7 of our best macaroni recipes, perfect for lovers of cheese and comfort

Kate Williams, Chef Jeffrey Gardner
Mac And Cheese

A beloved soul food, homemade Southern macaroni and cheese is easy to share, and even easier to eat as an appetizer, side or even the main course.

Here at Southern Kitchen, we don’t doubt for a second that your own macaroni and cheese recipe is the greatest ever. But there’s really no good reason why you shouldn’t at least try a new recipe or two. 

Here. some of our favorites, with options for the beginner, the connoisseur and everywhere in between.

Three-cheese macaroni and cheese at Sullivan's Steakhouse in downtown Austin.

Baked Mac and Cheese

Using a blonde roux as a thickener will give you a mac and cheese that’s more stable in the oven, and will prevent the fat from separating in the sauce. This recipe is a good basic version, but you can add a little extra flair by sprinkling the top with Parmesan cheese, buttered panko bread crumbs or even crushed-up cheese crackers for texture. (We love flair almost as much as mac and cheese.) Get the recipe

Triple Cheese Mac and Cheese

Many cooks believe in using a blend of cheeses in their mac. Though this recipe calls for a blend of cheddar for sharpness, Monterey Jack for meltiness, and Parmesan for saltiness, you can use it as a nice jumping-off point for experimentation. Get the recipe

Extra Cheesy Mac And Cheese

Extra Cheesy Mac and Cheese

This particular recipe uses a cream-based sauce with dry mustard, nutmeg and hot sauce to cut the richness of the cheese. On its own, it makes a great accompaniment to barbecued meat, but you can add ingredients to make it stand out. Diced city ham and sweet peas is a classic combo. Lobster, crab, roasted cauliflower and asparagus would all make fabulous additions. The only rule? Use the sharpest white cheddar you can find to impart the most flavor possible. Get the recipe

Cheeseburger Macaroni Casserole

There’s nothing wrong with going a little wild on this list, and cheeseburger macaroni casserole is just the right wild for us. Between the ground beef and Monterey Jack cheese (obvious additions), this potluck-friendly dish gets moisture from cream of mushroom soup and fast food flair from ketchup, onions, steak sauce and diced tomatoes. It’ll never be the prettiest mac and cheese around, but it just may be the tastiest. Get the recipe

Macaroni Pie

Macaroni Pie

Anne Byrn created a recipe that's quick and easy but also intensely flavored. Feel free to tweak it, however. Should the spirit move you, add chopped prosciutto or minced country ham, sprinkled between the layers of pasta, custard and good Parmesan cheese. To pick up the flavors at the end, shower the top with minced fresh oregano or parsley and add a big grind of black pepper. Get the recipe

Mac And Cheese

Old-Fashioned Macaroni and Cheese Casserole

Tired of all these wild mix-ins? Try this old-fashioned, sliceable mac and cheese, made with eggs, milk and a generous amount of sharp cheddar cheese melted over the top. You can even get this one almost ready to go beforehand; just add the milk mixture right before you pop the whole thing in the oven. Get the recipe

Truffled Mac and Cheese

There are two items that make this dish special: the white truffle oil and the 10-year aged white cheddar cheese. Recipe courtesy of Ray’s Killer Creek in Alpharetta, Ga.. Get the recipe