How to Make Creamy Stovetop Macaroni and Cheese

How to Make Creamy Stovetop Macaroni and Cheese

WATCH: How to Make Stovetop Mac ‘n’ Cheese

Watch this video (and check out our tried-and-tried recipe) for the creamiest, cheesiest mac and cheese yet. Start with the basics and then add extra flavor with different veggies, meats, and cheeses.

What you’ll need:

• Pot for boiling water — here’s the best of our test!

• Colander ($17, amazon.com)

• 4 tablespoon unsalted butter

• 1/4 cup all-purpose flour

• 3 cups whole milk

• 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

• 1/4 teaspoon salt

• 2 garlic cloves, peeled

• 8 ounces Velveeta, cubed

• 8 ounces Cheddar, coarsely grated

• 4 ounces Gouda

• 1 pound (8 ounces) elbow macaroni

• Freshly ground pepper, for garnish

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Step 1: Make Paste

To start, melt 4 tablespoons butter on medium heat in a medium pot. Once the butter is completely melted, sprinkle in 1/4 cup all-purpose flour and stir for 1 minute until a creamy paste forms. Reduce heat to medium-low.

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Step 2: Simmer

It’s time for milk: Add 3 cups of milk, bit by bit, whisking as you pour. Whole milk gives the creamiest taste but 2%, 1%, or skim milk are also okay if you’re looking to make this dish a little lighter. Once stirred, add black pepper, salt, and two garlic gloves, and let simmer.

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Step 3: Add Cheese

Here comes the part you’ve been waiting for — the cheese. Whisk together cubed Velveeta, grated Cheddar, and grated Gouda for the perfect blend. When adding the cheese (especially the grated kind!), wait until the first batch melts before adding in the next handful. Slow and steady is best.

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Step 4: Cook Pasta

In a separate pot, cook half a package of elbow macaroni until it’s firm —but still soft. Check the pasta directions for how long it takes to reach “al dente.” Strain the pasta in a colander once cooked thoroughly.

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Step 5: Stir in Cheese Sauce

Pour the pasta back into the large pot and stir in the gooey cheese sauce. Give it a good mix before serving.

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