My Mother's Mac and Cheese Recipe
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My Mother's Mac and Cheese Recipe

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I remember my mother sending me to the store for "15¢ worth of store cheese". The butcher would cut off a slice from a gigantic round of cheese covered with a wax-coated cloth. Mother would then blend that cheese into this tasty dish. Today, the memory of Mother's cooking is like food for my soul. — Phyllis Burkland, Portland, Oregon
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 10 min. Bake: 1 hour
MAKES:4 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 10 min. Bake: 1 hour
MAKES: 4 servings


  • 2 cups elbow macaroni, cooked and drained
  • 1 can (28 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion salt, optional
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 cups (8 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese, divided
  • 2 tablespoons butter

Nutritional Facts

1 cup: 373 calories, 22g fat (16g saturated fat), 75mg cholesterol, 759mg sodium, 27g carbohydrate (6g sugars, 2g fiber), 16g protein.


  1. In a bowl, combine macaroni, tomatoes, onion salt, pepper and 1-1/2 cups cheddar cheese. Pour into a greased 2-qt. baking dish. Dot with butter. Bake, uncovered, at 350° for 45 minutes. Sprinkle with remaining cheese; bake 15 minutes longer. Yield: 4 servings.
Originally published as My Mother's Mac and Cheese in Reminisce May/June 1993, p51

Full-Bodied White Wine

Enjoy this recipe with a full-bodied white wine such as Chardonnay or Viognier.

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Billid77 User ID: 4091641 250271
Reviewed Jul. 10, 2016


JEANIEL User ID: 4193559 250263
Reviewed Jul. 10, 2016

"My mother, grandmother and now I make this mac and cheese for years, if you love tomatoes and cheese you will love this. I use white american cheese in stead of cheddar , thats the way my husband and I like it the best."

GrannyKash User ID: 1273838 244424
Reviewed Feb. 24, 2016

"I made this a few months ago so I'm not sure if I changed anything but I'm pretty sure I did not. With that said, I can say that it was good (I'm the only one in my house that likes Mac & Cheese that DOES NOT come from a box) but I don't think it was my favorite. I think it was the tomatoes as one of the ingredients that I did not like. Thanks for sharing as I do love to try new things!!"

luvdemgrits User ID: 8486223 235460
Reviewed Oct. 22, 2015

"Thank you for the memories Phyllis, and for sharing this great recipe, I melted the cheese and then stirred it into the pasta before baking."

alfoa User ID: 2078080 233550
Reviewed Sep. 27, 2015

"Bland. Needs flavor!"

fiddle-dee User ID: 1467753 227891
Reviewed Jun. 13, 2015

"Terrible. Tasteless. Macaroni bakes to inedible bits on top. Won't ever make again"

karenvk User ID: 5079734 227884
Reviewed Jun. 13, 2015

"This was the best! My other Mac & Cheese recipes are gone. I did change it by shredding longhorn Colby cheese instead but I am sure it would be just as good with cheddar cheese. I wanted to use some of the other reviewers suggestions because I remember my Mom making something like this with hamburger. Thanks for the recipe!"

bunqui95 User ID: 7138867 227134
Reviewed May. 29, 2015

"Not my favorite mac and cheese recipe, but my husband really likes it, as does my toddler. Plus it's a very easy recipe to throw together. I've made it twice now, and it's been well liked both times."

allymcfan User ID: 8300452 226172
Reviewed May. 11, 2015 Edited Aug. 22, 2015

"I have made this 4-5 times. Sometimes I change up the cheese and use cheddar-jack and tomatoes with jalapenos. It does not get hot but gives it a little kick. Love it!"

ShannonMLeger User ID: 4216848 225929
Reviewed May. 5, 2015

"My family enjoyed it, especially my two year old son. Next time, I would add more cheddar cheese though. It was really good, the tomatoes went well with the mac and cheese."

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