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close up old-fashioned baked mac and cheese in a baking dish.

Old-Fashioned Baked Mac and Cheese

Indulgent old-fashioned baked mac and cheese, an American classic that will bring back memories. An easy recipe that makes the most of the simplest ingredients.
Course Main Course, Pasta Recipes
Cuisine American
Keyword baked mac and cheese, baked macaroni and cheese, old fashioned baked mac and cheese, old fashioned mac and cheese
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Servings 4 -6
Calories 868kcal
Author Adina


  • Large saucepan
  • Casserole dish of approximately 10x6x2 ½ inches (26x15x6 cm)


  • 9 oz macaroni 250 g
  • 2 ⅓ cups sharp cheddar divided, 200 g
  • 1 ¾ cup Gruyere cheese 150 g
  • 2 tablespoons butter 30 g
  • cup all-purpose flour 40 g
  • 1 ½ cups full-fat milk 350 ml
  • 1 ½ teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • ½ teaspoon sweet paprika powder
  • ½ teaspoon fine sea salt or Kosher, more to taste
  • teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 egg small, Notes 1, 2


  • Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Butter the casserole dish.
  • Cook pasta: Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add salt generously and cook the macaroni for 1 minute less than indicated on the package. Drain well.
  • In the meantime, prepare the rest of the recipe.
  • Grate both types of cheese. Set them aside.

Make sauce:

  • Roux: Melt the butter in a large saucepan. Sprinkle the flour on top and constantly stir for about 1 minute until the flour turns lightly golden.
  • Add milk: Slowly add the milk while whisking continuously to avoid lumps. Whisk until the mixture is lump free.
    Add mustard, sweet paprika, salt, and pepper and stir well to mix.
  • Simmer the white sauce for a couple of minutes until thickened while stirring constantly.
  • Add cheese: Turn off the heat and stir 2 cups of the Cheddar cheese and all the Gruyere cheese into the sauce. Stir well until almost completely melted. Crack the egg on top and stir it in as well.
  • Adjust the taste with more salt if necessary.
  • Add macaroni and stir well to combine.

Bake mac and cheese:

  • Assemble the dish: Pour the mixture into the prepared casserole dish. Sprinkle with the remaining ⅓ cup Cheddar cheese.
  • Bake: for 20-25 minutes until the top of the dish is lightly golden. Don’t overbake the dish, or it will become dry. Serve immediately.


  1. Using an egg is traditional for old-fashioned baked mac and cheese, but you can leave it out if you like. The egg will bind the dish a bit more, making everything a bit cakey-like. If you leave it out, the sauce will be creamier.
  2. One large egg will be enough if you make a double batch of mac and cheese.


Serving: 1g | Calories: 868kcal | Carbohydrates: 63g | Protein: 47g | Fat: 47g | Saturated Fat: 26g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 12g | Trans Fat: 0.01g | Cholesterol: 184mg | Sodium: 1234mg | Potassium: 427mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 1574IU | Vitamin C: 0.01mg | Calcium: 1211mg | Iron: 2mg