If comfort food is what you're after, nothing beats a generous helping of creamy, oozy mac and cheese. This recipe is the yummiest version – and the only one you'll ever need.
- Prep time 25 minutes
- Total time 1 hour
- Portion size 8 servings
- 3 cups elbow macaroni (about 450 g)
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
- 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 4 cups milk
- 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper
- pinch cayenne pepper
- 1 1/2 cup shredded Gruyère cheese
- 1 1/2 cup shredded extra-old Cheddar cheese
- 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
- 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 1 tablespoon butter diced and softened
In large pot of boiling salted water, cook pasta according to package directions until al dente. Drain; set aside.
Meanwhile, in large saucepan, melt butter over medium heat; cook garlic and thyme, stirring occasionally, until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Whisk in flour; cook, whisking constantly, for 2 minutes. Pour in milk in slow steady stream, whiskingconstantly until smooth; cook, whisking often, until thickened, about 7 minutes. Whisk in mustard, nutmeg, salt, pepper and cayenne pepper. Stir in Gruyère and Cheddar cheeses until smooth; stir in pasta. Scrape into lightly greased 12-cup (3 L) casserole dish.
Topping: In bowl, combine panko with Parmesan cheese; using fingers, rub in butter until mixture resembles coarse sand. Sprinkle over pasta mixture.
Bake in 400°F (200°C) oven until sauce is bubbly and topping is golden, about 25 minutes. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.
Tip from the Test Kitchen: The sauce might seem a little runny at first, but it will thicken beautifully when baked with the starchy macaroni.
Nutritional facts per serving: about
- Fibre 2 g
- Sodium 576 mg
- Sugars 11 g
- Protein 23 g
- Calories 479.0
- Total fat 24 g
- Potassium 262 mg
- Cholesterol 72 mg
- Saturated fat 14 g
- Total carbohydrate 43 g
- Iron 15.0
- Folate 45.0
- Calcium 51.0
- Vitamin A 25.0
- Vitamin C 2.0