Fannie Farmer's Classic Baked Macaroni & Cheese

Prep Time
Cook Time
Ready In

"I found this in the 1946 Edition of my Fannie Farmer's Boston Cooking School Cookbook. I have made it often throughout the years. It is an absolute favorite with my family. Here are a few tips to follow that may come in handy: When making the roux, melt the butter over low heat. When the foaming begins to subside, add the flour and stir constantly, watching the color of the flour. Let it cook about 5 minutes until it gets a light nutty brown color. Go by the color though, not by the time. If you don't cook it long enough, and the flour is still white, it will taste like raw flour. If it gets too brown, the flour will scorch, and it will taste awful, so watch it closely until it turns a light brown. Slowly add the milk a little at a time, until the sauce starts to thicken, turning up the heat to medium. Make sure you stir constantly until it comes to a boil, then boil for 2 minutes stirring constantly. Reduce heat and cook, stirring constantly for 10 minutes. Add cheese a little at a time, and simmer for 5 more minutes, or until cheese melts. Turn off the stove, then add to macaroni. Toss to coat, and then spoon into buttered baking dish. I sometimes use half Cheddar and half Monterey Jack cheese. I have also been known to add a can of chopped tomatoes or Ro-Tel tomatoes with green chilies to the mac n cheese and mix in before baking. It doesn't look so good but it tastes delicious. Also, this can be frozen in Ziploc bags for future use. Once you mix the macaroni with the cheese sauce, let it cool to room temperature, the put in bags and put in the freezer. When your ready to use the frozen portions, pull one out of the freezer the night before, and let thaw in the fridge. Let it come to room temperature before baking in a buttered baking dish. Sprinkle with bread crumbs (you can use regular or Panko), then bake for 20-30 minutes, or until it's bubbling and golden brown on top. Another Tip: You can use an 8x8 or 9x9 inch pan with great results or you can double the recipe and use a 9x13 inch pan."

Original is 4 servings


  • Serving Size: 1 (267.9 g)
  • Calories 703.3
  • Total Fat - 38.2 g
  • Saturated Fat - 22.7 g
  • Cholesterol - 108.5 mg
  • Sodium - 975.2 mg
  • Total Carbohydrate - 61.8 g
  • Dietary Fiber - 2.4 g
  • Sugars - 6.4 g
  • Protein - 28.2 g
  • Calcium - 664.5 mg
  • Iron - 1.4 mg
  • Vitamin C - 0.5 mg
  • Thiamin - 0.2 mg

Step by Step Method

Step 1

Preheat oven to 400°F.

Step 2

Cook, and drain macaroni according to package directions. Set aside.

Step 3

In a large saucepan, melt butter.

Step 4

Add flour mixed with salt and pepper, using a whisk to stir until well blended.

Step 5

Pour milk and cream in gradually, stirring constantly.

Step 6

Bring to boiling point, and boil for 2 minutes (stirring constantly).

Step 7

Reduce heat, and cook (stirring constantly) for 10 minutes.

Step 8

Add shredded Cheddar cheese a little at a time, and simmer an additional 5 minutes, or until cheese melts.

Step 9

Turn off stove.

Step 10

Add macaroni to the saucepan, and toss to coat with the cheese sauce.

Step 11

Transfer macaroni to a buttered baking dish.

Step 12

Sprinkle with breadcrumbs.

Step 13

Bake 20 minutes, until it's bubbling and golden brown on top.


No special items needed.

20 Reviews


Since making this the first time we liked it so much that I make it quite often. Especially when we are having hot dogs or ribs. They just seem to go together! Rich, creamy and cheesy. Just what we love in a mac n cheese!


review by:
(28 Apr 2021)


I made this today for lunch. Yummy, thick and creamy, with lots of cheesy flavor from this basic old standby. Why try to fix it when it ain't broken. Perfect as is!


review by:
(11 Jun 2020)


This is a well-spattered recipe in my Grandma’s cookbook; a family favorite for decades! Thanks for posting - it can now be shared with her great-grandkids.


review by:
(25 May 2020)


This Mac n Cheese is so creamy and delicious! It was so good with my baked ham. Yummy!


review by:
(2 May 2020)

Avery And Maxs Mom

My kids love Mac and cheese and this is their new favorite. My little one rubs his belly and says " yummy mommy". I love it when he eats good!


(27 Sep 2019)


Delicious Mac n Cheese and so comforting to our tummies. Instant favorite with the kids!


review by:
(16 Mar 2019)

You'll Also Love