The recipe for delicious Extra Cheesy Homemade Mac and Cheese is not as difficult as you think, Apronese will show you how to make it easily in 20 minutes.

Just straight up, creamy, comforting, cheesy goodness. The recipe that leaves you satisfied when eating pasta, is both delicious and addictive and suitable for many ages. It would be a mistake not to add it to your favorite recipes from now on.

Overhead view of a bowl of mac and cheese with a fork

Why Is It so Cheesy?

The homemade mac and cheese I made today was incredibly cheesy. I used a bit more roux and added about 30% more cheese than I normally do to my stovetop mac and cheese recipes. And I’m not even sorry for that.

I was able to sneak forkfuls of the mac and cheese even between taking photographs because the thicker sauce and extra cheese made it so creamy and cheesy that I was unable to stop eating it. It stays the same when you reheat it in the microwave, so you’re in heaven when it’s mac and cheese heaven.

Roux – What Is It?

It is a classic mac and cheese recipe that starts by making a roux, which is made from a mixture of flour and fat (in this case, butter). Roux thickens sauces and makes them easier to melt the cheese into the sauce without it clumping up as it melts into it.

In spite of the fact that there are a number of ways to make a cheese sauce without using a roux, taking this extra step for mac and cheese will definitely result in a creamy, dreamy cheese sauce.

How Do I Choose the Best Cheese for My Mac and Cheese?

It is likely that cheddar cheese will serve as the most popular cheese for macaroni and cheese, and sharp cheddar will offer the most pronounced taste.

But if you want to experiment outside of the confines of cheddar cheese, there are a lot of other cheeses that you can use in macaroni and cheese that are great, too! Whether you use one cheese or a combination of cheeses, your mac and cheese can be truly unique.

Other cheeses that would make a great accompaniment to macaroni and cheese include:

  • Parmesan
  • Gruyere
  • Smoked Gouda
  • Parmesan
  • Chevre
  • Cream Cheese
  • Brie
  • Monterey jack or pepper jack

Avoid Pre-Shredded Cheese

I know it’s convenient, but the anti-caking agents used in pre-shredded cheese will, without a doubt, affect the creaminess of your homemade mac and cheese, without a doubt.

You might want to choose cheese that is in block form and take a few moments to grate yourself so that your sauce will not be dried out and will have a truly creamy and smooth taste. If you choose this method, you will end up with a very grainy and chalky sauce.

Side view of mac and cheese in a pot

What Else Can I Add to Mac and Cheese?

You can add in your favorite herbs and spices, add in a little vegetable, or add in a favorite protein, and even switch up the cheeses to make your own homemade mac and cheese creation.

In addition to changing up the cheeses, you can also add in some vegetables or your favorite protein to make your own mac and cheese. You can also add in some fun ingredients to your mac and cheese, including:

  • Cooked chicken
  • Broccoli
  • Bacon
  • Spinach
  • Kimchi
  • Pesto
  • Sausage
  • Taco meat or taco seasoning
  • Smoked paprika
  • Sriracha
  • Peas
  • Tuna
  • Salsa
  • Rotel
  • Jalapeños
  • Sour cream
  • Cauliflower
  • Ham
  • Buffalo sauce

Need Some Inspiration?

Hopefully the list of add-ins that I have listed here won’t overwhelm you a bit, but here are a few Macaroni and Cheese Recipes that I’ve already created in the past that might be helpful to get you started:

  • Cheesy Vegetarian Chili Mac
  • White Cheddar Mac and Cheese with Chicken and Broccoli
  • Green Chile Mac and Cheese
  • Creamy Pesto Mac with Spinach
  • Jalapeño Popper Mac and Cheese
  • One Pot Bacon and Broccoli Mac and Cheese

Overhead view of homemade mac and cheese in the pot

Homemade Mac and Cheese

A great way to start your day is to make this delicious homemade mac and cheese that is incredibly creamy and cheesy. You can serve it on its own or as a basis for creating your own dish.

Author: Beth

Prep Time: 5 mins/ Cook Time: 20 mins/ Total Time: 25 mins

Servings: 4 about 1.25 cups each


  • 8 oz. macaroni ($0.67)
  • 3 Tbsp butter ($0.30)
  • 3 Tbsp all-purpose flour ($0.03)
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder ($0.05)
  • 2 cups whole milk ($0.84)
  • 1/2 tsp hot sauce* ($0.02)
  • 1/2 tsp salt ($0.03)
  • 8 oz. block sharp cheddar, shredded ($2.25)


  • Using a colander, drain the macaroni in a colander and cook the macaroni following the package instructions (boil the macaroni for 7-8 minutes, or until it reaches the desired tenderness).
  • When the butter, flour, and onion powder are combined in a medium pot, whisk carefully to prevent any lumps from forming. When the butter melts, continue to whisk and cook for one minute over medium heat until the mixture begins to bubble.
  • There will be a thickening of the liquid after the butter and flour roux has been cooked and incorporated into the milk mixture, so you will need to continue to cook and whisk over medium heat until the mixture begins to gently simmer until the solution becomes the consistency of heavy cream or gravy.
  • Once the burner has been turned off, season the white sauce with the salt and the hot sauce and allow it to cool.
  • Incorporate the shredded cheddar, one handful at a time, whisking it into the sauce until it is completely melted. Continue adding the cheese until the sauce is completely melted. In the event that the sauce becomes too cold for the cheese to melt, place it over low heat only briefly to continue melting the cheese. Overheating can cause the sauce to break and turn grainy.
  • In a large pot, add the drained rigatoni, cook it until it is al dente (about 5 minutes) and add the cheese sauce and stir to combine. Serve the mac and cheese hot and enjoy!

*If you wish to make the macaroni and cheese spicy or spicy-free, you simply add 15 to 20 drops of hot sauce. This does not make the macaroni and cheese spicy or hot. It just brightens up the flavor a bit. You can also achieve this with Dijon mustard.


Serving: 1 serving ・ Calories: 610 kcal ・ Carbohydrates: 53 g ・ Protein: 26 g ・ Fat: 32 g ・ Sodium: 787 mg ・ Fiber: 2 g

The nutritional values shown here are only estimates. Please see our nutrition disclaimer.


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side view of macaroni and cheese in a bowl with a fork

Macaroni and Cheese Recipe: How to Make – Step by Step Photos

Shredded cheddar in a bowl

To begin, shred a block of sharp cheddar cheese that weighs about 8 ounces. It is important that you shred the cheese yourself rather than use pre-shredded cheese in the recipe, but for more information on that, please refer to the section above the recipe entitled “Avoid Pre-Shredded Cheese”.

boiled macaroni held above the pot with a pasta spoon

It is then necessary to boil 8 oz. of macaroni according to the package instructions (boil for 7-8 minutes or until just tender).

Once done, drain the macaroni in a colander. (This is the Barilla elbow macaroni, which has a slightly unconventional shape and texture).

Butter flour and onion powder in the pot

As the macaroni is boiling, you can start making the cheese sauce either immediately or just wait until it is draining so you will save on doing dishes.

If you decide to make the cheese sauce immediately, you will need three tablespoons of butter, three tablespoons of all-purpose flour, and 12 teaspoons of onion powder.

Roux being whisked in the pot

Over medium heat, start melting the butter in the pot and whisk in the flour and onion powder as the mixture begins to bubble and froth.

Cook and continue whisking for about one minute after it begins to bubble and foam. When it is bubbly, remove from the heat and remove from the pot.

Milk being poured into the pot

When the butter and flour roux has been whisked into the milk, continue whisking and stirring as the milk begins to heat up (keep the pot on medium heat over the course of the cooking).

Thickened white sauce on the back of a spoon

Once the milk has come to a gentle simmer, turn the burner off when the milk is thick enough to thicken to the consistency of cream or gravy. Once the milk has reached a gentle simmer, turn the burner off.

salt and hot sauce added to the white sauce

As a seasoning, you can combine 1 teaspoon of salt with 1 teaspoon of hot sauce, or you can choose any other seasonings that you like (enjoy also smoked paprika, pepper, dry mustard, smoked mustard, pesto, etc.).

shredded cheddar added to the pot

When the cheddar is completely melted, begin adding a handful of shredded cheese to the pot at a time. Whisk until the cheddar is completely melted and continue adding it until the cheese is completely melted.

Occasionally, if a sauce becomes too cool to continue melting the cheese, you can warm it over a low heat briefly, but make sure you don’t allow it to simmer again. If you overheat cheese sauces, they will become grainy and oily and will break.

Finished cheese sauce dripping off the whisk

In order for the cheese sauce to be complete, all of the cheese must be melted into the sauce. Taste it at this point, and adjust the seasonings as necessary.

Keep in mind that the intensity of flavor will be diluted a bit once macaroni is added. You want to season the sauce well.

Cooked macaroni being stirred into the cheese sauce

Stir the hot cheese sauce and macaroni together in a large pot and then add back the drained and cooked macaroni to the pot.

Finished mac and cheese in the pot

There you have it! Your homemade mac and cheese is now ready to dig into. If you ask me, I’m sure you wouldn’t mind diving right into the pot of flavorful mac and cheese and swimming about a bit in it.

You must make this dish right away, Apronese believes that this is an extremely easy dish to make for you and your family a delicious and extremely delicious dinner. Don’t forget to share this interesting recipe with as many people as possible.