Easy 15-Minute Mac & Cheese

Mac and Cheese Recipe Stove Top Easy 15 Minute Mac & Cheese

As a kid, I used to love making and eating Kraft’s blue box mac and cheese. Making it was so simple and quick. Just boil the elbow shaped pasta, drain, mix in a few tablespoons of butter and milk, and finish it off by stirring in a bright orange cheese flavored powder.  I don’t know what was in that mysterious but tasty powder but the end result was this creamy mac and cheese my siblings and I would devour.

Long gone are those days of boxed mac & cheese with the occasional thinly sliced hotdogs my mom would add.  I will confess though,  I would be lying if I said there isn’t a nostalgic urging to have a bite now and again.  This reunion usually occurs once every few years when I happen to be at someone’s house who happens to be serving this.  A bite is all it takes to take my back to my childhood.

Mac and cheese in general is something I do not make regularly.  I like it but I don’t love it, unless it’s made with Gruyere, heavy cream, and tons of bacon. My kids however, love mac  and cheese.  They too, are familiar with the boxed variety but only at their friends’ houses.  A big enough reason not to make homemade mac and cheese at home is how time-consuming it can be to make all the elements and then have to bake it for an hour.  If it were one of my most favorite foods, perhaps I would make it more often.  But given the choice of a rich cheese cream sauce over pasta, mac and cheese would not be at the top of my list of foods to make.  But, for those times my kids request mac and cheese, I will accommodate their request with a technique where you make the mac and cheese on the stove top.  It takes about 15 minutes and within that span of time, I usually can steam some vegetables and grill some chicken.  It is by far the easiest, quickest, and simplest way to make mac and cheese. Period.

I’ve listed the recipe ingredients below.  The full recipe can be found on my PBS Parents column last week.  Give this recipe a go, I think you’ll find the results surprisingly delicious and the time you save makes this recipe a keeper.

15-Minute Mac & Cheese
Recipe type: Side Dish
Cuisine: Pasta
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
A creamy mac and cheese recipe made on the stove top and can be made in under 15 minutes.
  • pasta (elbow, shells, bow-tie, etc)
  • egg yolks
  • half and half
  • kosher salt
  • black pepper
  • yellow mustard
  • melted butter
  • cheddar cheese, shredded
  1. For the complete recipe and instructions, you can find the recipe on my PBS Parents column here. Easy Stove Top Mac & Cheese


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  1. says

    Oh man. Is it so wrong that I want to jump into that macaroni cheese and swim in it? Gorgeous. The best mac and cheese I’ve ever had was a recipe by Lorraine Pascale (worth looking up and trying!), but I’ll certainly give this a go. It’s the ultimate go-to meal.

  2. says

    Oh yeah, this is the way to do simple mac ‘n cheese. I don’t make it for my kids very often, but this a version I’d definitely feel good about serving them.

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