If there is something I refuse to eat, regardless of how inexpensive it may be, it would have to be…
Boxed. Mac. And. Cheese.
There is nothing comforting or rewarding about opening a cardboard box, boiling noodles, and pouring in a powder so artificial, so unrealistically orange, it makes my skin tingle thinking about it.…EHH.
Sarah, who grew up on this American cupboard staple, often suggests this as meal when we are stumped on what we want to indulge in for the evening. Without saying a word, I look over at her with a look of disgust on my face.
She already knows my answer.
So with some left over ingredients from other dishes we made earlier in the week, we whipped up a cheesy, creamy, and actually tasty mac and cheese.
Take a stand against nuclear orange pasta and make this mac and cheese!
- 1 1/2 cups, elbow mac
- 8 oz. cubed chicken breast
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tbsp. olive oil
- 2 cups, whole milk
- 4 oz. cream cheese
- 3/4 cup shredded mild cheddar (or whatever kind of cheese you prefer)
- 1/4 tsp. paprika
- 1/4 tsp. onion powder
- 1 tsp. Dijon mustard
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Boil the pasta according to the directions on the box. Just al dente, about 8-10 minutes. Strain and toss in little oil to keep from sticking.
- While the pasta is cooking, heat the oil in a large Dutch oven or large sauté pan to medium high. Add the chicken and garlic and cook until the chicken is fully cooked, about 5-7 minutes.
- Once the chicken is fully cooked, add the milk, paprika, onion powder and mustard. Stir to incorporate spices and bring to a quick boil.
- Once the milk is boiling, add the cream cheese and shredded cheese then turn down the head down to medium. Gently stir in the cheese until fully incorporated.
- Add the noodles and stir that bad boy up. Add a pinch each of salt and pepper and taste. Add more seasonings and cheese to your liking.
Simply put, this is going to be how we make our mac and cheese from now on. Sarah said it was “A hearty party in my belly”. That’s her way of saying it gets her stamp of approval. Sounds legit to me!
So before you reach for that box of noodles and orange powder, think twice and make this instead. It’s the right thing to do.
As always friends, Happy Feasting!