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The Best Homemade Mac and Cheese

Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time45 mins
Servings: 6


  • 1 lb cavatappi noodles
  • 4 cups whole milk
  • 8 tablespoons butter divided
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups extra-sharp white cheddar cheese shredded
  • 1 1/2 cups Cave aged Gruyere Cheese grated
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 cup Italian bread crumbs
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil


  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  • Add olive oil to large pot of boiling salted water.
  • Add pasta to boiling water, and cook pasta to the directions on the package. It is best to cook the pasta al dente, which means taking a minute or two off the cooking time. Drain well.
  • Meanwhile the pasta is boiling, heat milk in a saucepan on low heat.
  • At the same time, in a large pan, melt 6 tablespoons of butter on low heat.
  • When butter is melted, add a spoon full of flour at a time, and whisk until all flour has been added and all clumps are gone.
  • While still whisking, add the hot milk, and cook until the mixture is thickened and smooth.
  • Remove mixture off heat, and add Gruyere and white cheddar a little at a time, while mixing to avoid clumps.
  • Add salt, pepper and nutmeg to the sauce mixture.
  • Add the cooked pasta, and stir well. Place mixture in baking dish.
  • Melt the 2 remaining tablespoons of butter, and combine them with the italian breadcrumbs. Sprinkle breadcrumbs on top of dish.
  • Bake for 30 minutes, or until the sauce is bubbly and breadcrumbs are browned on the top.