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Baked Macaroni and Cheese

Baked Macaroni and Cheese
13 votes, 3.90 avg. rating (77% score)
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Yield: 4 to 6 servings

Before it became the decadent stuff of creamy, cheesy dreams, many a mac and cheese recipe was simple like this one from the Yankee recipe archives (Feb, 2000). Cooked macaroni is layered with shredded cheddar cheese and breadcrumbs (plus a generous splash of milk) for a home-style version of the classic comfort food. Try it for yourself and see how it measures up to your modern mac favorite.

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Old-Fashioned Baked Macaroni and Cheese
Photo/Art by Aimee Seavey


  • 3-1/2 cups elbow macaroni, about 6 cups cooked
  • 4 to 6 tablespoons butter
  • 1 1/2 cups coarse bread crumbs, approximately
  • 10 to 12 ounces extra-sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
  • salt and pepper to taste (remember, cheese is quite salty)
  • 1 cup milk


Cook the macaroni according to package directions, drain, and rinse with cold water. Grease (with butter) bottom and sides of a 2-quart casserole dish. Sprinkle with bread crumbs. Put in a layer of macaroni, sprinkle with cheese, dot with butter, salt, and pepper. Repeat until all ingredients are used up, ending with layer of cheese. Add milk. Sprinkle a good layer of bread crumbs over the top; dot with butter.

Bake at 350 degrees F for 35 to 40 minutes.
Updated Sunday, April 21st, 2002

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6 Responses to Baked Macaroni and Cheese

  1. Anonymous March 20, 2005 at 11:22 am #

    This dish needs to be more creamy.

  2. Anonymous March 11, 2009 at 8:35 am #

    I love this recipe! This is the macaroni and cheese I grew up with. If you’re used to the box variety, it’s probably not creamy enough, but for those of us who grew up with the real thing, it’s perfect!
    Sometimes I add prepared mustard and/or a pinch of horseradish for extra tang.

  3. N.H. Cook May 15, 2015 at 12:56 pm #

    I always put sliced onions in each layer.

  4. Dianna Haught May 15, 2015 at 10:30 pm #

    I don’t think that I’ve ever eaten mac and cheese with bread crumbs and I’ve eaten a lot of mac and cheese growing up. (I’m 59.) What do they add?

  5. Mignon Ariel King March 23, 2016 at 5:50 pm #

    This is very much like the recipe my NH/MA mother made, but she didn’t add breadcrumbs. A lot of people use them; I scrape them off when nobody is looking!

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