Cheddar Macaroni Cheese Recipe | Serves 4 | Timing: 30 mins

Macaroni Cheese is delicious and a great comfort food that immediately warms up your belly.  It’s even better if you use a nice mature cheddar to give it a strong flavour.  This recipe is great if you’re serving multiple people and if you’re not you can simply freeze the rest of the batch to have another day.  It’s also a great dish for buffet get togethers and can be eaten as a main or as a side.  It is also flexible and can adapt to your tastes.

Basic Ingredients:

  • 300g/ 10oz of Macaroni (or the pasta of your choice−I like Fusilli personally)
  • 50g/2oz Butter
  • 50g/2oz Plain flour
  • 750ml/1 ¼ Pints milk
  • 175g/7oz Cheddar
  • Salt & Pepper

Optional Ingredients:

  • 350g/11 ½ oz Baby spinach
  • 2tsp Wholegrain mustard
  • 1tsp Dijon mustard
  • 8 Cherry Tomatoes
  • 50g/2oz Breadcrumbs

(and any other ingredients you want to add, peas and broccoli work well too, or you can mix it up and pair some other cheeses with the cheddar to give it more layers.)

Firstly, preheat the oven to 200 °C/400°F Gas Mark 6, then boil some water in a large saucepan.

Add the macaroni to the water and cook for 8-10mins or for however long the packet suggests to get it al dente (remember it’s going in the oven after this, so you don’t want to overdo it).

If you’re using spinach add it now and cook in the pan for 1 minute until it’s wilted, before taking the pan off the heat and draining the water away.

Next place the macaroni (and spinach) in 1.5 litre ovenproof dish.

Meanwhile, add the butter, flour, and milk to a saucepan and whisk continuously over a medium heat until the sauce thickens (this can seem like it’s taking a while, but it will suddenly thicken up quite quickly so don’t give up).

Let the sauce simmer for 2-3mins until it is smooth and glossy looking, then lower the heat.

This is the time to stir in 150g of the cheddar, as well as any mustard and/or other cheeses you have decided to use.  Continue to stir over a low heat until the cheese is melted and season to taste.

Pour the sauce over macaroni (and spinach), making sure the macaroni and sauce cover the dish evenly.

Chop the tomatoes in half and scatter them over the macaroni along with the breadcrumbs if you are using them. Then sprinkle on the remaining cheddar (you should have 25g of cheddar left, feel free to add more though, I always like to have a good covering of melted cheese on top of my pasta bakes).

Bake in the oven for 20 mins or until golden and bubbling.


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