Good Cheese For Mac And Cheese

While we may keep a couple boxes of instant macaroni and cheese on hand for emergencies, we know that making mac and cheese from scratch is the best way to make the most of this comfort food. When we’re not using instant mac, we can’t help but wonder what may be the best cheese to use in macaroni and cheese. And to no one’s surprise, there isn’t really one right answer.

You could say that we like mac and cheese better than people, but really, we’re just dedicated to this perfect food. Honestly, your cooking skills are not up to par unless you have a horde of comforting, cheesy recipes in your arsenal. But you don’t have to be a master chef to make the creamiest, gooiest dish ever. All you need are a couple of mac and cheese hacks that will lead you down the right path.

  • The Best Brussels Sprouts Caesar Salad. Somewhere between a salad and a slaw, this Brussels.
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  • Parmesan: Spinach And Artichoke Mac And Cheese. When paired with Greek yogurt, parmesan.
  • Sep 13, 2016 The sharper, more complex flavors of aged cheddar team up well with salty Parmesan cheese. This combo is amazing in grilled cheese sandwiches — and the same goes for mac and cheese. Italian Parmesan's slightly fruity, subtly nutty notes and grittier texture pair beautifully with the smoother, creamier mouth feel of cheddar.

It may take some experimentation for you to find the perfect mac recipe for your taste buds, but we can guarantee that these 11 cheeses all make the dish great in their own way. Whether you’re looking for some mac and cheese with a kick, or you want to make a creamier casserole, one of these delicious cheeses is sure to do the trick.

Apr 05, 2020 The Super Basic Mac and Cheese Recipe. So, the MOST basic of basic mac and cheese is usually made from a box. There are a zillion variations, but the boxed variety will get you started down the path of mac and cheese success. Start with boxed mac and cheese such as Kraft Dinner, Velveeta Shells & Cheese, or Annie’s Shells & White Cheddar.

1. Parmesan: Spinach And Artichoke Mac And Cheese

When paired with Greek yogurt, parmesan makes a creamy bowl of mac and cheese. Damn Delicious mixes in spinach and artichokes to mimic your favorite cheesy dip.

2. Feta: Fire-Roasted Mac And Cheese With Feta

This crumbly cheese may seem an odd choice, but when it's whisked into a white sauce with white cheddar and Monterey Jack, it's just right in Mel's Kitchen Cafe's Mediterranean-inspired mac.

3. Cottage Cheese: Gooey Baked Mac And Cheese With Chorizo And Peppers

Surprise! Cottage cheese can totally be comfort food, especially when The Crepes of Wrath combines it with cheddar for the creamiest baked mac and cheese ever.

What cheese is good for mac and cheese

4. Gouda: Gouda And Spinach Shells And Cheese

The sharp, unique taste of gouda makes Naturally Ella's veggie mac and cheese taste like a grown-up version of your favorite shells.

5. Brie: Creamy Brie Four-Cheese Mac And Cheese

Easy Mac And Cheese Muffins

Of course the creamiest cheese of all makes Half Baked Harvest's four-cheese mac taste otherworldly. Fontina, havarti, and white cheddar round out the dish.

6. Gruyere Bacon Mac And Cheese

This hard yellow cheese melts into the most mouthwatering gooey sauce, so Damn Delicious' bacon mac and cheese is pretty much the definition of comfort food.

7. Cream Cheese: Tuscan Mac And Cheese Bake

Don't save your cream cheese for bagels and cheesecake. Use it instead to make Mel's Kitchen Cafe's wonderfully creamy mac and cheese. Mozzarella and parmesan top off the Italian-inspired dish.

8. Monterey Jack: Creamy Stovetop Jalapeño Mac And Cheese

A classic in the mac and cheese game, Monterey Jack is slightly sweeter and creamier than cheddar, making it the perfect complement to the hot jalapeños in I Am A Food Blog's mac.

9. Cheddar: Ultimate Mac And Cheese Casserole For Two

This one's a no-brainer: Table for Two knows that you simply just can't go wrong with cheddar.

10. Pepper Jack: Emma's Favorite Baked Macaroni

Pepper Jack makes it easy to add just a slight spicy kick to your favorite mac and cheese recipe. A Beautiful Mess' baked version is a classic.

11. American: Stovetop Macaroni And Cheese

Paired with cheddar and Monterey Jack, American cheese helps make Brown Eyed Baker's stovetop mac and cheese a simple, creamy meal with its easy-to-melt consistency.

Looking for more great food ideas? Check out Bustle on YouTube.

Images: I Am A Food Blog (2); Damn Delicious (2); Mel's Kitchen Cafe; The Crepes of Wrath; Naturally Ella; Half Baked Harvest; Table for Two; A Beautiful Mess; Brown Eyed Baker

Best Cheese For Stovetop Mac And Cheese

ByAND/Sept. 13, 2016 3:42 pm EDT/Updated: Jan. 3, 2020 4:06 pm EDT

Instant macaroni and cheese might pass the college dorm test — and we all know there's a time and a place for that blue box of Kraft Macaroni & Cheese.

But we all learn eventually that nothing beats the real stuff. When it's done right, homemade mac and cheese has the potential to be truly transformative — the stuff dreams are made of. If you don't agree, then you haven't had the good stuff.

Luckily for all of us cheesy carb lovers, this meal is simple to whip up from scratch. Like most dishes you'll cook, half the battle is won (or lost!) when you're choosing your ingredients in the grocery aisles. Whether it's baked for an irresistibly crunchy top, or cooked on the stovetop for maximum creaminess, this perennial comfort food requires the right cheese in order to fulfill its dinnertime destiny. To help you get started on your mac game, here's a down-and-dirty guide to the major players at the market.

These are the best cheeses to use in your homemade mac and cheese.

Classic sharp cheddar in mac and cheese is always a crowdpleaser

Firm, rich, and relatively mellow, cheddar cheese gets its name from the English town where it originated. One of the most popular varieties of cheeses in the U.S., it is beloved for its melting powers and smooth flavor.

While this cow's milk cheese is an ideal choice for grilled cheese sandwiches and general snacking, cheddar has also made quite a name for itself as the go-to choice for traditional all-American mac and cheese. You simply can't go wrong.


Gruyere cheese adds mature flair to mac and cheese

Made from cow's milk, Gruyere borrows its name from a village in Switzerland. This hard cheese is prized for its complex flavor profile.

With subtle sweet notes that complement earthy, nutty ones, Gruyere easily adds depth of flavor to a variety of dishes. From gratin and fondue to burgers and grilled cheese, this winning Swiss cheese delivers the goods. It lends mac and cheese just the right touch of grownup sophistication.

Smoked Gouda lends meaty flavor (minus the meat) to mac and cheese

Named after the Dutch city it hailed from, Gouda is a semi-soft cheese appreciated for its smooth, creamy texture and mild flavor.

While a majority of Gouda is made with cow's milk, some types are made from sheep's or goat's milk. Young Gouda is rich and mellow, while aged varieties possess a deeper, more pungent flavor. If you want to infuse robust, bacon-adjacent notes to your mac and cheese, try using smoked Gouda. You will not be disappointed.

Monterey Jack creates creamy mac and cheese

An American cow's milk cheese with origins in Monterey, California, the aptly named Monterey Jack is easy to love. At once firm and creamy, it melts like a dream, making it the perfect choice for all your gooey cheese needs. Buttery in texture and very mild, like cheddar, Monterey Jack is an easy choice for mac and cheese that both children and adults can get on board with. For deliciously melty, smooth, velvety mac and cheese, we highly recommend you try some Jack.

Brie is creamy, decadent, mac and cheese dream come true

Named after a region in France and literally eaten by kings, soft-ripened Brie is buttery, runny, and creamy like you wouldn't believe. Its flavor ranges from mild to extremely nutty and tangy, depending on what you get your hands on at the store.

This creamy wonder is the right way to go if you're looking to make mac and cheese that's sure to impress. Luxurious and decadent, this rich cheese promises to instantly take your humble mac and cheese to the next level.

Aged cheddar and Parmesan team up to make perfect mac and cheese

The sharper, more complex flavors of aged cheddar team up well with salty Parmesan cheese. This combo is amazing in grilled cheese sandwiches — and the same goes for mac and cheese.

Italian Parmesan's slightly fruity, subtly nutty notes and grittier texture pair beautifully with the smoother, creamier mouth feel of cheddar. Make this mac and cheese. Your stomach will thank you.

You'll go gaga for goat cheese mac and cheese

Whether it's used as the star attraction, or to complement other cheeses, nothing puts a 'what is that flavor?' zing into your homemade macaroni and cheese quite like goat cheese can.

Goat cheese (called 'chevre' when it's from France), comes in many varieties and can range from a creamy tanginess to a crumbly grassiness that is beloved by cheese lovers across the globe. Try melting it into a classic stovetop cheese sauce for a macaroni and cheese that can go straight to your plate, or into the oven for a bronzed crunch.

Fontina makes fabulous mac and cheese

Hailed for its unique versatility as both a table cheese and a cooking cheese, fontina is a crowd-pleasing, melty cheese that will work beautifully in many macaroni and cheese recipes.

Fontina is a cow's milk cheese that has been crafted in Italy since 1477 but is also widely available in both Swedish and Danish styles which are recognizable by their red wax wrapping. Skip the pricier varieties that are more suitable for serving on a cheese board, and instead opt for a mid-priced fontina that is ideal for cooking. With a flavor that balances earthiness with a buttery mouthfeel, fontina is a cheese you'll definitely be reaching for again.

Havarti creates heavenly mac and cheese

Havarti and cream havarti are cheeses that, like fontina, are also prized for their versatility as a slicing cheese and a cooking cheese. The semi-soft cow's milk cheese, cream havarti, was developed in the 19th century in Denmark and can often be found blended with herbs and spices like dill, caraway, or even jalapeno peppers.

Aged for three months, havarti's flavor can range from mild to strong and is often seen on dessert cheese plates. Its buttery meltiness makes havarti a welcome addition to a delicious homemade macaroni and cheese.


Cream cheese makes delicious mac and cheese

A true American invention, recipes for cream cheese filled American cookbooks and newspapers as far back as the 1700s. In 1872, an upstate New York dairy factory that was manufacturing the lighter French variety of cheese known as Neufchatel, decided to shake things up a bit by adding cream to the cow's milk cheese recipe. The rest is history.

Though many store-bought brands contain gums and stabilizers to preserve the stability of the fresh cream cheese, purely crafted artisan brands are available in specialty markets that will send you straight to cream cheese heaven. The USDA mandates that cream cheese be at least 33 percent fat, making it a fantastically creamy choice for your mac and cheese. Try blending its creaminess with a cheese of a bolder flavor for delicious results.

Cottage cheese is surprising and economical choice for mac and cheese

Cottage cheese is a fresh, unripened curd cheese that is valued for its high protein content and mild, sweet flavor. Often used as a lower-fat substitute for heavier cheeses in many recipes, cottage cheese's unique texture has also found a place in more decadent recipes.

Try the New York Times' recommendation for a mixture of cottage cheese and sharp cheddar for a classic elbow macaroni and cheese dish, or consider adding in some sour cream for a tangy kick.

Raclette is made for melty mac cheese

The very name 'raclette' is used to describe the famous dish of gooey cheese, scraped onto a waiting mound of bread or potatoes, as well as the cheese itself.


Made with cow's milk from the grasslands of the French and Swiss Alps, raclette is similar in texture to Gruyere cheese, with a distinctive aroma. Like Gruyere, raclette does not separate when melted, making it a great cooking cheese and one that would lend a nutty and refined flavor to any mac and cheese recipe.

Boursin makes a brilliant mac and cheese

Sometimes called Gournay cheese, boursin is a French cream cheese that can readily be found in your supermarket's appetizer section. It's a buttery and easily spreadable cheese that's brilliant on bread, crackers, and crudite, and comes in a vast array of herb and spice infused flavors.

One Pot Creamy Cauliflower Mac And Cheese.

Highly meltable, boursin will add a pop of intense, complex flavor to your homemade macaroni and cheese recipe. Suffering sticker shock from your grocery store's boursin price tag? Try your hand at making it homemade: cream cheese, butter, and your choice of herbs and spices can be blended for a more economical version.

Mascarpone creates magnificent mac and cheese

Mascarpone is an Italian double- or triple-cream soft cheese that is often the shining star of dessert dishes like Italian cheesecakes or tiramisu. Its high fat content, however (it's been likened to a cross between cream and butter), makes mascarpone an excellent choice for savory dishes as well.

Best Cheese For Mac And Cheese Homemade

Celebrity chef Michael Symon makes his mouth-watering mac and cheese with a blend of mascarpone, cheddar, and half and half. Over at The New York Times, Melissa Clark combines mascarpone with Brie and cream cheese for a mac and cheese with an undoubtedly velvety finish.

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