Macaroni and Cheese is quite possibly the greatest comfort food on the planet. Thick, gooey cheese and soft tender pasta: YUM. I am not a huge fan of gluten free pasta. Spaghetti night has become a thing of the past in my book. It just doesn’t taste like it used to. But if I can mask the taste of the weird pasta enough, I’ll use it. I have found that thick, heavy sauces work best, but they are probably the worst thing ever for my blood sugar. As much as I would love to sit down and eat the whole pan of macaroni and cheese, it also makes a great side dish to grilled chicken, steaks, or if you’re feeling super unhealthy, it is amazing with a juicy cheeseburger.
If you do make it a main course, remember to increase your basal rate or take another bolus/shot a few (2-3) hours later. It really makes all the difference. The nutrition facts are for a main course serving. I usually divide the pan in 12 before I serve it, and it helps me keep track of what I have eaten. Just take a butter knife or a kitchen knife and split up 12 equal areas. I usually slice it down the middle long ways and short ways, and then split it long ways into thirds on each side. But whatever floats your boat really. If you have extras, it also helps to store it in these blocks. Just microwave the block for 2 minutes and you have the best lunch in the entire world.
6 slices bread torn into 1/4- to 1/2-inch pieces (Rudi’s is my favorite)
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon paprika
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, plus more for dish
5 1/2 cups milk
1/2 cup flour (I use either King Arthur’s blend of gluten free flours or white rice flour)
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
(Optional) 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
4 1/2 cups (about 18 ounces) grated sharp white cheddar
1 1/4 cups (about 5 ounces) grated Pecorino Romano
1 pound gluten free pasta (penne and rotini work best)
- Heat the oven to 375 degrees.
- Butter a 3-quart casserole dish and set aside.
- Place bread pieces in a medium bowl. Smaller pieces are better, and most gluten free bread crumbles easily if you rub it between your hands.
- Melt 2 tablespoons butter and pour butter into the bowl with bread and add onion, garlic, and paprika, and toss. Set the breadcrumbs aside.
- In a medium saucepan set over medium heat, heat milk.
- Melt remaining 6 tablespoons butter in a high-sided skillet over medium heat. When butter bubbles, add flour. Cook, stirring with a whisk for 1 minute.
- Slowly pour hot milk into flour-butter mixture while whisking. Continue cooking, whisking constantly, until the mixture bubbles and becomes thick. This usually takes about 5 minutes for me.
- Remove the pan from the heat. Stir in salt, black pepper, 3 cups cheddar, and 1 cup pecorino Romano. Set cheese sauce aside.
- Fill a large saucepan with water. Bring to a boil. Add macaroni; cook 2 to 3 fewer minutes than manufacturer’s directions, until outside of pasta is cooked and inside is underdone. (Different brands of macaroni cook at different rates; be sure to read the instructions.)
- Transfer the macaroni to a colander, rinse under cold water, and drain well. Stir macaroni into the cheese sauce.
- Pour the mixture into the prepared casserole dish. Sprinkle half of the remaining cheddar and pecorino Romano.
- Scatter breadcrumbs over the top, and then the remaining cheese. Bake until browned on top, about 30 minutes. If the bread browns too quickly, cover with tin foil until it has been about 25-30 minutes. Transfer dish to a wire rack to cool for 5 minutes; serve.