Caramelized Cheddar Mac'n'Cheese

Caramelized Cheddar Mac'n'Cheese


(7 votes) 4 7

We love mac and cheese. It's cheesy, soft, and gooey. But to make it just slightly more adult, this recipe caramelizes the top layer of cheese, making it more chewy and delicious. Plus, once you eat the top layer, the rest still tastes the same!

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Time needed

15 min preparation + 20 min cooking

Serving Size / Yield

6 servings


  • 1 8-oz. pkg. elbow macaroni
  • 2 Tbs. butter
  • 2 Tbs. flour
  • 2 C. milk
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 8 oz. sharp cheddar, shredded and divided

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Prepare pasta according to directions, but undercook the pasta by about 3 minutes. It should be somewhat raw; it is going to cook in the oven. Drain and keep warm.

Melt butter in a large Dutch oven and mix in flour until it is a smooth sauce. Cook for two minutes. Slowly add in the milk and continue to whisk for about 5 minutes or until it gets thicker. Turn off the heat and stir in the seasonings, half of the cheese, and drained pasta.

Spoon the mixture into a 2 quart baking dish and top with the other half of the cheese. 

Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, turn the broiler on high and broil the top until it becomes golden-brown. It should take somewhere between 5-7 minutes. Watch closely and be careful not to burn. It will keep cooking once it's outside of the oven so the moment it turns golden brown, remove it. 

Allow to rest for 5-10 minutes before serving. 

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