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Mac and Cheese

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I am *in love* with this simple, no-frills mac and cheese. :) My granny used to make this all the time- she knew it was my favorite and always had it ready whenever I came to visit. :)  It’s a delicious quick-and-easy side dish- no fancy or unnecessary ingredients, just pure, unadulterated mac and cheese. :D It’s definitely one of my go-to meals- I almost always have all the ingredients on hand- and the baking time / temp isn’t too picky so I can usually just pop it in the oven with whatever my main dish is. :)

old fashioned mac and cheese recipe blog

The ingredients: noodles, butter, salt, shredded cheese and milk

old fashioned mac and cheese recipe blog

Boil and drain noodles in salted water. Since it’s just the two of us, I boiled 2 cups of penne pasta. That’s enough for 2-3 servings as a side dish. Spray a baking dish with Pam and make layers of noodles, a healthy pinch of salt, and pats of butter.

old fashioned mac and cheese recipe blog

Top with plenty of the good stuff- shredded cheese. My absolute favorite to use is colby jack.

old fashioned mac and cheese recipe blog

Repeat layers of noodles, salt, butter and cheese until you run out of noodles. In my case I usually only make 2 layers. :)

old fashioned mac and cheese recipe blog

Now the milk. The milk is very important, you don’t want to skip this step. :D Pour in the milk, about 1/2 cup at a time until your dish is about 1/3 full with milk. The reason why you want to do it a 1/2 cup at a time is because you want to give the milk a sec to settle before you pour more in so you don’t flood the mac and cheese with milk. Not that I’ve ever done that before. Tonight I poured in about 3/4 cup, and as you can see in the pic, the dish is about 1/4 full. I could’ve just gone ahead and poured in a full cup, but that’s ok. It was still good. :D

old fashioned mac and cheese recipe blog

Bake, uncovered, in a preheated oven for about 30 minutes. If I were making this just by itself, I would do 400 for 30 mins. But usually I have something else occupying my oven so I just pop it in with whatever else I have cooking at the time. :) Anywhere from 350 – 400 degrees is just fine. :)

old fashioned mac and cheese recipe blog

Oh, man, it’s so good. :) The perfect complement to any main dish. :D And in case you’re wondering, that’s Pioneer Woman’s Spicy Roasted Chicken Legs in the background. We both absolutely love them, they are so juicy and flavorful!! I make mine a bit different- I leave out the lemon and use a different seasoning than she does (I experiment every time!). I also cook mine for 20 mins on each side.

Speaking of seasonings, I love them. Tonight on the chicken, I tried 5, yes 5 different seasonings. I was going to do a taste test and see which one I liked best.

old fashioned mac and cheese recipe blog

Montreal chicken, seasoned chicken, Greek chicken, chicken creole, spicy chicken… Guess what. I liked them all. I couldn’t decide. :P

Mac and Cheese

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups penne pasta, boiled and drained
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3-4 tablespoon butter
  • 2 cups shredded colby jack cheese
  • 3/4 – 1 cup milk

Directions:

Spray a small baking dish with pam and preheat oven to 400. In the baking dish, make a layer of half the noodles, sprinkle on half the salt and top with pats of butter and 1 cup cheese. Repeat to make another layer of noodles, butter, salt and cheese. Pour in milk until the dish is about 1/3 full of milk. Bake at 400 for 30 mins, uncovered.