Who doesn’t love a good bowl of mac and cheese? Mac and cheese is easily one of the best comfort food dishes in the world, and what’s great about it is that it can easily be made in just a couple of minutes with very few ingredients.
I have always loved making mac and cheese, it’s salty and creamy taste just makes me feel like I’m home. It’s also a great dish for the whole family since children like it a lot.
One thing about mac and cheese is that you would need a lot of cheese, hence the name. The problem with this is that normal cheese can take a lot of time to fully melt and cover all the bits and pieces of the pasta.
Using normal cheese would also take a lot of effort since you would have to grate it first before melting it. It’s a good thing that we have canned cheese sauce to make our lives a little easier!
So for this article, I will be teaching you how to make mac and cheese using canned cheese sauce using three simple steps. Are you ready? Let’s get started!
What You’ll Need
To start making your mac and cheese dish, you will need to gather these simpleingredients:
5-6 Cups Of Cooked Macaroni Pasta
To make your mac and cheese, you should prepare 5-6 cups of macaroni pasta. You can use any brand of pasta for this dish, but I prefer large sized macaroni pasta because it is easier to eat with with a fork.
You can prepare your pasta by cooking it in boiling water with a pinch of salt for flavor. Once the pasta is thoroughly cooked, all you have to do is strain it, and can set it aside to cool.
2 Cups Of Canned Cheese Sauce
For this mac and cheese dish, you can use any brand of canned cheese sauce that you prefer. You can buy all sorts of canned cheese sauce in your local grocery store.
However, for this recipe, you should choose the undiluted canned cheese sauce because we will be diluting it with milk later on. If you do chose to go with the diluted canned cheese sauce, you should no longer use the 1 cup of milk listed in this recipe.
1-2 Cups Of Grated Cheddar Cheese
You might think that you would not need more cheese for this dishbecause of the canned cheese sauce, but the added cheddar cheese will add a tangy flavor to your mac and cheese dish. It will also make you dish look more appealing once it has melted all over the top of your dish.
If you’re also a cheese lover such as myself, you are free to add more types of cheeses to this dish. If you wish to make the dish all gooey, you can add some grated mozzarella cheese to the mix.
1 Cup Of Milk
You can use whatever kind of milk for this mac and cheese dish. You cango with skim milk, whole milk, or nonfat milk. The milk will only be used to dilute the canned cheese sauce, but I personally prefer going with whole milk because it leaves off a creamier feel once mixed with the canned cheese sauce.
2 Tablespoons Of Butter
You can also use any brand of butter for this dish. Butter is an importantpart of mac and cheese because it brings together all the flavors of the ingredients used in this dish. I would also recommend using salted butter instead of unsalted butter because it adds more flavor to the dish.
1/2 Cup Freshly Chopped Onion
For this dish you should use the white onion instead of the red onion.White onions are used for this dish because of the sweet flavor once it is cooked. You must not use the red onion as it might overpower the dish’s flavor. You can prepare your onion by chopping it into small diced pieces and setting it aside with your pasta.
4 Slices Of Bacon
This recipe only requires four slices of bacon, but if you’re a bacon loverjust like me, you should feel free to add more bacon slices. You can also slice the bacon into smaller bits and pieces if that’s what you prefer. I personally prefer slicing it into small bits so that it would mix well with the whole dish.
1 Deep Dish Casserole Dish
You should prepare your deep dish casserole dish by smothering somebutter all over its base and sides. This is important because it will keep the pasta from sticking to the base and the sides while it cooks inside the oven.
If you do not have a deep dish casserole dish that can fit all of the ingredients, you could always set aside the excess ingredients and repeat the steps once you are done with the first batch.
Let’s Get Started!
Step 1: Preparing the Sauce
To prepare your mac and cheese sauce, thoroughly mix two tablespoons ofbutter, a cup of milk, and two cups of the canned cheese sauce in a bowl. One thing you should make sure of is that there are no lumps of butter left when you are done mixing the sauce.
If you did choose to go with the diluted canned cheese sauce, there will be no need to take this step, and you should proceed directly to step 2.
Step 2: Preparing the Casserole
It is fairly easy to make your own mac and cheese. The first thing you’ll need todo cover the base of your deep dish casserole dish with pasta. Once you have filled about 1/2 or your casserole dish with pasta, you can now add one cup of your sauce into the casserole dish.
Once half of the casserole dish is filled with pasta and the cheese sauce, youshould add your diced onions followed by a cup or half a cup of grated cheddar cheese on top. When you are done with topping the pasta and onions with the grated cheddar cheese. You should now fill the casserole dish with the rest of your pasta and cheese sauce mixture.
When you’re done filling your casserole dish with all of the pasta and the cheese sauce, you should now put the bacon slices or bacon bits on top of the dish followed by the rest of your grated cheese.
Another thing you can do if you choose to go with bacon slices, is you can make a bacon weave and put it on top of your pasta followed by a sprinkle of grated cheese.
Step 3: Baking the Mac and Cheese
Once you are done preparing the casserole, you should now put it in your ovenand set the oven’s temperature to 350 degrees. Baking the mac and cheese would not take too long and would only take about 40 minutes.
Once the 40 minutes are up, you can now carefully take you deep dish casserole dish out of the oven, and you will now be left with a heavenly dish of mac and cheese covered with crispy bacon and melted cheese.
Pro Tips Diluting Canned Cheese Sauce
You should always dilute your canned cheese sauce in milk. If you add the undiluted canned cheese sauce directly to your dish, you might end up with a dish that is too salty to bear.
Take note the 1:2 ratio between undiluted canned cheese sauces and milk, this means that for every cup of canned cheese sauce, you should use half a cup of milk.
Making Al Dente Macaroni
Aside from following the instructions listed on the pasta’s packaging, you can figure out whether a pasta is truly al dente by tasting it as it cooks. You will know a pasta is completely al dente when you feel a firm but soft consistency when you try biting the pasta.
Another thing you can check for when cooking pasta, is the color of the pasta itself. A truly al dente pasta should have an even color all throughout. You can check this by simply slicing a piece of pasta in half, and checking whether its insides have the same color as its outside.
Did you like the mac and cheese you ended up with? I hope you had a great and easy time cooking this dish as much as I did. You can use this recipe if you are preparing for a children’s party, or if you are trying to impress a date, or if you’re simple craving for a cheesy dish of mac and cheese.
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