Roasted Garlic Mac and Cheese

Take your homemade mac and cheese to new heights by adding Roasted Garlic. The caramelized hint of the garlic makes this baked mac and cheese truly irresistible!

There’s a million different variations of mac and cheese and so much debate over the best way to make it. For me, it’s gotta be gooey with a crispy top. This time we’ve got exactly that, just with a little extra goodness…

Spoonful of mac and cheese being pulled out of baking dish with cheese dripping down

Roasted Garlic

If you’ve been a reader of mine for a while you’ll have noticed I’m a little obsessed with roasted garlic. I literally eat the stuff with a fork 😂 (100% serious).

When you roast garlic low and slow it caramelizes and completely transforms the flavour into something sweet and nutty. You get a gorgeous hint of garlic, without it being all up your face.

I usually add a small amount of garlic powder to mac and cheese, which works wonders. But it can be quite pungent if you put more than about a tsp in. With roasted garlic, you can put an entire large bulb of garlic in and you’ll still be wanting more.

How to Roast Garlic

  1. Slice off the tip of the bulb to expose the cloves.
  2. Drizzle with olive oil and wrap in foil.
  3. Roast at 356f/180c for 45mins-1hour or until golden brown and buttery.

Closeup of roasted garlic fresh out the oven

Baked Mac and Cheese with Roasted Garlic

Once you’ve roasted the garlic, squeeze it out of the cloves and mash with a fork and a pinch of salt until smooth.

When it comes to the cheese sauce, I always go with a simple triad of cheeses:

  • Sharp Cheddar
  • Mozzarella
  • Parmesan

No need for artsy fartsy cheeses, these 3 together are a force to be reckoned with.

Another non-negotiable in all mac and cheeses is a good dollop of mustard. This emphasises the cheese an insane amount.

Whether you like mustard or not, trust me, it makes the world of difference. Very subtle as well, you won’t notice it’s there.

How to make Baked Mac and Cheese with Roasted Garlic - 6 step by step photos

How to make Baked Mac and Cheese

  1. Melt butter and stir with roasted garlic.
  2. Add flour and stir into a paste.
  3. Gradually add milk and whisk until thickened, then add mustard, seasoning and cheese.
  4. Add al dente pasta and stir to combine.
  5. Add everything to a baking dish and top with breadcrumbs and extra parmesan.
  6. Bake until golden, then sprinkle with fresh chives.

Try not to think of the chives as just garnish, they actually add gorgeous flavour to the dish. Chives are close family to garlic so they really compliment the flavours.

Plus they add a pop of colour which is always nice.

Baked mac and cheese fresh out the oven with a spoon breaking through the breadcrumbs

Hey, whilst you’re here why not check out my other recipes?

Pasta Bake Recipes

Roasted Garlic Recipes

Okay, let’s tuck into the recipe shall we?

Bowl of roasted garlic mac and cheese with fork digging in and chives and garlic surrounding the bowl

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How to make Roasted Garlic Mac and Cheese (Full Recipe & Video)

5 from 5 votes
Spoonful of mac and cheese being pulled out of baking dish with cheese dripping down
Roasted Garlic Mac and Cheese
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
1 hr 20 mins
Total Time
1 hr 30 mins
 

Take your homemade mac and cheese to new heights by adding Roasted Garlic. The caramelized hint of the garlic makes this baked mac and cheese truly irresistible!

Course: Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Roasted Garlic Mac and Cheese
Servings: 6
Calories: 738 kcal
Author: Chris Collins
Ingredients
  • 14oz / 400g Elbow Macaroni (or other short-cut pasta)
  • 4 cups / 1 litre Milk, at room temp
  • 1 large bulb of Garlic
  • 2 cups / 200g Sharp Cheddar, grated
  • 2 cups / 200g Mozzarella, shredded
  • 1 cup / 70g Parmesan, grated (save half for top)
  • 1/2 cup / 30g Breadcrumbs, or as needed
  • 3 tbsp Plain Flour
  • 3 tbsp Unsalted Butter
  • 1 tbsp Dijon Mustard
  • Fresh Chives, finely diced
  • Salt & Black Pepper, to taste
  • Olive Oil / Oil Spray
Method
  1. Slice the tip off the garlic bulb to expose the cloves, drizzle with olive oil and wrap in foil. Pop in the oven for 45-60mins at 356f/180c or until golden brown and soft as butter.

  2. Squeeze out the garlic & mash with a pinch of salt to completely smooth it out. Add to a large saucepan with butter and stir to combine. Stir in flour to form a paste, then gradually pour in your milk, whisking as you go to avoid lumps. Once thickened, add mustard and seasoning, then stir in your cheeses (remember to save half parmesan).

  3. Meanwhile, cook pasta in salted boiling water until only JUST cooked. You want it still a bit hard. Reserve a cup of starchy pasta water (see notes) then drain and combine with cheese sauce.

  4. Add everything to a baking dish, top with parmesan then breadcrumbs and finish with a pinch of salt & pepper and oil spray. Pop in the oven at 390f/200c for 20mins or until golden on top. Sprinkle fresh chives over the top and serve.

Watch how to make it!

Recipe Notes

a) Roasted Garlic - Timings will vary depending on the size of the garlic, so just be vigilant after 40-45mins. If it looks like it's turning too dark too quickly simply lower the temperature. 

 

b) Al dente pasta - You want to make sure the pasta is only just cooked. It will finish cooking when you bake it in the oven. 

 

c) Consistency / Pasta Water - The sauce may seem overly stringy at the start, but when you add pasta, the little bit of water that comes with it will help smooth it out and turn the sauce silky. Use more pasta water as needed to help this. Also, when pasta is added there may seem too much sauce, but it will thicken when baked. 

 

d) Sauce - Make sure the sauce has thickened before you add the cheese, don't use the cheese to thicken the sauce or it will lose it's texture (namely the mozzarella).

 

e) Chives - Try not to think of these as just garnish, they add gorgeous flavour to the dish. I use around a tbsp to sprinkle on top, but work to preference.

Nutrition Facts
Roasted Garlic Mac and Cheese
Amount Per Serving
Calories 738 Calories from Fat 308
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 34.18g 53%
Saturated Fat 19.461g 97%
Trans Fat 0.73g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1.848g
Monounsaturated Fat 9.057g
Cholesterol 103mg 34%
Sodium 923mg 38%
Potassium 505mg 14%
Total Carbohydrates 68.94g 23%
Dietary Fiber 2.6g 10%
Sugars 10.97g
Protein 37.72g 75%
Vitamin A 53%
Vitamin C 3%
Calcium 82%
Iron 10%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

For another delicious baked mac and cheese recipe check out my Spicy Bacon Mac and Cheese!

Spicy mac and cheese with bacon fresh out the oven

If you loved this Roasted Garlic Mac and Cheese then be sure to Pin them for later! Already made them or got a burning question? Give me a shout in the comments and pick up your free ecookbook on the way!

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10 Comments

  • Reply
    Lisa
    May 25, 2019 at 6:35 pm

    The roasted garlic takes this recipe to a whole other level. So good!!

    • Reply
      Chris
      May 26, 2019 at 10:55 am

      Allllll about the roasted garlic

  • Reply
    SHANIKA
    May 25, 2019 at 9:08 pm

    Wow! This Mac + Cheese! It looks way too delicious and creamy!

    • Reply
      Chris
      May 26, 2019 at 10:55 am

      Thanks Shanika! 🙂

  • Reply
    Anita @ Daily Cooking Quest
    May 25, 2019 at 9:27 pm

    Roasted garlic takes everything to the next level. I bet the taste of this mac and cheese must be out of this world.

    • Reply
      Chris
      May 26, 2019 at 10:55 am

      It’s pretty darn good if I do say so myself

  • Reply
    Kelly Anthony
    May 25, 2019 at 10:04 pm

    Roasted garlic and mac and cheese sounds like the perfect combination. I can’t wait to make this for my family.

    • Reply
      Chris
      May 26, 2019 at 10:56 am

      Enjoy! 🙂

  • Reply
    Andrea Metlika
    May 25, 2019 at 10:28 pm

    I love roasted garlic. I cant wait to taste this flavorful mac n cheese with the roasted garlic.

    • Reply
      Chris
      May 26, 2019 at 10:56 am

      Thanks Andrea! 🙂

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