Why is my macaroni and cheese so dry? I mix 3 tablespoons of flour and 1 stick of butter in a saucepan and let it melt. Then I add 1.5 cans Carnation milk, 2 cups cheese, and 1-8oz package of cream cheese, stir and add to macaroni. Please tell me what I am doing wrong.
What do you mean by dry? Too much pasta and too little sauce?
Or next day sauce "gone"? The too much too little scenario is easy, decrease or increase as needed. Next day sauce "gone" means the pasta absorbed it, reserve some of the cheese sauce for a refresher for left overs, or rejuvenate with regular milk.
I think the simple solution is more plain milk or water in your recipe. Might back off a tablespoon of the flour too, which just thickens it to glop. The starch in the macaroni without any flour should thicken it fine if you're baking it. If you want a more creamy sauce, less flour, more regular milk. A "classic" southern baked mac n cheese has an egg it, which makes for a very rich, (too rich for me) dish, but the texture is almost more like a custard with the egg. If you want a creamier mac n cheese, put in more milk or water than you think, and after baking it will thicken up from the starch in the pasta. Hope this helps.
Just reading back on your recipe, I would simply try it without the flour at all. Just the starch of the pasta and the cream cheese should make a creamy rich sauce, even if not baking it.
One more thought: If you're using pre-shredded bagged cheese, sometimes they add cornstarch to the bag cheese so it doesn't clump, and cornstarch is yet another thickener. So also try grating your own cheese vs. the bag stuff.
Skip the flour. Never heard of using that. Your starch factor with pasta is high without adding a little more via flour. You have enough solid, add warm liquid.
Onesummer try this recipe that has been in our family for several years and be a little kind to your heart. It is good and creamy.
Macaroni and cheese:
2 cups (8 oz) elbow macaroni (I use whole wheat macaroni)
1/4 cup margarine or butter (optional)
1/4 cup flour
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
2 1/2 cups milk (I use 1%)
2 cups (8 0z) shredded cheddar cheese
Cook macaroni to box directions.
Whip the flour into the cold milk until well blended adding the salt and pepper and stiring until the mixture thickens. Add the cheese to hot mixture and stir in the butter if using.
Add sauce to the drained macaroni and stir to blend. At this point you can eat it ( what we do) or you can put it in a casserole and top it with buttered corn flake crumbs or crushed potato chips and bake at 350 until topping is golden.
I do hope you like this recipe and good luck.
Here's the recipe I use and it's nice and moist:
Deeli's Mac and Cheese
8 ounces uncooked elbow macaroni
4 tbls butter
2 tbls flour
2 cups half & half, or milk if desired
1 tbls Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp salt
8 ounces cheddar cheese, shredded
1 tbls canned diced jalapenos, if desired (it adds a really nice not too hot kick)
1/2 cup bread crumbs (I use Panko crumbs)
1 tbls butter, melted
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook macaroni according to package directions. Drain.
Meanwhile, melt the 4 tablespoons of butter in a 3 to 4 quart saucepan, stir in flour and cook over medium heat until smooth (about 1 minute).
Add half & half/milk, Dijon mustard and salt. Continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until sauce is thickened (about 3 to 4 minutes).
Stir in cooked macaroni, cheese and jalapeno and then spoon into an 8 x 8 baking dish.
Mix breadcrumbs and remaining melted butter in a small bowl and sprinkle over macaroni and cheese.
Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until heated through and golden brown.
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