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Beer Macaroni & Cheese

Creamy with a hint of beer, this cheesy mac is one of our favorites for a big family dinner. —Lauren Petersen, Marysville, Washington
  • Total Time
    Prep: 20 min. Bake: 15 min.
  • Makes
    12 servings


  • 1 package (16 ounces) elbow macaroni
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon ground mustard
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 2-1/2 cups 2% milk
  • 3/4 cup amber beer
  • 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 3 cups shredded cheddar cheese, divided
  • 2 cups shredded fontina cheese
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese, divided
  • 2 tablespoons minced chives
  • 5 bacon strips, cooked and crumbled


  • Cook macaroni according to package directions for al dente.
  • Meanwhile, in a Dutch oven, heat butter over medium-high heat. Add garlic; cook and stir for 1 minute. Stir in the flour, mustard, salt and pepper until smooth; gradually whisk in the milk, beer and cream. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened.
  • Reduce heat. Stir in 2 cups cheddar cheese, fontina cheese and 1 tablespoon Parmesan cheese until melted. Add chives.
  • Drain macaroni; stir into sauce. Transfer to a greased 3-qt. baking dish. Sprinkle with remaining cheddar and Parmesan cheeses.
  • Bake, uncovered, at 400° for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown and heated through. Top with crumbled bacon. Let stand for 5 minutes before serving.
Nutrition Facts
1 serving: 420 calories, 23g fat (14g saturated fat), 76mg cholesterol, 641mg sodium, 34g carbohydrate (4g sugars, 2g fiber), 20g protein.

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  • Mrs
    Jan 5, 2019

    My family LOVED this recipe. I will be making it again and again. IMO the people who complained about grainy texture did not cook the flour as per directions. I followed the directions as written other than substituting Gouda cheese for fontina one time and mozzarella another time. Simply because I am not familiar with fontina. Sooo yummy.

  • bucky2
    Sep 11, 2016

    This sounds like one of the best mac and cheese I will ever eat so I'm giving it a 10. I am aiming some barbs at reviewers since some of them apparently can only open a box or can. as far as the ;recipe, it's now in my recipe program. But, why do people use 2% milk then turn around and add heavy cream? For goodness sake use whole milk to begin with!Someone had a problem with the butter/flour ratio...that is the correct ratio for a b?chamel sauce which is the simple white sauce (in possibly different forms) to use in anything requiring; a "white sauce". Equal parts butter and flour stirred/cooked together to form a roux, which is pasty then stir in your milk slowly as you constantly stir to form a nice smooth sauce. I'm a bit leery of cooking the garlic with the roux because of burning it which will be bitter. Once you have your b?chamel done add whatever you want and keep on simmering slowly.If you don't like beer leave it out! Some of you sound like my sister who wont eat anything that is not "my recipe".If you think it needs kicking up a bit sub some of the cheddar cheese with pepper jack. Saut?ed jalapenos sounds good too.There are as many mac and cheeses as there are cooks. I really think this is a good one!

  • Wildfiremustang
    Feb 26, 2016

    I didn't care for the flavor of this one.

  • Darlagal87
    Nov 26, 2015

    I really enjoyed this. I used pale ale instead and I added a bit more heavy cream and cheese. To wicked u may have not allowed the flour to mix properly. U have to consistently wish it. Also try adding two more tablespoons of butter. Loved this recipe made it for thanksgiving

  • WickedWiles
    Feb 24, 2015

    I think this macaroni had really good flavors. I do think it got a bit grainy like someone else mentioned; I ended up with chunks of powder throughout it that did not dissolve and I believe this is because the recipe calls for too much flour. I think it would have been perfect with half or a third the amount of flour listed. I also think melting the butter on medium high was too hot. In spite of this, it turned out pretty well and I would make it again.

  • khegeman
    Jan 18, 2015

    I did follow the recipe to the letter. My teenage daughters really liked this dish. I think because they liked the the thought of beer in it. I found it too dry and prefer my mac and cheese creamier. It also seemed like it was missing something. My husband was not satisfied with the dish either.

  • RLiberty
    Nov 9, 2014

    We loved it - bacon, beer & cheese, how could it not be great. I would make extra sauce next time for on the side and for leftovers.

  • zabe03
    Sep 23, 2014

    I highly enjoyed this but recommend trying it with sauteed chopped jalapeños to balence out the beer flavor.

  • aldar
    Jun 11, 2014

    This was just OK. I like my regular Mac and cheese recipe better.

  • LStJean
    May 20, 2014

    I made this twice, once for a crowd for a birthday party and again just for dinner. Everyone raved about it. I, myself, thought it was too thick but still enjoyed it. Next time i will use less flour to thicken. Maybe almost omit it altogether. There isn't much beer in it but I felt it was a little strong. I'm not a beer drinker so that could be why I felt it was strong. The taste in general reminded me of lobster mac and cheese and I will try it that way next time.