This recipe is adapted from the April/May 2008 “Skillet Macaroni and Cheese” recipe from Cook’s Country. It’s almost as easy as mac & cheese out of the box and 20 times better than mac & cheese out of the box.
Easy Macaroni & Cheese
- 3 cups dried macaroni
- 3-3/4 cup water
- 12 ounces evaporated milk (1 can)
- 3 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
- 2 cups shredded monterrey jack cheese
- 1 Tablespoon dried onions (can use 1 tsp cornstarch instead, see recipe notes below)
- Optional: Additional seasonings such as dried parsley, Italian seasoning mix, etc; Spicy seasonings such as black pepper, cayenne pepper, or red pepper flakes
Mix 3-3/4 cups water & 12 ounces evaporated milk in a large saucepan (reserve 2 ounces or 1/4 cup evaporated milk if using cornstarch). Heat on medium-high heat.
When the liquid starts simmering, reduce heat to medium, add macaroni.
Cook until macaroni is just barely done (al dente). Turn heat off, stir in dried onion & other seasonings if using them (if using cornstarch, mix with reserved 1/4 evaporated milk & stir in at this step).
Stir in cheeses, one handful at a time. Once all cheese is melted, let sit about 5 minutes to thicken — the dried onions will help soak up any excess moisture — and serve.
If you want to add more: After macaroni is al dente, turn heat to low. Continue as directed, stirring in dried onions (or cornstarch), seasonings, and cheeses. Once cheeses are all stirred in, add any extra ingredients. Suggestions include 1 – 1-1/2 cups of a mild-flavored cooked meat such as chopped roasted chicken or chopped cooked shrimp; 1 – 2 Tablespoons of a strongly flavored meat such as chopped bacon; 1-2 cups thawed frozen peas; or 1-2 cups chopped and mildly steamed broccoli florets. Stir over low heat until all ingredients are heated through, then turn off heat & let sit for 5 minutes or so to let flavors blend before serving.