14 Macaroni and Cheese Makeovers You Just Have to See

Try a new spin on the classic dish everyone always loves for dinner. We’ve got unexpected add-ins, fun ways to serve it and top-rated rated recipes.
By: Foodlets
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FNM020109WN012.PSD

Try a new spin on the classic dish everyone always loves for dinner. We’ve got unexpected add-ins, fun ways to serve it and top-rated rated recipes.

Make It a Meal

Adding protein to mac and cheese transforms the dish from a side to a full-on entree.

Ham, Gruyère cheese and real breadcrumbs give this dish (pictured above) new levels of flavor and texture.

beefymaccheesespoon2_091.tif

beefymaccheesespoon2_091.tif

Food Stylist: Cyd Raftus Mcdowell Prop Stylist: Pam Morris

Photo by: Christopher Testani

Christopher Testani

You could be digging into this decadent casserole 35 minutes from now. Just saying.

MacnCheese_Broccoli_227.tif

MacnCheese_Broccoli_227.tif

Photo by: Charles Masters

Charles Masters

Crispy, salty Canadian bacon is balanced by fresh broccoli to create a satisfying meal.

Photo by: Jason Clairy ©Clairy Productions Inc.

Jason Clairy, Clairy Productions Inc.

This is a mash-up straight out of comfort food heaven.

Bring On the Veggies

Here are delicious ideas for adding a little extra nutrition and a ton of flavor.

RACHAEL_RAY_BUTTERNUT_SQ_MAC_CHEESE_H.jpg

RACHAEL_RAY_BUTTERNUT_SQ_MAC_CHEESE_H.jpg

Photo by: Matt Armendariz ©2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Matt Armendariz, 2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Butternut squash has a creamy texture, which means that it will work perfectly in a gooey cheese sauce.

Photo by: Picasa

Picasa

The addition of pureed spinach and chopped broccoli not only adds nutrition, but it also makes this casserole ideal for St. Patrick's Day feasting.

Food Network Kitchen Spinach and Artichoke Macaroni and Cheese Healthy Eats Food Network

Photo by: Stephen Johnson ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Stephen Johnson, 2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Picture the spinach and artichoke dip everyone loves. Now add it to macaroni and cheese.

Ina Garten's Mac and Cheese as Seen On Food Network's Barefoot Contessa

Photo by: Tara Donne ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Tara Donne, 2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

By simply adding a few thick slices of tomato on top (along with a couple more tricks, because Barefoot Contessa), this classic reaches a new level.

This is the birthday party food of your kids’ dreams. It's cute and filling, and it happens to be pretty good for you too.

Thanks to a little cauliflower magic, this vegan version stays as rich and creamy as the original.

Go Big with Flavor

When you’re ready to take things to the next level, these mac and cheeses are the way to go.

Ina Garten's Grown Up Mac and Cheese for Potluck Picks as seen on Food Network's Barefoot Contessa

Photo by: Alice Gao ©Alice Gao Photography

Alice Gao, Alice Gao Photography

With bacon and three kinds of cheese, this decadent dish bears almost no resemblance to that stuff we grew up on. #OutOfTheBox

With a 5-star rating and more than 700 fan reviews, this Italian mac and cheese, bubbling with Fontina, mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses, is hard to resist.

Photo by: Ryan Liebe ©Ryan Liebe—2016

Ryan Liebe, Ryan Liebe—2016

A blanket of buttery breadcrumbs means this dish is crunchy on top but gooey inside.

Bonus: Less Mess without Skimping on Flavor

For those of you pushed for time and energy (I know, only a couple of you right?), this one-pot stove-top mac and cheese might change everything. It did for us!

Charity Curley Mathews is the mom of four small kids. She blogs about food and parenting at Foodlets.com, where every recipe is full of fresh ingredients, simple to make and kid-tested 4x.

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