Smoky Mac 'n' Cheese

Smoky Mac 'n' Cheese
Tip: Double all ingredients for a large crowd.

Ingredients

Pasta

  • 8 ounces elbow pasta
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 4 ounces cream cheese
  • 1 cup Monterey jack cheese, shredded
  • 2 cups white Cheddar cheese, shredded

Topping

  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 30 Ritz crackers, crushed

Instructions

  1. Heat oven to 325 degrees F. Lightly butter a 9-inch square or 9 x 13-inch baking dish.
  2. Pasta: Boil the pasta according to directions.
  3. While pasta is boiling, use a heavy saucepan to make a roux by melting the butter and then adding flour and stirring constantly for a minute or two.
  4. Slowly add in the heavy cream and milk, then cook for about 3 more minutes, while stirring constantly.
  5. Add in the salt, pepper, smoked paprika and onion powder.
  6. Then add in the cream cheese until it is melted and add in the shredded Monterey jack and the shredded white Cheddar.
  7. Drain pasta completely and combine with cheese mixture.
  8. Pour into prepared dish.
  9. Topping: Prepare melted butter and crushed cracker mixture and sprinkle on top of the mac and cheese. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or just until the cracker topping is lightly browned.

Recipe and photo used with permission from: Southwest Dairy Farmers