Best Ever Baked Macaroni & Cheese
This recipe is truly the easiest and best mac and cheese recipe. It's packed with cheese from edge to edge. There's no roux in this recipe and no Velveeta cheese. Baked mac and cheese is a staple around this time of year and is the easiest dish to bring to a potluck.
This mac and cheese uses 4 different kinds of cheeses! That's right 4! I mix sharp cheddar, gouda, gruyere, and asiago.
I once overheard someone adamantly stating that if you add anything else to mac and cheese, it's not mac and cheese, it's a casserole. Well, my friend, this is my version of a mac and cheese casserole. I just eggs as a binder because I like my mac and cheese to be firm on my plate.
I've gone through many recipes to create this perfect one. It's extra cheesy without using Velveeta cheese. Velveeta has this distinct taste that I am not always in the mood for. It also prevents the firmness that I want in my baked mac and cheese.
Some cheeses are so strong in flavor that they overpower the others and don't create. I tried mac and cheese with smoked gouda and that smoky flavor ended up being too strong in the dish. But the unsmoked gouda ended up being the perfect balance.
Cheeses in My 4 Cheese Mac & Cheese
To make the best mac and cheese, shred the cheeses yourself. Pre-shredded cheese will often have preservatives to keep them from clumping but these preservatives often take away from the true nature of the cheese's creaminess and melting glory. If you can find it, buy the block of sharp cheddar and gouda. In the specialty cheese section, you can often find wedges of gruyere and asiago cheeses. The medium to large side of a box grader will give the perfect shredded sizes for your mac and cheese.
4 Cheese Baked Mac & Cheese
1/2 lb Elbow Macaroni, cooked until al dente
1 Cup Gouda, shredded
1 Cup Sharp Cheddar, shredded
1 Cup Asiago, shredded
1 Cup Gruyere, shredded
2 Eggs, beaten
2 Cups, Evaporated Milk
1/2 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp Pepper
2 Tbsp Unsalted Butter, melted
Nonstick Cooking Spray
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a 8 x 10 pan or similar size deep dish baking pan by spraying with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside. While pasta pasta is cooking, shred 1 cup of each type of cheese. Mix cheeses together in a medium size bowl.
In a small bowl, combine eggs, salt, pepper, milk, and melted butter.
Once noodles are cooked until al dente, drain and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process. Add half of the noodles in your prepared baking dish. Top with half the cheese mixture.
Layer the remaining noodles on top of the cheese layer and top with the remaining cheese. Ensure that all noodles are covered.
Pour your egg and milk mixture carefully over your layers. Press down to make sure that all of your noodles and cheese are coated with the mixture.
Place on the center rack in the oven and bake for 35 minutes until set. If cheese begins to brown too quickly, cover with aluminum foil and continue cooking.
Remove from oven and allow to cool slightly for 10 minutes before cutting and serving.