Sheet Pan Mac and Cheese

A flavor infused Mac & Cheese recipe. Sheet pan cooking makes it easy and easy and adds crunch.
Prep Time : 20 minutes
|
Cook Time : 25 minutes
|
Servings : 10

Sheet Pan Mac and Cheese

Late October, and I feel the chill that brings winter into Nebraska.  Autumn leaves drift from the maple trees into knee high piles.  I like hearing the crunch as I wade through, and my favorite  perfume is a mix of drying leaves from the maples, cherry tree and crab apple.  October scenery is painted in auburn, gold, yellow, rust, and ruby red.  I shake out my navy  blue cable stitched cardigan sweater.

As temperatures cool, I’m baking Sheet Pan Mac and Cheese. I like this recipe for its crunch and rich flavor. I like serving squares of Mac and Cheese versus scoops.  The recipe comes together quickly, and the baking takes only 20-25 minutes. Sheet Pan Mac and Cheese compliments my favorite meats and vegetables, and it stands alone with a slice of melon or a ham sandwich. 

When baking the Sheet Pan Mac and Cheese, bake only to a light browning in the center and a darker crispy roast on the edges.  In my first trial, I over baked, and the product tasted crisp throughout. I prefer a creamy Mac and Cheese in the center of the sheet pan.

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Sheet Pan Mac and Cheese

A flavor infused Mac & Cheese recipe. Sheet pan cooking makes it easy and easy and adds crunch.
Course Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine American
Keyword Buzz Savories Spicy Beer Mustard, Easy Cooking, flavor rich, Light Dinner Meal
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Servings 10

Equipment

  • 1 18x13 inch rimmed sheet pan is use a silicone mat for easy clean up

What You'll Need:

  • 1 lb. large elbow macaroni or other larger shape like fusilli
  • kosher salt to taste
  • 2 cups whole milk I keep a can of Carnation whole milk in the pantry and dilute according to directions
  • 1 Tb. cornstarch
  • 4 oz cream cheese
  • 2 Tb. Buzz Savories Spicy Beer Mustard
  • 12 oz. sharp cheddar cheese, grated coarsely
  • 4 oz. grated Parmesan cheese
  • freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 1 cup Panko bread crumbs

How To Prepare:

  • Place a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat oven to 450 Degrees.
  • Fill a large pot of salted water and bring to a boil. Add macaroni and cook to al-dente, about half the time of package directions. Drain.
  • Whisk 2 cups milk and 1 Tb. cornstarch in a medium bowls to combine. Transfer to the same pot in which you boiled the macaroni .
    Add 4 oz. cream cheese and 2 Tb. Buzz Savories Spicy Beer Mustard and heat until cream cheese is nearly melted, and mixture is beginning to simmer.
  • Gradually whisk in the cheddar cheese and finely grated Parmesan and cook, whisking constantly until cheese is mostly melted, 1-2 minutes.
  • Remove sauce from heat and add pasta, and mix until well coated. Taste, and then season with salt and plenty of freshly ground pepper.
  • Scrape pasta onto an 18 x 13 inch baking sheet and spread to the edges. No need to grease the baking sheet. I line the baking sheet with a silicone mat for extra-easy clean up although not required for the success of this recipe.
    Scatter 1 cup of panko over pasta.
    Bake, rotating baking sheet halfway through, until Panko is toasty around the edges and the corners of the baking sheet, 20 to 25 minutes. The top will be lightly toasted. The interior needs to be creamy.

Notes

Sheet Pan Mac and Cheese may be served hot, warm or room temperature - All delicious! Add a salad or a sandwich or a hot dog or fried chicken.. or serve with a slice of fruit.

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