Macaroni and Cheese is the ultimate comfort food, and this recipe is made on the stovetop using no roux or flour! This one’s super creamy and made in just half an hour with 4 simple ingredients: macaroni, cheese, milk, and butter.
There’s nothing better than homemade comfort food, and this Macaroni and Cheese recipe is so simple! Skip the roux and the extra flour and make this version with just FOUR ingredients: macaroni noodles, milk, butter, and American cheese!
I love American cheese because it melts so well. Add a little butter and milk to the sauce, and this easy side dish is ready in just half an hour. I’ve also used Velveeta and shredded mild cheddar cheese.
My grandkids LOVE this recipe. It’s perfect for little mouths with ingredients they know.
EASY MACARONI AND CHEESE INGREDIENTS
You only need four pantry staples for this macaroni and cheese recipe!
- Pasta — I use macaroni or elbow noodles, but you can use any pasta here like penne, bowtie, or fun shapes!
- American cheese
That’s IT! This quick and easy macaroni and cheese is a great weeknight side dish, or it can be dressed up with bacon, broccoli, pulled pork, or chicken to make it a meal!
HOW TO MAKE MAC AND CHEESE WITHOUT A ROUX
- First, cook your pasta according to the directions. You want it to be perfectly al dente pasta.
- Then, drain your pasta but don’t rinse it. You want those surface starches!
- Now, put the noodles back in the warm pot with the butter, milk, cheese, and a little black pepper.
- Finally, warm the macaroni and cheese over low heat, stirring occasionally, until fully melted and combined. You can always thin out your mixture with more milk or thicken it with more cheese!
This method for making mac and cheese is about as simple as it can get, short of using the store-bought blue boxes.
There is no flour, mustard, or anything that makes me go “Ewww, do people really put that in their macaroni and cheese?”
It’s simply unadulterated macaroni, butter, milk, and American cheese slices.
WHAT KIND OF CHEESE FOR MAC AND CHEESE WITHOUT FLOUR?
American cheese is the smoothest melting of all of the cheeses. With a mild flavor and creamy texture, American cheese is totally kid-friendly.
Yes, I know some people do not consider American cheese real cheese, but some of those same people will not hesitate to put those rubbery looking blocks of other processed cheese into their macaroni and cheese or queso dip!
You can also use Velveeta in a pinch for this macaroni and cheese recipe!
Sometimes, when I find some orphaned partial bag of cheddar shreds in the fridge, I might add a bit, but not too much.
Cheddar really needs a low heat to melt properly. The cheese will break if heated too much and may become gritty if melted too fast. That’s why most macaroni and cheese recipes start with a flour roux.
If you choose to use cheddar cheese, choose one that is mild.
BAKED MACARONI AND CHEESE
The simple no roux, no flour, macaroni and cheese recipe can also be baked with a crunchy top!
To bake this, simply place it into a greased casserole dish and top it with a crushed cracker topping.
I make my cracker topping with saltine crackers. To make a cracker crumb topping, combine 1 cup of cracker crumbs with 4 tablespoons of melted butter.
If you prefer more topping, just increase the amount of crumb topping made.
Bake it in a 350°F oven until the cracker crumbs are golden brown. Serve immediately.
Instead of cracker crumbs, this is the place you want to feature your cheddar cheese! Sprinkle cheddar cheese over the top of the macaroni and cheese and bake just until the cheese has melted.
MORE RECIPES KIDS LOVE TO EAT
- Frog Eye Soup (Chicken and Pasta)
- Peanut Butter Rice Krispie Treats
- Sprinkle Cookies
- Snickers Apple Salad
- Beef and Noodles
- Pepperoni Pizza Rolls
Simple Macaroni and Cheese
- 16 ounces dried pasta
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 16 ounces American cheese
- 1 ¼ cups milk
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- Cook pasta as directed on package.
- Drain pasta, but do not rinse.
- Add cooked pasta, butter, milk, cheese, and pepper to a pan.
- Cook over low heat, stirring occasionally until all cheese is melted, about 5 minutes.