This recipe is based on Alton Brown’s Baked Mac and Cheese from his TV show Good Eats. That recipe is the most downloaded recipe on Food Network, believe it or not! I’ve made it gluten-free and tweaked a few things here and there. I love this dish, and my kids and I devour it. Yum! I want to make his stovetop mac & cheese, but keep forgetting to do so.
This is a delicious gluten free, family-friendly recipe! It can also be (if you double check ingredients!) a wheat free, soy free, tree nut free, peanut free, fish free, shellfish free, corn free, and vegetarian recipe.
- 1 16oz bag Tinkyada Brown Rice Elbows (you could use penne, shells, or fusilli if needed, but elbows are classic)
- 3 TBS butter
- 3 TBS white rice flour
- 1/2 tsp yellow mustard (yes, I use yellow mustard from the plastic container. You can use a similar amount of dry mustard if you have that on hand)
- 3 cups milk (in addition to dairy milk, plain soy milk works find here, as does half & half, if that’s all you have around)
- 1/2 small onion, finely chopped
- 1 bay leaf
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- 1 egg
- 10 oz (2 1/2 cups) sharp cheddar
- 2 oz (1/2 cup) sharp cheddar
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 3 TBS butter
- 1 cup homemade breadcrumbs or Ian’s gluten-free panko breadcrumbs
- 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, grated
- or eliminate the above and use 1 cup plain potato chips, smashed into tiny pieces
Preheat oven to 350F
Bring a large pot of water to a boil, and cook the pasta according to package directions. It should be al dente, not squishy. I tend to cook it one or two minutes less than the directions say on the package. (Note – if using a brand other than Tinkyada, make sure you cook less than the package directions – very few gluten-free pasta brands stay al dente)
While the elbows are cooking, melt the butter in the bottom of a medium saucepan. Whisk in the white rice flour, and keep whisking for 3 or 4 minutes. Make sure that it isn’t lumpy! Just keep it moving.
After the 3-4 minutes, add mustard and onion and whisk again. While whisking, pour in the milk. Keep it moving, and add in the bay leaf and paprika. Let this simmer (don’t let it boil!) for about 10 minutes, then take out the bay leaf. (If for some reason you can’t find your bay leaves or paprika, don’t fret. This will still taste great without them. Just skip adding them, but still simmer for 10 minutes) After the 10 minutes, remove the bay leaf.
Use a ladle to scoop out about 1/2 cup of the milk mixture. Crack an egg into that milk, and whisk together. Then add the egg/milk mixture back into the milk mixture, whisking it together. (This is called tempering)
Whisk in the 10oz of sharp cheddar. Whisk or stir until melty and yummy.
Toss the drained pasta with the cheesy mixture, then pour that into a casserole dish. 8×11″ works well, as does a deep 9″ or 10″ circle or square. Sprinkle the remaining cheese on top.
Sprinkle breadcrumbs or potato chips on top of the cheesy macaroni casserole.
Bake at 350F for 30 minutes, then remove and let rest for 5-10 minutes before serving.
Eat – yum! This heats up beautifully for leftovers, too!
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