better than boxed mac & cheese


better than boxed mac and cheese - suzyhomemaker.net

When you think of an easy meal that you can just open a box and quickly prepare I am sure mac and cheese comes to mind. Unfortunately, boxed mac and cheese has many questionable ingredients. Case in point:



INGREDIENTS: , Enriched Macaroni Product (,WHEAT FLOUR, NIACIN, FERROUS SULFATE [IRON], THIAMIN HYDROCHLORIDE [VITAMIN B1],RIBOFLAVIN [VITAMIN B2], FOLIC ACID) , Cheese Sauce Mix (, WHEY, MILKFAT, MILK PROTEIN CONCENTRATE, SALT, SODIUM TRIPOLYPHOSPHATE, CONTAINS 2% OR LESS OF: , CITRIC ACID, LACTIC ACID, SODIUM PHOSPHATE, CALCIUM PHOSPHATE, MILK,YELLOW 5, YELLOW 6, ENZYMES, CHEESE CULTURE)

The other day I decided to make some homemade mac and cheese. It was not my intention to compare it to packaged, but I looked at the clock and was wondering how long it would take for me to make it.

Homemade Mac and Cheese timing:

Boil water ~10 minutes
While water is boiling melt butter, add flour to make a roux (so fancy), grab some spices and add them to the saucepan, start shredding the cheese.

Add pasta to boiling water ~10 minutes
As pasta is cooking finish making the sauce. Add some milk to saucepan. Add shredded cheese. Whisk. Check noodles.

Noodles are done. Drain noodles in colander. Add back to pot. Finish the cheese sauce and  to noodles. ~10 minutes.

Total time: ~37 minutes. Where did the extra time come from? I was watching my little one in between cooking. So the extra minutes were those unaccounted for distracted minutes of life with a toddler.

Is boxed mac and cheese faster? Yes, but not by much. It is still at least 20 minutes for the same water to boil and the same pasta to cook. In almost the same amount of time you could have a homemade version, with ingredients you choose.

I didn't include a recipe because I improvised, but here are a few I like.

Alton Brown's Macaroni and Cheese
Cooksmarts Baked Macaroni and Cheese

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