Creamy Mac and Cheese

Mac and Cheese

By Mark Hinds | Updated May 10, 2021

This mac and cheese recipe uses three kinds of cheese to create a rich mac and cheese that is creamy, gooey, and delicious.

We wanted to pull out all the stops for this mac and cheese; so we use Campanile pasta because of how well it holds onto the creamy cheese sauce and three different kinds of cheese. We start by using cheddar to get that great everyday cheese flavor, add in pepper jack for a little bite, and finish everything off with goat cheese for its creaminess.

We also include shallots, paprika, and freshly grated nutmeg to help round out the flavors and help this creamy mac and cheese some of the best we’ve ever had.

Mac and Cheese

Creamy Mac and Cheese

4.3 from 6 votes
Print Save Pin
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 8 servings


  • 1 pound campanile pasta
  • 4 cups milk
  • 6 tbsp butter
  • 6 tbsp flour
  • 1/3 cup shallot
  • 1 cup pepper jack cheese, divided
  • 2 cups cheddar cheese, divided
  • 4 oz goat cheese
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp mustard powder
  • 1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg


  • Start by bringing a large pot of water to a boil for the pasta. When the water is ready to cook the pasta for 10 minutes. When the pasta is finished cooking drain the water and set it aside.
  • While the water is coming to a boil, mince the shallot, and shred the cheddar and pepper jack cheese. Set aside a 1/2 cup of the pepper jack and cheddar cheese for a finishing touch.
  • To make the cheese sauce create a roux by melting the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. As the butter starts to melt whisk in the flour and continue whisking until the roux turns a light brown.
  • Add in the shallots and the milk and continue to stir lightly for five minutes until the mixture starts to thicken. The sauce may feel a little lumpy because of the shallots.
  • After five minutes or so add in 1 1/2 cups of cheddar, a 1/2 cup of pepper jack, and the goat cheese. Also add in the salt, pepper, paprika, mustard powder and the freshly grated nutmeg.
  • Continue to cook the cheese sauce on medium-low heat for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring regularly, until the sauce has thickened.
  • Bring everything together by folding the pasta into the cheese sauce. Pour the mac and cheese into a large baking dish and sprinkle the remaining cheese over the top.
  • Finish the creamy mac and cheese by putting it under the broiler for five minutes or until the cheese on top has some color.


This mac and cheese is best if you serve it right after you’ve made it. You can make it ahead of time and warm it up in the oven, but it won’t be quite as good as when it’s fresh.
Tried this RecipeLet us know what you think of this recipe. Leave your thoughts and rating in the comments.

The nutrition information shown is an estimate based on available ingredients and preparation.

Mark is an experienced food writer, recipe developer, and photographer who is also Umami’s publisher and CEO. A passionate cook who loves to cook for friends, he can often be found in the kitchen or by the grill testing new recipes.

More Info About Mark Hinds

Learn More

Find more recipes, tips, and ideas about these techniques, ingredients, and cuisines.

Let us know what you think

Let us know what you think, and share your thoughts with other cooks.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating