Southern Macaroni and Cheese is the ultimate comfort food everyone loves. Rich and creamy, and perfect for a holiday side dish or Sunday dinner.
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Four different kinds of cheese are baked to perfection for those delicious crispy edges. My Creamy Stovetop Mac and Cheese have always been a huge hit or one with a crispy topping and a little more kick try my Bacon Jalapeno Mac n Cheese with a side of my Skillet Cornbread.
Why this recipe works
The texture of this Mac and cheese is perfectly firm yet creamy and is a perfect side dish to this Reverse Sear Tri Tip!. This cast iron skillet Mac is hearty enough to serve on its own or makes a perfect side dish to my Oven Baked Ribs. No need to make a fancy cheese sauce just throw everything in a dish and bake, so easy!
- Pasta: I like to use elbow macaroni with little ridges on the sides. Small pasta shells work great.
- Sausages: Smoked sausage or hotlinks.
- Egg: Add as a binder to the pasta.
- Cheese: I like using a blend of Mozzarella, sharp cheddar cheese, pepper jack, and Colby jack cheese.
- Spices: Garlic powder, Onions powder, paprika.
- Cream: Heavy cream allows for that creamy texture.
- Milk: Whole milk is best here.
How to make this recipe
- Step 1: In a large cast iron skillet on medium heat add the sliced hot links and cook just until browned.
- Step 2: Heat a large pasta pot with water and once it's boiling cook pasta to just under al dente, drain and pour back into the pot. Add the pats of butter and toss until melted.
- Step 3: Toss the butter with the cooked pasta and add the heavy cream, milk, and sour cream and toss.
- Step 4: Mix in the whisked eggs and spices.
- Step 5: Add in all of the shredded cheeses leave some out for the top and mix.
- Step 6: Pour the mixture back into the skillet or baking dish, add the remaining cheese on top of the mac, and bake.
- Step 7: Pour the macaroni and cheese into a cast iron casserole dish or baking dish.
- Step 8: Add the remaining cheese on top and bake.
- Cook pasta just under al dente, it continues to cook more in the oven.
- Shred your own cheese, pre-shredded bag cheese doesn't melt as well.
- Let it sit: The same will seem runny at first but as it cools it will thicken up.
Yes, you can really use whatever type of cheese you prefer to try adding in some smoked gouda, fontina, or simply Monterey jack
Yes, you can prepare and assemble this cheesy pasta the day before, cover it with plastic wrap, and place it in the refrigerator. Make sure you remove it from the refrigerator 30 minutes prior to going into the oven.
No, covering it will steam the pasta and not allow any crispy edges to form.
Store in an airtight container for up to 4 days, and reheat in the microwave. This sauce will soak into the macaroni and thicken after being refrigerated. You can add a tablespoon or 2 of milk before reheating.
Southern Macaroni and Cheese
- 16 ounces of elbow macaroni
- 3 smoked sausages or hot links cut into slices
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 7 tablespoons butter sliced
- 3 cups heavy cream
- 1 cup whole milk
- ¼ cup sour cream
- 2 eggs whisked
- 1 teaspoon granulated garlic
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 2 cups Colby jack cheese shredded
- 1 cup Pepper Jack cheese shredded
- 1 cup mozzarella cheese cut into small cubes
- 1 ½ cup sharp shredded cheese shredded
- Fresh chopped parsley
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- Heat a large pot of water and cook pasta according to the pkg instructions to al dente. Drain and pour back into the pot.
- Heat a large 12 inch skillet on medium-high heat and add I teaspoon of olive oil and the sliced hot links, cook for about 5 minutes until browned and remove to a plate.
- Add the butter into the pot and toss with the pasta until melted.
- Pour in the cream, milk, and sour cream and mix.
- Add in the whisked eggs and spices and mix until combined.
- Add in all of the shredded cheese except the sharp cheddar, and the smoked sausage. And toss to combine.
- Pour the pasta back into the cast iron skillet. Sprinkle the remaining cheese on top.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes or until bubbly.
- Remove from the oven and let set for 10 minutes to thicken up a bit.
cheese in a 9x11 baking dish. To get a little more of a crust on the top turn on the broiler for the last 2-3 minutes, just keep an eye
on it though.