20-Minute Mac-and-Cheese

Yes, I used to make macaroni and cheese from a box. That was long ago. Now I usually make a totally different take on mac-and-cheese, like my favorite, fire eater chicken macaroni and cheese. But sometimes I just don’t have the time (or ingredients). That’s when this 20-minute mac-and-cheese version comes in real handy. Like the name says, it doesn’t take long to make and it comes out just as ooey and gooey as you’d expect (and want).

20-Minute Mac-and-Cheese

Add a couple pinches of cayenne if you want a little kick in your 20-minute mac-and-cheese. For something totally different, try my macaroni-and-cheese salad. Yes, salad.

20-Minute Mac-and-Cheese

This 20-minute mac-and-cheese version comes in real handy. Like the name says, it doesn’t take long to make and it comes out just as ooey and gooey as you’d expect (and want).
Course Side
Cuisine American
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 520kcal

Ingredients

  • Kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 cups elbow macaroni
  • 1 cup heavy cream half-and-half also works well
  • 1 ounce cream cheese at room temperature
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic salt
  • 1/2 cup extra sharp Cheddar cheese shredded
  • 2-4 slices American cheese

Instructions

  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook until al dente, about 9 minutes. Drain.
  • Meanwhile, heat cream in a large skillet.
  • Add cream cheese and salt and stir until cheese is melted.
  • Add cheddar and American cheeses and stir until melted.
  • Add cooked pasta and stir to coat well.
  • Note: Add a pinch of cayenne for extra kick.
  • Note: If you want a little crunch, sprinkle the top of the mac with panko breadcrumbs and place under the broiler for a few minutes until golden brown. Make sure you use a skillet that can stand the heat, such as a cast iron skillet.

Nutrition

Calories: 520kcal | Carbohydrates: 42g | Protein: 14g | Fat: 33g | Saturated Fat: 20g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 115mg | Sodium: 457mg | Potassium: 199mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 1211IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 268mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutritional values are approximate.