Although I still keep the boxed stuff around from time to time, I genuinely try to make macaroni and cheese from scratch more often than not. I mean, it really is very easy to do.
Years ago, when I first started blogging I posted this other ol’ stand-by mac n cheese recipe made with a simple, homemade cheese sauce. (I can’t believe it’s been almost 5 years since that post!! I was expecting my girl when I wrote that post and how things have changed since then…)
This baked macaroni and cheese is supremely rich, creamy and cheesy. I was immediately in love with it the first time I tried it at a potluck dinner several years ago. Luckily, the host was eager to share this recipe!
It’s made with a mixture of cottage cheese, shredded cheddar cheese and a good swirl of luscious, sour cream and baked until it’s all gooey and melt-y. It’s honestly become a comfort food staple in our house and it’s something we all look forward to.
For some reason, I only tend to make this on the weekends. So, a distinction has been made between this recipe and any other cheesy pasta dish and it’s known around here as “weekend macaroni and cheese”.
Now, I know a few people who won’t even give cottage cheese a chance, but I promise that in this recipe, it’s a really good thing. With all of it’s wonderful salty-creaminess (that’s a technical term), cottage cheese lends alot of flavor to this dish.
To be fair to the non-fans, the cottage cheese curds do melt in this dish, but they don’t always break down completely, as you can see in the picture above. If the appearance of cottage cheese bothers you, use a potato masher or a few pulses of a food processor and break it down a bit more (for a smoother cheese sauce) before you add it to cheese mixture, but don’t skip it!
Also, I also have thing with topping macaroni and cheese with crushed Ritz crackers. In fact, I giggled at myself when I looked at that old post and saw the cracker crumbs there… I’d forgotten I added them back then too.
Crushed crackers were not mentioned anywhere in the original recipe for this baked macaroni and cheese, but of course I added them. I just like it!
That’s how I roll and I hope you like it too!
Weekend Baked Macaroni and Cheese printable recipe
- 8 oz elbow macaroni, cooked according to package directions
- 2 cups small curd cottage cheese
- 3/4 cup sour cream
- 1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder (not garlic salt)
- 1 large egg, beaten
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups (8 oz) shredded cheddar blend cheese (I used Kraft Triple Cheddar blend)
- 20 Ritz brand crackers (or other crackers you prefer) crushed into crumbs, for topping (optional)