Is there anything better than gooey, cheesy, delicious oven baked mac n’ cheese? It is one of my favorite foods but I hardly ever make it because many baked macaroni and cheese recipes take an hour or longer. I am not that patient. I want the goodness now.
This recipe gives you yummy baked cheesy macaroni in only 20 minutes. I add my cheese to a simple becamel sauce, mix in noodles, load up a large (16oz) ramekin, top with a little shredded cheese and broil it! You get that good oven baked cheese flavor and texture without the wait.
Note: This recipe and the photos have been updated. I have been perfecting it over time and I think this sauce is better than the one I posted in my original recipe!
I have found that you can use any kind of milk and /or half and half with this recipe, including skim milk! I used skim for the mac in these photos. The key is to pour the milk in gradually and stir constantly as you are pouring it to prevent it from curdling. I would not recommending using low fat cheese though as it tends to get grainy.
Whenever you make a roux with flour, you want to make sure that your mixture comes to a boil so that the flour is well incorporated into the sauce.
20 minute Baked Mac n’ Cheese
|Cook time||20 minutes|
- 4oz macaroni noodles
- 1 1/2 tablespoon butter
- 1 1/2 tablespoon flour
- 1 cup milk (any % fat will work)
- 3/4 cups half & half
- 1 cup good quality grated cheese (cheddar, monterey jack, gruyère, havarti)
- 1/4 teaspoon paprika
- salt & pepper to taste
|1.||Add salt to water in a medium pot. Boil water and cook macaroni to al dente.|
|2.||Right after you add the noodles to the boiling water, start melting butter in saucepan. Add Flour, paprika and salt and pepper. Stir continuously for about two minutes until a (paste) roux is formed.|
|3.||Add milk gradually, stirring frequently over medium heat until it comes to a boil. Turn down heat to low and continue stirring until the sauce thickens, about 2 minutes, then turn off heat. Add cheese little by little, stirring until melted, until you've used up 3/4ths cup of cheese. Save remaining cheese. Turn off heat.|
|4.||Move an oven rack to second position from the top. Turn on broiler.|
|5.||Drain cooked pasta and add pasta to cheese sauce. Stir to coat noodles.|
|6.||Add noodles to oven safe dish. Top with remaining cheese. Broil dish for 3-5 minutes until cheese melts and starts to bubble.|