I don't really care if mac 'n cheese belongs or doesn't belong at a Thanksgiving meal but there are members of my family, who feel passionately that mac 'n cheese should be on their plate at Thanksgiving. Along with sliced turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, sweet potatoes, cornbread dressing, rolls, cranberry sauce and green beans. Did I forget something? This year will be a non Thanksgiving Thanksgiving, thanks to our soaring cases of Covid. I would be happy with elbows baked in a cheese sauce, butter flecked bread crumbs on top and a green salad with mustard in the dressing for dinner. Maybe a glass of wine 🍷 We can have a proper Thanksgiving at another safer to gather time in the future.
This baked version of mac 'n cheese is easy, no need to make a sauce on your stove, everything to make a sauce goes in the blender and I do love my NutriBullet.
Ingredients and Recipe for Easy Baked Mac 'N Cheese
Serves 2 generously
Serves 2 generously
1 cup elbow macaroni
1 cup whole milk
2 tablespoons all purpose flour
1 tablespoon minced shallots
1/2 teaspoon sea salt, plus extra for pasta water
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 & 1/2 cups grated Cheddar cheese
1/2 cup grated Gruyère cheese
2/3 cup Panko bread crumbs
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, plus extra to butter the ramekins
1/4 teaspoon sweet Paprika
Preheat the oven to 350F
Butter 2 medium size, minimum 10 ounce size, individual baking dishes
Cook the elbow macaroni in salted water according to al dente package directions, add the minced shallots to the elbow macaroni in the last minute of cooking. Drain the elbow macaroni and shallots, set aside in a large bowl.
In a blender, I love my NutriBullet, pour in the milk, flour, 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper to taste, blend on high speed.
Stir the milk mixture and cheeses into the cooked elbows until combined.
Divide the mixture into the prepared baking dishes.
Sprinkle half the Panko over each baking dish, drizzle with melted butter and sprinkle with paprika.
Bake for about 45 minutes or until golden brown on top and looks like the picture.
Let cool for a few minutes before serving.