20-Minute Mac and Cheese beauty, as seen on Food Network Kitchen Live.
Recipe courtesy of Jet Tila

20-Minute Mac 'n Cheese

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 20 min
  • Active: 20 min
  • Yield: 4 to 6 servings



  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the macaroni and about 1 tablespoon salt and cook according to package directions, usually 6 to 8 minutes. Transfer to a colander and drain well.
  2. While the pasta cooks, melt the butter in a 4-quart pot over medium heat. Stir in the flour with a wooden spoon, stirring and cooking until the mixture is smooth, about 1 minute. Whisk in about 1/2 cup of the milk, whisking until no lumps remain. Then whisk in the rest of the milk until the sauce is smooth. Bring to a simmer and whisk constantly until the sauce is slightly thickened, 1 to 2 minutes.
  3. Reduce the heat to medium-low. Stir in the Cheddar, Gruyere and Parmigiano-Reggiano with a wooden spoon. Stir until the cheese is completely melted and the sauce is smooth. Stir in the pepper and nutmeg and season to taste with salt. Remove from the heat.
  4. Transfer the drained pasta to a large bowl. Pour the sauce over the pasta and stir until well combined. Serve warm.

Cook’s Note

You can use any dry pasta shape that you like for this recipe. Or you can leave out the pasta and you'll have a beautiful Mornay sauce for any use. You also have a choice when it comes to cheese -- try smoked Gouda, fontina or Gorgonzola. And if you want an extra-thick sauce, feel free to use an extra cup of cheese.