, stirring constantly.

Step 6:  Add heavy cream, dried mustard, cayenne pepper, black pepper, & salt, whisking constantly.  Bring mixture to just boiling, then reduce heat and simmer for 30 more seconds.

remove sauce from heat and immediately add cheese. Mix until all cheese is melted.

Step 7:  Remove from heat and quickly stir in cheeses until cheese is completely melted.

Pour cheese sauce over macaroni noodles.

Step 8:   Place pasta back in pot.  Pour in cheese sauce and mix well.

Divide macaroni and cheese into casserole dishes. You can wrap these with plastic wrap and bake later for an easy freezer meal.

Step 9:  Spoon mac & cheese into casserole dish or dishes.  If you plan on freezing one, wrap it tightly with plastic wrap, label and place in freezer.

Sprinkle bread crumbs over macaroni and cheese; bake for 20 minutes at 400 degrees.

Step 10:  Sprinkle noodles with bread crumbs, then drizzle with melted butter.  Bake at 400 degrees for approximately 20 minutes, until crumbs are golden brown.

*   *   *

Do you prefer homemade mac & cheese or the from-the-box variety?

Best Ever Homemade Mac & Cheese | Macaroni & Cheese | Mac and Cheese Recipe | Easy Macaroni and Cheese | Cheesy Macaroni | Baked Macaroni and Cheese | Pasta Recipe


  1. Jasmine
    September 11 at 12:47PM

    YUM! This looks so good! Thanks for sharing!

  2. September 15 at 06:50PM

    Wow! “Ultimate comfort food” surely describes this. It looks sinful and delicious. I dare not ask for the lower fat version, what would be the point? Thanks for the recipe, I will be trying this one! (I like the use of gouda in this.)

  3. October 6 at 10:06PM

    I always forget you’re in the SE until I see PUBLIX items! Oh, I miss Publix – being a transplant to Kansas, originally born and raised in Fl. So not only do your recipes make me hungry and craving, they make me homesick 😉 Good job Ruth! 🙂

    Nicole @ WKH

  4. Kari
    January 20 at 08:57PM

    Can you substitute regular milk for the evaporated milk and get the same results?

  5. Fran
    February 24 at 07:30PM

    I have been looking for a really, really good Mac n Cheese recipe, and this is it.!!! I knew it would make a lot but it make enough for a small army! I am freezing a couple dishes and will be sooooo happy to have it again! Thanks so much!!!!!

  6. Elizabeth
    April 18 at 03:09PM

    What size cans do I use for the evaporated milk? I bought the smallest ones, but I can’t tell from the photo if that was correct. Thanks a lot. Trying this tonight.

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  9. Marlokristene
    November 22 at 11:43AM

    what size cans of evaporated milk did you use?

  10. Bon
    March 2 at 06:49PM

    What size evaporated milk?

    • Ruth Soukup
      March 3 at 02:35PM

      2 cans of evaporated milk 12oz cans. 🙂

  11. Anonymous
    May 18 at 09:05AM

    Looks gr8! Can you substitute the ground mustard with the paste.

    • Kathy Catanzaro
      June 7 at 06:50AM

      I do! I use Grey Poupon Dijon mustard.

  12. Tracy
    June 1 at 02:54PM

    Made this for a party, and everyone loved it! Thanks!

  13. kathy
    June 7 at 06:47AM

    My family owns a pizzeria, and we have the best kids working for us, all between 18 and 30. They come to our house on Saturday nights to eat after we close sometimes, and this is what they want me to make every time. It really is the best EVER!!!

  14. Rachael
    September 14 at 03:03AM

    Made this for dinner last night, came out so delicious. Added a touch of cumin. Kudos to the creator of this recipe!

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  16. Valerie
    March 14 at 09:24PM

    Is cooking the same after freezing it? Does it need to thaw? Same cooking time? Put the bread crumbs on top with butter like usual?

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