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3 bowl of southern cheddar mac & cheese with a blue napkin and chives next to it

Southern Cheddar Mac and Cheese

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Southern Cheddar Mac and Cheese is everything you want in a mac and cheese. All the carbs, cheesy, saucy, southern goodness you could want!


  • 1 Pound Pasta
  • 1 Tablespoon Butter
  • 1 Tablespoon Flour
  • 2 Cups Whole Milk
  • 1 Cup Half and Half
  • 2 Cups Mild Cheddar - shredded
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Salt + more to taste if needed
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Pepper
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Mustard Powder


  1. Fill a large pot with water and a generous amount of salt (2 big pinches). Bring to a boil. Add noodles once at a boil and cook according to package directions. Drain once finished and keep to the side until needed.
  2. Shred the cheddar cheese while the noodles are cooking.
  3. In the same large pot, with the noodles cooked in, add 1 tablespoon of butter and flour on medium heat. Whisk together as the butter starts to melt and cook for 2-3 minutes.
  4. Turn the heat down to medium-low. Add in 1/2 cup of half and half while whisking vigorously. The mixture will start to become thick very quickly. It is important to not stop whisking. You want to get all of the clumps of flour out and for this to become a smooth, creamy, and thick mixture. Add in the other 1/2 cup of half and half and repeat with whisking.
  5. You will continue on to add the milk, repeating the same whisking process as above and only adding a 1/2 cup at a time. You want to make sure after each addition the mixture is whisked enough so there are no clumps and it begins to thicken. Once you add the milk, the mixture won't be as thick until you add the cheese - but as it continues to cook it will thicken. It is also important not to stop whisking for the risk of scouring the bottom of the pan and burning the milk mixture.
  6. Once all the liquid has been added, add in your salt, pepper, mustard powder, and cheese. Whisk to combine. The cheese will slowly begin to melt.
  7. Cook for 5-10 minutes or until the cheese has completely melted and the mixture is smooth and warm.
  8. Add in your cooked noodles and mix to coat entirely with cheese.
  9. Remove from the heat and serve immediately.


  • You can also use up to 3 cups of cheddar in the recipe. You can also sub in gruyere or other melting cheeses for some different variations. 
  • This is best enjoyed right away after you have made it. If the mac and cheese will be sitting on the stove for a while until you eat, it will begin to lose some of the sauce and get too thick. Just add a splash of milk and stir to combine making it sauce and creamy again.
  • Leftovers can be stored in the fridge for 3 days.
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Category: Side Dish/Dinner
  • Method: Cooking
  • Cuisine: American


  • Serving Size: 1 scoop
  • Calories: 402
  • Sugar: 4.9 g
  • Sodium: 305.3 mg
  • Fat: 19 g
  • Carbohydrates: 38.8 g
  • Fiber: 1.5 g
  • Protein: 18.3 g
  • Cholesterol: 57.1 mg
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