Thursday, February 20, 2014

Mac & Cheese Casserole

Prep Time: 20 mins Bake Time: 20 mins Serves: 4-6 (depending how hungry you are!)

I love pasta, and I love cheese. I also love Kraft Dinner (I know I know, but it's a guilty pleasure), and never thought I would get sick of eating it, but I have consumed over 20 boxes of it on this trip (this is unfortunately true, actually that's probably a huge understatement, it was probably more like 30-40), so I'm slightly sick of it. So I've gotten into making homemade Mac n cheese, which I also love, maybe even more than KD!

3-4 cups elbow pasta (I like to make extra)
2 onions (optional) 
1 can of mushroom soup (gives it a different, but delicious flavor) or 1 can of condensed/evaporated milk or 1 1/2 cups of milk
2 tbsp flour
8 oz velveeta or other shredded cheese (mixing different cheese is delicious, I put a bit of smoked Gouda in!)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
Tsp minced garlic (optional)
3 tbsp butter or margarine 
4 tbsp bread crumbs

Boil the water with a bit if salt (helps the pasta not stick to the bottom) and cook pasta until 'al dente', being careful not to over cook it because it will go in the oven after. While the pasta is cooking dice the onions and sauté them with the mixed garlic.  Add butter to the onions and add the flour after the butter has melted and mix well. Then add the mushroom soup/milk and bring to a boil and cook for another couple minutes before adding the cheese. Add the spices and cook for another couple minutes. Drain the pasta and mix the cheese sauce into the pasta. Then pour it into a 2 qt. greased casserole dish (or if you're me and don't have one, a rectangular cake pan). Sprinkle with breadcrumbs and any left over cheese and bake in the oven for 20 mins, or until the cheese on top starts to bubble and brown. And now you have a delicious meal, which often provides a lot of leftovers (I made one big casserole and one mini). You can also try different add-ins like tuna, mushrooms or any other vegetable.

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