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 cents worth of cheese. The butcher would cut off a slice from a gigantic wheel covered with a wax-coated cloth. Mother would then blend that cheese into this tasty dish. Today, the memory of her 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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veggiemama User ID: 4640590 263650
Reviewed Mar. 19, 2017

"The flavor was good, but it ended up being dry and tough because it wasn't covered."

Michael User ID: 8996622 258559
Reviewed Dec. 24, 2016

"I found it was better to cover it for the first 30 mins of bake time to keep the top from getting hard and to use garlic powder instead of onion powder. And i always add extra cheese, but it is a good base recipe to start with"

Glenda User ID: 8984822 258057
Reviewed Dec. 12, 2016

"Why would you not make a recipe and then give it a one star? That is rude."

Susie77 User ID: 98373 258007
Reviewed Dec. 11, 2016

"I confess to not making this yet. I only wanted to comment on the author's description "the memory of Mother's cooking is like food for my soul." So lovely a thought, and one that I think most of us who love cooking can embrace. May you all always make good food, and good memories, for your own children."

sderf13 User ID: 2893582 258000
Reviewed Dec. 11, 2016

"I didn't make it, full of yellow coloring"

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!"

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