Pasta is one of our favorite foods. We talk all the time about how versatile it is, what with the never-ending sauce and add-in possibilities, and we find ourselves turning to pasta numerous times throughout the week because it’s just so comforting and yummy. In terms of the dishes we like the best, it would probably be a tie between classic macaroni and cheese and pesto pasta, but then we decided to combine the two and we discovered our ultimate pasta fave: creamy pesto mac and cheese. It’s perfectly balanced and out of this world…you have to try it out!
Pesto Mac And Cheese
- 1 pound elbow macaroni
- 3 cups sharp cheddar cheese, grated
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 1 cup whole milk
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, plus 2 tablespoons
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/3 cup seasoned breadcrumbs
- 1/3 cup parmesan cheese, grated
- 4 tablespoons pesto sauce, or to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
- Preheat oven to 350º F and lightly grease a 9×13-inch baking dish with butter or non-stick spray.
- Bring a large pot of salted water to boil and cook pasta according to packaging directions, or until al dente, then drain and set aside.
- Heat 1/2 cup butter in a large saucepan over medium heat until melted. Whisk in flour and cook for 1-2 minutes, or until roux is smooth and paste-like.
- Slowly whisk in heavy cream and whole milk, then mix in cheddar cheese and cook for 10 minutes, or until thickened.
- Season with salt, pepper and nutmeg.
- Stir pasta and pesto sauce, into the cheese sauce and stir together until coated, then transfer to baking dish.
- In a small dish, stir parmesan cheese and breadcrumbs together, then melt remaining 2 tablespoons butter and mix everything together.
- Spread breadcrumb mixture over the pasta, then place in oven and bake for 20 minutes, or until topping is golden brown and pasta is heated through.
- Remove from oven and serve hot.
Recipe adapted from 12 Tomatoes