Macaroni and cheese is the ultimate comfort food. This is a favorite in my house and often requested. 

Preparation Time: 20-30 minutes, depending on your options


1 package elbow macaroni noodles, cooked according to package directions
1/4 cup butter
1 package cream cheese, softened
1/4 tsp ground mustard seed
1/2 tsp ground turmeric
4-5 grates of fresh nutmeg
1/2 tsp ground paprika
Salt & fresh ground black pepper to taste
2 cups cubed Cheddar cheese Or any combination of cheeses you like

_Optional Mix-Ins_
1 cup cubed ham or cooked chicken and/or chopped broccoli and/or cauliflower

_Optional Toppings_
1 large tomato, sliced or several slices of sun-dried tomato
1/4 cup seasoned bread crumbs
1/4 cup fried onions or jalapeños


  1. Bring a pot of water to a bowl. Add your macaroni noodles and cook until tender yet firm according to package directions. If you are are using raw or frozen vegetables as mix-ins, you can stir them into the water just before the noodles are done, return to a boil and then strain.
  2. In a saucepan(or the pan you just cooked your noodles in), melt 1/4 cup butter and cream cheese, stirring constantly until it begins to soften.
  3. Add the seasonings and stir them in well.
  4. Continue to cook and stir till cream cheese is melted and you have a lovely smooth sauce.
  5. Stir in the macaroni, cheese cubes, and your pre-cooked meat mix-ins.
  6. Keep stirring over low heat till everything starts to integrate.
  7. Transfer to a casserole dish, if desired.
  8. Arrange the toppings in an attractive fashion.
  9. Cover and let rest 5-10 minutes before serving.

After placing in a casserole and arranging the toppings, cover and refrigerate or freeze. When you are ready, take it out and thaw, if needed and heat, covered, in a 350 F degree oven for 15- 20 minutes or until heated through- the exact time will depend on the depth of your casserole dish. Just check it every 10 minutes or so until everything is hot and melty again.

Additional Comments:

This dish is wonderful for cold winter nights at home and autumn pot lucks

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