If your family loves mac and cheese, then you will love this recipe! It’s cheesy, delicious, and easy to make.
David’s Frugal Mac and Cheese
When I got married, my husband, David, used to make homemade mac and cheese by just tossing cooked noodles with some shredded cheese and milk. He’s frugal and it worked, but it wasn’t exactly creamy mac and cheese. I remember thinking, there’s got to be a better way to make mac and cheese without buying the box mixes. After playing around, I landed on the perfect cheese sauce for homemade mac and cheese!
What I Love About this Recipe
The thing I love the most about this cheese sauce is that it uses a combination of bone broth and milk. The bone broth adds extra nutrients to the dish and some additional flavor. Also, it cuts down on how much other liquid you need to make the sauce. As a result, you can make this cheese sauce using cow’s milk or a milk alternative. I have a milk sensitivity so being able to use almond milk in this recipe makes it easier for my gut to digest and still enjoy mac and cheese made with real cheese!
Ingredients for Homemade Mac and Cheese
1 box of macaroni noodles
2 TBSP’s of butter
3 TBSP’s of flour
1 Cup of bone broth/chicken broth
1 Cup of milk
2 1/2 Cups of grated cheese
1 Tsp of salt
- Grate roughly a pound to a pound and a half of cheese. I like to use colby jack cheese, but you can use whichever cheese you prefer or a combination of cheeses.
- Boil a pot of water and cook your noodles as desired. (if your feeding young kids, I love to use rotini noodles instead of macaroni noodles because they are easier for her to pick up.)
- Strain and rinse the noodles with cold water to stop them from cooking and set them aside.
- Heat a pan over medium heat and melt the butter.
- Once the butter is melted, stir in the flour and whisk constantly for 40-60 seconds until there is a nutty aroma.
- Pour in the milk and bone broth. Whisk constantly until the mixture has thickened. It will only take a few minutes.
- Reduce the heat to low and add in the grated cheese and stir until completely combined.
- Turn the heat off and stir in the salt.
- Pour your desired amount of cheese sauce over the cooked noodles and enjoy!
Other Ways to Use this Cheese Sauce
- Taco Pizza
- Chips and Dip
- Cheesy Taco Noodles
Can You Make This Gluten Free?
Yes! Just cook up your favorite gluten free noodles, make the cheese sauce with an all-purpose gluten free flour and you will be set! I love to make it with Barilla’s gluten free elbow pasta.
- 2 TBSP's of butter
- 3 TBSP's of flour
- 1 Cup of chicken stock
- 1 Cup of milk
- 2 1/2 Cups of grated cheese
- 1 Tsp of salt
Cook the Noodles
- Bring a pot of water to a boil. (you can add 1/2 a tsp of salt and cover the pot with a lid to help it boil faster)
- Pour in your noodles of choice and cook until tender.
- Strain and rinse with cool water to help them stop cooking.
- Set aside until cheese sauce is ready.
How to Make the Cheese Sauce
- Melt the butter in a pot over medium heat
- Once the butter is completely melted, add the flour and stir constantly for 40-60 seconds. There will be a slight nutty smell when it's done. (You can turn down the heat if your butter was too hot and began to brown the flour)
- Stir in the chicken stock and milk, whisking constantly over medium heat. Wait for the mixture to thicken and then turn the heat to low.
- Add in the cheese and stir until it is completely melted.
- Stir in the salt.
Combine the Cheese Sauce and Noodles
The cheese sauce recipe makes enough cheese sauce for a whole box of cooked noodles. I suggest adding the cheese sauce to the noodles till it is cheesy enough for your taste. Any leftover cheese sauce is great for chips and dip or nachos.