Baked Mac and Cheese | Cooking With Gas

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At-Home Chefs Recipe


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  • 16 ounces of elbow macaroni or other tubular pasta of choice
  • 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil
  • 6 tablespoons of unsalted butter
  • ⅓ cup of all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups of whole milk
  • 1 cup of heavy whipping cream
  • 4 cups of sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 2 cups of gruyere cheese, shredded
  • 1 ½ cups of Panko breadcrumbs
  • 4 tablespoons of butter, melted
  • ½ cup of parmesan cheese, shredded
  • ¼ teaspoon of smoked or regular paprika
  • Salt to taste
  • Pepper to taste

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease a large 3-quart or 4-quart baking dish and set aside. Combine shredded sharp cheddar cheese and gruyere cheese in a large bowl and set aside. Cook the pasta one minute shy of al dente according to the package instructions. Remove from heat, drain and place in a large bowl. Drizzle pasta with olive oil and stir to coat pasta. Set aside to cool while preparing cheese sauce. Melt butter on the stove in a deep saucepan, Dutch oven or stock pot. Whisk in flour over medium heat and continue whisking for about 1 minute until bubbly and golden. Gradually whisk in the milk and heavy cream until nice and smooth. Continue whisking until you see bubbles on the surface and then continue cooking and whisking for another 2 minutes. Whisk in salt and pepper, to taste. Add 2 cups of shredded cheese mixture and whisk until smooth. Add another 2 cups of shredded cheese mixture and continue whisking until creamy and smooth. Sauce should be nice and thick. Stir in the cooled pasta until combined and pasta is fully coated with the cheese sauce. Pour half of the mac and cheese into the prepared baking dish. Top with remaining 2 cups of shredded cheese mixture and then pour the remaining mac and cheese into the dish. In a small bowl, combine Panko breadcrumbs, parmesan cheese, melted butter and paprika. Sprinkle over the top of the mac and cheese and bake until bubbly and golden brown, about 30 minutes. Serve immediately.