Ditch the boxed variety in favor of a quick and easy recipe for White Cheddar Mac and Cheese that will be on your table in 30 minutes or less.
Few foods are as comforting and satisfying as a big ol’ pot of mac and cheese. The kind that slurps as you stir it, as a velvety smooth cheese sauce yields cheese pull after cheese pull. True Instagram-worthy stuff, if you ask me.
We mastered the sharp cheddar version and French onion version of this comfort food, so a recent purchase of way too many blocks of white cheddar meant only one thing: You get a bowl of 30-Minute White Cheddar Mac and Cheese and you get a bowl and you get a bowl!
While the creamy consistency and mild taste of white cheddar may be the initial draw here, this mom of three (boys under age 5) is all about that total recipe time of 30 minutes. Yes, just 30 minutes from start to finish.
The setup is simple:
- Boil your noodles of choice
- Make your white cheddar cheese sauce
- Add cooked noodles to said cheese sauce
- Stir and devour
While white cheddar is most definitely the star of the cheese show, I like to also use an entire cup of grated Parmesan cheese. The salty richness of the Parm punches up the creamy tanginess of the white cheddar, making these two a match in cheese-lovers’ heaven.
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- 1 pound uncooked pasta, such as cavatappi or shells
- 4 cups whole milk
- 8 Tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 3 cups shredded white cheddar cheese
- 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook it until al dente, about 10 minutes. Drain the pasta then set it aside.
- Add the milk to a medium saucepan set over low heat. Once the milk is hot to the touch, turn off the heat and set it aside.
- Add the butter to a large heavy-bottomed stockpot set over low heat. Once the butter has melted, whisk in the flour. Cook the mixture, whisking constantly, until it is pale golden in color and smells slightly toasted, about 3 minutes.
- Slowly whisk in the warm milk, whisking constantly to avoid any lumps. (The mixture will become very thick then thin out slowly.)
- Increase the heat to medium and continue whisking the mixture constantly until it has thickened enough to coat the back of a spoon. Whisk in the salt and pepper.
- Stir in the white cheddar cheese and Parmesan cheese and continue cooking, stirring frequently, until the cheese sauce is creamy and the cheese has melted.
- Stir in the drained pasta then taste and season the mac and cheese with salt and pepper. Serve.
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Recipe by Kelly Senyei of Just a Taste. Please do not reprint this recipe without my permission. If you'd like to feature this recipe on your site, please rewrite the method of preparation and link to this post as the original source.
very creamy, works well with full fat Oat Milk.
Excellent! I’m so glad you enjoyed the recipe, Sally!
This was so quick and easy and best of all, delicious! I sauteed some onion and garlic before making the rue and didn’t have parmesan, so I only used sharp white cheddar. Will definitely be making this again. I made the regular sized batch and it makes A LOT! It’s just my husband and I, so his coworkers will be enjoying this as well.
I’m thrilled you and your husband enjoyed the recipe, Brittany! And I hope his coworkers enjoy the leftovers!
when i made this recipe for the first time i had divided it into a single serving and it was pretty good! i still felt the ratios were a bit wrong. then, when cooking for my family, i made the full batch and it was AMAZING! when i order white cheddar mac n cheese at restaurants it always ends up falling short, and this recipe has everything you could ever dream of.
Woohoo! I’m so glad you enjoyed the recipe, Kat!
I love this recipe! I wanted to share a tip with you – there is a way to make it even quicker by boiling the pasta with milk and water, then add cheese and seasonings. The starch from the pasta thickens the sauce so you don’t need butter and flour. You can make it in about 20 minutes and the kids don’t know the difference!
Thanks, Toni! I’ve never tried that. :)