The BEST Homemade Creamy Baked Mac and Cheese layered with three cheeses for the creamiest and most delectable side dish.
This Creamy Baked Mac and Cheese is one of my family’s favorite and is definitely a crowd-pleaser. It’s loved by both adults and kids which is huge. I serve this recipe for holidays, birthdays, and even during ordinary family dinners. We just can’t get enough.
HOW TO MAKE CREAMY BAKED MAC AND CHEESE
Creamy Baked Mac and Cheese is so easy to make and only requires a few really simple ingredients.
Pasta: Cook large elbow pasta noodles just until al dente, drain and rinse.
Cheese: Shred a generous amount of mild cheddar cheese, marbled colby cheese, and mozzarella cheese. These are the types of cheeses I like to use, but any other really good melting cheeses will work.
If you like smoked flavor cheese, smoked gouda cheese will be a great option to add as well.
Tip: Grate your cheese yourself instead of purchasing pre-shredded cheese from the grocery store. Pre-shredded cheese doesn’t melt as good as when you grate it yourself.
Milk mixture: In a measuring, add evaporated carnation milk, an egg, salt and whisk until combined.
Assemble: Lightly butter the inside of a casserole dish, layer the bottom of the casserole dish with the prepared elbow noodles, add a layer of the 3 cheese blend, add alternate between elbow noddles and the cheese blend until the top layer is topped with the 3 cheese blend.
After assembling the mac and cheese, pour the milk mixture over the entire top surface of the mac and cheese using the measuring cup.
Tip: Using a measuring cup makes it really easy to evenly pour the milk mixture over the entire top surface of the mac and cheese.
Bake: Loosely cover the mac and cheese with aluminum foil and bake until the cheese starts to bubble and edges are a nice golden brown. Remove the foil and bake for an additional 4 to 5 minutes.
If you prefer a crisper or browner top, place under the broiler for just a couple of minutes BUT watch closely to prevent the mac and cheese from burning.
*Step 2 – Assumes that you’ve cooked the large elbow noodles just until al dente
*Step 3 – Is the layering process
*Step 4 – After layering, the milk mixture is poured over the entire top surface of the mac and cheese using the measuring cup.
WHAT CAN I MAKE WITH BAKED MACARONI AND CHEESE
If you’re serving baked macaroni and cheese as a side dish, the following main dishes would pair perfectly:
- BBQ (chicken, pork, or beef ribs)
- Fried chicken
- Pork chop
- Lamb chops
- Prime Rib
WHAT KIND OF CHEESE TO USE FOR BAKED MAC AND CHEESE
I prefer using the following types of cheese when making baked mac and cheese: mild cheddar cheese, monterey jack, colby jack cheese, and mozzarella cheese. These cheeses have a nice creamy texture and melts beautifully when you shred it yourself.
TIPS FOR MAKING BAKED MAC AND CHEESE
- Do not overcook the pasta noodles prior to layering
- Shred the cheese yourself INSTEAD of buying pre-shredded cheese from the grocery store
- Use a cheese blend for extra flavor and creaminess
- Add enough of the milk mixture to prevent dry mac and cheese
- Add salt to the milk mixture for added flavor
- Loosely cover the mac and cheese with aluminum foil to prevent the top of the mac cheese from cooking too quickly and burning
OTHER SIDE DISHES THAT GO WITH BAKED MAC AND CHEESE
Other side dishes that go with baked mac and cheese are:
- Grilled, sauteed, or steamed vegetables
- Simple salad
- Corn bread
Here’s a little inspiration:
If you’re looking for main dishes to pair with baked mac and cheese check out this Tri-Tip Recipe or these other great recipes:
This Creamy Baked Mac and Cheese layered with three cheeses is the creamiest and most delectable side dish. It's so easy to make and a crowd favorite.
- 2 can evaporated carnation milk whole carnation milk
- 1 egg
- 1/2 tbsp kosher salt
- 2 tsp kosher salt
- 2 small bags large elbow noodles or 1 large bag
- 4 cups cheddar cheese
- 4 cups colby jack cheese
- 4 cups mozzarella cheese
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Shred cheeses. Set aside.
In measuring cup, add carnation milk, egg, and salt and whisk until well combined. Set aside,
Prepare casserole dish by rubbing the entire inner serve with butter to prevent mac and cheese from sticking.
Prepare large elbow noodles according to packaging instructions cooking just until al denta. Drain, rinse and pat dry with paper towel.
Assemble mac and cheese: Adding a layer of prepared elbow noodles to casserole dish, add a generous amount of cheese blend over first layer of noodles and alternate between elbow noodles and cheese blend until top layer is topped with a generous amount of cheese blend.
Whisk milk mixture again then pour over entire top surface of mac and cheese. Loosely cover mac and cheese with aluminum foil and bake in oven until cheese begins to bubble throughout. Remove aluminum foil and continue to bake for approximately 4 minutes or so.
**Please note: Nutritional values serve as a guide only as values may vary.