What’s better than macaroni and cheese? NOTHING. Well except macaroni and cheese with stuff in it. Make your next dinner, girls’ night or cookout the easiest and cheesiest with a macaroni and cheese bar.
Want to get people all excited? Ask them about what makes the perfect mac and cheese.
Is it multiple cheeses? Is it just processed cheese? On the stove or in the oven? There are so many ways and so many opinions.
A few years ago the mashed potato bar became the big trend for weddings and fancy parties. First because who doesn’t love mashed potatoes, but more so because it allowed everyone to personalize their meal just the way they wanted. I like to call this “Starbucking” phenomenon and for the most part, it always works! Plus – it’s really easy to lay out options and let guests do the work.
Now just like cupcakes went to donuts, mashed potatoes has gone to macaroni and cheese. Other than a few basics, there’s not one way to do it – just let their creativity take over. I love this option and so will they! Here’s how we did this on Good Morning Texas.
How to Make a Mac and Cheese Bar
First off you’ll need a great, basic macaroni and cheese recipe. To keep the noodles warm, I suggest making a macaroni and cheese recipe in the slowcooker. Based on this recipe, I’ve added a few touches to make it noodleriffic (see below.)
Once you have this down, the fun begins. What sounds good to you? I’ve put together a few common elements of toppings that are popular, but don’t let it end there. Taking a little inspiration from your favorite menus, add ingredients that together make a whole new dish. For instance, one favorite is Buffalo Mac and Cheese. So don’t forget buffalo sauce and chicken as toppings. And because sometimes people want recommendations, add a few suggested menu ideas just in case!
Spinach / Artichoke
Pico de Gallo
Chili / BBQ
- 2 cups uncooked elbow macaroni
- 4 tablespoons butter, 1/2 cup, cut into pieces
- 2 1/2 cups grated sharp Cheddar cheese
- 1/2 cup sour cream (I prefer Greek yogurt)
- One can condensed Cheddar cheese soup, (10 3/4-ounce can)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup whole milk
- 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- Boil the macaroni in a 2 quart saucepan in plenty of water until tender, about 7 minutes. Drain.
- In a medium saucepan, mix butter and cheese. Stir until the cheese melts.
- In a slow cooker, combine cheese/butter mixture and add the eggs, sour cream, soup, salt, milk, nutmeg, mustard and pepper and stir well.
- Add drained macaroni and stir again. Set the slow cooker on low setting and cook for 2 hours, stirring occasionally.
- Now add any toppings you want! We share tips and recommendations for the Best Macaroni & Cheese Bar on mamachallenge.com