Boys Who Can Cook

Macking Cheese

8 servings


20 minutes

active time

35 minutes

total time


1 lb. dried elbow pasta

1/2 cup unsalted butter

1/2 cup all purpose flour

1 1/2 cups whole milk (or vanilla almond milk NOOOOO)

2 1/2 cups half and half

4 cups shredded medium sharp cheddar cheese (divided (measured after shredding))

2 cups shredded Gruyere cheese (divided (measured after shredding)) Use Swiss as a substitute (cheaper)

1/2 Tbsp. salt

1/2 tsp. black pepper

1/4 tsp. paprika


Preheat oven to 325 degrees F and grease a 3 qt baking dish (9x13"). Set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. When boiling, add dried pasta and cook 1 minute less than the package directs for al dente. Drain and drizzle with a little bit of olive oil to keep from sticking.

While water is coming up to a boil, shred cheeses and toss together to mix, then divide into three piles. Â Approximately 3 cups for the sauce, 1 1/2 cups for the inner layer, and 1 1/2 cups for the topping.

Melt butter in a large saucepan over MED heat. Â Sprinkle in flour and whisk to combine. Â Mixture will look like very wet sand. Â Cook for approximately 1 minute, whisking often. Â Slowly pour in about 2 cups or so of the half and half, while whisking constantly, until smooth. Â Slowly pour in the remaining half and half and the whole milk, while whisking constantly, until combined and smooth.

Continue to heat over MED heat, whisking very often, until thickened to a very thick consistency. It should almost be the consistency of a semi thinned out condensed soup.

Remove from the heat and stir in spices and 1 1/2 cups of the cheeses, stirring to melt and combine. Â Stir in another 1 1/2 cups of cheese, and stir until completely melted and smooth.

In a large mixing bowl, combine drained pasta with cheese sauce, stirring to combine fully. Â Pour half of the pasta mixture into the prepared baking dish. Â Top with 1 1/2 cups of shredded cheeses, then top that with the remaining pasta mixture.

Sprinkle the top with the last 1 1/2 cups of cheese and bake for 15 minutes, until cheesy is bubbly and lightly golden brown. Â


Serving Size



665 kcal

Total Fat

41 g

Saturated Fat

25 g

Unsaturated Fat


Trans Fat



126 mg


700 mg

Total Carbohydrate

43 g

Dietary Fiber

1 g

Total Sugars

3 g


28 g

8 servings


20 minutes

active time

35 minutes

total time
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