The Mac & Cheese Rules

The Mac & Cheese Rules

Let me start by saying I LOVE mac ‘n cheese.  It is my all time favorite side dish.  I enjoy making it and of course partaking in devouring it.  As the Thanksgiving holiday approached, I got excited about all the mac ‘n cheese I planned to eat.  Then something odd happened, it seemed like everyone was presenting their own spin on mac ‘n cheese AND about 50% of these versions broke the cardinal rules!  Scrolling social media, I found myself saying “oh no baby what is you doin’ ” countless times!  So I decided that as a connoisseur of mac ‘n cheese I should share THE Mac & Cheese Rules so everyone can go forth and prosper!

The RULES

  • Mac ‘n cheese requires a cheese sauce (or roux), which generally combines milk and cheese on the stove before adding it to the pasta.  Some people also start with flour, but it still ends with cheese!  If you have no cheese in the cheese sauce then that dish is mac ‘n milk and I will not be eating it!
  • I am also not a fan of the butter and cheese sauce combination I have seen recently either.  Where is the milk or half and half?  Butter and cheddar cheese looks just like the cheese in the Kraft mac and cheese packages and that’s a no.
  • If your dish does not head to the oven to get nice and golden before serving, God ain’t in that and I am not eating it!  Without the oven, it is glorified Kraft macaroni and we should be elevating past that!
  • If you mix in shredded cheese with the dry pasta thinking you are about to make a bomb mac and cheese, I have some bad news for you.   The shredded cheese only adds extra cheesiness and provides nice crunchy top after going in the oven!  It cannot be your only cheese! If you find yourself doing this, start back at rule #1 above!
  • I also slightly judge folks who do not shred their own cheese. I say slightly because I just elevated to this greatness a few years back and welcome you all to join me in the promise land!  Some of your best cheeses for mac are not bagged and sold in your grocer’s cheese aisle.  Make your way to the deli section and get yo life with me!
  • I know some will say skip out on the velveeta because it isn’t real cheese.  I just cannot bring myself to say this ’cause I grew up on velveeta.  BUT, when I am feeling fancy cheeses like parmigiano reggiano, gouda and sharp cheddar are in the mix. They are definitley better than velveeta.

    The Mac and Cheese Rules-1

    A velvetta based mac and cheese that I would still tear up today despite my expanded palette.

  • There are some things you can add to mac ‘n cheese that could take it up a notch.  Like bread crumbs, lobster, crab or bacon.  There are other things that you should NOT, like squash and brussel sprouts.

    The Mac and Cheese Rules

    A version of my mac and cheese with bacon and bread crumbs before going in the oven.

The Takeaway

So I guess it would make sense to accompany this post with my own mac and cheese recipe, but I do not follow one.  Honestly, I play around with other folks’ recipes or I just let the lord use me by following the above rules!

What were some crazy mac and cheese recipes you all saw this past Thanksgiving? What are some of your mac and cheese tricks? Comment and let me know!

By |2017-11-27T22:47:45-05:00November 28th, 2017|Categories: Recipes, Tips and Tricks, Top Lists|2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Kaye November 28, 2017 at 2:27 pm - Reply

    These rules are gospel for mac and cheese. I saute onion and garlic before I make my reaux and I use the fancy cheeses, fontina, gruyere and sharp cheddar. We call it Fancy Mac. Great post!

    • Erika | Black Girls Who Brunch November 28, 2017 at 4:49 pm - Reply

      YES! I have used garlic as well and I often add a bit of onion powder to the roux before adding it to the pasta. Those are also great cheese. A recipe I have used will add fontina cubes through out the mac. SO GOOD! Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

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