Mac and cheese is one of the more amazing foods on the planet and I’m pretty sure everyone on the planet agrees with me on this. But, it does take some time, and multiple pots/pans/baking dishes. There are days where I’m totally good with that. I want that perfectly crisped from the oven bread crumb topping, melty cheese, and perfectly al dente noodles; and, here’s the caveat, I can wait patiently for it to all come together. But there are those days, days where we must have mac and cheese now, NOW, NOW!
The kids might just be uber cranky. And you might have finally, just, finished cleaning up the entire box of cheerios they dumped on the floor, after someone figured out how to open the cabinet. And it might be dinner time now. Like RIGHT now.
Or, you might just be running super late doing your gorgeous glamour girl make up for a dinner party. A dinner party where you’re going to see your ex-boyfirend with his new girlfriend. Which, of course, means your make up must in fact turn out perfect. And you should probably pick out a cuter outfit, now that you think about it. And on top of it all you need a speedy, delectable, impressive, crowd pleasing dish to bring; because you totally found out last minute dinner is a pot luck.
Or, it just might have been a long crummy day and you urgently need carbs. It doesn’t matter. I have good news for you regardless of wether your situation more closely resemble scenario a, b, or c….
Dun-ta-da-dun! It’s lazy, yet ammmayyyzing stove top mac and cheese to the rescue. One pot. A lot of cheese. Creamy melty goodness that comes together in less then 15 minutes. Happy children. Happy Mommy. Perfect Makeup. Ex-boyfriend who realizes how stupid he is. And a big plate of carbs. The day’s looking up.
The obvious secret to making this dish so speedy is making everything stove top. The bigger secret is skipping the traditional roux used as the base of most mac and cheese recipes. This means one pot start to finish. No oven time, and only two steps, means it’s no time at all till the macs’ ready. The secret to big flavor? Three cheeses. (Whatever you have on hand will work, though I’m partial to what I suggested in the recipe below.) The secret for creaminess? Well, cream. And some milk so things don’t get too rich. A touch of butter rounds things out nicely. You can add some herbs or spices if you’re feeling fancy; rosemary is particularly nice in my opinion; but this one is good served up plain Jane, with no adornments.
I promise this will not disappoint.
Lazy, Yet Amazing Stovetop Mac and Cheese
- 1 lb (one box) Pasta any shape
- 2 cups shredded Sharp Cheddar Cheese
- 1 and 1/2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese
- 1/2 cup fresh grated parmesan (the stuff in the jar will work too)
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1/4 cup cream
- 1/4 milk
1. In a large pot, cook the pasta according to the packages al dente directions.
2. Drain the pasta and return to the pot, over a low heat. Add the cheese, butter, cream, and milk to the pot. Stir well to mix all ingredients. Allow everything to melt together, 2-3 minutes, stirring frequently to prevent burning. Serve hot. Consider garnishing with additional shredded cheese, if desired.