This easy, cheesy mac and cheese comes together quickly on your stovetop
About the recipe
Use the sharpest white cheddar you can find for this straightforward mac and cheese recipe. Most of the work here happens on the stovetop, which makes your cooking time faster. We like to use Texas Pete hot sauce in this recipe, but you can skip it, and the crushed red pepper, if you're sensitive.
Total time: 45 minutes
2 cups heavy cream
2 teaspoons dry mustard
1 teaspoon hot sauce
1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more, as needed
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
2 cloves garlic, smashed
8 ounces elbow macaroni or pasta shells
3 cups grated sharp white cheddar cheese
Heat oven to 400 degrees. Cook the macaroni or pasta shells in boiling salted water until al dente. The noodles should be cooked through, but still have some bite or resistance.
In a medium saucepan, combine the cream, garlic, salt, hot sauce and spices. Allow to gently simmer over medium-low heat for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until cream has thickened. Remove garlic cloves.
Add the macaroni and 2 cups of the cheddar cheese to the now-thickened sauce. Heat on the stovetop and stir until cheese is melted. Place the mixture in a baking dish, top with the remaining cheese, and bake until cheese is melted (about 10-15 minutes). Serve hot.