Mom’s Favorite Macaroni and Cheese Recipe: Baked Macaroni and Cheese Made with Sharp Cheddar, Paired with Petite Peas, Stewed Tomatoes and Crisp Bacon, Sprinkled with Freshly Ground Black Pepper



One of my all-time favorite dinners: my Mom’s macaroni and cheese! First and foremost, she’d like everyone to know that she pulled this recipe from Tyler Florence’s cookbook called “Tyler’s Ultimateand made a few minor adjustments along the way. It reminded her of a family member’s macaroni and cheese recipe she had growing up, so naturally she fell in love with it. She’s been making this recipe for a number of years – the only adjustment I made to the recipe was I literally BEGGED her (probably 4 to 5 years ago) to use one of my favorite local cheeses from September Farm. She gave it a try and WOW – that was just the ticket to making an already fabulous recipe even a little bit better! Cheese can definitely be a more expensive item, but odds are you won’t be making this pretty regularly. So if you’re going to go all-out, I strongly suggest getting a really terrific cheese! We also paired the macaroni and cheese with bacon for the very first time last night (something Tyler Florence actually suggests in his recipe, along with the peas) and we are never going back! It just adds that little something extra on the side. Also, my Mom always eats her macaroni and cheese with stewed tomatoes, so that is also a must to throw into the mix for our meal. In reality though, you can add/pair whatever your heart desires! It’ll be hard to go back to store-bought and restaurant mac and cheese after this, I guarantee it!  Enjoy! 🙂

Makes Around 1 Large Tray (6 to 8 Dinner Servings) 

Post by © Alysha Melnyk 2018

*Special Thanks to my Mom and the Tyler Florence Cookbook for this Recipe Inspiration*

Kitchen Tools:


Pasta Pot


Cheese Grater

Large Sauté Pans (*For Bacon and Peas if Making)

Small Sauce Pan


9 by 13 Baking Dish

Oven, Preheated to 400°F

Liquid Measuring Cup

Measuring Cups

Measuring Spoons


1 Pound Elbow Macaroni

3 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter (*Or salted if you want to add salt)

3 Tablespoons All-Purpose Flour

4 Cups Milk, Warmed

5 and 1/2 Cups Shredded Sharp White Cheddar Cheese

Fresh Ground Black Pepper (*To Taste)

Optional for Serving: Bacon, Peas, Stewed Tomatoes, Salt, Pepper

Featured Artists/Products:

Square Platter by Jeremy Ogusky, Creater of Ogusky Ceramics (based in Jamaica Plan, MA)

Breakfast Board by Dennis Melnyk


  1. First, bring a pasta pot of salted water to a boil using high stovetop heat.
  2. While water is coming to a boil, shred cheese if not pre-shredded.
  3. Then, add in the elbow macaroni and cook al dente (about 8 to 9 minutes). Then drain and place pasta in 9 by 13 baking dish. Set aside.
  4. Next, preheat the oven to 400°F.
  5. Next, slice butter and place in the emptied pasta pan over medium heat until butter melts.
  6. Next, whisk in flour and cook for around 1 minute. Make sure to stir constantly so no lumps form. This process is forming the “roux” for the pasta dish.
  7. In a separate pan or in the microwave, heat milk and then whisk into the mixture, which will be thick but smooth.
  8. Next, stir in 4 cups of the shredded cheese. Season with black pepper if desired.
  9. After that, pour cheese mixture over pasta in 9 by 13 baking dish and stir so the macaroni pasta are coated.
  10. Next, add the remaining 1 and 1/2 cups of shredded cheddar cheese on top.
  11. Bake for around 30 minutes (or more depending how crispy you like the top).
  12. While macaroni and cheese is cooking, prepare side dishes like frying bacon, cooking frozen peas, and warming canned stewed tomatoes.
  13. Once macaroni and cheese is done baking, let it cool for around 10 minutes (or longer) to help the dish set and sauce thicken.
  14. Spoon to serve and pair with sides of choice
  15. Enjoy! 🙂

***Store leftovers in refrigerator and can be easily reheated in either the microwave or oven.***

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