Easy Stovetop Macaroni and Cheese

Stovetop Macaroni and Cheese adapted from Alton Brown
If you need a last-minute dish to bring to a barbecue or holiday get-together, here's a simple but really delicious side that will please everyone.

I have made this recipe  more than a few times, and I tried it once as a gluten-free dish by using Ancient Harvest Quinoa Elbow Pasta. I haven't been diagnosed as being allergic to gluten, but Mr. DG seems to feel better without it in his diet, so I gave the quinoa macaroni a try. The texture is pretty close to wheat-based pasta when eaten fresh, but upon reheating, the macaroni became a little unpleasant to chew. It was a bit off-putting for me.

The recipe is by Alton Brown, and every time I've made this, I've gotten rave reviews. If your macaroni isn't completely devoured in the first sitting, then reheat gently on the next go around. If you reheat it too vigorously, the sauce loses its creamy texture. I think the eggs in the sauce curdle if you aren't careful. The most time-consuming part of the recipe is grating the cheese. Other than that, everything is a snap!

One last tip is to use good quality, extra-sharp cheddar for this dish. And, please, grate your own cheese by hand or food processor. Don't use pre-grated cheese!

I recommend doubling the recipe.

Gather your ingredients first. Don't skimp on the hot sauce, in fact, add more than you think you'll need. I like using white pepper instead of black because you don't get dark flecks in the dish. I also like the different heat from the white pepper versus black.

Eggs and mustard powder for Mac 'n' Cheese

One tip I read online said to mix the powdered mustard into the eggs first until well incorporated before adding the rest of the ingredients.

Egg mixture for Mac 'n' Cheese

Combine well until there are no lumps in the mixture. Set aside until ready to use.

Stir butter into cooked macaroni

Cook the macaroni until al dente, drain and return the pasta to the pot. Melt the butter into the pasta.

Add grated cheddar cheese to macaroni and egg mixture

Pour in the egg mixture, then add grated cheese to macaroni. Stir until the sauce is smooth and creamy.

Stir slowly until cheese has melted into macaroni

Heat through gently, being careful not to overcook the sauce.

Enjoy the mac 'n' cheese and the many compliments you'll receive!

Here is the recipe adapted from Alton Brown.

Stove Top Mac-n-Cheese 

Prep Time:10 min
Cook Time: 25 min

Level: Easy
Serves: 6 to 8 servings (if you eat like a bird)

1/2 pound elbow macaroni
4 tablespoons butter
2 eggs
6 ounces evaporated milk
15 dashes hot sauce
1 teaspoon kosher salt
White pepper
3/4 teaspoon dry mustard
8 - 10 ounces sharp cheddar, shredded

In a large pot of boiling, salted water cook the pasta to al dente and drain. Return to the pot and melt in the butter. Toss to coat.

Whisk together the eggs, milk, hot sauce, salt, pepper and mustard. Stir into the pasta and add the cheese. Over low heat continue to stir for 3 minutes or until creamy.

By the way, this would be a great side to serve along with Mexican "Grilled" Corn!

Have a safe and happy 4th of July!


  1. I love me a spicy mac and cheese, that last picture has my stomach growling like crazy!

  2. This mac and cheese looks so gorgeous! I love your photos! I'll definitely have to check this out--I'm constantly on the lookout for a great macaroni and cheese recipe.

  3. Homemade mac and cheese is irresistible. I love the idea of adding evaporated milk.

  4. Hello and welcome! Thank you for leaving a comment.

    @bakerbynature : FYI, the mac 'n' cheese shown isn't spicy really, but there's no reason why it couldn't be. The red powder sprinkled on top is actually smoked paprika. I wanted to add visual contrast to the dish because it's so monochromatic. :)

    @Koci: Thank you for the kind words! It's really a great go-to recipe because you can easily multiply the ingredients to make a huge batch. Soooo good.

    @Jenn: The evaporated milk is the real timesaver here. No need to make a roux for your sauce. I do miss the crunchy top you get from baked mac 'n' cheese, but this one will not disappoint despite the lack of crunchy crust. FYI, I did try baking it once to create a crust on top, and it didn't work well. It ended up curdling the sauce.

  5. Is the dry mustard necessary? I would like to make this but don't have any at my house. Maybe you have an alternative suggestion?

  6. This recipe is definitely the best around. My sister has also a recipe for this but she got it from the cook book. I made this and we compared one another's recipe, and I'm proud to say that this is the winner!

  7. Just made this and it is AMAZING! What a great and simple recipe :)

    Thanks so much for posting this!!

  8. Hi, Anonymous (7/10/11). Sorry for the late response! I don't think you will notice a major difference if you do not have dry mustard. The cheesy goodness will still be there. I've not tried it with jarred mustard, but I wonder if that wouldn't do in a pinch? Let me know how it tastes if you omit the dry mustard or if you find an alternative. Thanks!

    @Digital Printing - Thank you for letting me know you enjoyed the recipe, too! Simple + tasty = my favorite combo. :)

    Anonymous (8/5/11) - I am so glad you had good luck with this recipe, too! Thanks for dropping by.

  9. Your photos are great and really helped me! I made this Friday night and it came out good. I had to get all the ingredients that I didn't have like the white pepper (very good!). I can really make a meal out of this, though I know most people have it for a side dish.

  10. Not your "blue box" mac and cheese is it?? Look awesome! My kids love love mac and cheese as I'm sure every other child does but this I am sure they are going to go nuts over!

  11. @Willy - Sorry for such a late reply, but I am so glad this post was helpful to you when you made the mac 'n cheese. Thank you for letting me know!

    @Alice Definitely a kid pleaser & not that much more work than the "blue box" kind!


Related Posts with Thumbnails