This baked macaroni and and cheese always reminds me of my momma. (I added the breadcrumbs!) When I returned home after going away to college I was welcomed with a seemingly endless supply of creamy homemade macaroni and cheese. Delicious, comforting and homey. Oh, yeahhhh.
My momma’s homemade macaroni is what you might call the “Mac Daddy.” Mac Mommy? Gosh, this is getting cheesy…
So, I wanna let you in on a little secret to making homemade mac and cheese a little easier. It’s the pan. You can use a dutch oven or a cast iron skillet. With the dutch oven there’s no need to transfer the cheesy macaroni into an oven-safe pan before baking, you can take it right from the stove top to the oven. You can do the same with the cast iron skillet, the sides are just lower so it’s more difficult to stir without spilling but the presentation is nicer. So I guess which one you choose, depends on your priority there.
I used to own the Food Network dutch oven and I loved it. I didn’t know if I was going to use it that much but it’s very versatile, you can fry in it, make casseroles, popcorn and even bake bread in it! It’s pretty awesome so if you don’t own one, I highly recommend making the investment. Actually the Food Network brand is very affordable compared to other brands. I am already on my second dutch oven though. The enamel started chipping on my first one I think because I used bleach to clean it. Apparently that’s a no no but I didn’t like the stains. I know have a Lodge dutch oven and I think I love that one even more. 🙂
As you may have noticed, the photos show my macaroni and cheese baked in my cast iron skillet. I knew I was going to be taking photos so I opted for the prettier presentation. As I mentioned, you can still create your cheesy roux in the skillet, add your noodles and then transfer the skillet into the oven, it’s just a little harder to contain the macaroni noodles when you stir in the cheese. So if you have either a cast iron skillet or a dutch oven, you’re good to go. If not, no biggie, you’ll just have to use an extra pan when transferring from the stove top to the oven to bake.