Baked Macaroni and Cheese with Buttered Crumb Topping - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

Baked Macaroni and Cheese with Buttered Crumb Topping

From Amy Tobin

Baked Macaroni and Cheese with Buttered Crumb Topping
Serves 4-6

Prep time: 10 minutes
Bake time: 20-25 minutes
Make ahead: Bake and cool; refrigerate until ready to use. Reheat in low oven.
Tip: Mac and Cheese is always a favorite of kids- my son Sean and daughter Katie absolutely love this for dinner.   The recipe changes based on what bits of cheese are in my fridge- so I encourage you to go beyond way beyond Cheddar!  And you can always toss in chopped ham, diced tomatoes or green chiles, too.

8 ounces macaroni or other tubular pasta
3 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons flour
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1 -2/3 cups milk
2-3 cups shredded Cheddar cheese  (or a mixture of Cheddar, Gouda, Fontina, Havarti, Mozzarella, etc)
Pinch cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon yellow mustard, plus more to taste
Salt and pepper to taste

Topping:
1 tablespoon butter, melted
1/2 cup fine dry bread crumbs
Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 350ºF. Spray a 2-quart casserole with cooking spray; set aside.
Cook macaroni as directed on package; drain. Transfer to prepared casserole; set aside.
While macaroni is cooking, melt butter in a medium saucepan. Stir in flour and onion powder; cook for about 1 minute. Gradually whisk in milk. Cook and stir over medium heat until mixture thickens and bubbles. Stir in cheese until smooth. Stir in a pinch of cayenne pepper. Generously season to taste with yellow mustard, salt and pepper. Add more cheese or mustard as needed. Remove from heat. Stir cheese sauce into macaroni.
Topping: In a small bowl combine melted butter and breadcrumbs. Sprinkle over macaroni and cheese. Sprinkle with a little freshly grated Parmesan cheese. Bake 25 minutes, or until bubbly and lightly browned on top. Let stand 5-10 minutes before serving.

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