Creamy Stovetop Macaroni and Cheese



1 pound (453.59 g) elbow macaroni

½ cup (113.5 g) unsalted butter

¼ cup (31.25 g) + 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

5 cups (1220 ml) whole milk

24 ounces (680.39 g) sharp cheddar cheese, shredded

8 ounces (226.8 g) American cheese, sliced and chopped

 Salt and pepper, to taste


Cook the pasta according to the instructions on the box, then drain; set aside.

In a large Dutch oven or saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the flour and whisk to combine, then cook for 1 to 2 minutes, whisking constantly, until the mixture is a light golden brown color and beginning to emit a nutty smell.

Reduce the heat to medium-low and slowly whisk in the milk until smooth. Simmer until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes, whisking occasionally.

Add the cheese, a handful at a time, whisking well after each addition and not adding more until the previous handful is fully melted and incorporated. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Add the drained pasta to the cheese sauce and stir to combine, breaking up any clumps of macaroni. Serve immediately. Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.