Mexi Macaroni and Cheese
Take your homemade Mac & Cheese to the NEXT LEVEL and make it Mexi Macaroni and Cheese, you won’t be sorry. With the addition of just a few pantry staple spices you can make outstanding mac and cheese. It’s not spicy hot, just flavorful and tasty. PLUS if you already have a macaroni and cheese recipe you love to make just use the spices I add to this recipe to make your next batch one to remember. Mexi Mac and Cheese, MAKE IT!
I used to buy a Mexican Flavored Macaroni and Cheese in a box. Then it was discontinued or the local store quit carrying it. For whatever reason I couldn’t get it any longer. I’m talking 23 years ago here, I don’t even remember the brand name, I just remember we loved it. I’d completely forgot about it until last week when my kids wanted to make macaroni and cheese for dinner. I don’t mind mac and cheese but I was looking to change it up, my boys weren’t excited by that prospect.
Macaroni and Cheese
So we made a double batch of pasta and I set my 14 year old to making a cheese sauce. He’s got some determination in the kitchen and has absolutely perfected his cheese sauce. Once everything was done I took half and popped in the oven to bake for a few minutes. Then I started adding spices to the other half. It was taste testing at its best! I used just about every spoon in the kitchen getting the sauce right.
the spices have it
I added a dash of chipotle powder, but in this recipe I’m calling for just chili powder. Chipotle powder packs a powerful punch of heat and that is not the point of this recipe. Spice and flavor but not heat. I also added smoked paprika, also called Spanish Paprika, for a smokey flavor. And finally a little cumin to round it all out. If you LIKE spice add chipotle or cayenne powder to taste.
- 1 pound elbow macaroni, use any pasta you like though
- 1/4 cup butter
- 1/4 cup flour
- 2 cups milk
- 2 cups grated cheese, use a variety for best results
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1/2 tsp chili powder
- 2 TBSP roasted red pepper, minced
- salt, to taste
- pepper, to taste
- 1/4 cup bread cumbs, or cracker crumbs *optional*
- cook macaroni according to package instructions
- meanwhile melt butter over medium heat
- once melted add flour, cook and stir for 3-4 minutes, don't let it burn
- slowly whisk in the milk and keep whisking until it's smooth
- once the sauce is smooth reduce the heat and add the cheese and stir until melted
- stir in the spices, and red peppers, taste for salt and pepper add as needed
- stir the sauce in to the drained macaroni
- you can serve it straight away OR place it in a buttered dish, top with cracker or bread crumbs and bake for 10-15 minutes in a 350˚ oven
- you can serve this once the sauce is done
- OR you can put it in a buttered casserole and bake for 10-15 minutes
- top with bread or cracker crumbs if desired