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Classic Baked Macaroni and Cheese

This baked macaroni and cheese recipe is an old classic one that I grew up on. Choose your shredded cheese and bake this until all the cheese is melty and bubbly.

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Do you like to make your own macaroni and cheese? If so, this recipe is for you. This classic baked macaroni and cheese recipe will give you the best tasting results. Want to try it?

Classic Comfort Food

Homemade Mac & Cheese is a simple comfort food that everyone should have a go-to recipe for. This one is mine.

It’s cheesy, creamy, and uncomplicated. Everything a good mac & cheese should be.

Everyone has a favorite food. For some, it’s macaroni and cheese. It may seem as though you can find this dish anywhere, but that is not the case. I have been to my share of restaurants and catered events where they serve something called macaroni and cheese, but when I take a bite, there’s always something missing. These dishes are often too creamy or too cheesy or even lack flavor altogether.

Thankfully, with a little effort on my part I am able to make my own macaroni and cheese at home that tastes just like it should: perfect! In order to achieve this goal, all one needs is some pasta (elbow noodles work best), milk- preferably whole milk for extra creaminess

Classic Baked Macaroni and Cheese
Classic Baked Macaroni and Cheese

Betty Crocker’s Original Pioneer Macaroni and Cheese Recipe

The basis for this mac and cheese recipe is the Betty Crocker’s Original Recipe that I grew up on. Same ingredients, just a slight variation in the amounts. Double the macaroni, more cheese, and less milk. It is still a classic.

Meatless Monday Meals or Great as a Side Dish

Just like the Kraft macaroni and cheese that many of us are all familiar with, this can be eaten as a side dish and is easy to make. For many of us, I know that we have all had a large bowl of mac and cheese and called that a meal. We still do once in a while. Sometimes we want a meal without meat and fuss, or we just want a hearty mac and cheese. This is a great side or meal for a weeknight.

Very easy recipe even for a beginner cook.

Bowl of Macaroni and Cheese
Bowl of Macaroni and Cheese

Enjoy the Next Day Too With These Yummy Leftovers

The bowl of macaroni and cheese was heated in the microwave with a bit of butter. It is just as delicious as the first day. Another reheating option is to melt a bit of butter in a non-stick pan and heat up over the stove. The oven is a great option to re-heat larger amounts. No matter how you choose to enjoy this, there are easy options for you.

Macaroni and Cheese with a Hint of Smoky Flavor

The paprika adds a little bit of extra smoky flavor of the paprika. Therefore, we make sure that there is a bit extra sprinkled on. Please be sure to adjust this or any recipe to your taste preferences.

Baked Mac and Cheese Just out of the Oven
Baked Mac and Cheese Just out of the Oven

Truly Easy Mac and Cheese

Some recipes start with a roux. This one does not. I repeat, this one does not. Cooking the noodles to al dente helps them soak up the milk in the recipe. Between the cheese, milk, and pasta, a creamy gooey sauce is created that is delicious.

What is Al Dente Pasta?

The pasts will feel firm, not crunchy, when bitten or smooshed between your fingers. Al dente pasta means to cook the pasta almost all of the way through with a small core of uncooked pasta in the middle. When using pasta cooked to this stage, it continues to soak up any liquid as the pasta continues to swell.

Classic Baked Macaroni and Cheese Served
Classic Baked Macaroni and Cheese Served
Simple Ingredients and Easy Comfort Food
Classic Baked Macaroni and Cheese 1
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Classic Baked Macaroni and Cheese

This macaroni and cheese is one recipe that I grew up with that I still enjoy eating today. Use your oven to bake a delicious pasta dish.
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time40 minutes
Total Time50 minutes
Course: Main Dish, Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: casserole, Cheese, Comfort food, Pasta, recipe
Servings: 10 Servings
Calories: 384kcal


  • 16 Oz. elbow macaroni cooked to al dente and drained
  • 16 Oz. Shredded Cheese Cheddar, colby/jack, or mozzerella (any kind you like)
  • 3 Cups whole milk
  • 4 Tbl butter
  • 1/2 Tsp. salt or to taste
  • 1/2 Tsp. pepper or to taste
  • 1 Tsp. Paprika or to taste


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Prepare 9 X 13 baking dish by spraying with oil or lightly buttering. Add the cooked and drained pasta that is cooked to al dente.
  • Add the shredded cheese, whole milk, salt, and pepper.
  • Dot with butter and sprinkle the paprika on top.
    Macaroni and Cheese Ready to Bake
  • Bake until golden brown on top. Approximately 40 minutes.

Your Own Private Notes




Calories: 384kcal | Carbohydrates: 40g | Protein: 19g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Cholesterol: 43mg | Sodium: 414mg | Potassium: 237mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 441IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 330mg | Iron: 1mg
Tried this recipe? Share a photo and tag us — we can’t wait to see what you’ve made! @patternprincess1 or tag #Patternprincess!

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I hope that you liked this recipe. If you are looking for more ideas on what to make, here are a few other recipes that you may enjoy.

Side Dish Recipes

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