Good ole fashioned boxed mac and cheese is the ultimate comfort food, but in recent years I discovered that the made-from-scratch version is not only tastier, but dare I say, easier, to make than the boxed. Okay, maybe not easier, but its definitely not harder, I promise. With just three ingredients–milk, shredded cheese and noodles–you’ve got a wholesome, hearty meal in minutes flat. Just keep a bag of shredded cheddar cheese in the fridge and plenty of dry noodles in the cabinet (I use whatever I have on hand, penne, elbow noodles, pasta shells or sometimes egg noodles), and a batch of hot, homemade, creamy mac and cheese is always just fifteen minutes away. Of course we still keep a few boxes of the instant stuff around for emergency situations, but the “real cheese” version, as we call it in our family, is always a crowd-pleaser.
But, with the help of this pinteresting find, homemade mac and cheese just got even easier. The secret twist? Boil the noodles in the milk! No need to strain the noodles. The milk makes a nice warm, creamy base so that the shredded cheese instantly melts when added to the noodles. We just whipped up a batch of it for dinner and were not disappointed. The added surprise of a little dijon mustard in this recipe is the icing on top. I even made it with whole grain noodles and my kids didn’t even notice.
Below is the recipe, but be sure to head over the Macaroni and Cheesecake for the original post. I’ve adapted it a little according to my experience with it. I found that it didn’t take a full twenty minutes for the noodles to cook, and I didn’t let it sit for five minutes before serving–whoever suggested that didn’t have five “starving” boys breathing down their necks ready to eat! (: Also, I borrowed their photography (been feeling a little lazy lately about pulling out my camera), so all credit for the beautiful picture above goes to my original source. Enjoy!
Revolutionary Mac & Cheese
Adapted from: Macaroni and Cheesecake
2 cups dried pasta
2 cups milk
1 cup loosely packed shredded cheddar cheese
1 tsp salt
1 tsp dijon mustard
In a small saucepan, add pasta and milk. Bring to simmer, then reduce heat to low and cook until the pasta is tender, stirring frequently and ensuring milk does not boil.
Turn heat off, add cheese, salt and mustard and stir to combine.