Mac-N-Cheese Casserole Recipe for Thanksgiving

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by Lisa M. Prysock

Depending on where you live, we are so blessed with the beauty around us this time of year as the leaves change their colors to glorious shades of deep reds, scarlet hues, and rich plums.  The golden yellows and pumpkin-colored, orange leaves add a delightful mix to the fall season as our hearts and minds turn to thoughts of our American traditional Thanksgiving celebration. 

I’m looking forward to time with the family around our table and a delicious meal of turkey, gravy, mashed potatoes, stuffing, cranberries, and all of the sides to go with it.  Oh and let us not forget the pie… apple, cherry, pumpkin, and lemon meringue!  Maybe even a chocolate pudding pie?  Truly, we have so much to be thankful for as I ponder how the Lord has preserved and grown my family year after year. 

Today I’m sharing a recipe for a homemade macaroni and cheese casserole you may want to try at your table this year–: 

INGREDIENTS 

2-3 lbs elbow macaroni 

Sea Salt 

Pepper 

Butter about one and a half sticks 

3 tablespoons Vegetable Oil 

Cooking spray  

1 box of Velveeta cheese spread 

Large bag of shredded sharp cheddar real cheese 

Three sleeves of Ritz cracker crumbs, well crushed 

Optional:  

3 tablespoons of parmesan grated or shredded cheese 

2-3 cups of Monterrey Jack or mozzarella finely shredded cheese

DIRECTIONS 

  1. Boil 2-3lbs of elbow macaroni (or your favorite pasta shape).  I boil it in a very large stock pot to the al dente stage (about 7-9 minutes depending on how much you’re making) since it will also bake in the oven for about 30-40 minutes.  I add a teaspoon of sea salt and three tablespoons of cooking oil to the water as it is boiling and stir frequently. 
  2. Drain and rinse pasta with hot water.  Pour into a large casserole baking pan prepared with non-stick cooking spray.
  3. Add chunks ofcubed Velveeta to the baking pan with the noodles (I usually use two-thirds or all of a large box of Velveeta cheese spread).   Also add seven to ten large dollops of butter (I use cholesterol free country crock but for Thanksgiving and Christmas I often use real, salted creamery butter to the noodles.  Now add most of a large bag of shredded sharp cheddar cheese, about one and half cups of milk (you can use 2% or low fat milk) if desired, salt and pepper to taste.   

**The secret is to use the sharp cheddar flavored cheese generously.  You want to cover the entire casserole with about two inches of the sharp cheddar shredded cheese and then stir the ingredients in the pan well to mix.   You may also add a few teaspoons of parmesan cheese and any other flavor of shredded or sliced cheese to this part of the process, but I find my family is just expecting a cheesy cheddar cheese taste and the less I mess with that the better.  A little Monterrey Jack shredded cheese or shredded mozzarella works well if added in a quantity of no more than about two to three cups.  You’ll most likely want the sharp cheddar to be the dominant flavor.  

  1. After you have mixed the ingredients well in the baking pan, add another thin layer of the sharp cheddar shredded cheese across the whole pan.  Cover with foil and place in the oven at about 375 degrees and bake for 30-35 minutes.  Then slide the casserole out and add two to three sleeves of crushed ritz crackers evenly across the top.  Do not cover.  Bake for an additional 10 minutes or until the cracker crumbs are nicely golden brown and the cheese is melted well and hot all the way through. 

Serve hot.  You’ll need to be sure to use the oven mitts removing this beautiful casserole in and out of the oven.  It’s a favorite at our table and my children often request this dish specifically.  It re-heats well if foiled or and serves ten to twenty guests depending on how much macaroni you choose to make.  I usually bake it in one of my largest baking pans.  It is so cheesy I use a sturdy, large metal cooking and serving spoon to serve.  Another nice thing about this dish is you can add a number of variations such as serving with other cheese flavors, decorating the dish with sprigs of parsley after baking, or serving with dollops of sour cream. 

Do you have a Thanksgiving recipe you’d like to share with us?  What’s new on your menu this year?  I wish you and your family a happy fall season and really enjoy hearing from you! I hope you get to enjoy a little reading during this time of year with a cup of cider, hot tea, or cocoa.   

You may be happy to know my new Christian Historical Romance release, Geneva, an Antebellum Era love story, is now only 99 cents through early November for the first time ever.   The story begins in Wales and moves to the heart of Kentucky during the days prior to what Lincoln called “The Great War.”  In my research, I was surprised to discover that during the days of the Civil War, folks were already making macaroni and cheese!  One recipe I ran into from that time period required folks to boil the pasta in milk, though perhaps they probably used quite a bit of water also to prevent curdling.   In any case, I do hope you will enjoy my recipe and my new release… as well as find time for a walk to take in the lovely fall colors.  Blessings to you my friends and readers,  

Lisa

You may click on the title to check out this Amazon exclusive or click the following link to Geneva: https://www.amazon.com/Geneva-Garden-Brides-Grace-Hill-ebook/dp/B075P61X98

Geneva

Author Bio:

Lisa M. PrysockLisa M. Prysock lives in the countryside of beautiful, rolling Kentucky just outside of the greater Louisville area near horse farms and four board fences with her husband of 19 years.  She homeschools the two youngest of their five children (three grown).  She and her husband live in an average, two story, Colonial style home they are continually updating– with a funny looking Heinz 57 dog; an adorably dainty lady cat; two teenagers; a vegetable garden; numerous flower beds; and a tree house undergoing a remodel.  When not in teaching or writing mode, she is teaching herself to play the piano and violin.  In regards to that, she laughs:  “It’s a pretty painful process, but I’m truly enjoying it!”

Lisa loves all things old-fashioned and has adopted a slogan of “The Old-Fashioned Everything Girl.”  A few of her interests and passions include doll houses, long dresses and hats, gardening, reading the Classics, butterflies, swimming, walking, working out, cooking, sewing, crochet, cross stitching, arts and crafts, scrapbooking, decorating, and drawing.  Recently, her husband remodeled a room in their home with a picture window overlooking a valley which contains a creek and wooded area, transforming the space into a serene and sublime writing office/sewing room.  “It’s a great source of peace and inspiration for me… and pure joy not to be writing from the busy kitchen amidst the household chaos on a laptop.  Growing teenagers eating every five minutes makes for a constant stream of happenings!”

Lisa is an Amazon bestselling author of To Find a Duchess, an Inspirational Regency Romance; a Victorian Christian Romance Series which includes Hannah’s Garden:  a Turn of the Century Love Story and Abigail’s Melody; and ‘The Lydia Collection,’ which includes The Redemption of Lady Georgiana (a Ruth love story of modern day Regency proportions), Protecting Miss Jenna (an Antebellum Era Christian Romance Adventure), and Persecution & Providence (a ‘Jane Austen-ish’ mail order bride story from the Pioneer Era).  She is also the author of a devotional/Bible Study, Arise Princess Warrior and recently released The Shoemaker, an Old-Fashioned Regency Christmas Romance.  Lisa writes clean and wholesome literature that shares her faith in Jesus Christ.  She is a member of ACFW and Louisville Christian Writers.  You can find out more about Lisa at:   www.LisaPrysock.com

Links:

https://www.facebook.com/LisaMPrysock

https://twitter.com/LPrysock

www.LisaPrysock.com

https://www.amazon.com/-/e/B00J6MBC64

https://www.bookbub.com/authors/lisa-m-prysock

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