50 Macaroni and Cheese Toppings
How Many Ways Can You Eat Macaroni and Cheese?
Buttery, cheesy, yummy... one of my favorite guilty pleasure foods is macaroni and cheese.
This article started out as the the top 25 mac and cheese toppings, but it's quickly grown to 50 toppings!
Feel free to add your own favorite toppings to the comments below.
50 Mac and Cheese Toppings
- Sea salt and cracked fresh pepper: Gotta have some flavor!
- Garlic salt: Garlic goes with everything.
- More cheese: Sharp cheddar, pepper jack—you can never have too much cheese!
- Bread crumbs: Give it some texture.
- Salsa or jalapeños: Heat it up!
- Crumbled chips or Cheez-its
- Broccoli and cauliflower: Get your daily dose of iron.
- Shredded carrots: Cooked or raw! Improve your vision while eating comfort food!
- Tomatoes: High in antioxidants.
- Mushrooms: Get some fiber and lower your cholesterol.
- Beans: Protein!
- Bean sprouts
- Bamboo shoots
- Baby corn
- Squash and zucchini
- Roasted red peppers
- Grilled onions
- Diced ham: Hot or cold; it's delicious!
- Grilled chicken: Healthy and low in fat.
- Shredded pork: Add some barbecue sauce.
- Bacon crumbles or turkey bacon
- Hot dogs
- Fried chicken pieces
- Roast beef slices
Sauces and Seasonings
- Soy sauce: Give it an oriental feel; one of my favorite combos.
- Teriyaki: Such an interesting flavor.
- Hot sauce: If you like it hot, you'll like hot sauce on your mac.
- Ranch: Because everyone loves ranch.
- Toasted sesame oil: Try it, you may like it!
- Taco seasoning
- Truffle oil
- White pepper
- Worcestershire sauce
- Curry powders
- Cayenne pepper
- Sour cream
- Chili flakes
Some Recipes to Experiment With
Best Mac and Cheese Ever
You've got your favorite topping all picked out, but what kind of mac and cheese are you going to put it on? How about this one!
- 1 lb uncooked shell noodles
- ½ cup butter
- ½ cup all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- ½ teaspoon ground mustard
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 pinch ground cayenne pepper (optional)
- 4 cups whole milk or 4 cups half-and-half
- 1 lb shredded sharp cheddar cheese
Bread Crumb Topping
- ½ cup Italian style breadcrumbs
- 2 tablespoons of melted butter
- Preheat the oven to 350º F, and cook the noodles on the stovetop.
- Melt butter in small saucepan over low heat so it doesn't burn.
- Stir in mustard, Worcestershire sauce, flour, salt, pepper, and cayenne pepper.
- Cook ingredients over low-medium heat, stirring, until mixture is smooth.
- Remove from burner and stir in milk.
- Heat to boiling, while stirring. Boil and stir for 1 minute as mixture thickens.
- Stir in the cheese.
- Cook, stirring, until the cheese is melted.
- Drain noodles and stir into cheese sauce. Then pour into 4-quart casserole.
- Stir together bread crumbs and butter and sprinkle over the top of the macaroni and cheese.
- Bake for about 20 minutes until bread crumbs are toasted.
Carrot Macaroni and Cheese
- 4 pound carrots, peeled and thinly sliced
- Zest and juice of 1 navel orange, zest removed in strips with a vegetable peeler
- 3 cups penne rigate
- 1 1/2 cups sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
- 1 tablespoon chopped tarragon
- Freshly ground white pepper
- Preheat the oven to 350°.
- In a saucepan, combine the carrots, zest, juice and 1/4 cup of water. Add salt and bring to a boil.
- Cover and simmer over low to medium heat until the carrots are completely soft. This will take about 25 minutes.
- Discard the zest. Pour carrots and any liquid into a blender and puree until smooth.
- In a large saucepan of boiling water, add salt and cook the pasta until al dente. Drain the pasta, but save 1 cup of the cooking water.
- Put the pasta back into the pot and add the reserved water and the carrot puree. Cook over low to medium heat, stirring, for about 5 minutes.
- Stir in 3/4 of the cheese and cook, while stirring, until creamy. This will take about 3 minutes. Add the tarragon, stirring, and season with salt and white pepper.
- Pour the pasta into a baking dish and cover with the remaining 1/4 cheese.
- Bake for about 20 minutes. It's best to let this one sit out for a few minutes before serving.
Light Macaroni and Cheese
Lighten it up a bit with this lower-fat macaroni and cheese recipe.
- 3 cups uncooked penne pasta
- 1 (12-ounce) carton 2% low-fat cottage cheese
- 1/2 cup finely shredded sharp cheddar cheese
- 1/2 cup grated fresh Parmesan cheese, divided
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- Cooking spray
- 3 tablespoons panko bread crumbs
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
- Preheat oven to 375*. Cook pasta, drain, place in large bowl.
- Pour cottage cheese into a food processor and process until it is smooth. Combine cottage cheese, cheddar, 1/4 cup parmesan, salt, and pepper. Add this mixture to the pasta and stir.
- Spoon mixture into a greased large glass or ceramic baking dish.
- Mix remaining 1/4 cup parmesan, panko, and parsley in a bowl. Sprinkle over pasta mixture.
- Bake at 375* for 10 minutes. Then, broil for 1 minute.
Waffled Macaroni and Cheese?
Yes, please! There's a website entirely devoted to seeing if things can be made into waffles, mac and cheese included. Here's a succinct version of the recipe.
- Mac and cheese
- Bread crumbs
- Grease of some sort
- A waffle iron
- Take leftover mac and cheese and spread it into a thin layer on a baking sheet and put it in the refrigerator overnight.
- Cut out a waffle-sized slab of the mac. Dip it in flour, then eggs, then panko bread crumbs.
- Put it into your (well-greased) waffle maker for about 3 minutes.
- Careful when you take it out; it's fragile!